Essential Breastfeeding Accessories for a Successful Lactation Journey

A mother wearing a cream sweater cradles her newborn baby while breastfeeding.

For many new moms, breastfeeding is one of the things they’re most nervous about when it comes to parenting. While you can practice most baby-related skills before your little one arrives, breastfeeding training happens on the job. 

Being prepared and anticipating potential pitfalls will help you have a successful breastfeeding journey. Besides taking a lactation class, the best way to prepare is to gather your essential breastfeeding accessories so you already have them when you need them. Keep reading to discover our list of the best breastfeeding accessories.

Related: DIY Postpartum Care Kit | 7 Items You Need for Postpartum Recovery

Want to head straight to the nursing accessories? Click here for everything!

collection of essential breastfeeding accessories
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A baby looks at the camera, leaning against its mother's chest after breastfeeding.

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The essential breastfeeding accessories you need for your lactation journey:

These essential breastfeeding accessories have made it so much easier for me to navigate nursing for the first time. I hope they help you, too! 

Kindred Bravely Organic Reusable Nursing Pads

I’ve heard that some moms stop leaking once they get into the flow of breastfeeding (See what I did there?), but I am definitely not one of them! That’s why I own two sets of Kindred Bravely Organic Reusable Nursing Pads and wear them every day.

I’ve found these nursing pads to be soft and comfortable. They don’t bunch up easily, and I’ve never leaked through them, even though I have a strong letdown. They’ve held up well to weekly washings for the past 8 months, and I love that they’re reusable, so I’m not creating unnecessary waste.

Related: How I Used ‘The First Forty Days’ Book to Plan My Dream Postpartum

CAKYE Maternity Nursing Bralettes

A comfortable nursing bra is a must-have for breastfeeding. I wanted mine to be as soft and simple as possible, and CAKYE Maternity Nursing Bralettes definitely fit the bill!

It’s so easy to pull one panel of this nursing bra out of the way when my baby is ready to eat – no snaps or buttons required! I sleep in CAKYE’s nursing bras and wear them throughout the day, and they’re comfortable, supportive, and discrete. I love that there are so many color and pattern options to make getting dressed with a nursing bra a little more fun.

Boppy Nursing Pillow

Our Boppy Nursing Pillow was a godsend in the first few months of breastfeeding! It provided so much support during the time that my baby couldn’t hold her head up herself to help with nursing. And it saved my back and shoulders since I didn’t have to hunch over to reach her!

The Boppy kept being useful after we stopped needing it for nursing. I used it to prop her up during tummy time sometimes so she could feel what it was like to be a little higher up. And once she was practicing sitting on her own, I put the Boppy around her so she could build her oblique muscles without toppling over!

Earth Mama Organics Nipple Butter Breastfeeding Cream

Breastfeeding can be super uncomfortable at first, as you and your baby figure out your ideal latch and positioning. Your nipples will also need to get used to nursing, and they can end up sore, cracked, or even blistered. Breastfeeding my daughter was a big goal for me, and I really wanted to work through the pain of my sore nipples in the first few weeks. Earth Mama Organics’ Nipple Butter made that possible.

I would smooth Earth Mama’s breastfeeding cream immediately after nursing. It went a long way to healing my cracked skin so I could persevere until breastfeeding got more comfortable!

Related: Pregnancy Tea Recipe with Red Raspberry Leaf and Nettle

haakaa Silicone Breast Pump with Silicone Cap

The haakaa Silicone Breast Pump is a lifesaver in those first weeks of breastfeeding if you’re engorged. Placing it on the opposite breast than the one your baby is feeding on to collect your letdown, bringing you some relief and helping your build a little stash early on. 

Make sure to get the haakaa with a silicone cap so it won’t spill when you inevitably knock it over!

Philips AVENT Manual Breast Pump

Since I’m with my daughter most of the time, I only pump a few times a week. I ended up not wanting to set up and clean the electric breast milk pump I got through insurance just for those few pumping sessions a week. Instead, I’ve loved pumping with the Philips AVENT Manual Breast Pump, and it has become one of my most essential breastfeeding accessories!

It’s super easy to use and clean, and there’s no tubing involved. This hand pump is small enough to fit inside a purse, so I’ve actually taken it to two different concerts to pump there! Even if I were using my full-sized pump, I’d want to have this manual pump on hand for the convenience it provides. 

HOOJO Breast Milk Freezer Organizer Bins

I’ve loved the HOOJO Breast Milk Freezer Organizer Bins for keeping my milk storage bags together. Every drop of breast milk is honestly so valuable because of the time and energy I put into producing it. 

These bins make it easy to see how much milk I have stored. In a few months, I’m going on a weekend trip away from my baby for the first time, so this is helpful as I prepare enough for her to eat during that time. 

Related: 7 Ways to Help New Parents (Plus, 3 Things NOT to Do!)

What breastfeeding supplies are covered by insurance?

Many insurance plans will cover breastfeeding supplies like electric breast pumps, according to HealthCare.gov. Some will even cover replacement parts like tubing or flanges when needed, usually every few months. Check with your insurance provider to make sure you get the most out of your benefits and to find out how to order your covered breastfeeding supplies. 

What’s your number one question about breastfeeding? Ask in the comments!

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