Bottle Feedings Mamas! THIS POST IS FOR YOU GUYS! Looking for bottle feeding equipment? Feeding your baby, whether it be from your breast or from a bottle, is no walk in the park. There are challenges and eases with both!
I bottle fed my breastfed baby (we did a combo of each for his first year), and I can attest that YOU NEED A LOTTA STUFF to bottle feed your little one.
I’ve broken this post up into sections for pumping and formula feeding mamas!
So use this list if you’ve already got a babe and you’re switching to the bottle, use it to add to your baby registry, or shop it yourself!
But seriously – I’ve thought of all the bottle feeding must haves. You’re gonna be set.
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Bottle feeding equipment: For both formula and pumping moms
1. A bottle warmer
YAS! I LOVED this thing. Kinde has a great one! Guys, you never have to fiddle with warming up water over the stove, or the warm-water-in-the-coffee-cup trick (this works, it just takes WAY longer).
You can also throw frozen milk bags and food jars in here! There’s a handy dandy little flow sheet that you can keep on your fridge to let you know exactly how long to warm up your bottle for (if I remember right it was about 6-7 minutes from the fridge for our average bottles).
2nd Best: Phillips AVENT Bottle Warmer…also from Amazon
2. Multiple size bottles
Here’s the reasoning behind why I say MULTIPLE. First off, you may find that one brand works better for your baby than another. I, for one, bought a ton of AVENT bottles, only to find my son a big Medela fan.
As baby gets bigger (especially if you plan on formula feeding), baby will take larger feeds. What was once a 3oz tummy, is now a 6oz tummy. Most small bottles only go up to 5oz, so it’s a good idea to register for a few sets of larger quantity bottles, stick them in storage, and bring them out once baby gets a little bigger.
- My faves : Medela 5oz and larger quantity bottles
- Also very popular : Dr’s Browns (these are good for babies who tend to be colicky, or gassy as well)
Related Reading: Thinking About Weaning? Read me…
3. Multiple size nipples
Going along with the same reasoning why you need multiple size bottles, you’ll need multiple size nipples as well. As baby gets bigger, he/she may prefer a faster flow.
Always, however, remember to START baby off with a size 0. We were actually in 0’s for 6 months before we bumped up to a size 1! This is common with breastfed babies, doing a combo feed. Strictly bottle-fed babies tend to bump up sizes faster…either is normal!
My faves, again, are Medela!
4. A good quality bottle brush
You’ll be using this tool more than you’d like to admit. Invest in a good quality bottle brush that will last that entire year!
- My fave: Dr. Brown’s
- A close 2nd: OXO Tot
5. A crap ton of bibs
These aren’t super necessary when baby is teeny tiny, but once he/she starts to grow….BIBS Y’ALL. Feed them with the bib on! It helps with yucky-milk-neck.
6. A crap ton of burp cloths
My husband may argue with this one….he used paper towels like they were burp cloths ? Burp cloths are a necessity, though (in my opinion).
They have so many cute options to choose from too! My advice is to buy a few different brands, and try them out IRL before you go nuts and buy a 30 pack. You may find the ones you thought were useful while you were pregnant are crap at sopping up baby puke.
7. A bottle sterilizer…maybe
Okay this one is a big MAYBE. If you have a preemie, YES get one of these. It’s really important to be sterilizing your bottles in between each usage (your pediatrician will also confirm this).
If you have a healthy, full-term baby….this is up to you. I personally had no issue with just washing my bottles in warm, soapy water. I do know moms out there who would probably shudder at the thought at not sterilizing bottles after each use. Totally up to you.
8. Bottle soap
Nowadays they have fancy bottle soap specifically for baby bottles that’s free from harmful chemicals!
If you don’t care about fancy soap, though…get some Dawn! (It works just as well)
9. A drying rack
I LOVE MY BOON LAWN. I had to fight with my husband to put it away in storage. The truth is, we have limited counter space so once my son was off the bottle….it was time to say good-bye to the sacred Boon Lawn. Oh, how I loved that thing.
A few tips…make sure you pick up a few accessories for hanging nipples (you’ll be able to fit a lot more on there), and keep a paper towel in between the lawn and the white tray. This helps to get rid of excess moisture build-up.
10. A drying mat
I liked to keep a drying mat laying around as well…pick one up here from Amazon 🙂
11. A dishwasher basket
If you aren’t planning on buying a bottle sterilizer, and you want to go the dishwasher route…..a dishwasher basket is vital to keeping all your nipples from flying all over the place. This is also useful once they get bigger for straw and cup accessories!
12. One of these guys to keep everything organized
Thanks Pinterest! What a great idea!
13. Gas drops/Gripe water
I only add this one just because sometimes bottle fed babies can be a little on the gassy side. Gas drops are something you want to have at your house BEFORE you actually need it. Pregnant? Go ahead and pick some up.
Bottle feeding equipment: for pumpers
14. A double electric breast pump
BE EFFICIENT! I mean, a hand pump can be indispensable at times, but IMO you need to invest in a good quality double electric pump if you plan on exclusively pumping.
In 2021, while breastfeeding my second baby, I set out to review as MANY breast pumps as possible. You can read full breast pump reviews of the Elvie, Willow, Baby Buddha, Spectra, Medela, Freemies, AND Luna. Whew.
And you know the number one questions I always get asked? Which one is my favorite? It’s tough because they all have different applications, but if I had to pick one I’d go WILLOW! I know it’s pricey, but it’s just so dang convenient AND works so well.
Related Reading: Want to Learn About Exclusive Pumping?
15. Milk bags
If you plan on exclusively pumping…you’ll need a TON of these guys. They are much more space-saving than always using bottles (and let’s be honest you don’t have to wash them…as you would a bottle).
Call me crazy…but my FAVORITE brand was from Walmart (Parent’s Choice)!
16. A deep freezer..No for real
For real though…if you start seriously pumping massive amounts of milk you’ll fill up your regular freezer pretty quickly. I wouldn’t go invest in a deep freezer until you establish your milk supply…but maybe something to think about!
Related Reading: 30 Crazy Things I Did to Increase My Milk Supply
17. Gallon Ziploc bags
For storage! Milk bags should be frozen FLAT, and then stored in gallon ziploc bags for maximum storage potential!
18. A thin permanent marker
Also just nice to have for labeling your baggies!
19. Lubricant for your nipples
In the first few weeks, your nipples are going to be quite sore from pumping. It takes a little while (just as it does breastfeeding) for your nipples to almost “build up a callus” and quit being sore after you pump. I’ve always been a big fan of coconut oil 🙂
Motherlove’s nipple cream works great as well!
20. Extra flanges
Just like you need a few extra bottles for baby, momma needs some extra flanges! You also never know when one is going to fried in the dishwasher #truestory
Depending on which pump you use, will determine which flange set you need!
21. A mini fridge
I have a girlfriend who told me about this idea! Brilliant! She got an extra mini-fridge to keep in the nursery for late night feedings…AND she keeps Gatorades for her thirsty self in the middle of the night. GOLD.
Bottle feeding equipment: For formula moms
Well DUH! I used a few different brands, but ended up sticking with Earth’s Best Organic Infant Formula until he was about 9 months old.
After that we switched to Enfamil Toddler Transitions. It’s completely normal to switch a few times in the newborn stage, per your pediatrician 🙂
Related Reading: Organic vs Non Organic Formula and How to Choose the Best One!
23. A formula dispenser
I didn’t even know about this thing until AFTER I was done bottle feeding! I would always carry his formula in pre-measured Ziploc bags (a huge mess). This thing makes carrying formula on the go SOOO easy! Pick up yours at Amazon 🙂
24. A *fancy* water pitcher
This super fancy water pitcher by Dr. Brown’s is BPA-free and offers a neat way to store your pre-mixed formula all day.
- Unique blade mixes formula quickly
- No clumping, BPA-Free
- Minimal air introduced into formula
- Prepare up to four 8-oz. bottles of formula at a time
- No slip, soft grip handle designed for comfortable pouring, Dishwasher safe, Locking lid
25. A Formula Keurig AKA The Baby Brezza
What I do know, is that if you plan on formula feeding your little one…and you want the most efficient, most stylish way to make your baby a bottle…get one of these puppies.
Everything you need to bottle feed!
What am I missing guys? Do you have any suggestions of essential bottle feeding items to add to my list? I want to hear from the bottle mommies out there!
Happy Feeding! 🙂