My Breastfeeding Essentials.

   

When I got pregnant I knew I wanted to give breastfeeding a try and although I know it isn't for everyone and in some cases it doesn't work out, I was determined to give it my best go. We are currently 7 weeks into our journey of exclusively breast feeding and I am so proud of both me & Teddy. Don't get me wrong, it's possibly one of the hardest, most demanding things I've ever done, but I absolutely love it. It is such a special bonding time for us and I love knowing that it is something that is just mine & his.

I thought I would put together a list of all the things that have made our journey that little bit easier and helped us along the way.

Nipple Cream or Balm- I have been applying this since day one & although I am lucky enough to not have suffered from sore or cracked nipples, I still apply this at least once a day usually when I get in bed. In the early days I applied it more often, usually after every couple of feeds. When buying a nipple cream make sure it is one that doesn't need to be removed for feeding, just as it's something that is easily forgotten. My favourites are the Boots Maternity Lanolin Nipple Cream and the Lansinoh HPA Lanolin Nipple Cream.

Nursing Pillow- During the early days and growth spurts it literally feels like you are constantly feeding and your arms can really begin to ache! I use my nursing pillow during the day and in the night as it just makes things that little bit comfier. I picked mine up during the baby event at Asda and although I don't think they have it in stock all through the year, they have the same pillow on Amazon for £12.99!

Night Time Vest Tops- One thing I've found since starting to breastfeed is that comfort is so important! At bedtime my favourite top to wear are the Primark pyjama vest tops with built in elasticated support underneath. I don't like wearing a bra to bed so I can put my breast pads inside the support and they are held in place by the elasticated band. They are super stretchy so I just pull them down to feed him and also super cheap!

Breast Pads- Stocking up on breast pads was my Sisters main piece of advice when I was buying things ready for breastfeeding! I didn't realise how much your boobs can leak! I am quite lucky that I don't leak much, but when I do, I know about it! Breast pads give you that added security and protect all your clothes from the dreaded wet patches that suddenly appear! I recently had a slight breast pad disaster in the middle of M&S café where I had my breast pad stuck to my shoe...I must have put it in my pocket, it fell out and I stood on it. I dread to think how long it had been there..

Nursing Bras- One thing that I struggled in finding was nice nursing bras, they only tend to come in white, black or nude and some of them are really ugly, i'm not gonna' lie. I spent hours browsing websites trying to find ones that I liked and that would be comfy on my swollen milk filled titties! JoJo Maman Bebe have an amazing range of bras in all different styles. My go to bra is the JoJo Cotton Maternity & Nursing Bra which is a sports bra style and super comfy! They offer amazing support and the clips on the front are really easy to clip and unclip with one hand.

Breast Pump- I have been using the NatureBond Silicone Breast Pump and it is just amazing! I was so sceptical at first and wasn't sure how it could possibly work, but I figured before I invested in a proper manual or electric pump I would try out the NatureBond and ordered one off Amazon for £11.99. It is a silicone pump that you suction onto your breast whilst your baby is feeding off the other, and it catches your let down and any leaks. On my first go I managed to collect about 4oz in ten to fifteen minutes! Keep your eyes out for my full review.

Milk Storage Bottles- This week we have introduced Teddy to a bottle, which we will be giving him a few times a week just to get him used to them. I will still be exclusively breastfeeding but it's nice to have the option there. I wanted to make sure that he would take one without much fuss so I had piece of mind. I am pumping with my NatureBond and then tipping the milk I collect into the storage cups and putting them in the fridge. I picked up four Lasinoh Breastmilk Storage Bottles off Amazon for £9.07, they are great because you can store them in the fridge or freezer.

I'd love to know whether you breastfeed and what has helped make your experience that little bit easier?