Every new mother desires to be close to her child in order to attend to his/her needs when they arise. However, not all mothers are afforded this luxury as an unforeseen circumstance that you need to attend to outside the home may present itself or you may need to get back to work after your maternity leave. This is not usually an issue for mothers that practice mixed feeding, but the same cannot be said for those that breastfeed exclusively.
In order to attend to other areas of life and keep your baby fed, you may need to store breastmilk that will be used when you are away. The constant advancement of technology brings about the regular invention of new machines and equipment designed to make life easier, breast pumps inclusively. But, buying even a device as basic as a breast pump is never easy because you may need to consider a few important factors to help you make the right decision.
We have done almost all the difficult part for you. All you need to do is read through our buying guide the list of the best manual breast pumps on the market and then decide which product best suit your needs. Read on for a comprehensive guide to buying the best breast pump.
The Advantages of Manual Breast Pumps
Talking about breast pumps, you would probably agree with me that the electric variants are faster and more efficient than their manual counterparts. For this reason, many new mothers prefer to go for the former. However, some women still prefer manual breast pumps to electric ones.
You are reading this post because you are probably also considering the idea of purchasing the best manual breast pumps. Here is the thing, although not as efficient as the electrically powered variant, manual breast pumps comes with lots of benefits that you may not enjoy with the former. For instance, manual breast pumps may be the only way out in the case of power outage since they do not require power to function.
In addition, the idea of coupling a device powered by electric to a sensitive part of the body does not settle well with some new mothers, and for others, manual breast pumps are more comfortable compared to their electric counterparts. Manual breast pumps may also be ideal for you outside the home because they are less noisy and will not attract too much attention to you. They are also portable and easy to carry from place to place.
Although it helps to express less milk and maybe a little bit more tasking than the electric variants, manual breast pumps are easy to use, assemble and maintain. They are also relatively inexpensive.
The Types of Manual Breast Pumps
Manual breast pumps can be generally categorized into two groups namely: levered and suction breast pumps. While the former usually features a handle or lever that helps you pump milk manually by moving it up and down with your hands, the latter usually requires you to squeed the silicon base of the device in order to establish a suction.
A levered pump features designs that look just like electric pumps, just that the former is controlled by hand. It is usually quiet, and portable, thus making it ideal to use at work. This type of breast pump allows you to pump milk directly into your baby’s feeding bottle. Suction pumps also known as milk catchers also makes pumping significantly easy just that you may need to move milk to your baby’s bottle or storage containers after pumping.
Key Thing to Consider When Choosing Manual Breast Pumps
Breast pumping is an intimate and sometimes uncomfortable procedure. Going for a product that best serves your needs will go a long way to make the process a less demanding one. Although the best product for you will be dependant on your unique needs and personal preference, here are few general tips to help your decision-making journey an easy one:
The suction strength of the manual breast pump is the first and the most important factor you should put into consideration. This is because it determines how fast and easy milk pumping will be as well as whether you will get enough milk for your baby or not. Using a manual pump to express milk is tasking and the process will be made more difficult with devices with loosed suction.
Ease of use
While some breast pumps will require you to use your two hands in exerting pressure so as to express milk properly. You may comfortably use only one of your hand with the other, thus affording you an opportunity to feed your baby with the other or attend to other businesses. It may take about 30 minutes or more to express milk using a breast pump, a device that requires you to use two hands may be too tiring for you.
Ease of Cleaning
This is another important factor to consider when choosing the best manual pump as devices that are hard to clean may support the growth of bacteria. I need not mention that breeding bacteria in a breast pump may adversely affect your health and that of your baby. For this reason, it is best to go for products that are easy to clean. Those with detachable components often make the exercise easier.
Compatibility With Other Bottles
Many levered manual pumps on the market allow you to use only the bottle that shipped with the product. This is not a very good thing as you may be forced to discontinue your use of the device when something happens to the body. However, you will have other options and sourcing a replacement of the bottle will be easier with pumps that support other bottles.
Quality & Durability
It best to go for a top quality device that ships with amazing features to make breast pumping easy. You may need the product for about one year or even more on how long you intend to breastfeed. A breast pump that is durable will go a long way to serve you during this period without presenting you with the need to go in search of another.
This factor is important if you intend to express breastmilk outside the home. Since the process is intimate, you should consider going for a breast pump that you can easily drop into your bag and it would not be noticed on the outside.
The cost of the product you are about to buy should be carefully considered if you are on a budget. Either way, it is advised to go for a device that offers the best value for money. Manual breast pumps are relatively inexpensive, and you may get a good one for about $25 to $50.
Here is a list of the best manual breast pumps on the market:
Medela, Harmony Breast Pump, Manual Breast Pump, Portable Pump, 2-Phase Expression Technology, Ergonomic Swivel Handle, Easy to Control Vacuum, Designed for Occasional Use
The Medela Harmony is one of the best breast pumps on the market. It is a high performance levered device with a powerful suction. This product is comfortable and it makes the expression of milk easier. It is ideal for mothers who have only a little milk and thus looking to encourage milk production with the use of a breast pump.
The device ships with a milk bottle, breast shield, stand, and a lid. The product is relatively easy to assemble and use even though it does not ship with any guidelines. The manual breast pump features two levers. While the first one is used to prepare your breast for the procedure, the longer one is utilized to support the expression of milk. It is sizeable and may be carried around in a large bag without been noticed.
Additionally, it doesn’t make much noise and thus may be ideal for use in public places. The product is made of a BPA-Free plastic that is easy to wash. The product is reasonably priced and it ships with a 30 days limited warranty. However, some users report that the suction strength of the product reduces after repeated use.
Others have complained that the handle may fall off easily. It is hard to hold in place while using, and the connection may also loosen thereby causing loss of expressed milk. It ships with only one size (24mm) flange.
Philips Avent Breast SCF330/30 Pump Manual, Clear
This is another amazing levered manual breast pump on the market. The product is famous among new mummies because of its amazing features and a budget-friendly cost. The product works very fast and allows you to express more milk compared to similar products. Interestingly, it features a rubber cushion it shields to make the process easier and more comfortable.
Unlike many other products on the market, the comfort offered by this device allows you to express breast milk for a long period of time without getting too tired. The top quality and durable build of the Philips Avent manual pump makes it ideals for women who pump breast milk on a daily basis. It is easy to assemble and relatively easy to use. Cleaning is also pretty effortless as the product can be safely dropped in a dishwasher.
Although the suction is good, it is relatively mild thus eliminating the fear of soreness associated with pumping. The breast pump is lightweight, and portable making it a great choice for outdoor use as it can easily fit into a large purse. It ships with a two years warranty to further assure you of the durability of the product.
If you have the Philips Avent electric breast pump, then going for this product is a big win-win as its parts can best be used with the former. However, dried leftover milk may cause the handle of the product to become squeaky while using. Another set back for the product is that it can only be used with the Philips Avent bottles. It ships with only one size (25mm) flange.
Lansinoh Manual Breast Pump with Stimulation and Expression Modes, Portable Breast Pump
Compatible with all Lansinoh Baby Bottles & Breast Milk Storage Bags (Single pack)
The Lansinoh Manual Breast Pump is ideal if you are looking for a device that packs both high performance and comfort. It comes with two different modes – the stimulation to prepare your breast for the procedure and the expression mode to pump breast milk into the bottle you provided. It works really fast and it rarely has performance issues.
Unlike many products on the market, this one ship with two different sizes (25mm and 30.5mm) of a shield. This further makes it easier to express milk as you have an option to use the shield that works best for you. Furthermore, the product is easy to assemble and easy to use, thereby preventing you from expending too much energy while expressing milk for your little one.
This breast pump is easy to clean, and it supports dishwasher cleaning. It is portable thus allowing you to easily carry it around during your normal day to day activities. But the product does not support the use of standard bottles, and it can only be used with Lansinoh’s Momma bottles. Some users have reported that the parts of the product may be difficult to find when you need a replacement.
Haakaa Silicone Breastfeeding Manual Breast Pump Milk Pump 100% Food Grade Silicone BPA PVC and Phthalate Free
Haakaa silicone device is one of the best suction manual breast pumps available on the market. You will find this product ideal if you don’t pump milk regularly. In addition, it requires you to do less compared to other competing products. This means that you may be able to store a small amount of breast milk for your little one by doing almost nothing.
You can use the product by simply using it to trap milk from one breast while you breastfeeding your baby on the other. The strong but mild suction of the product allows you to collect enough milk for your baby within a short period of time. You have fewer concerns about sore breast with this product as it is easy to use and comfortable. Assembly is also not an issue with this breast pump as it ships already assembled
Haakaa breast pump is lightweight and portable thereby making it easy to carry around in your purse. It is easy to clean and maybe wash using a dishwasher. Additionally, it is affordable and it offers good value for money. However, some users have complained that the product only works well as a milk catcher and may not be good as a breast pump.
Others state that the suction may become weak and unable to pump milk after repeated use. The measurement of the inbuilt maker is not correct. Also, it is sometimes difficult to find a comfortable position.
Ameda One Hand Breast Pump – BPA Free
If you are looking to buy a breast pump that makes the process of expressing milk relatively easy, then you should consider checking Ameda manual breast pump out. Although it is a levered device, it allows users to control it using only one hand. As already mentioned above, this will allow to feed your baby with the other hand or even attend to other businesses.
The product is easy to assemble because the breast shield comes already attached to the device. Also, easy to clean as it part are dishwasher friendly. It is lightweight and portable thus making it ideal for outside-the-home feeding. The product works fast and the suction is strong which invariably translates to more ilk within a short period of time.
Another advantage of this pump is that it supports the use of standard baby bottles and not just the ones that came with the product. Unlike other similar products, this breast pump is comfortable and easy to hold in place so that you don’t feel exhausted after expressing milk. This will go a long way in reducing the possibility of having sore breasts after the process is completed.
The maker of the product has taken steps to prevent leakages by placing the handle at an angle that differs from that of other companies. This may make it a little bit difficult for you to use the device if you are already used to others. The product makes less noise compared to similar products on the market, but it may begin to make loud squeaky noise after repeated use. It is reasonably priced, but the product does not ship with any warranty.
Also, some users have concerns about the quality of the Ameda One-Hand Manual Breast Pump. others state that it is too pricey compared to similar products on the market.
NatureBond Silicone Manual Breast Pump – BPA Free
The NatureBond Silicone Manual breast pump is another amazing product on the market. The product is popular among mums and it has received lots of favorable reviews from past users. It is made from a top quality silicone material that is BPA, PVC, Phthalate, and Lead-free thus making it safe for you and your little one. The material is durable and will probably allow you to enjoy the product for a long period of time. It features a powerful suction that will make the process of expressing breast milk a breeze.
It comes in a complete package that includes Air-Tight Vacuum Packaging, 1 x Luxury Pouch, 1 x Dust Cover Lid, 1 x Silicone Breast Pump. the product is easy to use, thanks to the Full Colour English Instructions that comes with it. The pouch will go a long way to the product from dust when not in use. It will also provide you with a beautiful, easy, and luxurious way to take the breast pump from one place to another.
Furthermore, the NatureBond Silicone Manual Breast Pump is lightweight as it weighs only about 2.88 ounces. This will go a long way to make it easy to use since the lightweight will allow for a hands-free use thereby allowing you to engage in other activities while expressing breast milk. It will also allow you to effortless carry the product from place to place. The product comes with a stopper that is designed to prevent milk from spilling while using the product. The manufacturer stated that the stopper will make the product 100 percent leak proof.
You will find that maintenance is easy with this product since it supports dishwasher cleaning. Many users like that the product is budget friendly. However, some users complain that the product is likely to lose suction everytime they move. It is also stated that it is somewhat difficult to position the pump in a way that allows easy and fast expression of milk. Also, some users complain that using the product is painful and uncomfortable.
These are the products that made it to our list due to their amazing quality and features. As already mentioned above, the best one for you will be highly dependant on your preferences and personal needs. We hope you were able to find one of the above-listed products appealing.