Congrats! Now you are a mommy to the cutest thing in your world. And your tiny center of happiness now takes up all the time you can think of. Ouch! Yes, it’s true. Babies are so small and dependant that it takes parents their whole time and attention through the day, a week for months to come.
This is an irreversible cycle, and the work only gets more intense and tiring as the baby grows and the demands of the baby. One of the foremost needs of a baby after birth is nourishment and hygiene. That is all it takes but then takes up a lot of time if not planned correctly. Add to it the fact that the baby’s sleep-wake-nourish-play-sleep cycle is neither regulated nor fixed.
Importance of a Breastfeeding Schedule
Of these requirements, nourishment is key because the baby can wake up in the middle of the night if hungry. And so it makes sense to plan according to the nourishment cycle so that other activities can subsequently fall into place around it.
The baby is primarily nourished on the mother’s milk for the first few weeks, after which other foods are slowly introduced. After this shift, breast milk intake reduces by quite a large amount. However, breast milk can still be given to a child while adding other foods as it’s one of the best forms of nutrition. Babies can be nourished up to one year or more on breast milk.
Introduction of Breastfeeding Bags
Now the process of breastfeeding can be done naturally and is the best way to do it for the initial few weeks. This is because the baby is suddenly in a new environment where it can be overwhelming for the baby to deal with many changes.
But after the first few weeks, the baby can advance to feeding breast milk through a bottle. Adding breast milk to a bottle comes with its own set of rules and hygiene processes to be followed. We are saying a process because it’s not just the feeding of the bottle that is essential, but also the process of sourcing the milk well in time and storing it properly. Not just that it has to be timed to perfection, but it needs its own set of accessories to complete the job. Accessories like a feeding bottle with a suitable nipple, a breast pump, and milk storage bags are required.
Breast Milk Storage Bags
Breast milk storage bags are essentially containers to store the entire volume of breast milk that the mother would pump. The mother needs to regularly keep ready storage of breast milk ready for the baby just in case he demands it suddenly. It’s important to build a stash.
This is possible using breast milk storage bags which lets the mothers store the milk on large bags from where they can feed into smaller containers like milk bottles for regular feed. So there is no need for the mother to pump the milk every time the baby demands it. She can have her breast milk cycle where she will use the breast pump to feed the milk into the larger storage bags. There are some advantages to this process.
How to Select Good Breast Milk Bags?
- Ensure they are manufactured from food-grade plastic. Usually, all the bags are tested medically and are found to be BPA-free.
- Like all baby products, the bags must come in tamper protection and must be sealed when you buy them. This will ensure the contents are not contaminated.
- Breast milk containers are flexible plastic pouches, and so they will slump and fold easily into the tiniest of spaces. They are usually stored in the freezer.
- Choose one that lets you pump the milk directly into the bags. This will avoid unnecessary spillage. Some feeding bottles contain pouches so that you can pump and store the bags and then connect them directly to the feeding bottles. This way, you minimize spillage and wastage of precious milk.
The choice of the perfect bag depends on criteria like their durability, size, material, and usability. The bags have to be easily usable and puncture-resistant. A bag that can ideally grow with the baby is good. While 4 ounces will quickly outgrow the baby’s needs, the 8-ounce bag will last a long time. All the bags are medically certified—all these factors majorly into user convenience and satisfaction.
Product Reviews – Breast Milk Bags
Since we have understood the purpose and usefulness of the bags and understood key requirements, let us evaluate some market products.
Lansinoh Breast Milk Storage Bags – Best Overall Product
These bags are BPA and BPS-free, pre-sterilized for safety, and also feature their own patented double zipper seal and the reinforced double-sealed side seams. This offers ultimate protection and ensures no spillage, even in case of an accident. This will save you valuable milk from being wasted, and the effort needed to clean the spill like, e.g., imagine it’s happening inside your fridge. They are large-sized bags available in capacities of 6-ounces. The large holding size ensures you can use them as your baby grows older and consumes relatively more feed.
In case you have the Lansinoh Breast Pump, you can directly feed into the bags saving valuable time, effort, and money. The bags can be locally recyclable in the recyclable plastic bins. Besides these features, Lansinoh has been a trusted name in the market when it comes to quality baby products. One package consists of 50 bags and retails for around $10.
Kiinde Twist Pouch Breast Milk Storage Bags – Most Convenient Product
This breast milk pouch has convenience written all over it. This is the best thing for moms who are looking at convenient yet practical solutions for breastfeeding. They are somewhat a bag and a bottle in one. The pouches can connect to their breast pumps and also the brand’s bottle converter. They feature a threaded cap design instead of zip-lock closure, and this design, as we know, is more resistant to accidental spills from zip locks.
Their innovative twist-and-lock mechanism design allows convenient pumping, storage, and feed. The entire product is easily recyclable. List most shipped pre-sterilized products and are medically tested to be phthalate, BPA, and PVC free. They retail for around 15 for 40 bags (150 milliliters) which are available in 6-8 ounce capacities.
I think, apart from convenience, the best part about them is the size, which at 8 inches should take care of a lot of needs. You can pump the feed directly into the bag, freeze it to store it, and heat it when needed. Then you can use an adapter to connect the bag to a range of nipples, and it’s ready for the baby. So the entire process from boob to baby is so effortless without any pouring, measuring, and eliminating the process of decanting along the way. If you’re looking for a one-stop-shop solution, they have their breast pump, bags, bag heater, and also nipple-bottle feed.
Medela Breast Milk Storage Bags – Extremely Safe Product Design
The best thing about this product is that this set is made for travel. Either local every day or a long journey, they will ease your life. The product is shipped with a re-sealable transport pouch. This pouch enables you to pack and carry any unused bags. Therefore if you cannot carry breast milk with you, they can pump whenever they can, and rest assured that they have a set of clean bags to use from the pouch, which helps organize and store them properly.
They are pre-sterilized and are BPA-free. The bags have a self-standing design and so will not slouch. Therefore, you can keep them standing to make them lie flat in the freezer and take minimum space. The bag has been manufactured from durable double-layer material and an in-built double-zipper seal so that the feed remains safe irrespective of where it is stored.
These bags are ideal for everyday travel or once in a while family trips where it’s easy to transport them, and rest assured that the feed is safe inside. Their make and design ensure the contents stay safe can be pushed around a bit in your travel bag without causing leakage, spillage, or even breakage. They are available in 6-ounce sizes (180 milliliters), and packages can contain 25, 50, or even 100 pouches. They are available at rates starting from $10.
Nanobébé 50 Breastmilk Storage Bags – Excellent Storage and Product Design
The one feature that makes it a superb product is the way the unit has been designed. The design gives it a unique stackable storage feature which saves a lot of space in the freezer. Not limited to that, the stackable feature also takes a whole lot less space and looks nice and organized. Often, bags can be lying around all over the freezer and sometimes can be difficult to find. This is not some theory but a practical, real-world struggle for most parents.
Imagine having a product that stacks beautifully but also instantly gives you an idea of how much storage you have left. Its vertical storage unit (which can hold 50 storage bags) has to be purchased additionally and is worth it. This is good if you are the type that appreciates ergonomics and an organized look in the fridge. It also allows you to organize the bags from new-to-old, something that is difficult to do with other bags.
In addition to all these benefits, they claim to defrost much quicker than the rest of the brands, almost twice as fast. Other standard features include pre-sterilized material, extra thick bags that are BPA-free, a double zipper safety seal, and an easy-pour opening. The design is so nice, neat, and well-designed that you would be left wondering what other manufacturers were thinking all this time. The package ships with 50 5-ounce bags (150 milliliters) and retails for around $10. This is our top pick considering the design features.
Ameda Store’ N Pour Breast Milk Storage Bags – Simple and Best
This is a simple no-holds-barred product that enables the easy collection, storage, and pouring of breast milk. They are resistant to spilling and cracking due to the special multi-ply design, which gives them added strength. Due to this, they are capable of standing on their own and use a zip mechanism for sealing. They are pre-sterilized and BPA-free. The specially designed pout spout ensures sills are completely cut down, and you can pour the contents with one hand. These are available at around $20 for 40 pieces of 5-ounce bags (150 milliliters).
Best Breast Milk Storage Bags: Summary
After all this evaluation, I am sure you are left wondering, why not just use plastic bags. The reason being for one, they are not medically certified and so have high chances of contamination and leaks. Breastfeeding bags are designed to store and pour milk, not the regular bags, and so spillage may occur and are also inconvenient.
Even if you manage to get one that meets all the mentioned criteria, you do not want something easy to spill in the freezer. It is a loss of milk and effort and additional effort to clean the mess. So investing a couple of dollars is well worth the benefits.