Are you breastfeeding mum looking to express breast milk, but you’re worried about choosing a feeding bottle? Then you’ve come to the right place. Mama Milk have answered some of your FAQ about how to choose the best bottles for breastfed babies. We’ve reviewed the most popular bottles on the market to help you decide which ones to buy.
Top 7 Best Bottles for Breastfed Babies
1. Vital Baby Nurture
These Nurture bottles are a popular choice for breastfeeding mums. The teats have been specially designed to be wide, soft and flexible like a nipple. The contour of the teat is supposed to mimic the natural latch of a breastfeeding baby. Vital baby claims this makes it easier for you to switch between the breast and bottle.
Your baby will take to these bottles quickly, especially if they are quite fussy about the bottles they use. We found these bottle to be one of the best performing bottles at a great price. If you are on a tight budget we recommend keeping an eye out for online deals. You can easily get 4-5 bottles for under £10.
2. Haberman Suckle Feeder
The Suckle feeder is a new kid on the baby bottle block. It is designed to reduce nipple-teat confusion for your breast fed baby as he needs to apply pressure with his jaw to release the milk. The teat is angled and filters out trapped air bubbles to prevent colic. Your baby can suck at a natural rhythm as a valve system shuts the tip closed when he isn’t suckling. This will prevent him overfeeding and the milk simply pouring into his mouth without any effort.
Online reviews by mums give these bottles a huge thumbs up. It was hard to find a review giving it any less than 5 out of 5 stars. If you’ve struggled on with other baby bottles with poor results then we recommend you check out these bottles.
3. Medela Calma Solitaire
The Calma Solitaire was the brain child of Medela as the result of a study into the nature of how babies suck at the breast. This bottle is designed to allow your baby to suck, pause, breathe and swallow all in the natural rhythm they would if on the breast. Mums who have used both regular teats and this teat swear it prevents your baby picking up bad habits which result in sore boobs when they are at the breast.
If you have a Medela breast pump, you can attach the bottle directly and store until the milk is needed. This saves you the hassle of decanting to another feeding bottle. Which means less washing up to do. We bet you like the sound of that. We wouldn’t recommend them if you are planning or feeding baby a bottle more than once a day as the bottle are expensive. That being said they are high quality bottles and you may want to make that extra investment to ensure baby doesn’t develop nipple-teat confusion.
4. NUK Glass
We’re happy to announce that glass baby bottles are come back into fashion, now that modern technology has improved the cons of using them. Choice is still limited here in the UK, but the NUK glass bottles are heads and shoulder above the rest. Glass bottle have a lot of benefits especially for breast milk, including chemical free, easy to heat and hygienic. Breast milk given in a glass bottle is known to provide baby with more nutrients than plastic bottles. This is because the milk can’t combine to chemicals in the plastic.
If your baby struggles with the harder silicone teats, they may benefit from the softer latex teats. The glass is sturdy, albeit heavier than plastic. They are easier to heat, giving baby less time to cry whist waiting or a feed. If you want to know more about why you should consider using glass bottles over plastic click here.
5. Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature
Let’s look at the most popular baby bottle in the UK – the Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature. They are wide necked bottles which gives them a shorter and fatter look than standard bottles. Don’t worry they will hold the same amount of milk. It means they are easier for you to hold and clean. The teat is wider and more breast like for your baby. This helps to maintain a nice wide attachment when feeding.
The teats are sturdy silicone with small air vents, perfect if your baby struggles with colic or gets frustrated with collapsing teats. You can buy these bottles as a single bottle right up to a 6 pack. This gives you the flexibility to meet your needs, without costing you an arm and a leg for only buying a few bottles.
Newborn teats are provided as standard, but if you need a quicker or slower flow there are 5 size options. We love that you can also get different coloured bottles, and not just pink and blue, to make bottle feeding a little more interesting.
6. Avent Natural
If you’re looking for great quality, high performing bottles which are made in the UK, Avent Natural are the bottles for you. These bottles are a great alternative to the Tommee Tippee closure to nature. They have a a longer, narrower shape if you prefer that bottle style.
The teats is wide, vented and sturdy silicone, making it easier for baby to attach and take in little air, preventing trapped wind and colic. This make the transition between breast and bottle seamless and prevent the likelihood of nipple teat confusion.
Just be aware before you buy these bottles that some sets come with a new born teat (size 1) and some with a slow flow (size 2). If you don’t want baby gulping milk stat with the slower teat. If the milk flows too quick you baby may quickly realise that bottle feeding is much less hard work than breastfeeding, and start to show a preference for a bottle.
These bottles are also available in a glass version is you want to avoid using plastic bottles.
7. Dr Browns Natural Flow
Colic is a huge problem with when bottle feeding as babies tend to take in more air. Dr Browns natural flow bottle have been engineered to tackle that problem head on. They have an internal vent system which allows air to flow freely during feeding.
The teats provided are size one (newborn teats) which are designed to help your baby mimic the suckling of the breast. The teats are available right up to level 4 which is suitable 9 months plus, to help baby control the flow of the milk.
The biggest drawback of this system is that it’s quite fiddly to clean due to the part of the vent system. However if you’re at your wits end with a colicky baby or your baby suffer from reflux, give these a shot, they may just save your sanity!
Worth a mention….
The Breastflow bottles are the original breastfeeding bottles designed to mimic the action of a breastfeeding. Just like being on the breast, your baby will have to compress the teat and create a vacuum suction in order for the milk to be released.
Theses bottle are like the marmite of bottle, hit or miss. The concept behind them is fantastic but they can be temperamental. They appear to work well for occasional use but don’t withstand frequent or exclusive use. Keep this in mind if you’ve set your breastfeeding goals to under a year. If you’re on a budget you may not want to buy more than one set of bottles.
Basics of buying bottles for breastfed babies…
Do I need special bottles if my baby is breastfeeding?
You won’t need special bottles when mixing breastfeeding with bottle feeding, however you may want to consider the type of teat you use on the bottle.
Why is the teat important?
Well it’s all down to the sucking technique that your baby uses when they feed. When your baby is at the breast he will push his tongue to the roof of the mouth to get the milk. When using a bottle he pushes the tongue forward towards the teeth so the milk flows out of the teat.
Are regular teats bad for my breastfeeding baby?
The difference between the two suckling actions can cause confusion for baby if you plan to change between the two regularly. Milk can still flow from a regular feeding teat without the baby actively sucking. This means that your baby doesn’t need to put much effort into getting milk and can overfeed. When you put baby back onto the breast they may be a reluctant to have to work hard for their food, and start to reject the breast.