Get updates on how your baby develops, your body changes, and what you can expect during each week of your pregnancy by signing up to the Mumsnet Pregnancy Newsletters.
This is a Premium feature
Bottles and teats... Feeling totally lost, is it really that complicated?!(12 Posts)
I EBF my first for 18 months, and I don't want to BF again this time. I know bottles aren't going to be as "easy" as BF, but I've been a bit overwhelmed by my research! Different types and bottle, different types and speed of teats - not to mention different ways of preparing the milk! In the supermarket the other day, I saw own brand bottles for much less money, and I started to wonder if they would be ok...
In short, can any FF mums give a bit of insight in to what is really necessary, kit-wise. What are the must-haves, or is it a wait and see what your baby is like situation? Can you prep bottles in advance (even though I know it's not recommended)? A friend gave me a perfect prep machine, but then does the baby not get used to bottles at a certain temper, and also - what about when you're out and about?
Am I overcomplicating it? Thanks in advance for any advice from more experienced parents!
*bottles at a certain temperature
BTW, I know there's lots of information available, but I think I've over-researched and would just like to hear some real "this is how I did it" advice.
Get MAM bottles, you can sterilise them in the microwave without a steriliser so they're really handy if you're at someone else's house or staying with grandparents for a couple of days etc.
I never had a perfect prep machine, seemed more of a faff to me, although some people swear by it. The pre-made formula is handy to have a few in your bag if you're out and about, I used to take a flask of hot water and then just pop the pre-made formula in the bottle and then popped it into a container of hot water for a few minutes.
Oh and one of those little dispensers which you can measure the formula into in advance is really handy too.
I think a lot of it is personal preference, and babies needs.
With our first we stocked up on Tommee Tippee bottles as I liked that bigger teat size for a more natural experience for baby (originally I planned on mixed feeding) but little one was super colicky so we ended up having to change her to colic bottles, again we chose Tommee Tippee for this, for the same reasons as above.
I know a friend chose the Mam bottles as they can self sterilise in the microwave.
Doctor Brown bottles seem to be highly rated but are quite expensive I believe.
Another thing to consider is sterilisers seem to be made to fit their own bottles - you can mix and match to an extent but my Tommee Tippee steriliser only took 3 bottles of a different brand as they were taller (it took 5 tommee tippee ones) Same thing for the prep machine too I guess.
In terms of the prep machine, oh what a brilliant thing it is. We use it until our little one was about 1, and now at 2.5 she still gets her milk warmed at night (but using the bottle warmer)
For when you are out and about I took a bottle of cooled boiled water, and one of boiling water (in a thermal flask or holder) and a couple of tubs of measured out formula. Filled the bottle half way with the boiling water, added the formula and mixed before filling the rest with the cool water.
I never made bottles up in advance as I had no need with the machine and above method for out and about.
Breathe! It’s pretty easy. I’m lazy and stupid and managed fine!
I decide the best option was for it to be as easy and cheap as possible. If that didn’t work I’d move on to more complex and expensive.
So. I started on cow and gate which is the cheapest (midwives all day they’re basically all the same except for specialist ones). At the start he had pre made stuff from the fridge. Then used a perfect prep but with premade for out and about and nights. While my mother insisted giving a baby cold milk is child abuse I think he was fine having a bottle of c&g in the fridge and having it doled out as needed.
Powder is cheaper so I used that with the pp machine when I could be arsed.
With bottles I bought the only ones they sell in the small boots near me. Then bought sized up teats on amazon. I think they’re Phillips.
You’ll need a steriliser for the bottles and if you don’t have a dishwasher you’ll need a bottle brush.
Friends used to make up a days worth with a kettle each night then fridge them and use as needed. Also seemed nice and easy but I’m not that organised. Good luck!
Although I combi feed I've needed:
Bottles - if your bottle feeding from the start then it doesn't really matter what kind. Anti colic are always supposed to be better.
Teats - get the first size or two & see how you go. My 8 month old is still happily using a newborn teat size!
Steriliser - if not using MAM bottles. Electric convenient but microwave ones are cheaper.
Things that are useful but not essential:
Bottle drying rack
Flask for hot water to warm bottles when out & about
Spare liquid formula as back ups
Insulated bottle bag
Your meant to make up a feed fresh with powder. But, my DD has recently started nursery & they won't measure anything & you have to provide everything pre-measured. I boil & cool the water in bottles & send that in with dispenser of powder. They then warm it up in a cup of hot water. She hasn't had any trouble yet. I just make sure I keep everything clean & wash hands. Or you can make up the full feed & cool it down & keep it in the fridge. Lots of my FF friends pre-make bottles!
I used Tommee Tippee bottles for DC1 & the prefect prep machine. With DC2 I used MAM bottles & the perfect prep machine again.
I used a cold water sterilizer for both but loved the MAM bottles as I could take just 1 with me for the day at my parents house & rewash & microwave sterilize it multiple times rather than taking multiple bottles (although I did just take a lunchbox with a lid & a Milton tablet & do the same with DC1s Tommee Tippee bottles)
On days out I tried to time it so that I made a bottle with just boiled water just before leaving the house & kept it in an insulated pouch so it was the right temperature approx 60-90mins later. I carried 2 flasks & a powder dispenser (one hot water, one cooled water) & mimicked the prep machine for longer days out. If it was a really long day out I kept a spare empty bottle & a ready-made carton in the car as a backup with a measuring jug (most places are happy to give a jug of hot water, if not, order a tea with the bag out & pour the water in the jug 🤷♀️)
Don't worry. Own brand bottles are fine. The branded ones tend to claim all sorts of bollocks to justify their inflated price tags!
You can mix and match teats and screw tops sometimes, generally the narrow vs wide neck bottles are a standard size.
We used Philips Avent bottles which were great - had the electric steriliser from them too - six bottles plus dummies done in minutes.
Perfect prep is a life saver and ready made is great for out and about - we used cow & gate as it was the cheapest and easy to get hold of.
Oooh thanks for all the advice, everyone. It does sound quite straightforward if you bottle feed from the start. I had a nightmare trying to get my DS1 to take a bottle and bought every bottle/teat under the sun but it never worked, but think I waited too long before trying. It's good to hear how others have done it, it does seem easy and fine to make your life easier with pre-made stuff if necessary!
I was so confused too but now I've got it sorted out. I just bought a few different brands to see which ones he would be ok with (he was fine with all of them!)
For sterilising, we have a UV light machine. It's ace. It dries the bottles too and means you have somewhere to store them. Something like this, but this seems pricey (we got ours from a friend when she was finished with it.) www.amazon.com/Sterilizer-Sanitiser-Hospital-Strength-Sterilizes/dp/B07W7HSDPZ?tag=mumsnetforu03-21
Please login first.