Mamas! I’ve been tandem nursing for 18 months (read about how to do it like a boss) and I have pumped. A lot! (Ironically, neither of my nurslings ever took to the bottle.) With Nugget, I pumped and created a freezer stash because that’s what I thought I was supposed to do! With Peanut, I only pumped occasionally, if I needed some relief. The further along I traveled on my breastfeeding journey, the more intel I gathered. I decided if and when I was going to pump, I would need my 5 must haves for pumping.
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My 5 Must Haves for Pumping:
An Amazing Electric Pump
If you’re going get into the pumping game, you’ll need a good quality electric pump. I absolutely LOVE this one:
This pump is hospital grade, a closed system, relatively quiet, and most importantly, works! Bonus that the company that makes the pump (Spectra Baby USA) is owned and operated by registered nurses and board certified lactation consultants. This pump must be plugged in. If you are looking for a battery operated pump (to be more mobile), this is the counterpart:
A Comfy Hands-Free Bra
Ladies, this is an absolute game changer! You are hands free and are able to move around (for the most part) while being attached. Nothing says multi-tasking like a good hands-free pumping bra.
I can’t say enough good things about this bra. Love that it zips up in the front and the nipple holes aren’t too big. Perfect for keeping everything in place while securing the bottles! Straps are adjustable and the bra is well constructed.
A Hand Pump
I learned the hard way…always keep a hand pump on hand! (Hand expressing is no fun and some women don’t respond well to it–me, for example.) In case your electricity goes out and you don’t have the battery operated pump, in case you get separated from your pump, in case you ever need immediate relief!…keep one of these with you.
This little thing is so handy, I even used it to catch the overflow while nursing one baby. It’s so comfortable, I didn’t even feel it.
There are so many different bags out on the market! Quite honestly, this is the only one I’ve ever used. I like that they are double sealed, easy to pour, and have plenty of space for labeling. PUMPING HACK: I just found out you can pump DIRECTLY into this bag. What?!!! (Apparently, you can get a Lansinoh pump adaptor if you don’t have a Lansinoh pump. Otherwise, the bags fit the pump.) This is amazing, especially if you don’t enjoy washing out bottles!!
A Bottle Drying Rack
If you’re pumping, you’ll need bottles (and those are entirely dependent upon your babe’s preferences!). Those bottles will have to be washed…and dried.
I had a friend who exclusively pumped and tried getting away with not having a drying rack. After a few weeks, she had had enough. Regular dish racks/towels on the countertop just don’t cut it. (The towels get damp and start to smell and the bottles don’t completely dry.) Bottles need airflow in order to dry, especially with all the pump parts!
These are my favorites:
And there you have it! My 5 must haves for pumping (although let’s be honest, I didn’t/don’t really enjoy pumping)! But Mama’s got to do what Mama’s got to do, right?
Ironically, my girls never took the bottle (so we ended up feeding from a cup when necessary). I ended up pretty much just straight nursing! But these items were the ones I used and loved when I did pump.
To read more about my breastfeeding journey, check out 8 Best Nursing Tops and You Know You’re a Tandem Nursing Mama When….
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