If you’re a mama rushing between meetings, struggling to get your work done before you dash home, or don’t have access to a private lactation room at work, this post is for you. We’re highlighting our favorite breast pumps for working moms in 2020. Each is unique — some hospital grade, some electric, some manual. They are for women with all budgets, and include the most innovative items on the market today.
On more about choosing the right breast pump for you, see the Mayo Clinic guide here.
Above all, we love this pump because of the ability to pump while doing almost anything else. One of the most innovative pumps on the market, the Elvie is a silent, hands-free smart breast pump that fits in your bra. We love that its cord free — so you can truly wear it anywhere. The pump connects to an app on your smartphone so you can track your pumping and control the settings on the go. A bottle collects milk directly from the pump, and has a sensor to stop when the bottle is full to prevent leakage and overflow. This pump has both stimulation and expression modes it works into every time you use the pump, and has a rechargeable battery so you can take the Elvie with you. You will, however, need to transfer the milk to a storage container once you’re done pumping. There’s also a display light that appears while in use that makes this tool a bit less discreet.
Affordability, portability, and simplicity summarize this manual breast pump. You lose the nifty features on tracking and automation, but Haaka is easy to clean, carry, and super effective. After some time, women say they master a way to express milk into the collection container totally hands-free. Because it’s not electric, it also means pumping is silent. Keep in mind you’ll need to invest in a separate collection container and lid, still manual pump, which may cost you more.
Another innovative player, the Willow wearable fits in your bra, is hands-free, and has no cords. This high-tech option allows you to operate the pump through a discreet app which collects milk into a bag you can pour into a bottle. Both parts are dishwasher safe.
The Willow doesn’t have a light and is silent, making it the ideal pump for meeting or open space. We love the customer support Willow offers with a personalized coach to make use easy. The learning curve is slightly more steep on the Willow compared to a traditional pump — you have to get the seal right in order for the best results. Another downside is that you will also definitely see a bulge from the Willow in your bra but still a best in class pump.
This hands-free, quiet, and versatile pump has clips that fit directly in your bra. After pumping, you can just remove the Freemie Cups and transfer your milk to storage. This pump has a customizable, automatic on/off time and intervals. The small but powerful interface has over 100 pumping settings, with a memory for one-touch start if you have a preference for how to pump each time. This charges through a USB and is portable,operating on battery so it's easy to travel with and works anywhere. The Freemie holds 8 ounces of milk, in comparison to Willow’s 4 ounces so it’s a bit bulkier, but may be a better option for some women. All the parts come in a single tote, ready to use. The pump does come with cords, and is a little cumbersome to put together and clean all the parts.
This electric, double pump is pretty, small, portable, and has an easy-to-use external interface. It’s definitely not the most innovative of the bunch in terms of hands-free options and tracking milk quantities, but it does have a cool feature that works to mimic how a baby would latch and suck the breast. In a major step forward on woman-centered design since we don’t need to be milked like industrial cows, that can be a major plus and a more comfortable overall experience. That feature also helps extraction more efficiently, and stimulates letdown. You can also adjust the speed to be more like your baby’s eating routine.
Other benefits include easy cleaning, a night light so you don’t wake your partner or a sleeping baby, and a rechargeable battery so you can take your pump with you. While this pump isn’t always hands or cords free, it can fit with particular bras to make a hands-free option. It’s not the best if you’re stuck in meetings all day, but works well in a private office or lactation room where you can carry on working. The battery can drain pretty fast, and there are a lot of parts associated with the Spectra, but we like the simple approach.
On our radar:
This pump isn’t in the market yet and we haven’t tested it, but we’re keeping a close eye. The Babyation is discreet, using low profile breast shields and tubes so you can keep your shirt on while pumping. Like others, Babynations claims this pumps is super quiet, designed to mimic a baby’s mouth and sucking, is easy to clean, and portable. It also claims it's easy to clean. What we’re really excited about is the companion app on your phone to track, control, and customize your pumping, while your in a meeting or at your desk. We also love the unique storage: when you open the Babyation carrier, you have everything in one place: ice pack, milk containers, storage for parts. That makes for less awkward kitchen talk if you store your milk in the company fridge, and less burdensome to track all the parts.
Downside: Not yet available for commercial sale and we can’t confirm the claims.
This list is not exhaustive. You’ll see we’re not listing the main brands like Medela since we are focusing on brands less often covered by your insurance selected supply company, but we encourage you to continue your search and welcome any feedback and recommendations for pumps you love!