Breastfeeding and pumping is truly a labor of love. Larken founders Katie and Maggie designed the Larken X, a hands-free breast pumping bra, out of their frustration with mass-marketed, uncomfortable pumping bras that just don’t get it. Here are five tips and must-have products for making pumping more comfortable from two moms who’ve been there, and done that!The Best Breast Pump For You
Starting with the basics, time and time again we hear Larken moms swear by both the Spectra Portable Breast Pump and the Medela Freestyle Flex Hands Free Pump. They both have top reviews for power and comfort. If you’re looking to go the manual route, our personal secret weapon is the Haakaa Manual Breast Pump - coming soon to the Larken website!
- Make sure to check with your insurance company before you decide which pump is best for you. While some insurances cover certain pumps 100%, there are many others you can access for a $75-$150 upcharge.
- When it comes to your pump, comfort is so individual and depends on the size of the flanges, the level of suction and more. Don’t hesitate to order a smaller or larger flange size or change up the suction power. Pumping may not be your favorite thing to do, but it shouldn't hurt.
The Most Comfortable Pumping Bra
Aside from a top-notch breast pump, what’s the second most important pumping essential? A comfortable, practical hands-free pumping bra. Larken’s nursing bra doubles as a hands-free pumping bra, giving you maximum freedom regardless of your nursing preference. Larken is a nursing bra company designed for moms by moms:
- Always elastic-, hardware-, and tag-free.
- Bump, pump, and nursing friendly,
- Luxuriously soft, breathable fabrics.
Plus, who can resist cute breastfeeding bras that are truly comfortable?
Unfortunately, sore, cracked nipples typically go hand-in-hand with nursing - especially at the beginning. Our secret? Our holy grail product: Motherlove Nipple Cream. Made from certified organic ingredients, this lanolin-free nipple cream is best-selling and award-winning for a reason! You can use this balm to provide relief to nursed nipples, soothe nipple sensitivity during pregnancy, lubricate pumps, and moisturize cuticles, lips, or any dry skin on the body. Trust us, we’ll just leave this link here. Pro Tip:
- Coat your breast shields (also known as flanges) in nipple cream before you use them
- Store your breast shields in the fridge between pumping sessions - the cool touch gives some relief
Looking to pass the pumping time? Productive pumpers will love podcasts like Gretchen Rubin’s Happier or email newsletters like The Skimm for a daily dose of easy-to-read news. When in doubt, a half-hour cable TV show translates to 21-22 minutes via streaming services, which is conveniently long enough for one pumping session! Friends reruns, anyone?
Self Love and Compassion
Keep in mind the most important thing - be kind to yourself. Breastfeeding and nursing is such hard work, and no matter what you choose, or how you choose to do it - remember you’re doing your best and that’s all that matters. Your baby is one lucky kiddo to have a mama like you!
What are your must-have comfort pumping products? Tell us over on our Instagram! Remember, you’re not in this alone, mama!