Favorite Breastfeeding Pillows
So, you thought breastfeeding would be simple! No bottles, less stuff, right? Turns out, actually, there is a whole host of products out there built to support breastfeeding in one way or another, and some of them actually are really great and do make it a little easier. One of these is the breastfeeding pillow.
It turns out that there are many different breastfeeding positions and holds (who knew!?) and that you and your baby will find the one(s) that are most convenient and comfortable to you. I highly recommend having a breastfeeding pillow to help support the baby’s weight as you may be holding the baby in one position for quite long stretches at a time. With a breastfeeding pillow, you might gain one (or two!) hands free to browse your phone, drink a glass of water, push the remote control buttons, etc.
A good starter one is My Brest Friend. Definitely get the Deluxe version as this one has a cover which is fuzzy and soft and very comfortable. The nice thing about this pillow is that it velcros around your waist, so that it doesn’t slip away from you as you’re positioning it. The attached pocket is useful to keep the cell phone nearby. It’s also very firm and supportive, and you can rest your newborn on it sideways for cross cradle feeding. It was absolutely instrumental for me when I was learning how to breastfeed! After the baby was born, I actually had my husband drive back home to go get it, as I should have brought it to the hospital in the first place, to help me with breastfeeding there from the get-go. Lactation consultants worked with me using it as well, in the hospital and at home.
It does have a few drawbacks. It is a little on the thinner side, so I found it helpful to actually even put another pillow under it to get it up high enough. Be aware of the velcro though; the exposed portion can catch on clothes or swaddles and damage them, as I found out when it created huge snags in my muslin swaddle blankets. It is also a very large pillow and doesn’t travel too well as it takes up so much space. They do make an inflatable version though, which might work better for travel but I haven’t tested it myself. You might want to consider having an extra cover on hand for those times when baby decides to throw up on the pillow.
After I weaned from nipple shields, though, and after my baby got a little bit bigger, I needed a different breastfeeding pillow solution. He was getting a bit too tall to fit horizontally on the pillow in between the two armrests of my chair, so I needed to feed him a bit on a diagonal with one head more elevated. On top of that, our favorite nursing position changed to a hybrid of cradle hold and laid-back position. Then I found this pillow from Little Beam.
How adorable is that!? It’s a very firm memory foam pillow which is slightly bean-shaped, with a cute cotton printed cover which comes in different prints. It’s perfect for wedging up under one elbow to support the baby’s head. It’s small enough to conveniently take with you to different places (including for traveling, like the plane or the car). It’s cute enough to use as decor, on the couch or in the nursery. I also use it to rest my head on when I’m laying on the floor playing with baby, or to support my head/neck when lounging around on the couch. It’s a total winner and it’s not a pillow that gets a lot of coverage on the internet so I wanted to highlight it here.
For something that you’re going to be doing for literally hours every day, I think it’s important that you make yourself as comfortable as possible. The nursing pillows might seem to be an excessive splurge at first but really, you owe it to yourself — definitely get one that you like.