My Mom has always referred to breast milk as “liquid gold” since it is your life source for feeding your new baby. She always encouraged me to capture every drop of milk as humanly possible. However, breastfeeding does have its challenges. Like when you are feeding your little bundle on one breast, the other breast starts to leak! This is a problem if you want to keep wearing the shirt you have on for the rest of the day. Thankfully, there are a few options out there on how to keep your shirt dry. But only one offers you a way to keep the milk & store it.
The first two options I will give you are easy to find & keep your shirt dry but do nothing to save the milk for future use. Option number 3 will open your eyes to a new product that is slowly making its way into the mainstream market, but still needs some help. Most Mommas have never heard of it before! In my eyes, it is the best kept secret of breastfeeding Mommas everywhere! Here I go, hoping to shed some light on this subject for you moving forward. I will get to option 3 in a minute. But first, here are two options that sort of work, but not really.
1) Disposable Nursing Pads: These are round pads made of cotton you insert into your bra. Kind of like a round maxi pad. They can be found in the baby aisle of any supermarket or pharmacy. They do a pretty good job of keeping your shirt dry but do nothing to save the milk for future use. You end up throwing these in the trash when you are done. Not to mention, they are quite expensive & you would need to buy these pads as much as you buy diapers! Imagine breastfeeding six times a day and needing to get a fresh pair every time? That's a lot of pads.
2) Reusable Nursing Pads: These round pads are made of terrycloth fabric and are washable. They serve the same purpose as the disposable pads, but you can wash them in your washing machine and use them again and again. But it's not like you can wring out any milk from them to store. It is still wasted. Simply a semi-solution, as you would need to buy at least six pairs of these for each feeding, and then be sure to wash them every day to get ready for the next day. Otherwise, they turn to sour milk and start to stink up the place if you leave them lying around full of old breast milk. Yes, it may help save the environment from creating more trash, but still does nothing to capture the milk in a way you can use it again. Besides, what sleep deprived Momma wants to add even more laundry to their heavy hamper load?
OK HERE COMES OPTION 3.
I HOPE YOU ARE READY TO HAVE YOUR MIND BLOWN!
3) Breast Shells: If you have never heard of these, let me enlighten you. Once again, my dear ol’ Mom taught me all about these, as she had them when she nursed me many moons ago. What are breast shells? They are hollowed out plastic cups, shaped like half an orange, with a hole inside where your nipple can fit. There are also air holes so you can have some circulation while the whole process is happening. As you are breastfeeding on the left breast, you can put this on your right breast to catch the milk. And vice-versa. The beauty of these babies is that they CAN catch all the milk that leaks out of the non-feeding breast, while also keeping your shirt dry. Once the milk is collected, you can pour it into a milk freezer bag or baby bottle and add it to your future milk stash. No milk gets thrown away and no milk goes into your washing machine ever! They are plastic, so of course you can use them again and again. No harm to the environment, no added laundry, and no added expense. The best part is, you are capturing every drop of liquid gold for your new baby! Score!
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