How To Choose The Best Breastfeeding Pillow To Use

breastfeeding mom

If you've ever wanted to change the channel while nursing your wee one, you'll understand the need for a solid breastfeeding pillow. These ergonomic pillows will make feeding your baby while watching your favorite soap possible by freeing up an arm. They will also take the stress off your overworked arms, whether you're breastfeeding or bottle feeding.

Finding the best breastfeeding pillow, however, depends a lot on personal preference. Some mothers prefer tall, plush pillows to help raise their child closer to them. Others prefer softer, less-filled pillows, which are ideal for larger breasts. Whatever the case, there is a breastfeeding pillow out there to suit your wants and needs.

What is a Breastfeeding Pillow?

Many moons ago, breastfeeding pillows simply did not exist. Mothers stuck to holding their children the entire time or used something to prop their arms up (a chair arm, a stack of regular pillows, etc.). Thankfully, breastfeeding pillows have grown in popularity over the past 30 years, and there are many makes and models available on the market.

Traditional breastfeeding pillows feature a crescent moon or "C" shape. These pillows wrap around the mother's waist and make nursing easier by lifting the baby closer to the breasts. They have been proven to help minimize back and nipple pain because mom no longer leans forward to nurse. Breastfeeding pillows are better than regular pillows because they are shaped to hug the mother's waist and are specially made to hold a growing infant.

How We Reviewed

Using research and online reviews, we compiled a list of breastfeeding pillows to suit every mother and child. We looked at several brands' models and explored their strengths, and weaknesses.

There are many brands which manufacture breastfeeding pillows. Some brands have multiple models to cater to different needs (materials, twins, etc.). Below are a few best-rated brands and their breastfeeding pillows.

My Brest Friend: Original Nursing Pillow


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My Brest Friend's original nursing pillow was created about 20 years ago and is now sold worldwide to over 35 countries. The U-shaped original breastfeeding pillow is available in 22 different patterns and features a plastic clasp to keep the pillow in place. The back is raised to support the mother's spine, and an integrated pocket can hold small items such as a bottle or wipes.

The cushion for the baby is firm and eliminates the gap between mother and child. Its flat surface ensures the baby does not roll in or away while breastfeeding. There are also soft arm and elbow rests to keep mom comfortable. Despite great reviews, some mothers have complained about oddly-placed bumps on the pillow. They state that although they believe the lumps are to prop up the baby's head, they are not useful. 

My Brest Friend: Professional Twin Plus Breastfeeding Pillow


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The Professional Twin Plus breastfeeding pillow is best for tandem breastfeeding in either the double football or double cradle position. The double football position means having the babies at mom's sides, under the arms with their heads supported by mom's hands. The double cradle means having both infants' heads at the crook of mom's elbow with their feet overlapping.

This pillow is wider and more rectangular than the original nursing to accommodate both infants. It is just as flat and firm as the original; however, some reviewers have complained that the slipcover is not 100 percent waterproof. Consequently, the slipcover must go through the washer more often.

Pros

  • Safety clasp on the side
  • Flat surface prevents rolling
  • Professional Plus is suitable for tandem breastfeeding

Cons

  • Complaints that the pillows are too firm
  • Slipcover is not 100 percent waterproof
  • Bumps on the pillow are not as useful as intended to keep baby's head up

Leachco Best Nest


Leachco Best Nest

Leachco has been making natal and pre-natal products since 1988. Within their lineup of natal items are quite a few breastfeeding pillows — one of them is the best nest. This pillow is a 2-in-1 natal pillow which changes from a full-body pregnancy sleeping pillow into a plush breastfeeding pillow. It features an elastic back and front opening for easy use that stays together thanks to Velcro straps.

The Best Nest is made of 65 percent polyester and 35 percent cotton and is one size fits all. The zippered slipcover is removable, and you can wash it with similarly colored clothes. This breastfeeding pillow can be purchased online at Bed Bath & Beyond or buybuyBaby. Other retailers such as Amazon do not carry the Best Nest.

Leachco Natural Boost


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The natural boost pillow is much more structured than Leachco's best nest model. Its C-shape has a secondary pillow attached to the base to give moms the little boost they need to get baby to breast level. The boost pillow can be used either on the right or left side or completely removed if not necessary. Moms can also remove the boost from the base and use it as a nursing pillow all by itself. Reviewers have said that the boost pillow can either be used above or below the base pillow. When beneath the booster is beneath the base pillow, it allows the baby to be on a perfect slope without any grooves or gaps.

The Natural Boost basic does not have a removable slipcover. However, the Natural Boost Original does have a removal sham-style cover that is machine washable. This breastfeeding pillow can be found on Bed Bath & Beyond, buybuyBaby, Walmart, and Amazon. 

Pros

  • More affordable than its competitors
  • Best Nest doubles as a pregnancy pillow
  • Natural Boost is readily available in store and online

Cons

  • Best Nest only has one size
  • Best Nest cannot be found on Amazon or in stores
  • Natural Boost basic does not have a removable slipcover

Dr.Brown's Gia Nursing Pillow


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Dr.Brown is lesser known than its competitors, but their nursing pillows are just as highly reviewed. Their Gia breastfeeding pillow is in the shape of a giant comma. Its gentle slope is angled to support mom's nursing positions. Unlike other models, it does not have any safety clasps, plush back support, or additional pockets. However, the Gia pillow is larger than most models to accommodate a growing baby and can be flipped to the left or right.

The Gia breastfeeding pillow boasts zipper-free covers so they won't ever accidentally hurt mom or baby during nursing. According to Amazon reviews, the Gia pillow does not come with a slipcover. However, you can find slipcovers available separately.

Their slipcovers are 100 percent machine washable for easy cleanup. Some mothers also complain that their babies sometimes fall into the space between their bodies and pillow. This is a common issue with most pillows that do not have safety clasps.

Pros

  • No zippers
  • Sloped design for easy nursing
  • The most cost-effective pillow of the list

Cons

  • No safety clasp or back support
  • The slipcover comes separately
  • Mothers must flip the pillow to nurse from another breast

Boppy Bare Naked Pillow


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Boppy has been making natal and pre-natal products since they first started almost 30 years ago with their first nursing pillow. They were so popular that they were on an episode of Friends! Their bare naked pillow is suitable for babies ages 0-12 months old and weighs three pounds. This model is the most basic of all of their models: It has no straps, extra support, and slipcovers must come separately. One side is soft, while the other is firm, so mothers can choose which side they prefer.

Despite this, the pillow has gained an enormous following. The Bare Naked Pillow has over 1,000 reviews on the Boppy website and approximately 720 on Amazon. Mothers who have used the bare naked gush about its multiple uses. The breastfeeding pillow doubles up as a pillow to prop their little one while they get dressed. Due to their lack of extra bells and whistles, the Boppy bare naked pillow receives praise for its practicality and ease of use. The only complaint is the nursing child slipping through the gap between the mother and pillow — a problem most breastfeeding pillows cannot avoid.

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Works as a baby pillow
  • Entire pillow is machine washable

Cons

  • No slipcover included
  • Slight more expensive than other models

Boppy Best Latch


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For moms looking for a sturdy breastfeeding pillow that will not slip, Boppy’s Best Latch delivers. The pillow features a soft and firm surface to suit mom’s breastfeeding needs and an adjustable belt to keep the pillow secure. This pillow is available in three color combinations, and the entire pillow (minus the foam insert) is washable in the washing machine.

This pillow is much larger, and is, therefore, more apt to accommodate heavier babies as they grow. The belt tucks into a small side pocket when not in use. While the belt is useful, reviewers have complained that the quality of the clasp is subpar. There is also no slipcover to wrap around the entire pillow. This means that mom must wash the whole pillow (without the insert) whenever it becomes soiled. This is inconvenient when the breastfeeding pillow is in use multiple times per day.

The Best Latch is available on Boppy’s website as well as other online retailers and in-store.

Pros

  • Plusher than other pillows
  • Available online and in store
  • Accommodates babies better than other pillows as they grow

Cons

  • Low-quality clasp
  • No slipcover for the entire pillow
  • Not many color combinations available

Luna Lullaby Bosom


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The Luna Lullaby Bosom breastfeeding pillow comes in a unique V shape and promises to make nursing comfortable for both mom and baby. The elongated V shape allows nursing mothers to rest their elbows while raising their baby to breast level.

This pillow weighs a mere 1.33 pounds and is one of the softest pillows on the list. Some nursing mothers say that this pillow is too soft when they are breastfeeding and would prefer something firmer. Some reviewers on Amazon also state that this pillow does not have the height required so baby can easily latch onto the breast. 

Pros

  • Very light
  • Easily available online
  • Comfortable and unique V-shape

Cons

  • Low-quality clasp
  • One of the priciest pillow of the list
  • Reviewers complain it is not tall enough

Is There a Best Breastfeeding Pillow?

The bottom line is that everyone’s personal preferences are different. For this reason, it is difficult to name one pillow as the best breastfeeding pillow. Nursing mothers may not know which firmness level and safety features they prefer until they try one. It may be worth trying a friend’s pillow and finding out your likes and dislikes. This way, when the time is right, mothers will be able to make a purchase best suited to their needs.

If you’ve had a great experience with your own nursing pillow, comment below and let us know! Your experience could just make another person’s decision that much easier.

Comparison Table

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