Product Spotlight: Breast Pumps & Accessories — The Bump
February 2020 Moms

Product Spotlight: Breast Pumps & Accessories

This week’s product spotlight will be: breast pumps and accessories

  • Brand
  • Pros/cons
  • Battery powered or outlet?
  • Open or closed system?
  • Accessories?
  • Compatible bottles?
  • Tips on dealing with insurance
  • Pumping bras?

Re: Product Spotlight: Breast Pumps & Accessories

  • Brand: Medela Freestyle
    Pros: it’s trusty and reliable. Due to latching issues I had to pump exclusively for my daughter so this bad boy got used at least 4 times a day from birth until just after her first birthday. 
    Cons: I’m sure this is a con of many pumps, but the parts take a lot of time to clean. Eventually, I learned the trick to store them in the fridge immediately after each pump and sanitize them when I got home from work. I also ended up getting a second set of parts (free from insurance) that I would use at night. 
    System: closed...I think?
    Accessories: it came with a tote bag, cooler, bottles and an ice pack. 
    Compatible bottles: I didn’t bother with that since I was pumping so much and so often. I would dump the milk into bags so I could pack more in the cooler. 
    Insurance tips: I went through one of those services. I think I used Aeroflow and it was sooo convenient. They handled everything and the pump just showed up at my door. They even reminded me when I could request free accessories/parts. I’m going to go through them again to see if I’m eligible for another free pump. Fingers crossed. 
    Pumping bras: I absolutely loved the simple wishes pumping bra. I changed into it whenever it was time to pump versus wearing it all day because it’s rally just meant for pumping. 

    My Questions: I’m hoping I’ll have better luck breastfeeding #2 so I’m thinking about getting a haakaa to catch milk from the side I’m not nursing from. Does anyone have experience with it? Any pump recos other than the freestyle?
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  • craftywitchcraftywitch member
    edited September 2019
    • Brand Medela PISA, Avent Double Electric, Spectra2, Avent single handheld (+ Freemie Liberty for this time but haven’t tried it yet)
    • Pros/cons Spectra2 is the best of the bunch as it’s hospital grade, Medela was ok, don’t recommend bothering with Avent
    • Battery powered or outlet? Outlet and recommend the AC adapter to pump to and from work while commuting
    • Open or closed system? Spectra2 is closed, Medela PISA is open, recommend closed
    • Accessories? AC adapter all day!
    • Compatible bottles? Avent bottles (including glass) are directly compatible with Spectra2, loved that! Ended spilled milk!
    • Tips on dealing with insurance Go through the website- check FAQs and browse through all the “partner” site options. 3 of mine didn’t offer Freemies, but digging on the 4th site I found the Freemie system 100% covered!
    • Pumping bras? Unnecessary consumer goods- I cut 2 holes in an old sports bra and it worked exactly the same for hands-free pumping.
    Also side note I had the Milky milk catcher to collect leakage from the opposite boob while nursing and it was okay, but I’ve heard the Hakka is better since it has suction. Has anyone used it? What do you think? Milk catcher would collect 1/4-1/2oz from me so hoping the Hakka is more efficient.
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    • Brand - Madela Pump-in-Style, Spectra 2
    • Pros/cons - I loved the feel of the Spectra 2 and the portability of the Madela. The spectra is like a fat teardrop shape which isn't great for carrying on planes. The other thing was though that I already had about 100 hand-me-down bottles for the Madela AND my work had hospital grade Madela pumps we could use so I honestly used those most. 
    • Battery powered or outlet? They were both outlet but I bought a battery pack for the Madela for use on the plane or in the car.
    • Open or closed system? both closed. so were the hospital grade pumps at work.
    • Accessories? pumping bra is a must. I just dumped the bottles into bags dated them and put them in the freezer.
    • Compatible bottles? I got SO MANY madela bottles passed down to me but I would pump into them and pour them into other bottles. 
    • Tips on dealing with insurance - I just called the number provided and they sent me my pump, it was pretty easy. My insurance requires that we use their supplier so we have limited choices. Luckily I still have my other two which are basically unused since we had the hospital grade pumps at work. My new work does not have any pumps so I will have to rely more heavily on mine.
    • Pumping bras? I had a no name brand one from Amazon that zipped up the front and was perfect. This time I might buy a second so I can wash them more often LOL. THIS IS THE MOST KEY ACCESSORY EVER. Pumping without a pumping bra stinks because you literally can do nothing put hold and hope they don't spill. 
    • ALSO MANUAL PUMPS - are great for when you want less setup but need to pump (like out on a date away from baby).
    @craftywitch - I never bothered to catch milk from the other breast while nursing and it was only a problem a few times so I'm not sure I would buy something special just for that.

    Bottles - anyone considering glass bottles please be aware that some daycares (like ours) would not take them. So check with your provider before investing in glass bottles. Some of them will take them if you also buy those silicone covers for the bottles.

    This time I am interested in trying freemies or some other non-traditional pump which will be out of pocket so we will see how nursing goes this time around. 
    Me: 38, DH: 36 
    Married Jan 2008 
    DD Baby Bells born Dec 2016 5 lbs, 12 oz, 18" <3 so in love <3
    Due with #2 Baby Arya EDD February 2020

    • Brand -Hygeia as my primary pump. I used the Hakaa and the freemie also
    • Pros/cons the hygeia is hospital grade so for someone that ended up needing to exclusively pump, it was great. A bit louder than other pumps but so efficient, way more so than other pumps I tried 
    • Battery powered or outlet? Both!
    • Open or closed system? Closed. This was very important to me. 
    • Accessories? I dunno, I got a bunch of the hygeia flanges and stuff. I pumped and mostly since I was EPing for a while. 
    • Compatible bottles? I found a lot of bottles fit in. Maybe not always pretty, but the medela and advent fit (ish...) and obviously the hygeia bottles fit
    • Tips on dealing with insurance- it was really easy for me. I called insurance, they told me the 3 suppliers they use, I called all 3 to see what they offered. Between the medela, spectra and hygeia I picked the hygeia. 
    • Pumping bras? Let me look them up!
    The freemie was great for car pumping! It attached to my hygeia pump so I only needed the $50 cups. Loved it. It was annoying only in that you pump directly into the cups so you can’t really use them again until you wash and dry them, but it’s not recommended to use them as your every pumping product anyway, so they were great for on the go. Also used the hakaa for a short time, my boobs didn’t love them, but that was my boob problem and not the hakaa. 
  • Maybe it's a silly question,  but those who mentioned having multiple pumps,  did your insurance cover all of them?  Or were the extras out of pocket?
  • @babyroma I’m a FTM but I think it’s across the board that insurance will cover one pump a year / per pregnancy. And a lot of them only cover certain brands where others will just need submitted to get reimbursed.

    I’ve pretty much made my mind up about getting the Willow wearable pump so I can work and now they have a milk container so you don’t have to get a bunch of bags. I’m in and out of meetings and running around the office so even though I’ll pay OOP for it I think it will help me stay sane. 
    BFP 6/3/19 EDD 2/14/20 BFP 4/15/21 EDD 12/20/21
    Diagnosed with PCOS & Hashimoto's
  • @babyroma My insurance covered 1 pump per pregnancy and this is my second so 2 pumps. I was gifted the Spectra from another mom who decided not to BF but had already received her free insurance pump. I bought the Avent stuff from Target OOP- skip the double electric but I loved the hand pump as a backup and for traveling.
  • @brookert615 @craftywitch
    Thanks ladies! I figured it was something like that just thought I'd ask! I'd honestly been dreading looking for breast pumps haha
  • @babyroma it isn't that scary. I honestly had two pumps because of laziness. If you can call EP'ing lazy ever, which you can't. When DD 2-5 weeks old I exclusively pumped, because she damaged me so badly from her shallow latch that I literally screamed if she tried to nurse. Not exactly calming haha. So I pumped for about a month to let myself heal and then we resumed a nursing relationship. People worry about nipple confusion but we did not have that problem and it was either try or switch to formula. So I had one pump upstairs for the MOTN and one downstairs. 

    EP is the most difficult in the MOTN because you have to feed the baby and then stay up to pump after. Obviously the SO can take a turn with the feedings but you have to get up every time to freaking pump. I really hope this baby and I learn to BF more easily this time around.
    Me: 38, DH: 36 
    Married Jan 2008 
    DD Baby Bells born Dec 2016 5 lbs, 12 oz, 18" <3 so in love <3
    Due with #2 Baby Arya EDD February 2020

  • Has anyone tried multiple manual pumps? Curious if I'm missing out on anything with my little Avent handheld... the single manual ones are so cheap I would totally spring for options if anyone has any rave reviews.
  • @craftywitch I have only used a used madela manual pump that lost half its suction and I wanted to set it on fire. I am going to try the Hakaa one this time and won't be shy about trying others this time life is too short!!
    Me: 38, DH: 36 
    Married Jan 2008 
    DD Baby Bells born Dec 2016 5 lbs, 12 oz, 18" <3 so in love <3
    Due with #2 Baby Arya EDD February 2020

  • I had the Haakaa and wasn’t supper impressed.  It would be great to catch milk from the other side while nursing and you have a let down.  I had to pump with an electric pump to empty my breast completely.  
  • @lanie1000 @craftywitch Being a FTM I don't have the personal experience but my sister had her first in April and has used the haakaa and loves it. I thought it was brilliant because she would sometime catch around 3oz milk in the haakaa while her son was feeding from the other side. Again, only witnessed it but I have been sold as long as breast feeding works out for me. 
    Thank you for everyone's input on these product details. They have been super helpful to this momma-to-be
  • jlmack022920 - here you go

    Something to think about is do you need portability? Will you be pumping in the car/plane? There are options to do that with all of these but I was seriously considering the Mya before I decided to splurge and get an Elvie.
    Me: 38, DH: 36 
    Married Jan 2008 
    DD Baby Bells born Dec 2016 5 lbs, 12 oz, 18" <3 so in love <3
    Due with #2 Baby Arya EDD February 2020

  • Thanks ladies! STM here, but reading through these helped!
  • I appreciate this thread being revived! I have the Spectra s1 from my first pregnancy and LOVED it, especially because it doesn't have to be plugged in while you use it! Was going to just get another this time (I'd like to keep one at work and one at home,) but I'm looking at some of the cordless options too.

    I used the Haakaa (actually Nature Bond brand) last time and it was sooo great. I had a strong supply and would easily get 3-4 oz from the side I wasn't nursing on, it added up to a ton. Though it can fall off...I remember a particularly low moment in the middle of the night when mine fell off and milk spilled in the bed and I threw the thing across the room, lol. But still worth it.
  • @shellac835 I got the Spectra S1 this time around since I read such good things about it. With my first, I got the Medela Freestyle which I loved. Honestly, the only reason I got another one this time around was because of insurance. I think the S1 is a little bigger so maybe I'll travel with the Medela and use the Spectra at home. Either way it's nice to have options!

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