Seeking a Reccomendation on a Breast Pump

Updated on April 05, 2008
C.R. asks from San Diego, CA
38 answers

Hello mommies. My daughter just turned one month old today and I think it's time to start pumping. I intend to breastfeed the majority of the time but I'm beginning to realize that having pumped milk is necessary. I don't intend to go back to work any time soon but I will be going back to school in the Fall. I've heard great things about the Pump In Style by Medela but I'm not sure if I need all those bells and whistles it comes with. I've also heard good things about the Swing by Medela. Please let me know what you would recommend.

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So What Happened?

Thank you all SO much for all of your wonderful suggestions and support! I decided to go with the Medela Swing and it works great. I see how having a double pump would save time while acquiring more milk, but since I'm home most of the time, I'm fine with the single pump. Again, thank you mamasource mommies!

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R.R.

answers from Los Angeles on

I also want to recommend the ISIS pump. It's awesome. A mom in target recommended it to me as I was about to buy some other battery electric pump for more $ I'm so glad she did because I love the ISIS and you can take it anywhere with you, no need for electricity or batteries and yes it is true that it is as effective at a hospital grade pump, it really does start going by itself after the milk lets down and you only have to do minimal work to get the milk out. I love it.

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K.K.

answers from Los Angeles on

C.:

I have a one year old son and expecting my second child in October. I used the Medela Pump In Style until I found out my husband and I were expecting another. I went back to work when my son was 3 1/2 months so I would pump at work all the time(for several months). I would completely recommend this pump and I have not had any problems with it at all. Good Luck:)
K. K.

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K.M.

answers from Los Angeles on

Everyone is suggesting the medela pump, which I know is good brand. I started out with a gerber handpump, which didn't produce what I was expecting(I'd never buy a hand pump again-I only expressed a few drops at times!) and it aggravated my "new mommy" tendonitis and eventually it broke. I then recieved an evenflo electric/battery operated handpump(under $40) and it made a difference. It might not be the best for working mums, and I have large breasts, but the output is way more signifigant then hand pumping and my wrist aren't in constant pain.....If you are are stay at home mum and want a pump for occasional pumping, I've have no problems with this particular pump...

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K.R.

answers from Los Angeles on

I'm a lactation educator with A Mother's Haven in Encino and a breastfeeding mom of a 14 month old.

Because you're going back to school in the Fall I would recommend the same pump to you that I recommend to working moms and that's the Medela Symphony. It's a hospital grade pump, so the most affordable way to get one is to rent it (purchasing would be around $800). The reason I recommend it to working moms is when you go back to work (or school) you're introducing new stresses into your life and stress can cause your milk supply to go down. Also, when you're there you don't always get to sit down and pump every 3 hours like you should to maintain your supply. The Symphony has a nice strong motor, so it's more efficient than the non-hospital grade pumps, and it runs more quietly. For all of the Medela pumps you can get a softer breast shield that is more comfortable than the hard ones that typically come in the personal fit kits.

It really depends on what your milk supply is like and what type of person you are. If you handle stress well and you have a good, established milk supply then I would try the Pump and Style Advanced. If you stress out easily or you get less than 3 ounces from each breast when you pump, a hospital grade pump is probably going to make your life easier. If you want to talk about it more email me here or at [email protected]____.com. I'm more than happy to chat with you and help you figure out which one is the best for you.

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C.B.

answers from Los Angeles on

HI, C.! Yes, I do highly recommend the Medela Pump In Style. My son was in the NICu for two months after he was born. During that time, I rented the hospital grade one. But, I returned it when he came home from the hospital. I found that he wasn't getting as used to breasfeeding exclusively with me at home so I turned to the Pump In Style. It was definitely the next best thing to the Hospital Pump. They even told me at the hospital that the Pump In Style was "good, but won't hold up for pumping exclusively"...Boy were they wrong. It's still going strong!

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M.J.

answers from Los Angeles on

I have the Pump In Style by Medela, and I LOVE it!! However, whether or not it's the right thing for you is something only you know :o) I also am at home with my kids, but it's nice to be able to pump and have milk available in case I'm gone for longer than anticipated or if my husband and I want to go out for a little while! I found that the things that I think are most important in a breast pump are:

1 - Definitely get one that pumps both sides - it saves time amongst other things!
2 - Make sure it's easy to clean - Medela has some cool microwave bags to clean the parts - very convenient (of course, I'm sure you could use them with other pumps, too!)
3 - Storage is a great feature, so you only have to carry/pack away one thing. An insulated pocket is great just in case you have to pump somewhere before getting into your car to drive home! (Trust me, it has happened! :oD)

Anyways, that's my two cents! Good luck!

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L.M.

answers from Los Angeles on

I used the pump in sytle and loved it!!

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J.F.

answers from San Diego on

I LOVED my Medela Pump in Style. I had to go back to work at 6 weeks and I pumped three times while at work. I am a teacher so I also had a short amount of time to pump. I really needed the bells and whistles to keep up my breast-feeding schedule. Hope this helps!

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M.S.

answers from Washington DC on

Highly recommend the Pump In Style by Medela. I've been using it ever since we got home from the hospital (we had some issues with our daughter at the breast so I was pumping almost exclusively for the first two weeks or so until we all got the hang of it) and my daughter is almost 9 months old. I use it every day here at the office and it's been just great. I hope to use it for successive children, too (perhaps with a parts replacement if needed), so I could justify the price. Yes, it's expensive, but it's the baby's food, right? It probably pays for itself in not having to use formula if things go well for you.

I have the backpack version and I recommend that, too. With a laptop, purse, and cooler (for the expressed breastmilk)-- my hands are full! Never mind if I bring in lunch or coffee or whatnot. Being able to put the backpack on frees up my hands for all the other junk.

Don't know about the Swing, so can't comment on that one. Good luck with your choice and continued breastfeeding success!

--M.

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B.B.

answers from Reno on

Great question. I borrowed my friends "In Style Medela" pump and loved it. It worked awesome and I was done in just a few minutes. You could pump both breasts at one time. It is a little big but very efficent! It was time to give it back so I bought the "Swing" it too worked great but a lot slower. I am a full time stay at home mommy so it worked just fine for me. I only pumped so I would have breast milk for my sons food. This one is small and wil fit in your pursue so it is great for travel. My sister who works part time bought the "Swing" and so frustreted because it took so long to pump and you could only pump one breast at time. So if time is an issue you may want a double pump.
Good luck

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C.A.

answers from Las Vegas on

Please allow me to share my opinion. The Avent ISIS breast pump is a manual breast pump, it has a cushion to encourage fast, natural let-down, it combines massage with a vacuum, once you let-down you only have to compress the handle occasionally....I cannot say enough great things about this effective yet affordable system. I tried the Medela Pump In Style and HATED it...that was a lot of money to spend to feel like a dairy cow---yes, that's right, I said dairy cow. I tried one other electric pump and several manuals before I found the Avent ISIS and can honestly say if it wasn't for this breast pump I would have stopped breat feeding when i went back to work. This systems is EASY to use, EASY to clean, compact and highly effective. I don't know how much they cost right now since I purchased mine at Target two years ago for about $45 but I would pay twice that amount. Whatever you decide, I wish you the best of luck with your new baby!!! Take time to take care of yourself, eat right, get sleep and take tons of photos!!!!! All the best, C.

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K.C.

answers from San Diego on

Don't buy a high priced electrical pump... borrow one or get one from a girlfriend, otherwise get a decent hand pump without all the bells and whistles cuz your breast will respond as it desires... "let-down" of milk happens best when you are in a comfortable situation not cuz of the machinery. Watch what happens when you nurse your baby and then imagine what it would be like nursing a machine.. or hand pump... what will work best for you does not neccesarily mean spending a lot of $$ for something you have to hook up to an electrical outlet. Think of convenience alos: if you're FULL and need to pump, but have no outlet??? LEAKAGE and lost milk!

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M.D.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi C.,

I had a premee at 27 wks and therefore had to start pumping very early and continue to do so for quite a while. I pumped for a yr and then for his adjusted age..another 6 months. At Loma Linda Hosp. where he was born, they recommended Medella..they picked the most powerful one, they said it would be painful at first but that the more I pumped, the more milk I would produce so I would have the luxury of always ..(most of the tme) be full so I could either breast feed or share the weatlh with daddy and friends. It was painful, it did have all the bells and whistle..that was 6 yrs ago, so I'm sure they've changed by then..I would go by the power of the pump motor.. our babies only deserve the best..and it's a good investment. You can always sell it when you're done or shave it for your next little one. Good Luck ~ M. P.S. I did rent mine, paid every 4 months and had no problems..so you don't always have to buy!

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B.R.

answers from Los Angeles on

I know a lot of people have already responded, but I didn't want to read all of them and I want to make sure this gets said- it sounds like you will only be an occasional pumper. DO NOT spend the money on one of those big electric pumps, even on renting one. Those are wonderful pumps and they work great, but they are for people who work and have to pump 5+ times every day (unless money's not an issue, then go ahead!). Similarly, I wouldn't suggest buying a cheap electric pump- I've never heard of one that actually worked. I bought a fifty dollar one, can't remember the brand, and it did NOTHING. I used the Medela hand pump and for my purposes (occasional pumping, like you) it was perfect and worked great. It's not as cheap as some other hand pumps, but it's not expensive, either. And if you want (although I just used the bags) they have an additional storage system you can buy, where you freeze the milk in the bottle, then thaw and screw on a nipple (FYI I thought the bag was easier, though, because the milk was more spread out it thawed faster when I put the bag in hot water). Whatever you do try, be patient- pumping is a little different than your baby sucking, so you might not get as much milk the first few times, but once you've done it a few times your body will adjust.

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N.P.

answers from San Diego on

The medela pump in style...it is pricey but WELL worth the money :) !!!

Also, I noticed a lot of people recommended you "borrow" one...do not borrow a breatpump. For sanitary reasons, you should NEVER do this.

Good Luck!!!

J.H.

answers from Los Angeles on

Honestly, I don't know the exact model I have... but it's a Medela electric pump. Retails for close to $300. I actually was very fortunate and am borrowing it from a friend. She stopped pumping right when it was time for me to start. This pump is AMAZING!! Comes with a backpack. It plugs into the wall and is just a great convenience. I can pump up to 6 oz in about 10-15 minutes. Perfect for a working mother like me who goes to pump on her breaks. It hooks up to both breasts at the same time. Just beware, when you first start pumping it's a VERY weird sensation! But you'll get the hang of it and it'll be great. Advice I was given... pump right after you feed. That way you don't fear running out for your little one. Gives your body atleast a few hours to then make plenty more for the next feeding. Good luck to you!! You'll do great!

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S.M.

answers from Las Vegas on

Madela, Madela, Madela...you can't go wrong with their products.
However, you just need to figure out which style works for your needs.
I BF'ed all three of my kids with Madela.

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N.J.

answers from Los Angeles on

I recommend the Avent Isis hand-held pump. My older daughter was hospitalized at two days old and after given one bottle, would not go back to the breast. I pumped for three months and got as much milk as I did on the hospital grade pump that I used while she was in the hospital. For my second daughter I bought the double pump from Medela. (I didn't think it was worth the extra cash to have a carrying case, since I wasn't taking it anywhere.) It worked great, but I actually took the plastic massage cup from my Isis and used it on my Medela. For you, the hand-held is probably fine, its a little tricky, but you can nurse the baby on one breast and pump the other.

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J.B.

answers from Los Angeles on

i love the medella pumps. i have the swing but it didnt have a hard suck. the in style is more like the ones you would use in the hospital. i would reccomend the in style. i have also heard the avent pumps are good

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A.C.

answers from San Diego on

I love the Medela Pump in Style. My lactation specialist recommended it. I had purchased a manual pump, but after using one at the hospital, I found out quickly this wasn't for me. With the Pump in Style you are done in 15 minutes, both sides. It comes in its own black carrying case which is convenient for going back to work or traveling.

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A.W.

answers from San Diego on

I have two boys....a 4 year old and a 19 month old. I used the Medela breast pump with my first son. It was nice and I never had any problems with it. The only complaints I had with it were that it was expensive and it was a little too big and bulky for me to carry around with me all day at work. I also had to use both of my hands to hold the bottles while pumping both breasts simultaneously. I couldn't get anything else done. When I had my second son, I decided to look for a pump that was smaller and easier to transport, cheaper, and single-hand use. I found the perfect pump at Target. It is The First Years Deluxe Comfort Electric/Battery Double Breast Pump. It only costs $59.99 and storage bottles are included. It comes in a carrying case that is compact and easy to carry. I loved being able to sit down and pump both breasts at the same time and have a free hand to do other things. It worked great and I never had a problem with it (and I nursed my son until he was 17 months old). It is very simple and easy to use. I also liked the fact that if I was unable to get to a power outlet, it could switch to battery mode. You can check them out at target.com. I hope this helps! Good luck!

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K.E.

answers from Los Angeles on

i just want to say that icould not pump. i tried everything and had lots of milk but the pumps and hand expressing into a cup just would not work. so, good luck, but if it doesn't work, don't feel bad. that said, my sister pumped with no problem.

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K.P.

answers from Los Angeles on

C.,

I LOVED the Medela - I would recommend it highly!

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J.F.

answers from Las Vegas on

The Medela Pump in Style is great. I used mine after my son was born three years ago. I used in for almost a year, and it was a great investment. If you plan on bf for a long time, and you have to be away from your baby (when you go back to school), the best thing you can do is to get a good, double pump. It saves a lot more time than single and hand-held pumps. Good luck!

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A.L.

answers from Las Vegas on

I love my Pump-N-Style by Medela and would recommend it over everything else. But whatever you choose, medela would be the brand I would go with because that is all they do is the breast feeding products. I reccomend using their freezer storage bags because they can attatch right to the pump and you won't need the bottles attatched to the pump. The "bells and whistles" that come with the pump are essential because they make it more convienient to pump!

Good luck!

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H.H.

answers from San Diego on

See if the lactation clinic associated with the hospital where you delivered offers rentals. Try each pump for one month and see what you think. I rented a Pump In Style with my first and bought one when I had my second. LOVED IT.

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W.A.

answers from Honolulu on

I have the swing and LOVE IT!! I borrowed the pump in style from the hospital and it was a good pump but way more industrial then I needed. The Swing worked great. I pump everyday 3 times a day for 20 minutes and it works great. It's also a great value as well, for the quality that comes with Medela.

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A.M.

answers from Los Angeles on

Yes, I agree, the Pump in Style by Medela is AWESOME and completely reliable. I've had mine for all 3 of my kids. Was worth every penny and bought it for a good deal, brand new on ebay.

L.B.

answers from San Diego on

I highly recommend the Harmony manual Breastpump from Madela. I don't know how much it costs because it was actually given to me by the nurse while I was still in the hospital. I was also given the evenflo double electric pump as a gift and I choose to use the manual one over that. It is so easy and doesn't come with a lot of parts. My daughter is two and half months old and I work part-time. It is really all that you need. Also if you qualify for WIC (Women Infants and Children ) program they will give you one also...I don't know what brand they use. Good luck.

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N.H.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi C.,
I did a post not so far back & asked about double electric breastpumps, they can be really expensive (check my profile if you want to see what other moms put).
Anyways, if your just going to be the occassional pumper, I would recommend the Medela Single Deluxe breastpump. I had one with my first son & it was great to take with me when I knew I would be away from my son for a feeding or two. It's also great if you want to just build up a supply, which I did by feeding on one side & pumping on the other (it's about $80).
One thing to consider though is if you do go back to work & want to continue breastfeeding you'll need a good breastpump. Also if you plan on having more babies you will continue to use it and might find that a more adavanced breast pump will be a good investment. Good luck making the decision, I still haven't purchased one, but know the time is soon coming & it will be expensive, but well worth it in the end.

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L.A.

answers from Los Angeles on

Ameda Purley Yours, $150 on the internet, works REALLY well. Good for you to keep up the breast feeding.

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A.T.

answers from Reno on

Ameda Purely yours is a little less expensive than Medela, but still does the job quite well

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N.M.

answers from Las Vegas on

When I started to pump I started with a first years pump and it hurt really bad & after about 2 months it stopped working. I did some research and bought an Ameda because it was only 150.00 and all the reviews said it worked very similar to the Medela. I thought the Ameda worked really efficiently. It has the double pump and in about 10 minutes I was done. All I can say is to spend the extra $ to get one that works for you. By the way, my friend had the Medela Swing and loved it. She pumped at least four times a day (which is a lot more than I did). Hope this helps!

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D.V.

answers from Las Vegas on

The Medela Pump In Style is good if you have to purchase a pump to carry back and forth to work. Otherwise, I would recommend renting the hospital grade pump from the hospital. It is also a double electric pump, but you only have to purchase the parts that come in part with your body or milk. The hand pump hooks into the electric pump, whose piston action pumps the hand pumps for you. I've had the best luck with this pump. I believe it is called a Medela Lactina. It is way too expensive to purchase, but hospitals rent them cheaply, and the WIC program will give you one to use for free. It is an awesome pump! I was able to get twice as much milk in half the time compared with using the Pump In Style. And with twins, that was the biggest consideration for me. Good luck!

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K.T.

answers from Honolulu on

I used a medela pump in style and a swing pump, both were great. What I like best though is my medela single deluxe breast pump. It's small, cheaper, and has the option of battery powered or plug in. I didn't like double pumps because it takes both hands and I wasn't that pressed on time. The single deluxe was great and has almost the same sucking strength as a pump in style or swing. It took me the same amount of time to make a bottle with this pump as with the others. The parts are slightly cheaper and this pump just has been great for me. I even bought the pump itself from craigslist for cheap, then used all my own accessories. Hope this helps.

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A.B.

answers from Reno on

I have tried a couple other pumps and the Pump in Style was by far the best. It is fast and I was able to pump more milk with it. It looks like you can get it in a more compact set up now, which is nice. The size is only thing I would say is negative about mine. I would say it is well worth the money.

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H.A.

answers from Santa Barbara on

The pump is a great invention! My daughter is a little over 4 months old and I had to go back to work after 3 1/2 months. I had purchased a manual pump and used it infrequently before I came back to work, but my husband thought I was crazy and kept offering to buy me an electric one. I told him to wait so I could see how it went once I was actually trying to pump at work. My opinion is that I can't see why anyone would spend the money on the electric one, the manual one works terrific (I have the Lanosh) and I can't EVEN imagine lugging that elecric thing around - the manual fits right in my purse! I pump twice a day and it works great for me. I just bring a magazine and pump eight minutes a side and read. Of course everyone is different, some people may prefer the electric.

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G.R.

answers from San Diego on

DO NOT BORROW AT PUMP! There are only a few that are okay to borrow in terms of sanitation, and they are usually the expensive ones. I am on my 3rd baby and with the first one Iused even flo,it was ok! By my second I bought the medela pump and style. It is worth the money. I now use it with my third and still love it! I think there is even another version out and if I where you I would buy that one if you can afford it. Do not buy a manual, it gave my thumb cramps (I never knew a thumb could cramp up). Dual electric will cut your time in half!!!! As your baby gets older that extra 10 minutes will mean alot to you. Good luck and keep up the breastfeeding, it is the best for you and your baby!

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