10 of the best nipple creams

Sore, cracked nipples will be eased with the help of these soothing and protecting nipple creams

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Why do I need nipple cream?

Breastfeeding is great on so many levels, but let’s face it, it’s not always pain-free.  Many of us suffer from sore, painful, or cracked nipples especially in the first few weeks.

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Sometimes the pain can become so uncomfortable that a few of us give up breastfeeding altogether.  According to the NHS it’s actually one of the main reasons we switch to bottle feeding.  

However, if you don’t fancy moving to bottles, you can attend local breastfeeding support clinics, or contact organisations like La Leche League.  Most midwives will try to help your baby get a better position and latch on more effectively, which can go a long way to easing the pain.

Not everyone will get sore nipples, but it’s worth remembering that if you do feel tender, it gets better the longer you breastfeed.  You can check out this breastfeeding clinic FAQs  for more advice.

Thankfully, there are treatment creams available which can make life a little easier while your body adjusts to breastfeeding. And most don’t need to be removed while you feed, so it save you precious seconds and avoids the crying frenzy while you’re washing it off.  

Whether based on lanolin – an oily substance found naturally on sheep’s wool – or created totally from plant products, here’s some nipple saviours to make breastfeeding more comfortable… 

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1. Medela PureLan 100 nipple cream, £6.99 for 37g – 18p per ml, MadeForMums Awards Joint Gold Winner

Does it have to be removed before breastfeeding: No

Medela is probably best known for its breast pump products, like the electric Medela Swing, but it also hits the spot with this nipple cream, securing our MadeForMums gold award this year. Made of 100 per cent lanolin, it’s artificial ingredient free, as well as being fragrance and dye-free too.

Our mums raved about it relieving the pain of cracked nipples during breastfeeding, but as you should expect from a lanolin product it’s very sticky and requires a bit of work to apply.

What our MadeForMums Awards judges say about Medela PureLan 100 nipple cream:

“This is brilliant stuff. It’s great that it’s all natural and that it can be left on while breast feeding. My little one has had sore lips so I have put this on him as it’s safe and it’s worked a treat. I recommended this product to every new mum not just for breast feeding mums as it has other uses and it’s handy to have in the house.” Mum of 1, Rebecca

“This pure lanolin nipple cream is thick enough to soothe and protect the most cracked and sore nipples, and doesn’t need to be removed before breastfeeding. Fantastic value for money and easy to use flip top cap.” MFM Reviews Editor Magda Ibrahim

Available from: MothercareAmazonKiddicare


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2. Boots Maternity Lanolin Nipple Cream, £9.49 for 40g – 23 per gr, MadeForMums Awards Joint Gold Winner

Does it have to be removed before breastfeeding: No

“The cream appears to be almost identical to some of the slightly more expensive versions of nipple cream, but slightly cheaper. The cream was moisturising and I used it for my nipples and as a lip balm,” mum-of-one, Iyishia.

This cream is very easy to use and did help to protect my nipples from cracking, and helped them feel less sore. It’s easy to apply and isn’t too oily. There isn’t anything to improve about this cream,” expectant mum-of-two, Sally

Available from: Boots


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3. Weleda Nipple Balm, £6.95 for 25g tube, MadeForMums Awards Silver Winner

Does it have to be removed before breastfeeding: No

We love the Weleda brand – it has a long traditional of using the best natural ingredients, certified as natural by Natrue personal care. Best of all, its products are lush and soothing, and this silver award winning nipple balm is no exception 

It is made with organic calendula, nourishing plant oils and protective waxes, and of  course free of petroleum derivatives or artificial additives. It is completely safe to use and doesn’t need to be wiped off before breastfeeding, which is a great relief in the early days when breastfeeding can be somewhat unpredictable 

What our MadeForMums Awards judges say about Weleda Nipple Balm:

“A great barrier and cream for sore nipples, naturally products and nice consistency.” MFM Reviews Editor Hazelann Williams

“Very easy to apply and it’s great that it doesn’t need to be removed before feeding.” Mum of 1, Gillian

 Available from: Amazon, Boots and Beauty Expert


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4. Lansinoh’s HPA® Lanolin nipple cream, £10.49 for 40ml –  £0.26 per ml, MadeForMums Awards Joint Bronze Winner

Does it have to be removed before breastfeeding: No

Made with only one ingredient – 100 per cent ultra refined HPA lanolin, this is the bestselling nipple cream in the UK. It’s also the only lanolin to receive the British Allergy Foundation’s Seal of Approval.

Fragrance-free and colourless, there’s a discussion here at MFM HQ as to whether lanolin has a taste.  Some of us don’t taste a thing (yes, we’ve tasted it) then some of us detect a very slight ‘wet wool flavour’.

Our MFM mum loved the fact this year’s joint bronze award winner gives “immediate pain relief”  and while it’s thick, it melts as soon as it touches the skin.

What our MadeForMums Awards judges say about Lansinoh’s HPA Lanolin nipple cream:

“Great product. Initially quite difficult to squeeze out of tube due to thickness, but it softens quickly and once applied it soothes nipples instantly. I’ve also used it for cracked lips, dry hands and even on dry skin on my baby and it’s worked fantastically. Lasts a long time and is the perfect blend – not too sticky or too watery.” Mum of 1, Emma

“The lanolin goes soft in your fingers quickly which makes it easy to rub lightly onto sore nipples and soothe them. It was especially effective in the early days when we were getting used to breastfeeding. My nipples no longer became cracked after using the product and did not require excessive use.” Mum of 1, Lucy

Available from: BootsSuperdrugTescoJohn LewisLloyds PharmacyAmazon


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5. My Expert Midwife No Harm Nipple Balm, £16.50 for 30ml – 55p per ml, MadeForMums Awards Joint Bronze Winner

Does it have to be removed before breastfeeding: No

Nipple cream often ends up unused, especially if it works brilliantly, so the guys at My Expert Midwife are very cleverly marketing this nipple balm for its number of uses.

Not only does it soothe sore nipples, it is also designed to be used beyond the painful cracked nipple stage. Its airless pump ensures great hygiene and that all product can be squeezed out, and the natural ingredients, including pure lanolin, are just as effective as a nappy cream, lip balm, hand moisturiser and in many more situations. Could quickly become a changing bag staple.

What our MadeForMums Awards judges say about My Expert Midwife No Harm Nipple Balm

“Breastfeeding has been the hardest part of my pregnancy and parenting journey so far. We have faced many struggles, and sore nipple is one of them. The pump action bottles makes it feel like a very high quality product, and it is soft and smooth to apply making is glide over tender spots with ease. You can feel the difference after just one application, a must have for every mother.” Mum of 1, Joelle

“No Harm Nipple Balm has been a life saver to my nipples. Breastfeeding my little one seems continuous on days/nights, but with this easy to use natural nipple cream my nipples are no longer sore. I have also tried other nipple creams, and my little one seems to pull a face to others but not this one. The pump is easy to use, and to keep clean.” Mum of 1, Kayleigh

Available from: Amazon


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6. Mama Mio Keep Calm nipple balm, £12 for 30ml – 40p per ml

Does it have to be removed before breastfeeding: No

Blending medical grade lanolin, organic shea butter, organic coconut and olive oils and calendula, this lotion doubles up as a balm for lips, cuticles and any other dry skin.

One of our MFM mums shared how she loved the whole Mama Mio range and would “heartily recommend it”.

Despite having added oils the Mama Mio still manages to remain thick, like a lanolin only product.  In fact it’s so thick you’ll have to use some extra mummy force when trying to get it out of the tube. 

Available from: John LewisSpace NK and JoJo Maman Bebe


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7. Derma Mum Superior Protection nipple balm, £7.99 for 100ml – 7p per ml

Does it have to be removed before breastfeeding: Yes

If you’re on a budget or want a less thick, sticky and greasy nipple cream, then the Derma Mum Superior Protection nipple balm is for you.

Made with a combination of lanolin, grape seed and shea butter it’s got a thinner consistency than a pure lanolin lotion and works a treat to soothe distressed nippled.  That means it’ll be easier to get out of the tube and apply to your nipples.  The downside to that is that you may find the cream can get lumpy and any excess has to be cleaned off your nipple before breastfeeding.

Available from: Amazon


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8 Organic Babies Mum & Baby Rescue Balm, £10.50 for 100ml – 10p per ml

Does it have to be removed before breastfeeding: No

From the folk at organic beauty brand Green People, this rich cream is made from 91.9 per cent organic ingredients and is certified by the Soil Association and the Vegetarian Society.

Packed with ingredients like organic shea butter, hemp, beeswax and calendula, it will soothe mega-sore nipples and can be used to soften the perineum area before birth.  

Although it is fragrance-free and mostly organic, you may notice a slight smell, a bit like vegetable oil.  

Available from: Green PeopleAmazonOcado

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9 Bloom and Blossom Soothing Nipple Balm, £16 for 30ml – 53p per ml

Does it have to be removed before breastfeeding: No

This UK brand from two mums has gathered support from the likes of the Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Winslet and Victoria Beckham, and its nipple soothing balm is one of a range of maternity cosmetics.

With passionflower extract – rich in vitamin E – and coconut oil, combined with lanolin, the soothing nipple balm is handbag sized and can also be used for lips and other dry skin. 

It’s worth noting that all of these lovely ingredients come at a price as this nipple balm is very expensive. 

Available from: Bloom and BlossomJohn LewisSpace NK and Amazon


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10. nspa Mum to Be Soothing Nipple Balm, £5 for 75ml -6p per ml

Does it have to be removed before breastfeeding: No

From the experts at Nirvana Spa and produced exclusively for ASDA, soothing rosehip oil is combined with lanolin to create this moisturising balm.  It’s good value for throwing in the trolley, and will last for a while. 

Saying that, it’s got a very thick consistency (like honey) and it takes a while to melt/dissolve into the skin. 

Available from: ASDA and Spa At Home

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