A nursing pillow is one of those products that some moms consider a necessity...and other moms scoff at as an unnecessary luxury.
I'm in the middle camp: I think they're a "nicety," not a necessity. If you're short on money, you certainly can use regular pillows for support. But if you can spare the change, a breastfeeding pillow will provide optimal support as you nurse your baby (and will likely spare you sore arms and an aching back).
Breastfeeding pillows are especially wonderful for first-time moms and/or for those first few weeks postpartum as you and your baby adjust and "learn" together.
The two most popular breastfeeding pillows on the market are the Boppy and the My Brest Friend. I had the Boppy for my first baby and I am using the My Brest Friend this time around. I prefer the latter.
The primary differences are highlighted below, but I found the My Brest Friend to be much more comfortable due to the wrap-around design. I appreciate the fact that it offers back support...and the firm, flat surface prevents my newborn from rolling in towards me, thus allowing for better positioning. I also find the little "pocket" to be quite handy for storing nursing pads, cream, snacks, and other necessities.
Both brands offer pillows that retail between $30-60, depending on which "model" you select.
My Brest Friend
Better back support
No back support
Pocket for holding nursing pads, nursing cream, water bottle, etc.
Hmm…not sure this pillow would work for playtime/tummy time
Ideal for baby’s “tummy time” or playtime
Original - $39.99
Deluxe - $44.99
Individual Slipcovers - $17.99
Bare Naked (no slipcover) - $29.99
Boppy with Slipcover - $34.99
Boppy with Designer Slipcover - $44.99
Boppy with Posh Slipcover - $59.99
Individual Slipcovers - $19.99
In sum: I recommend the My Brest Friend pillow. I have both pillows in my house and I always end up reaching for the MBF before the Boppy. I guess you could say it's my new best friend (ha!)...
YOUR TURN: Do you/Did you use a breastfeeding pillow? Do you consider it to be a necessity, a nicety,...or an unnecessary item?
I've never tried MBF but after a c-section, my Boppy was a total necessity to keep the baby's weight off of my scar. I'd definitely recommend c-section moms get some sort of nursing pillow!
I preferred the breast friend for the first two months but now that my son and I have figured out nursing, We tend to use my boppy more now. I can throw it on my lap one handed while I have him in hand. The MBF is still used but it takes more effort to put on and secure. The MBF is the only reason I could actually do the football hold comfortably by turning the whole thing sideways. But now I'm getting better at doing it with the boppy. The boppy is nice because I can set it off my lap and snuggle the kid into it for an observed nap or playtime whereas the MBF is much better for walking somewhere with a sleeping or nursing kid. All in all I say the MBF is best for the learning period of the first 6 weeks and then the boppy becomes useful too as the baby starts having more alert periods.
I agree that both pillows have benefits. If a new mom can only budget for 1 pillow, I would say to go with the MBF. If she can get both, that would be even better. :)
I used both regularly. I think MBF is better for most people, especially in the earliest months, and agree with your blog about it. Very supportive of your back and really helps hold up the baby. I still kept using the Boppy for both my kids. It's less bulky and flexible for say sitting with your feet up on the couch or in bed. But I am very thankful to my best friend from high school for getting me the MBF - despite the ridiculous name.
Also, I am a total fan of lying down nursing. Get a little more rest that way!
MBF is fantastic! Every nursing mother should have one. The boppy is inadequete
MY BREST FREND IS A BLESSING TO ALL NURSING MOMS N I REALLY MEAN IT...my 1st week after delivery was a bit painful as i had terrible waist and back ache and nursing seemed like a burden to me. I used to cry with pain in waist and back and nurse my baby (also felt guilty for doing something so divine like nursing half heartedly). Then my darling husband got My Brest Frend for me and THAT CHANGED EVERYTHING. I started to enjoy nursing and it took care of all my aches and pains as it has provisions like backrest and support for hands too.70% of my nursing problems were solved immediately as soon as i wore it for the 1st time. I TRULY RECOMMEND MY BREST FREND TO ALL NURSING MOMS...ITS A MUST MUST HAVE!!!!!:)
We used the Blessed Nest pillow when Jayden was a newborn, loved it. As he grew, I no longer needed it for nursing. Now it's used to cuddle up with or as a barrier.
No I didn't. I had one and it was more of hassle then it was worth! =)
I used Boppy pillows from day one. With my second baby, I had two -- one for each floor of our home. I couldn't live without them! There were times when I'd try to prop couch cushions around me, but it just didn't work! I'm so glad Boppys came out before my first one came along. I think it helped me stick with breastfeeding so long, I really do!
I used a Boppy for my kids - never even heard of MBF! With my son, the Boppy was a necessity. We struggled with nursing for 2 weeks before he learned how to latch on. Once he figured it out though, he could still only latch on if he was in very specific positions that were easiest to get into using it. It wasn't until he was a couple of months old that I could nurse him without it. My daughter latched on the first time she came to me in the hospital, and the Boppy was just a nicety for her.
I tried the Boppy with all 3 kids, but used it very infrequently. But now it is getting lots of use with my 15 month old. It is her pillow that she plops down in with her sippy cup to watch a little Baby Einstein. Woe to the sibling who dares come near her Boppy! I had not heard of the Best Friend brand. It looks very functional, maybe it would work better than the Boppy.
My son lived on the Boppy. Sometimes, when I could be watchful, I even let him sleep on it. (Shhh!) Even now at 2.5 he sleeps with his Boppy. At the time he was born, I didn't know about My Brest Friend. I am looking into using that for my second baby, though.
I only have used the boppy, but I personally found it to be a necessity. I am intrigued by the MBF. Maybe I can find one on Craigslist when baby #2 comes along.
I have both. With the boppy I found I had positioning problems with baby number 1 because the pillow kept moving out of place and because of the rounded top. I stopped using it all together after a month and used a regular pillow. With babies number 2 and 3 I found the MBF to be a Godsend. Not only is positioning better but it stays with me so if a baby falls asleep on the boob it is easier to transfer her up the stairs and to her bed without waking her because the pillow stays there for support! Just a strange thing I wouldn't have thought of to be a bonus but it is! I would recommend the MBF to anyone over the boppy.
Brest friend all the way
One of the first things I got was a Boppy. Totally useless! I lost 15 lbs when I left the hospital but the darn pillow didn't fit around me. 2 months later I lost another 15 lbs and I still don't use it. For me, it makes baby too high up for nursing. We're going to use it for tummy time instead.
I have a boppy. I like to use it in the middle of the night so if I fall asleep my girl won't be dropped. Other then that I only really used it for the first couple of weeks.
I had a boppy and never used it. I got it after I was already in a routine with regular pillows. I found just using a bed pillow (or 2) was easier and more comfortable for both of us. But I can imagine that for those who use it and are used it it that either would be a nice addition.
I have a Brest Friend and don't use it anymore but it was wonderful for quite awhile! Now my babe loves playing with it and leaning back on it. I also have a Blessed Nest organic one which is nice but not as supportive or reliable as the BF!
I've never used the breast friend, so I can't compare, but one thing I love about the boppy is that its versatile. I liked it for nursing (even though a firm pillow worked eaqually as well), but we also used it to lay DD on when she was younger and even now it keeps her from rolling when she sleeps (supervised of course!).
We used it for tummy time before she really started pushing up on her arms because it positioned her at enough of an angle that she could play, which was less frustrating for her than being flat on the floor; and even now at 7 months, we will wrap it around her when she's sitting up playing because it provides just enough support to keep her from tipping.
I definitely think we got our money's worth.
I picked a Boppy up at a garage sale for $5 before my first baby was born. It worked good enough for us. I'm sure I'd like the My Brest Friend pillow better but to me Nursing pillows are simply a nicety so I know I wouldn't spend the money on one. I did like the way the Boppy worked out for tummy time and simply to make a little nest for my little one for the first few months of her life. That was probably more valuable to me than anything.
I borrowed my sister-in-law's Boppy with my first. She hadn't used it much with her first (though she did with her third), so, even though she had a baby 12 days before me, she felt she could live without it. ;) I found that I would pull my legs up onto the couch or chair (like I was going to rest my chin on my knees, almost) and support the baby on my thighs. It works great for me, and it means it's one less thing that I have to make sure I have when sitting down to breastfeed in those first weeks!