Sure, breastfeeding is a beautiful and bonding experience. But it can also be messy and uncomfortable. These essential accessories, below, will help make your breastfeeding time easier.
You’ll want to have one or two of these easy-access items (most have cups that unclasp or unsnap in front) for the first few days of new motherhood, but wait until your milk comes in to get any additional ones so you can ensure a good fit, suggests Kristen Chase, cofounder of coolmompicks.com.
Milkin’ Mommas co-founder Paula Caplan, CLEC, cautions, “An ill-fitting bra can lead to plugged ducts or mastitis.” Breathable cotton or microfiber materials are a good bet. Larger-breasted women may need a bra with an underwire, though some say they’re not as comfortable, and you won’t want to sleep in those, Chase adds. Another great invention for nursing moms are nursing tops. Motherwear makes a great line of tops that allow you to easily nurse whlle wearing them. Buy there here.
For unexpected leaks, look for pads that are absorbent but not so obvious when worn out in public, says Chase, noting that washable pads are worth checking out. “They are environmentally friendly, often more absorbent and comfortable, and easily washed and dried for use,” she explains. We loves these adorable polka dot nursing pads (pictured) we saw on the great website, Etsy. Buy them here
“Most nipple wounds heal best with moisture, so anything that is non-toxic to the baby and provides moisture to the nipple will make the mother feel better,” says The Pump Station cofounder Wendy Haldeman, IBCLC. A lot of moms swear by ointments made from 100 percent lanolin, which is fine as long as you don’t have a wool allergy, Haldeman notes, although she also recommends a product made from pressed olive oil, shay butter and calendula called MotherLove.
“Shop around for a nursing pillow,” says Chase. “Many of them can be used as a back/belly/ankle support during pregnancy, then for nursing when baby arrives.” Some women swear by super-stiff pillows to keep baby propped up for breastfeeding, but Chase says something flexible that molds to your body may make getting into different positions easier. Boppy Pillows are a classic, and you can even pick out which fabric best suits your decorating style.