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Wondering what to buy for breastfeeding your newborn? Look no further!
If you’re wondering what to buy for breastfeeding your new baby, you’re miles ahead of me. When I was pregnant with my first child, breastfeeding must haves barely even crossed my mind.
I received a LOT of baby gifts for my child, but hadn’t really considered whether I would need anything for nursing my new babe.
If you plan on staying at home and exclusively breastfeeding, there isn’t much that you absolutely need to buy for nursing your baby. The most important things you need are already attached to you.
However, there are a few items that are really nice to have. And if you plan on working outside the home, you will want to pack a bag of pumping supplies.
Before baby arrives, it’s a good idea to at least consider the various items you might want or need.
Here are a few of the best, must-have breastfeeding products to get you started.
Have you created your baby registry yet? (Yes, you absolutely can add breastfeeding products to your registry!)
Most of the items in this post can be found on Amazon, so make sure to set up your baby registry now and you’ll be able to easily add anything you need to it.
Plus, you’ll get a discount when you “complete” your registry by ordering anything you didn’t receive but really need — and they’ll also send you a box of really cool free gifts for your baby!
If you already have one, or perhaps you don’t plan on creating a registry, don’t worry. We’re moving right along to the breastfeeding must haves that you’re here for!
1. Nursing bras
Nursing bras are the first item on my breastfeeding must haves list for a reason: They provide easy access for a hungry baby while giving your sore breasts a little support.
If I could only have one thing for breastfeeding, THIS would be it. Nursing bras may not be attractive, but they are comfortable.
Look for a seamless sleep bra with removable padding. A nursing bra with a good clasp is easy to open with one hand, while holding baby with the other.
Pro nursing mom tip: Another thing worth mentioning…
While you can use either disposable or reusable nursing pads with your nursing bra, I prefer reusable cloth nursing pads. They are more comfortable, and they can be washed and reused an unlimited number of times.
2. Nursing tanks
Likewise, nursing tanks or camisoles are a must.
As with a nursing bra, a cami designed for breastfeeding has an easy-open clasp to provide ease of access. I wore mine all the time — they are great for layering and can be worn under any shirt.
You can pull your shirt up to breastfeed your baby, while keeping your belly from being exposed (and from getting cold!). This is an especially great thing to have if you don’t have the budget to buy all new nursing shirts.
Pro nursing mom tip: If you need to nurse baby while shopping, you can use the two-shirt method for discreet public breastfeeding.
Simply turn away from prying eyes as you get baby latched, then pull your top shirt down to cover your breast. It will look like you’re just holding your baby!
3. Nursing cover
While some mommies are perfectly comfortable nursing their babies without covering up — and you can usually get enough coverage just using the layering method above — sometimes I am more comfortable using a breastfeeding cover.
I used a nursing apron for a little while, but they tend to get hot.
A light, muslin swaddling blanket works really well. I prefer the larger sizes, because then I can tie the corners together around my neck, and it will stay put.
But my favorite is a stretchy, four-in-one nursing cover that can also be used as a scarf, car seat/stroller cover, and shopping cart cover.
Pro nursing mom tip: When using a stretchy nursing cover, practice using it at home first to avoid a stressful situation in public.
Pull the cover over your head and get situated, then pull baby underneath to latch.
4. Nursing pillow
I rarely use a standard nursing pillow while breastfeeding. It is nice to have at times, but it just sits on my lap and doesn’t provide much support. Not to mention it never stays put.
I waited way too long to order the My Brest Friend nursing pillow after having my first baby — it would have been much more helpful in the first couple months after delivery.
This is a firm foam pillow with a washable cotton cover. You can wrap it around your waist and secure with a clasp to keep it from falling off your lap.
I didn’t get mine until my daughter was a couple months old, so it wasn’t really useful for long. However, I did get some more use from it in the first couple months after my second baby was born.
Pro nursing mom tip: Keep a little snack or a burp cloth handy in the attached pocket of this nursing pillow!
5. Breast pump
If you plan on working outside the home, a good breast pump is a must. You’ll want to pump to help maintain your milk supply and avoid discomfort.
You could use either an electric or manual pump, and I would suggest getting one of each.
My breast pump was provided free of charge through insurance, so I didn’t get to choose the model. They gave me the Medela Pump in Style Advanced Double Electric Breast Pump, and it does a great job. It’s a popular choice among working moms.
On the other hand, a manual pump is really handy when you’re on the go because you can quickly and easily pump anywhere.
I bought the Medela Harmony Manual Breastpump and, while my hands get a little sore, it works just as well as the electric pump.
Pro nursing mom tip: Keep in mind that you will need to clean and dry the parts every. single. night (that you use them). You may want to invest in a second set of parts to make that process easier.
Another option, if you need to have your hands free while pumping, is a wireless pump.
Breastfeeding must haves
Now that you know about the best breastfeeding must haves for nursing moms, best wishes on your breastfeeding journey — and congratulations on your new little one!