Breastfeeding Diaries: Nursing Essentials

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No matter what project you take on you need the perfect set of tools. You get a manicure and you have nail polish, a file, clippers… you paint a picture, you have a paint brush and a canvas. To me, breastfeeding was no different. Of course nursing a baby is much bigger and more important than painting your nails or a picture, but it does require a certain checklist if you want to do it efficiently and comfortably.

Of course your breastfeeding essentials may vary from my own but if you’re just starting out or preparing to nurse and have no idea where to begin, feel free to check out my list!

1. A good nursing bra.
One that clips in the front! This will save you from a lot of fumbling as your baby quickly grows hungry. They’re also incredibly comfortable and you may find yourself wanting to wear them for months AFTER you’ve weaned the baby from the breast.
Found at: Target
Tip: Wait to be fitted until after the baby is born and your milk has come in then buy the bra. 


2. Tank Tops.
If you’re more on the modest side and don’t want to lift your entire shirt up in public then this will be a staple in your closet. Layer it under your shirt and simply pull the top down for the baby to eat (this will help keep your tummy covered).
Found at: Old Navy or Target
Tip: Don’t pay for overpriced nursing tanks; instead buy some simple tank tops that are big enough to pull down!

3. A good cover.
Blankets will work for this but I recommend using a light weight, breathable one. I personally decided to invest in an Udder Cover and am so glad I did! These not only come in some extremely cute prints but they are light and airy with a little plastic insert that allows you to see the baby as your nurse. Each one also has a strap that’s acts almost like an apron keeping the cover securely attached to you. This provided a huge peace of mind and made it much easier to maneuver the baby without letting the cover slip.
Found at: Uddercover.com
Tip: use the code 767593 at checkout to save $35 on yours today!


(using my Udder Cover after crossing the finish line at a 10k)

4. A reliable pump.
Whether you plan to go back to work or just go out to see a movie, you’ll want a good pump you can depend on. My recommendation is to use one that is easy to travel with. My Medela came in a backpack so it was great on the go.
Found at: Target
Tip: Check with your insurance..they may cover some or all of the cost of a pump!

5. A bottle you’re comfortable with.
As a mom who felt strongly about breastfeeding it was very important to me that I find a bottle that would be as similar to the breast as possible. There are a variety of options. Do your research and you’ll find one that you’ll feel comfortable with. We used bottles very seldom but when we did we used Munchkin Latch bottles.
Found at: Target
Tip: Keep in mind that many bottles have “stages” based on age/size of baby. Don’t get one that is too big or small for your little one. 

6. Nursing pads.
A Breastfeeding mom’s worst nightmare…leaking! Chances are, the leaking may begin towards the end of your third trimester. Having nursing pads on hand will save you some discomfort and a lot of embarrassment. They tuck securely into your bra and are comfortable enough that I had no problem wearing them for the entire 12 months that I breastfed!
Found at: Target
Tip: if you’re leaking and using these, I recommend also getting a “sleep bra“. It’s a thin cotton bralett type of bra that will help jeep the pads securely in place through the night. I found mine at Here at Target as well.

 (Picture via www.breastfeedingmamatalk.com)

7. A mommy-worn teething necklace.
These adorable accessories come in handy for much more than teething! During my breastfeeding experience my son would paw at me like a puppy. To be honest, being scratched and pinched by little baby fingers isn’t ideal. Wearing a teething/nursing necklace will keep those little hands busy while nursing. It allows them to grab and hold onto something other than your boob or shirt (which you are probably trying to keep up and off of the baby’s face!). My absolute favorite nursing necklace is by The Vintage Honey Shop. They’re absolutely beautifully handmade and they offer a variety of styles/patterns. Best of all, I’ve teamed up with them to GIVE one lucky reader a $25 gift card to their shop in an INSTAGRAM GIVEAWAY!

To enter:
1. Visit our Instagram @beautifullyimperfectmama and follow us!
While you’re there, like the giveaway photo for an entry!
For more entries tag a friend (1 entry per friend) or Share our post (be sure to tag us so we know!)
2. Head on over to @thevintagehoneyshop and follow their page as well!
Giveaway ends Tuesday April 11, 2017!

You may find that you need some or all of these items but either way I definitely recommend checking them out. Life doesn’t give you a checklist for motherhood and winging it can be tough. I hope my Nursing Essentials here at least gave you an idea of what to look for!

What was your MUST have product when you breastfed? Do you have a concern and need a product to help? Comment below and maybe we can find an answer for you!

Don’t forget to check out the rest of our series. This includes product recommendations for breastfeeding for the first time and tips on nursing in public!

**Still need to create your baby registry? Click here to create yours today!

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