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An alternative to breast pads that also collects leaked breast milk? Yes, it exists, and they’re called Milkies Milk-Saver.
Leaking breasts can be an embarrassment for most of us and a concern for low-supply mums, so I was thrilled to test the innovative Milkies Milk-Saver, which claims to be superior to any disposable or washable products for keeping breastfeeding mums dry and comfortable.
Milkies was founded by registered nurses who know the benefits of breastfeeding and want to help mums do it successfully. Although bulkier than expected, the Milk-Saver is easy to use and comfy. Before you start breastfeeding or expressing, slip it into your bra on the non-nursing side and position the center hole over your nipple. Any milk that leaks will collect in the bottom of the cup. You can then store this milk to use later. Alternatively, you can attach a breast milk freezing bag to it.
It’s a safe product as it has been tested to ensure zero chemical leaching, which is a relief after the recent bisphenol A (BPA) scare involving baby bottles. It has green credentials, too, as it’s recyclable and offers an alternative to disposable breast pads – but you will have to buy two of them! In the long run, it will also save money, water, electricity and time wasted having to wash and dry milk-soaked towels, shirts and fabric pads.
What we love
I wished I could have bought the Milk-Saver when I started breastfeeding Michela. In the early months I experienced constant leakages. I often sported embarrassing marks on my T-shirts because the breast pads slipped or got soaked; my nipples got stuck to the paper pads (ouch!) and when I switched to the washable ones, I needed several boxes to get by and was constantly washing them.
Unlike some breast shells, the Milk-Saver is durable and its reservoir is bigger, so I think it would also be ideal for mums who want to hand express. The manufacturer states that average mums leak 1-4 ounces of milk each time they breastfeed, but some mums managed to store up to 6 ounces and fared better with this product than with a pump.
On the practical side, it comes with a clear travel case and it’s easy to clean.
Unlike some online reviews that recommend the Milk-Saver to low-supply mums, I think it would suit all mums, even those with enough breast milk to feed triplets. Many mums like to store breast milk ahead for weaning recipes. It’s also great for mums wanting to go back to work and still feed breast milk to their baby as they can build up a long-lasting supply in their freezer.
What to watch out for
You need to ensure you wear the shell the right way up if you don’t want the breast milk to pour straight in your lap – a bit daft but possible if you can’t think straight because of sleep deprivation.
I’m not convinced about the claims that it’s discreet and you can use it anywhere. If you have small breasts it’s bulgy under your top and even if you’re confident at breastfeeding in public, getting the Milk-Saver positioned and then removed and poured out while also holding your baby might be tricky.
Who is the Milkies Milk-Saver best for?
Keen breastfeeders who want to save every precious drop.
A durable, easy-to-use breastfeeding aid. It might not be as discreet or inexpensive as a breast pad but a Milkies Milk-Saver can hold a good amount of milk that would otherwise be wasted and it’s environmentally friendly, too. Just remember to buy two if you want to wear them instead of breast pads.