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8 best baby bottles for newborns, colic and more, as recommended by parents

Whether you’re expressing milk, formula feeding or any combination of the two, you’ll need to stock up on baby bottles. After three months of research and parent-led testing, here are the best baby bottles to buy in 2023.

By Rachel Jeffcoat | Last updated May 19, 2023

a collage of baby bottles

This article was updated on 12th May 2023.

Bottle feeding might be the right option for you if you're struggling to breastfeed, want to combination feed or share the feeding load with your partner. But feeding your baby is such an emotional business that making sense of the vast range of baby bottle designs and functionalities can seem impossible, whether that's anti-colic bottles to help with colic and reflux or teats that aim to mimic breastfeeding - finding the best baby bottles for your child is hard.

From the best breast pumps to the best changing bags, part of Mumsnet's mission is to take the confusion out of the choices new parents have to make. We research, test and review products that make parents' lives easier - offering honest, authentic recommendations with options to suit every family and budget. 

The first thing to remember is that different babies take to different bottles. So if your baby doesn’t like one bottle, don't give up. You also might get on very well with a particular brand of breast pump and want to buy the matching bottle and use them together. 

We combined our in-depth research and product testing with recommendations from our Mumsnet forums to reveal which baby bottles wash well, won’t leak in your changing bag and are easy to make up at 4am. With the uncertainty of the cost of living crisis, we know it's more important than ever that they are good value for money too. 

How we chose our recommendations

To help us find the best baby bottles, we started by thoroughly researching the products currently on the market. We commissioned Rachel Jeffcoat, a writer and mum of three, to research and review the top bottles out there.

  • We always start by getting product recommendations from the Mumsnet forums. These products have been tried and tested at home by parents in a variety of real life situations and, with over 7 million users, we know this is the best place to go to find out which bottles offer the best value for money. 
  • We investigated design innovations and materials, scouring the market for cutting-edge new brands alongside old established favourites and bestsellers, using trusted review sites like Which? to review the latest testing scores.
  • We sourced expert advice from The UNICEF UK Baby Friendly Initiative and the NHS.
  • Finally, we narrowed down our list of choices to 15 testing candidates from a range of brands and price points.

How we tested

Bottle use is so subjective that what works with one baby might not work with another, so our tester Katrĩna, a mum of two, spent several weeks washing bottles repeatedly, filling them, sterilising them, and testing their solidity and safety.

  • She analysed instructions and online resources, and noted down information about materials and safety standards.
  • She filled each bottle with boiling water and timed how long they could be held comfortably, measured any squirting hot water from the teat due to pressure escaping
  • She dropped the bottles onto a hard floor to see whether they remained in one piece.
  • She scrubbed each one hard with a new sponge to see if any of the markings came off.

Following testing, all the products were scored on six areas: purchase and assembly, safety and stability, day-to-day usage, cleanliness, aesthetics and value for money. 

Here are the best baby bottles to buy in 2023.

Best baby bottles at a glance

1. Best overall baby bottle: MAM Easy Start Anti-Colic Bottle

mam easy start baby bottle

RRP: £14.40 for two | Buy now from Amazon

Key specs

Capacity/sizes: 160ml and 260ml | Type of teats: Sizes one to three for babies, then X (cross cut for faster flow) and non-spill (for self-feeding toddlers) | Made from: BPA- and BPS-free plastic and silicone | Dishwasher-safe: Yes

What we love

  • Teat intended to mimic breastfeeding
  • Anti-colic function for babies suffering from colic
  • It's self-sterilising, so no need for a steriliser
  • Microwave- and dishwasher-safe

What to know

  • Can leak if the top or bottom isn’t screwed on properly
  • Extra parts make for longer assembly

What our Mumsnet users say

"I used them with both my DC and they’re brilliant. I always recommend them and everyone I know who has used them loves them too." Recommended by Mumsnetter mnahmnah.

"They are excellent. All the components come apart for the microwave self sterilisation. No problems with leaking. They last as well as you just buy the next size teat up each time rather than a whole new bottle. You will use them when you move on to formula/ cows milk so they are worth the investment." Tried and tested by Mumsnet user lemorella

Our verdict

Universally beloved by parents far and wide, this clever little bottle is self-sterilising, leak-proof and surprisingly budget-friendly. The super-soft silicone teat has been designed with a flat shape intended to mimic the nipple when breastfeeding.

A vented, removable base prevents the baby from swallowing too much air, which also makes it ideal for newborn babies and babies suffering from colic. A curved, ergonomic design with plastic bubbles for grip will help your baby to hold on when she’s ready and the self-sterilising function is great for travelling or for families with smaller kitchens.

This is a solid bottle that handled to all our tests brilliantly. The plastic bottle, base and lid are all made from BPA- and BPS-free plastic, and the teat is hygienic silicone, with different sizes to prevent too fast a flow. 

Available in 160ml or 260ml sizes, and in a range of colours and five teat flow rates, the MAM Easy Start Anti-Colic Bottle is adaptable over time as your baby grows. It’s compatible with the MAM manual and electric breast pumps too, including the MAM 2-in-1. All that and it’s one of the most inexpensive on the market.

Read next: The best nursing chairs to buy, as recommended by mums

2. Best baby bottle for breastfed babies: Lansinoh Baby Bottle with NaturalWave Teat

lansinoh momma baby bottles

RRP: £10.99 for two | Buy now from Amazon

Key specs

Capacity/sizes: 160ml and 260ml | Type of teats: Sizes one to three | Made from: BPA- and BPS-free plastic and silicone | Dishwasher-safe: Yes

What we love

  • Robustly made and clearly marked
  • Three-part design is easy to put together, take apart and clean
  • Vented teat prevents baby from swallowing air

What to know

  • Will discolour in a dishwasher with tomato sauce
  • Glass version is more expensive than the plastic

What our Mumsnet users say

"I loved the Lansinoh bottles that I used for DD. She rejected every other bottle and only sometimes accepted the Lansinoh one." Loved by Mumsnetter KitchenTowel.

Our verdict

Sturdily made with an exceptionally well-designed teat, the Lansinoh baby bottle is, quite frankly, indestructible. There, we said it. Made from solid PP plastics, its squat, curved shape feels comfortable in the hand. It doesn’t show any damage after being scrubbed with a sponge or dropped, and it doesn’t drip at all.

But it’s the silicone NaturalWave® teat that’s the bottle’s big selling point. Designed to promote a baby’s natural peristaltic tongue movement when sucking, it’s beautifully soft and well shaped, making it a brilliant bottle for a newborn or breastfed baby and for parents wanting to do paced bottle feeding.

The plastic and teat is BPA- and BPS-free and the air ventilation system in the teat is intended to reduce the amount of air swallowed by your baby.

Read next: The best nipple cream for breastfeeding

3. Best value baby bottle: Philips Avent Natural Baby Bottle

philips avent baby bottles

RRP: £9.98 for two | Buy now from Amazon

Key specs

Capacity/sizes: 60ml, 125ml, 260ml and 330ml | Type of teats: Four sizes (newborn, 0 months+, 3 months+ and 6 months+) | Made from: BPA- and BPS-free plastic and silicone | Dishwasher-safe: Yes

What we love

  • Robust and long-lasting
  • Easy to read, take apart and put together

What to know

  • Drips significantly when held upside down and gets too hot to touch when filled with boiling water
  • Isn’t compatible with all Philips toddler cups
  • Teats only intended for up to 12 months

What our Mumsnet users say

"I used Phillips Avent bottles, tried Tommy Tippee but DS didn't seem to drink as well from them as he did with the Phillips ones." Recommended by Mumsnet user BorisJohnsonMicrowavesHisBacon.

Our verdict

The Philips Avent Natural has been designed, as most bottles are, with breastfed babies in mind, incorporating soft ‘petals’ in its wide base to make sucking easier and more intuitive. A twin valve in the teat and collar lets air into the bottle, reducing the amount your baby could swallow.

The teat comes in four well-signposted flow rates, from newborn to 12 months, and bottles come in four sizes. The Natural bottle is available by itself and in a variety of starter packs, and is also compatible with Philips breast pumps, such as the Philips Avent Manual Breast Pump, and some of their toddler drinking cups. 

The BPA-free plastic is solid, so the bottle doesn’t feel cheap. Be aware, though, that it does drip quite a bit when held upside down and it will get hot on the outside when filled with boiling water, so watch out for grabby older babies. Aesthetics-wise, it’s a minimalist design that also comes in pink and blue.

4. Best eco-friendly baby bottle: Pura Kiki Infant Bottle

pura kiki baby bottle

RRP: £24.99 | Buy now from Pura

Key specs

Capacity/sizes: 5oz, 9oz and 11oz | Type of teats: Slow flow teat (newborn) and medium flow teat (three months onwards) | Made from: Stainless steel with a silicone sleeve and teat | Dishwasher-safe: Yes

What we love

  • Completely plastic-free and eco-friendly
  • Exceptionally robust
  • Lifetime warranty

What to know

  • Can't be sterilised in the microwave
  • Leaks a fair amount when tipped upside down
  • Inflexible teat better suited to older or unfussy babies

What our Mumsnet users say

"Stainless steel bottles are cheaper and more durable than glass." Recommended by Mumsnet user ZippedyBooBah.

Our verdict

As eco-friendly living becomes ever more important, the eye-catching stainless steel Pura Kiki is a great – if somewhat limited – stride in the right direction. One of the only completely plastic-free baby bottles, it’s a striking looking design: a stainless steel bottle that comes in three sizes with a neon-bright silicone insulating cover, a steel collar and a silicone teat. The best news is that the same bottle can be used with a toddler drinking spout, a sports-bottle spout or a lid for snacks (all purchased separately), making the Kiki useful all the way to adulthood and beyond. 

However, the teat, while it has an anti-colic vent and does come in two flow rates (slow and medium), is somewhat inflexible and plasticky. The volume markings are engraved on the inside of the bottle – not easy to squint at in the middle of the night – and, of course, the bottle isn’t compatible with any breast pumps and can’t go in a microwave steriliser.  It’s safe and well made, however, and created with high-grade, hygienic materials which are dishwasher-safe. For an older or easy-going baby, it’s a great, responsible buy – long-lasting, unbreakable and, even in its hot pink colour, impeccably green.

Read our in-depth Pura Kiki review

Read next: Best reusable nappies for babies and toddlers

5. Best baby bottle starter kit: Hegen PCTO Feeding Bottle

hegen pcto baby bottle

RRP: £25.95 | Buy now from Amazon

Key specs

Capacity/sizes: 150ml, 240ml and 330ml | Type of teats: Slow, medium, fast and thick | Made from: BPA- and BPS-free plastics and silicone | Dishwasher-safe: Yes

What we love

  • Innovative soft square shape makes holding, cleaning and storage easier
  • Extra-tough bottle material is almost impossible to damage
  • Off-centre teat designed to feed in a more upright position

What to know

  • Pricey
  • Teat has to be in a particular position for correct assembly, which can be confusing

What our Mumsnet users say

"I have the Hegen bottles.I found if I warm the milk up before leaving and out the air tight container lid on they stayed warm for ages!Definitely recommend them." Tried and tested by Mumsnetter Dandelion1993

Our verdict

It’s at the expensive end of the bottle market, but this high-quality, long-lasting model feels genuinely innovative. Hegen's flagship bottle, the Hegen PCTO (Press to Close, Twist to Open) is more expensive than those from more established brands, but it’s really good. Made from extra-tough PPSU plastics (usually used for medical appliances), the bottle is an unusual ‘soft square’ shape, which is supposed to easier for a baby to grip, but it also stacks neatly, one within another, when it’s empty. 

As the name suggests, the collar presses on with a click and is removed by twisting, which in practice is quicker than the more common baby bottle twisting mechanism. The teat is super-soft silicone, designed to be slightly off-centre so that babies can be fed from a more upright position, protecting them from recurrent ear infections. The materials are robust and the Hegen feels like a high-quality, almost luxurious bottle. Expressed milk or snacks can be sealed in the bottles using flat storage lids. There are also compatible drink spouts for adults or older children to use. 

6. Best affordable baby bottle: Tommee Tippee Closer To Nature Bottle

tommee tippee closer to nature baby bottle

RRP: £6.49 for two | Buy now from Boots

Key specs

Capacity/sizes: 150ml, 260ml and 340ml | Type of teats: Size one, two, three and vari-flow | Made from: BPA- and BPS-free plastics and silicone | Dishwasher-safe: Yes

What we love

  • Comes in a large variety of colours and sizes
  • Dishwasher-safe and compatible with most sterilisers

What to know

  • Less robust than more expensive competitors
  • Silicone teat is not especially soft or innovatively designed
  • Fell apart when dropped on the floor

What our Mumsnet users say 

"Are you thinking of mixed feeding? Or fully formula feeding? If you want to do a bit of both then get something like Tommee Tippee closer to nature where they have to open their mouth nice and wide as this makes it easier to switch." Tried and tested by Mumsnet user PeigiSu.

Our verdict

This entry-level crowd-pleaser continues to be a bestseller. Widely available, brilliantly inexpensive and supported by the vast Tommee Tippee ecosystem. The Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature isn’t trying to reinvent the wheel, just provide a decent bottle experience at a price affordable for most families. More good news – the wide bottle neck and built-in collar and teat make it easy to assemble and make up a feed.

Its curved shape makes it easy to hold and to hand wash and it is available in three sizes and four teat flows. The teat has an anti-colic vent and is designed to help the transition between breast and bottle. 

It’s not as sturdy as its more expensive rivals, including the Lansinoh and the Hegen, and the BPA-free plastic feels a little thinner than other bottles, which makes it hard to hold when very hot. But for a bottle on a budget? The Closer to Nature does a really decent job, even if it might not be with you for the long haul.

Read next: The best sippy cups for babies

7. Best versatile baby bottle: Twistshake Baby Bottle

twistshake baby bottle

RRP: £9.77 | Buy now from Amazon

Key specs

Capacity/sizes: 180ml, 260ml and 330ml | Type of teats: Small, medium, large and extra large | Made from: BPA- and BPS-free plastics and silicone | Dishwasher-safe: Yes

What we love

  • Good quality BPA-free plastic
  • Comes with a container for formula if combination feeding
  • Dishwasher- and steriliser-safe

What to know

  • Less support and compatibility than other bottles
  • In the white model we tested, measurements were also in white, so not easy to see when the bottle was filled with milk

What our Mumsnet users say

"I used to take hot water in a vacuum flask and then formula in a tub already measured and make up the formula that way. It's what the NHS website recommends to do." Advice from Mumsnetter Danikm151.

Our verdict

Strikingly designed in an array of colours, prints and materials, this Twistshake bottle should brighten up anyone’s kitchen and last forever too. Designed with an extra-wide neck for easy cleaning and filling, it also comes with a formula powder tub (which can be stored inside the bottle when not in use) and a ‘mixer net’ component to mix the powder and water without clumping.  

The bottle is made from a tough, BPA-free plastic, but also comes in stainless steel and glass models as well as a variety of cool patterns and colours, so you’re bound to find one that suits you. Twistshake bottles come in three sizes and teats in four flow rates. Once your baby gives up bottle feeding, there’s a toddler spout and a straw for children and adults available to buy separately. The teat comes with an anti-colic air valve and is fairly soft and flexible. Safety-wise, it’s made from high-grade, hygienic materials, and is dishwasher- and steriliser-safe. It’s not compatible with any breast pumps, unfortunately – often a downside of equipment from newer brands.

8. Best baby bottle for colic and reflux: Tommee Tippee Advanced Anti-Colic Bottle

tommee tippee anti-colic baby bottles

RRP: £9.49 for pack of three | Buy now from Boots

Key specs

Capacity/sizes: 160ml and 260ml | Type of teats: 0 months+, 3 months+, 6 months+ and vari-flow | Made from: BPA- and BPS-free plastics and silicone | Dishwasher-safe: Yes

What we love

  • Has a nipple-like teat to closely mimic breastfeeding
  • The anti-colic venting system that helps with wind, colic and reflux
  • Hardwearing with easy-to-read volume markings
  • Heat-sensitive straw tells you when the milk is ready to drink

What to know

  • The teat is not as soft and flexible as some – and while the wide teat base works for some babies, others prefer narrower shapes
  • The six-part design is a faff to clean, sterilise and reassemble

What our Mumsnet users say

"We used Tommee Tippee colic bottles for our DD and they were great. Planning on doing the same for our next DC due in April. Never had any issue with them at all." Recommended by Mumsnet user Snipples.

Our verdict

Tommee Tippee’s anti-colic bottle is as widely available as its Closer to Nature counterpart – and, despite the extra functions, it’s still within reach of most family budgets. 

Colic is so individual and so unfathomable, but we think that the Tommee Tippee Advanced Anti-Colic Bottle is the best baby bottle for babies suffering from colic and reflux.

Made from BPA-free plastics and fairly soft silicone, the bottle includes an anti-colic air-removal system comprised of a straw, a venting wheel and a star-shaped valve. The idea is that air is sucked through the straw and released harmlessly at the bottom of the bottle, preventing it from entering the milk. As an added bonus, the straw is heat sensitive, turning pink when the feed is too hot.

The silicone teat is soft, wide and flexible, which should help to maintain the baby’s latch. Just be aware that, while they look very similar, Advanced Anti-Colic bottles must be used with Advanced Anti-Colic teats, and can’t be swapped with the Closer to Nature kind. 

While the plastic is thinner than some models on the market (the Lansinoh, say, or the Twistshake), it held up well under our scrubbing and dropping tests. 

Read next: The best nipple shields for comfortable feeding

mum feeding baby with bottle

What to look for in a baby bottle

  • Size: Bottles almost always come in more than one size. While the smallest size might look most appropriate for a newborn, it’s actually the teat flow that matters most. We’d recommend buying the next bottle size up because your baby will be drinking more milk before you know it, and you don’t want to have to replace the bottles too soon. Plus, it’s important to be sure that your baby is feeding till they’re properly full.
  • Teat and flow rates: Teats are typically made from either silicone or latex. You'll also find bottles with teats that aim to mimic breastfeeding. The three teat flow sizes (slow, medium and fast) are designed to stop a small baby guzzling and choking on milk coming out faster than they can swallow and larger babies from having to work too hard to suck milk out of a small hole. Many brands use approximate age ranges to label their teats, but only use these as a guide. Generally, if your baby takes longer than 20 minutes to finish a feed, falls asleep regularly while feeding or tugs at the teat while feeding, it may be a sign that they’re ready for the next teat size up.
  • Anti-colic features: These help to combat symptoms of reflux and colic, which can be very uncomfortable and distressing for both babies and parents. Typical anti-colic features found in baby bottles are slow-flow teats that help to slow the flow of milk and stop babies from swallowing extra air when they are colicky, vents in the bottle base that ensure air doesn't travel through the milk, valve systems that allow for better air flow, and angled bottle shapes to help a baby stay more upright when feeding, which will encourage paced bottle feeding.
  • Shape and bottle neck width: Does it look like it would fit comfortably in your hand and be easy for your baby to hold too, when ready? How wide is the bottle neck? If you’re combination feeding, a wide neck will stop late-night powder spillages. If you’re breastfeeding, you’ll want every drop of breast milk to be collected safely.
  • Volume markings: Are they clear and easy to read? This will become much more important at 4am – trust us.
  • Material: Most baby bottles are made from BPA-free plastic, which is safe for babies to suckle on. This type of plastic is light and easy to clean and also stands up well to repeated washing. Plastic baby bottles will end up in landfill once discarded, so there is also the option of non-plastic alternatives, like glass bottles, which are more hardwearing, environmentally-friendly and easier to clean. Just be aware that they are heavier, have more chance of breaking and are generally more expensive than plastic baby bottles. 

What are the different types of baby bottle?

1. Natural feel

The WHO recommends that babies are exclusively breastfed for the first six months of their life and that breastfeeding continues where possible up to two years. Accordingly, bottle manufacturers invest a great deal of research into designing a teat that mimics breastfeeding as closely as possible, so you can express and bottle feed without nipple confusion.

All designs look a little different, but generally you should look for a soft silicone teat that your baby can latch onto without slipping off (if your baby doesn’t like the feel of silicone, NUK also make a latex version).

2. Anti-colic

Almost all bottles on the market include anti-colic features. One of the potential causes of colic and reflux is swallowing too much air during feeds, so bottle designers include venting systems to reduce the amount of air that gets into the milk as the baby drinks.

Bottles with ‘anti-colic’ in their names are likely to have a more intricate system to get that pesky air out of the way – usually straws, weights and valves that are a pain to clean but might help your baby feel more comfortable.

3. Angled

You might see some bottles on the shelf that have an off-centre teat or are otherwise designed with an angled appearance.

They’re designed to help the baby drink while being as upright as possible as there’s some evidence that pressure in the bottle creates negative pressure in the mouth, causing fluid build-up in the middle ear when lying flat. This could potentially lead to ear infections.

Keeping your baby upright should minimise this and angled bottles make the correct positioning easier.

4. Eco-friendly

As our plastic use comes ever more under the microscope, some manufacturers are trying to provide plastic-free alternatives for baby bottles. Many brands make a glass version of their plastic bestseller (Lansinoh and NUK among them) and a new wave of eco-friendly brands are also designing bottles in stainless steel.

The existing baby equipment system isn’t really set up to be compatible with these sustainable interlopers. They’re more expensive, you won’t be able to use a connecting breast pump or sterilise them in the microwave, and the volume markings are sometimes tricky to read. But, if you’re trying to do your bit for the planet, this might be a good place to start.

5. Transitional

Often this category of bottles overlaps with the eco-friendly category. They are bottles designed to last long after the baby years, to toddlerhood and often beyond.

Usually this means using the bottle with an alternative top – a sippy spout for a toddler and an adult bottle top for an older child, which you’ll probably need to buy separately. Bottles that can do this (Hegen, Twistshake and Pura Kiki, for example) tend to be made of tough, long-lasting materials – a fact often reflected in their price.

How much do baby bottles cost?

It varies tremendously between brands. Many plastic bottles are very competitively priced, especially if an online retailer is having a sale, so keep an eye out for useful deals. 

Starter kits can also be a good way of getting more for your money, though look carefully at what’s included. If you don’t think you’ll use everything in there, it’s probably not good value for you. Generally, plastic bottles start at about £5 per bottle up to £20 t0 £30 for the higher-end luxe brands. Glass and stainless steel models will also be more, again between £20 to £30 per bottle.

How many bottles do I need for my baby?

Most lactation experts recommend six bottles in rotation for daily full-time feeding. However, if you’re combination feeding or just occasionally expressing, you’ll be able to get away with two to four, depending on how often you use them.

As a rule of thumb, buy how many bottles you think you’d need for a 12-hour period so you’re not constantly washing and sterilising them – life with a new baby is busy enough.

What makes a baby bottle safe?

First, check that the bottle has complied with the relevant EU safety legislation, EN:14350, which gives specifications for children’s drinking equipment. This can usually be found on the bottle box or the manufacturer’s website.

Plastic bottles should now be made from BPA- and BPS-free plastics – both chemicals can reportedly leach into food and drink and affect the body – which should also be obvious on the label.

Keep an eye on the silicone teats. If they degrade, get damaged or are bitten through, they’ll need replacing immediately so as not to present a choking hazard.

As you use the bottle, don’t put the teat on too soon after filling with boiling water. The build-up of pressure can squirt hot water out of the teat and present a hazard.

The small parts found in an anti-colic bottle should, of course, be kept out of baby’s reach.

How do I make up a bottle?

If you’re expressing breast milk into a bottle, it can be used to feed your baby immediately or stored for later use. The NHS says that breast milk can be kept in a fridge at 4°C or lower for four days (three days if you’re not sure what temperature your fridge is). It can also be frozen and kept for up to six months.

When defrosting breast milk, it’s best to do it slowly in a fridge – though, if you can’t wait, you can hold it under warm running water or put it in a jug of warm water. You can warm up fridge-cold milk the same way if your baby prefers it warm. Once defrosted, any leftovers can’t be kept for later or refrozen.

If you're formula feeding, boil fresh tap water and leave it to cool a little (no longer than 30 minutes) before pouring into the clean, sterilised bottle. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions exactly to add the right amount of powder, then put on the teat and lid and shake to combine. You can cool the bottle so it’s safe to drink by standing it in cold water or holding it under cold running water with the lid on. Don’t use bottled or reboiled water and don’t make up more than one feed at once.

How do I bottle-feed my baby?

After you’ve prepared a bottle and checked the temperature is safe (check it on your own wrist to make sure it’s not too hot), sit comfortably with them in your arms. The UNICEF UK Baby Friendly Initiative recommends that you “hold baby close in a semi-upright position so you can see their face, and reassure them by looking into their eyes and talking to them during the feed.” Sitting them upright also has the advantage of helping to prevent fluid build-up in the middle ear. Brush the bottle teat against their lips and let them suck on it when they open their mouth.

Keep an eye on the teat to make sure it’s always full of milk, not air (this helps prevent swallowing too much air, which can lead to reflux or colic). If the pressure in the bottle builds up so the teat goes flat, the NHS recommends inserting a little finger gently in the corner of your baby’s mouth to release it.

According, again, to the UNICEF UK Baby Friendly Initiative, “offering the bottle in response to feeding cues, gently inviting the baby to take the teat, pacing the feeds and avoiding forcing the baby to finish the feed can all help to make the experience as acceptable and stress-free for the baby as possible.”

After the feed (or halfway through if you prefer), sit your baby up and gently pat their back to bring up any wind.

Don’t forget to throw away any leftover milk and to clean the bottle afterwards.

How do I clean and sterilise a baby bottle?

According to the NHS, all baby equipment should be sterilised before use for the first 12 months to protect against infections.

After a bottle has been used, dismantle it and either handwash with hot soapy water or put it in the dishwasher if it’s labelled dishwasher-safe. If the bottle includes small parts, make sure they’re thoroughly cleaned before reuse. Make sure you wash your bottle after every use.

After rinsing, you can also sterilise the bottle parts using whatever method you prefer: cold water, microwave or electric steam. Some bottles (the MAM Easy Start, for example) have been designed to self-sterilise in the microwave. If so, follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully.

Once sterilised, leave the bottles inside the steriliser until they’re needed and make sure you have clean hands when you assemble them.

Read next: The best sterilisers for baby bottles and feeding gear

When should I replace baby bottles?

There’s no official guidance about this, though manufacturers might advise how often to replace teats – usually every three months or so.

For the bottle itself, watch out for chips, cracks and discolouration that isn’t from lasagne night, all of which could present a danger or indicate that the material is damaged.

For the teat, check often for wear and tear, weakening patches or bitten-through ends, and replace as soon as you find any. As with all baby equipment, it’s much better to err on the side of caution.

Related: How to transition from bottle to cup

Why you should trust us

All Mumsnet product reviews are written by real parents. We work hard to provide honest and independent advice you can trust. We spend hours researching, speaking to parents, analysing data and listening to experts before we test out the products on our shortlist.

As a parent to an eight-, six- and two-year-old, all of whom were combination-fed as babies, Rachel has years of experience using a wide variety of baby equipment, including baby bottles.

Transparency is really important to us and that's why we're always upfront about how we tested the products we recommend. There's no incentive for us to be lazy with our research or in our testing process. There's no reason for us to respond to pressure from retailers or brands trying to promote new products. It's actually quite the opposite and we think it's a good system, one that keeps us focused on making parents lives' easier.