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Ep 114. – Pump Review Pt. 3

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Ep. 114 – Breast Pump Review Pt. 3

This is Maureen Farrell and Heather ONeal and this is The Milk Minute. We’re midwives and lactation professionals bringing you the most up to date evidence for all things lactation. So you can feel more confident about feeding your baby, body positivity, relationships and mental health. Plus, we laugh a little or a lot along the way.

So join us for another episode. Welcome to the Milk Minute Podcast, everybody. Hey, I am pumped about our third part in the series on breast pump reviews. Yes. We get to do a new one today. I apologize to everyone if I’m a little sluggish. I had a fresh round of anaphylaxis yesterday after getting stung by a wasp in my eye.

I keep telling her that even though she loves nature, nature doesn’t seem to love her back. You know, nature isn’t loving to anyone. Actually I think just trying to kill every living thing all at the same time. Nature is scary, and this is just further proof that I’m always right. I, I will never stop going outside.

And if I die by bee attack, so be it. This one wasn’t even a bee; it was a paper wasp. Yeah. And it wasn’t like attacking me. It just flew into my face. And I’m, I’m mad about it, but mostly because it’s like, I’m in a lot of pain. And I really it’s terrifying to experience that level of allergic reaction and I have panic attacks when it happens.

So it’s like double, like it’s hard to distinguish, like, can I not breathe cuz I’m having a panic attack or am I experiencing upper airway edema? Yeah, that’s horrifying. Yeah. And you’re in the middle of nowhere. Yeah. I have lots of EpiPens and EMS can get to us in 20 minutes. It’s fine. I have enough EpiPens for it, but it’s just, it’s like the most unpleasant thing ever.

Yeah. And when I saw you today and your whole face was inflamed and also you got stung right after being at a birth for 36 hours. Oh yeah. So I’m already like, not at my best. I saw her, I saw her at the hospital. We actually, our paths crossed in a non-podcast way, which is always so fun. We’re like, what are you doing here?

Like, Hey girl, what are you doing here? Oh, what are you doing here? Yeah, so we met at the hospital cuz she was doulaing for a client and I was teaching my nursing students. And so that was fun. So we got to hang out a little bit. And wow. That mom really worked for her birth. Yes. So, and Maureen worked for that birth too.

Yeah, it was wonderful though. So beautiful. And then I got home and slept and then I woke up and got stung right in the eye. Right, right there. Yeah. Poor baby. Yeah. But you know, in the meantime she’s still been pumping with a bajillion pumps to make sure she can get all this info for you guys.

Actually, funny enough at that birth since I was gone for 36 hours, I was like, okay, I’m just gonna pump really regularly. You know? And since I was a doula and not working as a midwife, then I had a little more freedom to do that. So I was like, whatever, I’ll pump between every like two and four hours. And it’ll be fine, completely not realizing that my baby does not nurse every two.

Like my baby’s a year old, Heather. Yeah. She doesn’t nurse that often. What was I thinking? You weren’t, you were just in that, like I’m away from my baby and I must keep my supply up and yeah. So I was pumping more than I should have and I ended up at the end of it so engorged. I boosted my supply somehow, even though I did not sleep for 36 hours. Then I got home and I was so engorged and my baby was already asleep and I was like, what am I gonna do?

I got home and I was like, I showered and I didn’t wanna put a bra back on, but I was like, I have to pump. Oh my goodness. And so I like pumped and had my, I was like holding the flanges. You know, my husband was like helping me with the buttons and it was super stressful. I can just see Ivan by the way.

He’s like now, which of these 3000 pumps would you like to use today, Maureen? But anyway, then I was like still really engorged in the morning when I got stung and had to take like 75 milligrams of Benadryl and other antihistamines. And then that, that cured my engorgement. Oh, my God. Anyway, I, I guess I’m back to normal now.

You’re not back to normal. The poor thing. I tried to make her take a walk in the middle of our recording session today, just to clear our clear our air and just blow the stink off of us for a minute. And she, she just looks so sad as she goes. I can’t walk anymore. My joints hurt so much from all of the anaphylaxis.

So it was like, okay, we’ll go home now. Yeah. I, if anyone else is more experienced in managing the like everything about anaphylaxis, I’d love to hear from you because the like week after it feels like my joints are on fire and I’m nauseous and swollen and it’s horrible. Yeah. I’m sorry.

Well, my daughter poops on the potty everywhere now. Yes! I mean everywhere. Heidi! Heidi! She’s become, a potty connoisseur everywhere we go. She says, is she rating them? Oh, five outta five. Yeah. No, she’s very uncomfortable with numbers. She only gives them letters. I’m kidding. She loves it. So like everywhere we go, she says they have a potty here? And I say, yep.

And she does the sweetest thing ever. First of all her poops are still nasty. Great. And like diarrhea every time. And I don’t know why. Great and whatever she eats too much fruit is what the pediatrician said. That can’t be it. I’m sorry. I don’t know. There’s something off with her microbiome. Yeah. But anyway, every time she gets on the potty, she says, I sit like a big girl.

I sit like big girl watch and she goes, no hands. And I’m like, hold on to that potty. You’re like, don’t fall in please. She leans forward so I can wipe her. And she holds onto one of my legs and she always looks up with the sweetest, look on her face. And she goes, I love you mom, as I’m wiping her stinky butt. And I say, I love you too.

And then she goes, I missed you today. And then she pats the back of my thigh as she holds me. And it’s the cutest thing. As your wiping poop off her? She, her little personality is just something else. Dad was trying to cover her up for a nap the other day, Uhhuh and she has a blanket that’s fuzzy on one side and just regular soft on the other side.

And she’s very particular about it being the regular soft side, touching her body. Right. Whatever. Okay. And he put it on her wrong and was not understanding what she was saying when she’s like, daddy, it’s the wrong side. And he’s like, they’re the same cuz he’s a man. Yeah. And she says, daddy, you broke my life.

And she came running into find me and she’s tattling on her dad, of course. And I said, what happened? She goes, daddy’s standing in there putting a blanket on me, breaking my life. So the drama has entered the ONeal household, but anyway, I’m here for it. That’s what is going on with three. I’m obsessed with three, three is so fun.

I honestly, I loved two and three with Griffin. Yeah, so cute and so fun and so creative. Mm-hmm. And just the shit they say you’re like it can’t not be cute. Yeah. She’s adorable. Yeah. So if you’re stuck in the early twos, just wait, it gets better. It does. It does. And before we get into these reviews today, we have a firsthand account that I’d like to read.

Oh yeah. So we got a lovely email from a listener who says, hi, Heather and Maureen. I recently came across your podcast, The Milk Minute, and listened to the episode about D-MER. We’ll link it in the show notes. Yeah. She says in it, you guys asked for listener’s experiences with dysphoric milk ejection reflex and I have some insight.

I’m literally experiencing a dysphoric episode as I type this out. My second child is six weeks old and I’m nursing right now. I self-diagnosed with this condition about two years ago. And for context, we had a rocky start with birth and breastfeeding. She went through three days of labor, ended up with an emergency C-section and then he spent 10 days in the NICU with group B strep.

Ooh, that’s awful. And she says, she thinks they picked it up through the long labor process, which can happen. Yeah, of course she was a mess through the whole experience, very stressful with her baby being in the NICU. And they weren’t able to establish successful breastfeeding initially. Had lots of lactation consultants trying to help.

And then she was only with her baby only a few hours each day. She has very large breasts and flatter nipples. It was just like the worst combination of circumstances. Lots, like the perfect storm of issues, but she was still determined to breastfeed. So despite it all, she actually improved over time and was able to get rid of the nipple shield and rely less on formula despite all of those challenges.

So for those of you out there really struggling, know that sometimes with enough persistence, it really can get better. And she wanted to give that background because it obscured the fact that what she was experiencing while nursing was not normal. Like she’s still very persistent about breastfeeding, but then every time she breastfed, she was having negative emotions and she thought it was just postpartum depression.

She says eventually, as I emerged from the postpartum fog, I started to wonder about the negative feelings I had almost every time I nursed my baby. It was strange and discouraging. I’d feel a dropping sensation in the pit of my stomach, a feeling that something was terribly, terribly wrong. A feeling of physical illness, accompanied by extreme thirst for water to help quell the sensation and intense worry that nothing would ever be right again.

And then seconds later, the feelings would disappear and I would be completely fine and normal. This dysphoria as it’s called would last, maybe 30 seconds. Never more than a minute. It was bizarre. So she self-diagnoses with D-MER and she was very relieved to find out what was actually going on. Yeah, because just giving it a name sometimes gives it less power.

You know, psychologically just knowing that these negative feelings will pass and pass quickly, and that it’s not a mystery condition made it endurable. I continued to experience it throughout my son’s infancy, but by the time he had weaned himself at 10 months old, I had gotten used to the D-MER and found I could live with it.

Our tenuous breastfeeding relationship had been enough to make up for the periodic discomfort caused by the dysphoria. She’s now newly postpartum again. Congratulations. Yes. Congratulations. And she still has D-MER. It’s still there. Yeah. But she has got more power over it. It’s not defining her journey.

They’re having a much smoother experience. And I think she found out like it’s unrelated to the traumatic birth experience. Right. Because the second one was not like that. Exactly. Yeah. So she says, I hope this helps a little bit in understanding D-MER from the perspective of someone who has it and is surviving quite well.

Thanks for your time. I’ve enjoyed listening to your podcast and look forward to many more episodes- Jessica K. Thank you so much for telling us about your experience and mostly for giving some hope and inspiration to other people who experience D-MER. Just knowing that it can get better. It can be endurable and that you’re not alone in experiencing that.

Yes. Thank you, Jessica. We are super proud of you and, and we know that somebody out there listing is resonating with that. We really appreciate you sharing.

All right. It’s Maureen here. And I want to tell you that I have finally set up a link so you can instantly book virtual lactation consults with me. Thank the Lord. I know Heather, it took me a long time to take the leap from in person visits to virtual, but I did. You’re gonna love it. I love doing virtual consults.

They are the best. It serves more people. I’m so glad you took the plunge. Thank you. And if you guys out there wanna book some time with me, you can go to and then click on my lactation services tab. Is that H I G H L A N D. Yes. Okay. I will see you on zoom, everybody.

Okay. So I have a question to lead us into this episode today. Our question is from Lindsay Mertes and she asks, what specific Facebook groups or other places can you buy pump parts or donate and sell pump systems when we’re done with our journey? So there are a variety of places. Technically Facebook prohibits the sale of medical devices.

However, there are a lot of Facebook groups you can buy and sell and give away pumps on. I use Exclusively Pumping Yard Sale. But there are other groups too. You’re usually looking for a BST group, a buy sell trade. You have to look at the rules for how to list your stuff so it doesn’t get kicked off Facebook.

And it’s kind of the wild west over there and then actually eBay allows sales of breast pumps as long as you clean and sterilize them. So that’s another good place to find them. And I find a lot of new pumps on there for really cheap, right. Because they expect people to bid on them and then nobody bids.

 So if you’re diligent about it and that’s like your 2:00 AM pumping scroll, you can find things on there. Or in that case, you can sell things on there. You can do that on Mercari as well. Can you give them to WIC? So, I don’t think you can give a used one to WIC unless it’s approved as like a multi-user pump.

Okay. So if you have like a Medela Symphony, I’ll take it. Sure. You can call me, call us. But if you have one that like you got through insurance and never used, I’m sure you can give that to WIC or a women’s shelter, a domestic violence shelter, a pregnancy resource center. Anything like that in your local area, that helps folks who are likely to be pregnant or postpartum is a good place to call.

And also we just did an interview with Moira Tannenbaum about breastfeeding in jail. Yes. And pumping in jail. And I’m just wondering if any of those organizations would take some pumps and help inmates be able to express milk. Well, we’ll look at it. We’ll see what we can find. Yep. Okay. We will link all of those in the show notes for you.

Okay, well, let’s talk about pumps. Okay. So list the pumps that you’re going to be reviewing for us today. Okay. I have three pumps. I have the Limerick Joy, the Bella Baby Pocket Pump. And then I have the old school Medela Freestyle, which we’ll go into more about that later, but it’s not the freestyle flex.

So, what do, I don’t know, what should we start with? I wanna start with the Limerick Joy. Are you sure? Yes, I do. Okay. Because this one blew my mind. I had a patient come into my office and I said, okay, what pump are you using? And she said, the Limerick Joy. And I was like, what the, what is that?

And so I’m like, oh, great. Another pump. So I look up the website and I’m reading the specs on it. And I’m like, what the heck is this? And it’s meant for people like me that have a breastfeeding office. So Heather bought me one . So I bought one for Maureen and also for me to keep at the office, because I mean, I wanted to buy one for her to have here, but also for patients if they needed them.

So it was between the Spectra, multi-user Spectra, the multi-user Symphony. Right. And then I was like, oh, I didn’t even know I had a third option. So let me look into this. And then we’ll also do a review on it because some insurances are actually covering it. Mm-hmm. And I will let you take it away. Okay.

And I can actually comment, cuz I’ve seen you pump with it several times now and I’m excited. Yeah. Yeah. So I’ll say this is a kind of a different class of pump than the other two. The other two are kind of comparable to each other, but this is not. So this is like a truly hospital grade, multi-user like extremely nice pump and it costs new $600.

So it is cost prohibitive for a lot of people. However, they have a lactation workplace program where a lot of people get these for free or cheap through their employers and then resell them after they never used them. So you can find these on some of those resale sites we talked about. I got this one on Mercari.

For like, how much did I spend? $200? $200? $250, something like that. Yeah. And that’s like a normal pump price. Yeah. Well, and also for a multi-user pump, that’s pretty darn cheap. So let me just establish, this is a work horse. Okay. This is nice. This thing feels like it’ll just run till the end of time.

It’s well made and it’s super versatile. So the cycle speed goes from one to 30. 30 options. And the vacuum strength goes from one to 80. Whoa! I have not gone above 30. Whoa, really? Really. What the heck? So like, and at this point I’m usually using higher vacuum strength. Like, I’m not nursing a newborn anymore, you know, I’m finding I need more stimulation with pumps.

And so this one, like, I didn’t even realize it went that high till I just like plugged it in a minute ago to be like, I wonder how high it goes. Whoa. And, okay. So I do have kind of a question mark about that though, because I’ve noticed if I try to go well, okay. Hold on. Let me start at a different place for that.

Okay. First let’s describe what it looks like. Yes. Sorry, I’m getting ahead of myself. You are, but so it I’m just excited. It looks like, it’s smaller than a lunch box. Sure. Yeah. It’s just like a little pink box and it’s got a little screen and little knobbies and, and I like the pink color. It plugs into the wall.

The pink does not have a battery. The pink is very like 1950s. It reminds me of when they like, did that study to see like what color they should paint, like mental institutions to calm people. It’s like that color pink. Yes. And when you turn it on, it says, hello, mommy. Okay. Which I don’t love. And it’s kinda creepy.

It has these little affirmations every once in a while. That’s like, you’re my hero. Great job. For the first, like, so I used this a lot. I was like, I gotta give this a really good try. I used it for like a month. I put eight hours on this. Whoa. Yeah. And at first I was like, these affirmations make me wanna stab myself in the eye.

And at the end of it, I’m like, you know what? Yeah, I am your fucking hero, Limerick. Yeah. Yeah, I am. I think, I think it’s supposed to be mimicking your baby. I don’t, I think it’s just supposed to be nice and it’s like, whatever. It doesn’t really matter. And let’s see, we’re gonna turn it on for you. Hi mommy.

Ooh, it’s got a beeping. I don’t think it usually has a beep. It’s just weird feedback in the mic.

Oh, I hate it.

Very powerful. It’s actually, maybe not as obnoxious as it sounds in the microphone. Yeah. There, that beeping is not there in real life. No, it’s just a weird electric feedback thing. Oh, it just gave me a little finger hickey. What? I had to press the suction. Oh, I had to put my finger over the hole so it would actually like suck.

You got a finger hickey.

Yeah. Eight hours is a long time to try out pump it, just to try it. It is. I made it my primary pump since I got it from you. That’s awesome. Oh, and it tells you how many hours that you put on it. So if you’re buying it used, it might be used, but there’s only two hours on it total so it’s a good way to kind of see how much the motor’s been used.

Yeah. Which is nice. It has special flanges, super flexible silicone that are supposed to mimic baby’s mouth, kind of like the LacTeck flange, but way more flexible, way softer. They are super comfortable. I don’t really feel pain when I go at too high of a suction level, but the flanges do like totally collapse on themselves at some point.

So I’m wondering like question mark about that. Like, how does anyone get up to the higher levels of suction or do like, do they just have more elastic nipples that fill the flanges more than I do? Maybe, maybe. I think it’s cool that you don’t have to size your nipple. Yes, theoretically, and I will say like I have a 19 millimeter ish size is what I usually use, and these are comfortable for me and effective.

I’ve been getting as much and sometimes more than I would get with my Spectra. So it’s an effective pump. It has cup holders. Americans love a good cup holder. It’s like, is that an American thing? Like cup holders in cars is an American thing. What? Like other countries don’t advertise like 12 cup holders in the car.

Yeah. Cause they don’t like eat in the car like we do. Oh, go on road trips where we just like eat in the car the whole time. Anyway, that has optional cup holders so you can put your little bottles in. When you’re done they don’t fall over and it comes with a cute little backpack that everything fits in.

So that’s fun. It doesn’t use room air inside the pump, so that like protects it from like mold and stuff. Yeah. It has a filter. So the air that it sucks in gets filtered through a crazy filter. Yeah. There’s like some, some interesting science going on in. It’s a science pass and then there’s like a one micron filter between the tubing and the pump itself.

That’s legit. Yeah. So that’s real small. That’s why it’s hospital grade. Exactly. You could pump in a place full of MRSA and you could still call it clean. And then it also has dry mode where if you get some condensation in your tubing or milk and you have to wash it, then you can click the button on dry mode and it runs on this special mode for five minutes and then turns itself off.

Amazing. Yeah, it’s super nice. The manual it came with had some super solid breastfeeding advice, some pumping advice in it, and we were like, wow, cool. Yeah. I love that it actually was like, by the way, this is supposed to supplement breastfeeding. Yeah. Here’s how you can breastfeed better. And I’m like, whoa, thank you.

Yeah. So I, I like this. So if you run a workplace and you’re like, we need a workplace lactation program, maybe call Limerick. If you know that you’re going to exclusively pump and you have money to put into a really nice pump, this would be a great option. Or if you like know that you’re gonna work 24 hour shifts at the hospital or something, like something like this is gonna be your BFF.

And it’s a little bit smaller than the Spectra. Yeah. It’s smaller and compact. And it’s smaller than something like the Symphony too. Oh yeah. If we’re talking about other hospital grade pumps, it’s probably like eight inches by six. Yeah. Yeah. And just to go back to the flanges so in case you didn’t know what a LacTeck flange is, we did a breast pump accessory review that you can go back to as well, which we will link in the show notes.

Where we talk about like inserts and cushions and things like that. And these flanges are not, they say that you don’t have to size them because the bottom of it kind of collapses up against your nipple and squeezes your nipple much like the baby’s tongue would squeeze your nipple. So it forms to your nipple instead of your nipple forming to the flange, which is nice, which is nice.

Should I talk about what I don’t like? Yeah. Cause it’s pretty much all been good things. Yeah. Okay. So there’s no backflow protector at the bottle and no duck bill. And what forms the seal is there’s a gasket where you screw the bottle in. And I will say that that part has given me more trouble in creating a seal.

Like I accidentally had two gaskets in there instead of one, cuz they’re super thin. I couldn’t tell they were stuck together. And that made a weird seal. Or if I over tighten the bottles, it like doesn’t seal right. You know, like you don’t wanna over tighten a rubber gasket and when I’m washing them I’m like, I really should remove this rubber gasket every time, but it’s kind of a pain in the ass and I’m afraid I’m gonna rip it cause it’s so thin.

So I’m like not super-hot on that option. I feel like it should just come with six of them. Yeah. And it comes with a couple. I did have somebody tell me who used this pump regularly, that they don’t use the gaskets. And they just like really tighten the bottle in there which might work.

But I’m also skeptical of with like plastic threading that we might like cross thread and mess that up. And like you are a little more prone to getting milk in the tubes because the filter is not at the bottles. It’s at the pump. Oh. So like, those are two things I don’t love about it. I don’t love the price.

I get that it’s expensive because it’s like a very nice multi-user hospital grade thing, but it just means it’s not accessible to most of our listeners. I feel like all, this is a bold statement. I feel like all hospitals should switch from the Symphony to this because I’m so tired of my patients getting handed a 24 or a 28 millimeter flange that fits the Medela.

Yeah. When they have 17 millimeter nipples. Yeah. And they’re like, well, make it work. And then they end up with stretched areolas and nerve damage that sets them up for breast pain. That’s a really good point. Especially if we’re not gonna be like stocking their size or bothering to size them at all.

Right. And it’s like at least stock their size and bill them for it. You’re getting billed for the pump parts that don’t fit you by the way, with the Medela. And then you take them home and you have a Spectra or whatever. And so this would be really nice because it’s one flange. That’s the only flange that the hospitals have to store.

 I think the whole accessory kit, like for multi users is $40. Yeah. And the Medela ones are $50. Yeah. So pretty sure it’s, it’s comparable. And I, I know Limerick has, like, this is not the only model they offer .The PJ, is that what they offer that’s kind of more of an individual user one. It’s like a, it’s more affordable and they might even have another. I think they have one step up from the joy.

Yeah. Yeah. Like a more hospital one. Yeah. Anyway this is great for an office though. Yes. And I, I loved this pump, so I’m gonna give this pump a 9 out of 10 and I’m really mostly taking off because I wish I could tell you guys to, you could buy it. But look into the Limerick PJ Comfort if you like what I’m saying about this pump, because it’s pretty much the same.

The only thing is if you don’t like the flanges, I don’t know that there’s a lot of options for you to switch ’em in and out. Yeah. Yeah. They have, the tubing is like, it uses hard connectors on the end, so it’s hard to like switch something else onto it. The piece that the flanges go into is really unique.

Like that whole connection is not standard. Proprietary is the word. Yeah. Which I get from a business owner standpoint. But what they’ve really done is try to make a pump that this is the only pump you need. But yeah, I’ll say like it’s proprietary, but it actually works. Right. So that’s the difference. So I like didn’t feel like I needed to do any of that.

Right. But if you’re the kind of person that’s like, oh, I use, you know, a 24 with a 21 insert and a BeauGen comfort cushion. This’ll work for you. I swear. I think this will work for you because it’s softer. Yeah. It’s silicone, right? Yeah. Okay. Yeah. I like it. I mean, I really like it. I was surprised I was; I was prepared to be annoyed.

Me too. Yep. I’m, let me just tell you. I go into every pump experience skeptical and already annoyed that I have to pump. So like I’m not setting myself up to love these usually. Well, I guess the number one question everyone will wanna know, Limerick Joy or Spectra? I would choose well, okay. In the past month, the only time I have chosen my Spectra over the Joy is when I don’t have access to an outlet because this doesn’t have a battery.

So like, I took my Spectra to that birth the other day, cuz I was like, there’s like one freaking outlet in those hospital rooms that are not behind the beds, you know? Yeah. So, and that was fine. And that was wonderful and I’m so glad I have my spectra for that. But every time I pumped at home, I just, and I just like left this plugged in on the table and that was my spot.

Yeah, but I guess if you’re between like the Spectra S2 and the Limerick Joy, it’s gonna be hands down Limerick Joy pretty much. Yeah. Okay. Okay.

So my next two are kind of more comparable to each other. So let’s start with the Bellababy pocket edition. Bellababy was kind enough to send us this pump to try out. And that was really great. And I’ll start off by saying it looks like the Baby Buddha.

It’s like an oblong little oval that fits in your hand. You know what it looks like to me? Those little space coffins that in all of the, in all of those like Star Trek movies where they’re, oh my goodness. They’re going to deep space and it’s gonna take them a hundred years to get there and they get in it and there’s just like that little hole for the face.

They, they remind me of the little like micro hotels in Japan. Oh, yeah. Like a little, a little capsule, a little tiny capsule. Yeah. So it’s like a little capsule. And it has a little light up screen. And so it comes, it came with a lot of fun accessories.

It came with a charger, bottle adapters so you can use smaller bottles cause it has a wide neck flange. It came with the bag adapters so you can pump right into bags. It had extra duck bills, bottles, nipples, 24 millimeter flanges, a lanyard and tubing. So bunch of stuff and like extra, extra stuff for the tubing.

So that’s always fun. And let’s see, it’s small, it’s lightweight. It’s portable. It’s rechargeable. It has a pretty short battery life. I did a full power pump with it this morning on the way here. And it was like almost dead. Probably could have pumped one more time with it, but it charges really fast. Like, I don’t know, like 20 minutes it was charged.

So I’m not gonna complain too hard about that. The flanges are basically just like the Medela flanges. They’re totally normal flanges compatible with other leading brands. You can switch out for ones you like better. They fit normal inserts. So that’s always easy. It has a stimulation mode and an expression mode.

And we’ll just turn that sucker on for you here.

So that’s stimulation and expression.

And the stimulation mode has six vacuum strengths and the expression mode has nine. And so you don’t have a lot of combinations there. Right? But I was actually surprised how well it worked. Okay. I didn’t think it was gonna work great. I’ve pumped with it a bunch of times and I basically get my same normal output.

And it’s strong. I don’t go up to level nine. Why would, I’m not gonna go that high. I probably go up to like level six and I’m like, Hmm, that’s a little pinchy pully. I don’t need to go any higher. So that’s great. And the buttons on the front are like touch buttons and they’re super sensitive. So it has a lock mode.

Oh, thank goodness. Cause I kept accidentally pushing the buttons and I was like, what? This is a dumb design. And then I noticed the lock mode on the side. So that’s wonderful and totally fixes that as a problem. And you can wear it around your neck. It’s small enough I can totally fit it between my boobs.

And it would actually fit if you’re like a nurse or something. Yeah. It’ll fit in your scrub top pocket. Yeah, it’s really small. It’s not quiet. I would probably, as an, like, if I was working, I would put the lanyard around my neck and then put it in my top pocket. Yeah. That way if I leaned over and it fell out, it doesn’t hit the floor. It just like your neck catches it. That’s a good idea.

The lanyard, I think it’s cute. And I have to say I didn’t pump obviously, but I’m the one that got it in the mail and I like the way it came. The packaging was nice where you could see everything and it wasn’t confusing looking. Yeah. Like sometimes when they come in like one box, it’s like a box and a box and a box and a box.

And it’s just like overwhelming to unpack it. This was really nice. It kind of slid out like a tray. Yeah. And it had everything that you could see right there. And it was pretty obvious and the instructions were pretty good. Yeah. Yeah. And I found this pump really easy to use, intuitive to use. It was nice that my regular flange inserts could just pop right in and I didn’t have to worry about trying some new stuff.

Yeah. And I mean, I used it on the car ride here. It was great. And so it’s not a cup in the bra? No. It comes with regular flanges and bottles. I’m sure you could find cups that fit it. It’s not quite the same size tubing as a Spectra, but it’s really close. So we could probably finagle some stuff.

I have yet to hack some cups to it though. So this is similar to like the Spectra S9. Yeah. It’s in that same class of pumps. And really similar to this Medela Freestyle we’re about to talk about in a minute, too. So this is not like the Elvie Stride or the Elvie or the Willow, which are the wearable cup pumps.

No, this is a portable regular pump. Yes. With flanges that stick out through your bras. Yes. Yes. My biggest complaint with this pump is that it’s really loud. It’s really vibrating. There’s nothing subtle about this. And I just feel like if my like, baby grabbed it and threw it, it might shatter in two, a thousand pieces.

Only one way to find out. Right. I’m hoping not to find that out, but it definitely is like kind of lightweight and like maybe feels a little bit delicate which is fine. It’s just something like maybe, maybe not made for my life. Delicate things don’t fit well. But it also kinda looks it would do really well with an Otter box on it.

Oh my gosh. Yeah. You know, like if they made an Otter box for that, it’s the perfect size for it. Yeah. But yeah, like this is a really great portable pump and it’s super affordable. It’s $89. Oh, for the whole setup. That’s great. So like, I really can’t knock it too much because that is one of the more affordable pump setups.

And I think if you had to make this work as your primary pump, you could, so that’s awesome. 8 out of 10. As your primary pump? If you had to. Yeah. Like if, if you had a hundred dollars to spend and you were like, I need something I can travel with and use at home and I’m pumping all the time.

Like you could probably make it work. That one over the Buddha or the S9? I’ve never tried the Baby Buddha. So I don’t know. Comparable to the S9, similar. Okay. I can’t say like one is better. This is smaller than the S9 significantly. It’s like half the size. Yep. Yeah. So it’s definitely like in that class of pump, Okay.

Okay. 8 outta 10. Yeah, pretty good. We’re having a good day with these. We are. They’re all I liked all of these today. So, I feel like part two of the series you were like, nah. Part three I’m feeling more optimistic, everybody. Okay.

So let’s talk about the Medela Freestyle. Now, this is actually not the newest version. And so mostly if you’re like in a store, you’re gonna see the Freestyle Flex, but I have noticed there’s a lot of new in box Medela Freestyles, like all over eBay and stuff. Cuz they’re not like selling this new anymore, so you can actually get a great deal on these. Yeah. It’s the size of a Russet potato.

Yeah. Like, like a big old baked potato. Yeah. About the weight of a baked potato too. Yeah. This feels a lot sturdier and there’s like some kind of like textured silicone around it, which makes me feel like maybe it’s a little cushioned somehow. A little grippy for your hand so you don’t get a case of the drops.

Yeah, exactly. But anyway, it’s not the flex. Does not take the new flex parts as we learned the hard way, but we have it so I thought I may as well review it. And if we get our hands on a Freestyle Flex, I’ll review that too. Okay. So this one automatically switches from stimulation to expression mode, which I always love, cuz I forget.

And then I’m like 20 minutes in, still pumping on stimulation. Oh my God. And let’s see, we’re gonna turn it on for you.

Sounds like a kitty. Woo. A happy kitty.

Now it’s sad. Oh, oh, that’s the, that’s the highest mode. She loud. She loud. It’s loud. It has a hip clip. Sounds like it’s got some personality. Nothing about this is subtle. It’s got nine levels of suction for both modes, for both stimulation and expression. And it’s pretty strong suction and a, you know, again, like the last pump when I’ve used this a couple of times I got the output I expected to get.

I was not disappointed, but I will say this particular pump has like really short, has a really short tunnel on the flanges and a lot of the Medelas do. So if you’re somebody with super elastic nipples, like I can see the, the tip of your nip, just like hitting the end of the tunnel. Oh. So you would definitely want to get like Pumpin Pals or something.

I think that’s a pretty big problem with a lot of the Medelas. Like you get that flange in there and you’re like, oh, it’s not very long at all. Hope I don’t stretch. Anyway, it is, but it’s really sturdy and it’s got a great battery life. Really? Yeah. It lasted a bunch of pumps. I kind of forgot about recharging it and it didn’t die.

So that’s always nice. Yeah. And I mean, it’s, it’s pretty big and heavy, so I’m sure there’s like a hefty old battery in there. Yeah, I liked it well enough. It was definitely like a little bit on the louder, obnoxious side, like continual fart. It’s gonna gotta be the one that you wanna use if you’re a teacher of high school boys.

No, and it’s definitely like, I could maybe fit it in my bra between my boobs, but it would look like a third boob. Yeah. Which is fine, but it has a little Clippie on it for your hip. Yeah. So I, I liked this. I didn’t love it. Mostly it’s just loud and obnoxious. How much is it? So that’s a hard thing to say because it’s not like regularly in retail stores.

So I found it on resale sites anywhere from $20 to $60, you know? And, and then like I found new in box, like unopened box ones for ridiculous stupid prices. So this might be a good emergency pump. Yeah. And. This is a good one, too. If your friend is like, oh, I had this laying around, do you want it? Like, yeah, just take it.

Why not? Just say yes. You know, it’s actually like, I feel like it would last a long time. Yeah. It looks durable. I will say durability gets 10 out of 10. It ain’t cute. It’s not, but it’s durable. I mean, it’s not ugly. It’s just a little, little bit bigger. It’s like a big potato. It’s that’s all, I’ll just a yellow baked potato.

Yeah. So not to be repetitive, but I was gonna give this also an 8 out of 10. Really? I feel like you like the other one better. I maybe I do, maybe a 7. Yeah. It’s hard though. I actually liked this maybe more than I’m coming across. I felt like solid about all of these pumps today. Well, good.

I’m happy for you. I’m happy for these companies and for the people getting them. I forgot to say this one has a little memory function. Oh. So like, if you wanted to remember your settings, you can do that. Oh, that’s nice. Like getting in the driver’s seat of your own car and it already knows what you want.

So that’s fun. Cool. Yeah. Yeah. But I, I will say I’m happy with the pumps we talked about today. I would gladly pump with any of them again. I don’t think you’re gonna get the Bellababy back. That’s mine. Okay. Well, it was a gift anyway, so it’s a gift that just keeps giving. Yeah. But let me know if you guys have used any of these and if there are pumps you want us to try.

If you’re out there and you make pumps and you want us to review something that you create, send us something. Give us suggestions. I’ve gotten a lot of requests to try the Baby Buddha, and I want to try it. So anyone out there works for Baby Buddha, go ahead and send me one. We’ll even make a TikTok video for you.

I will. Thank you. Yes. And there’s a video of the Bellababy on our TikTok right now, as well as the Limerick joy.

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All right. Well, before we get outta here, let’s give one of our amazing listeners an award. Oh good. Okay. Today’s award goes to Sarah Kollment, one of our amazing patrons. Sarah says my win for the week is pumping enough at work for my son to have the next day also the first nursing session after getting home from work and the look of pure happiness on baby’s face because he’s getting the good stuff right from the source makes coming home that much sweeter.

Oh, I love that. I miss that actually. That 4:00 PM feeding with Heidi was one of the best of the day because she missed me so much. Yeah. And I missed her and she’s also kind of sleepy. You know, some people don’t have that experience. Sometimes four o’clock can be like the beginning of witching hour for them.

But for, for us it was a short feeding but it was usually a really nice one. And I miss that too. That’s the one where she would like softly touch my face and stare at me. I love them when I just get home and I get home at erratic, random hours, but I usually try to like go up to bed with Lyra and lay down and just focus and nurse her and try to get her to empty everything out.

And I love how she said pumping enough at work. Yes. Not just enough. Enough. Who was it that said that? Was it in our Facebook group where they said, I can’t remember? Yeah. They said, can we stop calling it just enough? Like, I’m a just enougher. She said, how about we are enougher. You know, like we’re just enough regularly.

Like at baseline, we are enough. We’re not just enough. We’re enough. And I was like, you’re right. Language is important. I wish I could remember her name, but you know who you are. Thank you so much for pointing that out for all of you enough or out there, which is all of you, Sarah, we bestow upon you the Always Enough Award, because we think that no matter what you are always enough. And we continue to hope that you always produce enough milk for your baby and that you always feel that way.

Yes. About yourself and about your relationship. Well, thank you for listening to another episode of the Milk Minute Podcast. The way we change this big system full of thousands of pumps that we barely know how to use. I’m kidding. We’ll get there, but really, but seriously, is to educate ourselves, our friends, our children, and our lactation consultants.

If there’s a new pump out there, send it to us. If you guys want extra bonus content, if you wanna know us better, if you just wanna have access to us at your fingertips, you should join us on Patreon at Your small monetary contribution is what keeps this project going and helps get more evidence based breastfeeding education to people all around the world.

All right, guys. Well, we will see you next week. Have a great day. Bye. Bye.


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