Milk is the sole source of food for newborns as they begin their life. According to UNICEF, breast milk is the healthiest and safest food for a baby’s first six months, providing them with all the nutrients they need to thrive.
The act of breastfeeding provides an excellent opportunity to bond with your baby, but it can be time-consuming. If you’re a busy mom, it helps to express your breast milk for your baby to feed on when you’re pressed for time.
There are many types of breast pumps, including manual, wearable, hospital-grade, and electric pumps. Wearable electric breast pumps are the most modern way of pumping; they take the lead in convenience and ease of use. But how can you choose the best breast pump for you? Here we’ll narrow it down to the best three hands-free breast pump choices on the market today.
Top 3 Best Wearable Breast Pumps – Comparison
What is A Wearable Breast Pump?
A wearable breast pump is cordless, tubeless, and hands-free. It is designed to fit and pump from inside your bra as you proceed with your daily activities. Most of these hands-free breast pumps drain milk into collecting cups, milk containers, or disposable milk bags within the pump. You can pump one breast at a time or pump both simultaneously.
Wearable breast pumps use rechargeable batteries, but you can only charge them when not in use. They are quiet, and their designs are suitable for multi-tasking moms.
Our Top Three Best Hands-Free Breast Pumps
Best Portable Breast Pump: Elvie Double Electric Wearable Smart Breast Pump
The Elvie Pump is an excellent portable breast pump for working moms. This wireless and tubeless pump has a built-in breast milk collection hub that fits your standard nursing bra. Since it’s a hands-free pump, the Elvie allows you to do other things as you pump. You can buy two hubs to pump both breasts simultaneously and save time.
You can monitor your breast milk flow in real-time by linking your pump to the free Elvie Pump app on your phone. The pump detects let-down and shifts from stimulation into expression mode, stopping when the bottle fills.
The Elvie uses a built-in rechargeable battery and pumps silently. The battery will give you two and a half hours of life when fully charged – perfect for busy mothers who need a reliable pump.
Its sleek, modern design makes it a good choice for experienced and inexperienced moms. Each pump has snap-on bra strap extenders (bra adjusters). It is best to wear a well-fitting bra and use the strap extenders as you pump. Better yet, it is simple to disassemble, clean & assemble.
The Elvie double electric breast pump comes with two hubs, four 5-ounce milk bottles with lids, four spouts, four seals, four valves, two 24mm and two 28mm breast shields (you can buy additional 21mm breast shield packs separately if you need them), four bra adjusters, two micro USB charging cables, and two carry bags.
Safety & Cleaning
The Elvie double electric pump is BPA-free. You can wash the parts in a dishwasher and dry them on a rack. The pump is generally easy to clean, and the bra adjusters are machine washable.
Elvie has a handy two-year warranty for the pump (hub) and ninety days warrant for washable parts. The pump is FSA/HAS compatible and partially covered by some insurance companies.
On top of being easy to use, transferring the milk into a storage container or bag is simple using the spout. When fully charged, the Elvie breast pump can take you through four pumping sessions, and charging takes only two hours.
In October 2019, the company introduced a firmware upgrade (1.7.0) to make the overflow sensor more accurate and prevent overflow issues.
Many customers have positive reviews of the Elvie breast pump. The downside is that you can’t pump in a lying position.
Best Wearable Breast Pump: Willow Pump Wearable Breast Pump
The Willow is a cordless and tubeless wearable breast pump with a compact design to fit your bra. The pump has seven suction levels similar to hospital-grade and traditional electric pumps. The pump is highly sensitive, so you can adjust for more comfort.
Willow’s leak-proof pumping gives you all-around freedom to pump in any position. It uses Smart Suction technology to help increase your milk volume per pumping session. You can use the Willow app for live pumping sessions, pumping history, and customized tips.
The hands-free pumping of the Willow breast pump is easy with a soft and slow rhythm to maximize your comfort. After pumping, you can directly store the milk bags in the fridge or freezer. If using reusable containers, you can combine milk from the two breasts into a single container and store then wash the empty container for reuse.
The breast pump uses a rechargeable battery with a battery life of up to five pumping sessions. It takes two hours to charge fully, but a 20-minute charge can take you through one pumping session.
The Willow is a wireless, hands-free, all-in-one smart breast pump with the most innovative design that allows you to pump wherever you are, even when lying down. It has a one-way valve that only allows milk to flow in and not out, eliminating the chances of spillage even when you bend.
Willow assures you of 360-degrees mobility when you pump into milk bags and 190-degree mobility if you pump into reusable containers.
The Willow pump comprises two white bra-shaped pumps to wear under your nursing bra. The pump is discreet and quiet, giving you the confidence to wear it as you move about since nobody will notice that you’re pumping.
The Willow double electric pump comes with two pumps, two flanges, two flextubes, one charger, 24 4-oz milk bags, and two cleaning brushes. You can separately buy reusable containers, milk container inserts, and additional components (flanges, flextubes, milk bags, and a charger).
Safety & Cleaning
The Willow breast pump is BPA-free and keeps your breastmilk hygienic and safe due to the one-way valve and self-sealing. The company recommends that you replace most of the parts every three months, and replacement is free! The breast pump has only three parts to clean, and they are dishwasher safe.
The Willow breast pump has a one-year warranty from the manufacturer. It is also FSA/HAS eligible and partially covered by some insurance companies.
According to customers who’ve used it, the Willow is the most convenient of all the wearable pumps. It’s the easiest to clean, non-spilling, and most hygienic. The only downside of the Willow is that you have to buy another charger to charge both pumps simultaneously.
Best Affordable Wearable Breast Pump: Momcozy Electric Wearable Breast Pump
The Momcozy electric breast pump imitates your baby’s sucking mode to pump more milk in less time. This breast pump is relatively quiet and made of soft, food-grade silicone. It has a leak-proof closed system that prevents leakage. In addition, the breast pump is lightweight and portable with a rechargeable battery that lasts up to eighty minutes.
Momcozy breast pump comprises one pump (including its accessories), one 24mm flange, and one USB cable.
Momcozy pumps directly into a milk container. It has a closed system that prevents backflow. The USB charger allows you to recharge using a laptop, power bank, or car USB; the batteries take 2.5 hours to charge fully. The pump’s parts are dishwasher safe, and you can sterilize them except the motor.
Momcozy is a hands-free pump that gives you freedom of mobility as you pump. It has five adjustable suction levels, and you can switch the massage mode for more comfortable pumping. The pump’s accessories are removable and easy to wash. However, because you only get one pump in the pack, you are limited to pumping milk from one breast at a time.
Cost & Warranty
Momcozy is has a very low price as compared to popular wearable pumps. It comes with a seven days warranty.
Pros and Cons of a Wearable Breast Pump vs a Standard Double Electric Breast Pump
If you’ve crossed manual breast pumps off the list, you might find yourself choosing between investing in a wearable, portable breast pump system, or a hospital-grade double electric breast pump. So which should you choose? Here are the pros and cons of a wearable breast pump system.
You can use a wearable breast pump as you shop, drive, teleconference, or work in your office. Even though your chest will appear bigger, you won’t need to take a break from work, and the public won’t notice that you’re pumping.
Freedom of Movement
A wearable breast pump won’t keep you attached to a power system. Instead, it uses a rechargeable battery, giving you the freedom to move anywhere while pumping. You can also travel or do your regular exercises as you pump.
The Willow and Elvie breast pumps have apps compatible with your Android or iPhone. The apps help you adjust speed and suction levels, monitor your pumping sessions in real-time, and track your daily milk volume.
The best wearable breast pumps produce unnoticeable sounds when pumping. The Willow and the Elvie pumps are currently the quietest pumps in the market. The quietness of the pumps gives you peace of mind as they don’t attract people’s attention to you. This gives you the flexibility to use the pump on-the-go, something that the best manual breast pump and best electric breast pump systems can’t offer!
Ease of Cleaning
A wearable breast pump is easy to clean. Unlike the other breast pumps, a wearable pump has fewer parts; for instance, Willow has two parts to clean, while Elvie has five, and all are dishwasher friendly.
An excellent wearable breast pump may be more costly than the non-wearable options.
A wearable pump cannot suction as efficiently as the best hospital-grade breast pump. Thus, you’ll need to pump several times to have an adequate milk supply.
You’ll have to set a mental reminder to charge your wearable pump when not using it. To save time, you’ll need to charge both pumps simultaneously.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Wearable Breast Pump
Wearable pumps are often more expensive than a non-wearable breast pump or a manual breast pump. However, you can opt for the affordable or FSA eligible pump.
Mode of Use
Single electric models pump one breast at a time, while double electric pumps suction both breasts. You can use the single pump when breastfeeding your baby on one breast, similar to how the Haakaa silicone breast pump works. However, a double pump will be more efficient if you are using it away from your baby.
You can check out the suction strength of the breast pump on the manufacturer’s site before buying. Generally, wearable pumps are not as powerful as a hospital-grade pump, so if you’re struggling with inadequate milk production, a wearable breast pump might not be suitable for you.
A quiet pump will calm your mind and trigger more milk letdown than a noisy one. A silent pump also gives you the convenience of using it in a public place. Check out the amount of sound the pump produces before buying.
Ease of Use
A wearable doesn’t have to be complicated to use – in fact, the whole idea is to make it easier than using a manual pump! Consider a simple design with user-friendly instructions for your convenience. Other pumps have toll-free numbers, which you can call for guidance whenever you’re stuck. You also want one that is easy to clean. Where possible, opt for a closed-system pump rather than an open system one, as they keep your milk separate from the machinery and workings of the pump, so that it’s easy to keep the whole system clean.
How to Use Your Wearable Breast Pump
- Read the user manual on usage and cleaning.
- Position your nipple appropriately into the pump.
- Maintain a slow speed and suction for more milk production and comfort.
- You can proceed with other activities as you pump.
- When you’re through, store the milk safely.
Pumping breast milk is beneficial for you and your baby; it ensures a constant milk supply while giving you the freedom to go to work, travel, or undertake other activities. While you’re looking for the best breast pumps, you need to consider the investment you are making, both in money and in your time each day.
Of all the breast pumps on the market, wearable pumps are the most convenient. They give you the freedom to pump at any place and any time you need to. You can buy two pumps, one for each breast, to save time. This makes wearable pumps the perfect solution for busy mothers.
Table of Contents
- Top 3 Best Wearable Breast Pumps – Comparison
- What is A Wearable Breast Pump?
- Our Top Three Best Hands-Free Breast Pumps
- Pros and Cons of a Wearable Breast Pump vs a Standard Double Electric Breast Pump
- Factors to Consider When Choosing a Wearable Breast Pump
- How to Use Your Wearable Breast Pump
- Bottom Line