Breast feeding is so not cheaper

(80 Posts)
Bodicea Sun 16-Feb-14 21:51:03

So breastfeeding my little one. Love it and wouldn't change for the world first of all.

Just pondering the costs of all the breastfeeding parephenalia I have had to fork out for and starting to think that the argument that is is significantly cheaper unless you plan to do it for a seriously significant amount of time is rubbish.

So I am three and a half months in and so far have bought a breast pump, four nursing bras, two ridiculously overpriced nursing tops, other clothes that make breastfeeding easier as most of my wardrobe was not suitable, three packs reusable breast pads, three boxes of disposable pads, all the bottle and storage parephenalia for my expressed milk, nipple shields, breast shells, nipple cream, expensive breast feeding supplements, a breast feeding scarf and now some formula too for mixed feeding.

Granted that not everyone is going to buy everything on that list but even so, That is a fair amount of money to spend on formula.

Hoping to make it to 6 months. And like I say wouldn't change it for the world but still think it is a bit of a false argument that it is cheaper.

MichaelFinnigan Sun 16-Feb-14 21:55:04

You're missing a trick. You don't need any of that shit apart from the breast pads and some lansinoh
Tip 1:
Vest underneath, top over, hitch up outer top, hitch down vest - no special clothes required

Yo

TheScience Sun 16-Feb-14 21:55:08

Most of that is stuff that you have chosen to buy rather than necessary though.

My only big costs were some nursing bras - however, I'd have had to buy new bras anyway.
I didn't need nursing tops, I got a few adjustable vests from Primark to wear under tops. The only clothes I had that were totally unsuitable to breastfeed in were dresses with high necklines or that zipped at the back.
Oh, and a tube of Lansinoh that I ended up mainly using as lip balm.

What nonsense! angry You don't need all that paraphernalia!

TheScience Sun 16-Feb-14 21:55:39

Oh yes, and a couple of sets of reusable breastpads!

Bluesandgreen Sun 16-Feb-14 21:58:40

Extra calories. I ate a great deal more when breastfeeding. I'm not sure formula would have been any more expensive. I would still breastfeed though.

TamerB Sun 16-Feb-14 21:59:21

I just had nursing bras and breast pads. I don't think you need the rest.

ExBrightonBell Sun 16-Feb-14 22:00:00

I don't think many people give "being cheaper" as one of their main reasons for breastfeeding. And as you have acknowledged a lot of your list are things that not everyone would need or buy. Maybe a better way of putting it is "could save you money, depending on what you see as essential purchases".

Kellymom has an interesting comparison of costs that explores what you are saying in detail (in USD not GBP but the comparison is still valid).

TheScience Sun 16-Feb-14 22:04:28

Even the extra calories, you only need an extra 300-500 cals a day, and most women will have put on some extra fat during pregnancy.

NotCitrus Sun 16-Feb-14 22:04:59

I agree - even though I bought almost no new clothed and would have needed new bras and tops anyway thanks to larger breast size, I needed a pump, My Breast Friend cushion, a v-shaped cushion I rapidly gave away, shedloads of breas pads as washables couldn't cope for more than half an hour and I leaked for months, and lots of extra food as I was constantly ravenous.

So not much cheaper than formula over a year. However with baby number 2 it wasn't nearly as bad, despite still leaking loads. Have finally quit bf this week and noticed the milk bill going up!

TK1930 Sun 16-Feb-14 22:30:30

After just giving up breastfeeding I have to disagree. Am getting fed up of having to go to boots weekly I spend £10 on powder and £5 on cartons. I bought 2 nursing bras one black, one white and alternated. They were £20 each. Breast pads cost me about £3 for a huge box. My breastfeeding. Oat was nothing in comparison to what I spend now.
Oh .... And I've had to buy bottles £5 each..... Teats £5 for 2... And a steriliser.... £40

nickelbabe Sun 16-Feb-14 22:36:12

hmm.
I started off with one bfing bra which was so good it dries overnight.

I.just stopped wearing dresses - I can get my top up to feed perfectly well (and if you don't want to flash your belly you can gave a vest underneath to pull down)

you can hand express, find people who you know to hand-me-down bottles (although dd only had expressed milk in a sippy cup because she refused a bottle) - my siater gave me her sterilizer, but a pan full of boiled water is fine.

the only thing that's cost me really is the fact that I eat like 20 horses!

TheScience Sun 16-Feb-14 22:36:56

I think the main difference is all the breastfeeding paraphernalia is optional to some extent or other - you can choose whether to buy special bras, clothes, pillows, pumps etc. If you didn't have the money you wouldn't buy it.

With formula feeding you have to buy formula, bottles and teats.

sweetkitty Sun 16-Feb-14 22:37:06

How much is a steriliser/bottles/teats/formula for a year?

I bought a breast pump but used it for 4 babies, did buy 2 decent nursing bras but used them for 2 babies apiece, breast pads it would calm down with after a month, one washable set a day. No special clothes for BFing.

nickelbabe Sun 16-Feb-14 22:37:42

pads - I actually made 3 pairs, but also bought a pack of bamboo ones from Little Lambs. wash 'em and go again (nicer on the skin too)

LimeLelloLizard Sun 16-Feb-14 22:40:27

During bf I didn't buy much apart from the nursing bras.

But I spent a lot more than usual on chocolate.

scarlettsmummy2 Sun 16-Feb-14 22:45:13

I breasted both daughters. First time round- yes, did buy all that crap. Totally unnecessary. Second time, exclusively breasted until daughter self weaned at about ten months. Bought three nursing bras and never needed pads, that was it.

MrsDeVere Sun 16-Feb-14 22:46:44

I bf my two eldest children then an 8 week old baby arrived out of the blue and I found myself ff a newborn for the first time.

It cost me a bloody fortune! Birth mum wouldn't give us milk vouchers and SS wouldn't help us with the cost of feeding him. NO WAY is it cheaper than bf!

After our (now) DS I had two further birth children and I bf them.

No bloody way was I going back to spending all that money and faffing about with bottles.

Never owned a feeding top in my life. Breast pads are not expensive and I didn't use a pump.

Only thing I bought was a handful of those knock off pashminas off the market. 6 for a fiver. Bought different colours so I alway had one to go with whatever I was wearing.

Brilliant as a cover up if you need one and for wrapping up the baby if it gets chilly and for hanging over the buggy if it gets sunny.

MrsDeVere Sun 16-Feb-14 22:48:45

I am intrigued as to how a breastfeeding scarf differs from my knock off pashminas.
Breast feeding supplements? confused

FadBook Sun 16-Feb-14 22:53:05

Quick maths and I've had wine, bear with me...

BREASTFEEDING
1 v shaped pillow from Dunelm = £10
2 x nursing bras from eBay = £12
B&m/ home bargains breast pads = £2 once a month for 5 months
Basic advent breast pump = £18
Same clothes, wore vests underneath, one top up one down
Lansinol cream = £10
Total = £60

FORMULA FEEDING
0-6 months Formula per week £20 x 26 weeks = £520
6-12 months Formula per week £10 x 26 weeks = £260
Bottles = £20
Steriliser = from £10 (cold water one) to £40 (steamer)
12 months + cows milk = 0.50p pint x 365 days = £182
Total = £982 ish

I bf'd till 30 months, recently stopped. We're getting through more cows milk!

According to Which?, the cost of formula for one year is between £367.59 and £395.46 a year, depending on the brand, and that doesn't include bottles, teats, steriliser, the odd carton of ready-mixed milk etc. So let's say up to £450 a year. You'd really have to be going some to spend the same on crap you don't need for breastfeeding!

FadBook Sun 16-Feb-14 23:06:16

My maths is completely out then, for formula Fetchez grin

Patchouli Sun 16-Feb-14 23:09:38

Babies, or rather new mums, are a big marketing opportunity.
Don't get sucked in!

Marnieshere Sun 16-Feb-14 23:10:52

I just use sports bras from primark. Two pack for £4!

Percephone Sun 16-Feb-14 23:11:46

What 0-6 month baby has 2 boxes of milk per week Fad shock

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