Being a mom is no child’s play. Now you have an actual mini human who depends on you from literally everything. I know we all are grateful for our motherhood but we also secretly hope that there were some magic way to make all this easier.
Thanks to the advent of the latest technology, we actually do have some means of making motherhood go a little less hard on us.
For instance, we have hands-free breast pumps today that take the chore out of pumping for both working and stay-at-home moms. These types of electrical pumps are not only super easy to use but they also help speed up the letdown by stimulating your breast before the expression.
And the best part is, you can move with your nursing bra on while pumping. If that doesn’t sound like a deal worth grabbing, not sure what else will. I have been exactly where you are today 2 years ago. So I know the amount of stress looming upon your head right now. The least I can do is help you choose the right breast pump without blowing your budget. That’s why I’ve rounded up 6 best hands free breast pumps along with their in-depth reviews to help you make the right decision.
6 Best Hands Free Breast Pump 2020
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- 1.Willow Double Electric Breast Pump
- 2.Elvie Double Silent Wearable Breast Pump
- 3.Freemie Liberty Mobile Hands Free Breast Pump
- 4.Medela Freestyle Double Electric Breast Pump
- 5.BabyBuddha Portable and Compact Breast Pump
- 6.Bellababy Pocket Double Electric Breast Pump
- Wireless vs. Hands-free Breast Pumps: The Core Differences Explained
- Best Hands-free Breast Pump – Buying Guide
1.Willow Double Electric Breast Pump
This wireless, wearable breast pump is a game-changer, in the truest sense of the term. If you are a working mom with multiple kids, you will admire the incredible comfort and convenience offered by this pump. You can take a call, write, eat, or even lie down on your back (only if you are directly pumping into the spill-proof bag) during the expression.
It’s possible because there’s no tubing or wire attached to the device and the bags fit right into the pump instead of hanging from the shield. The unit comes with 24 spill-proof bags which makes pumping on-the-move a breeze. But if you only use the bags, the yearly cost of pumping will skyrocket.
So when you are at home, I’d suggest getting the compatible reusable bottle that’s available for purchase separately. The standard flanges come in two sizes: 24 and 27 mm but if needed, you can also order 21 mm cups separately.
And finally, the show-stopping feature of the pump is the app Willow Pump app. You can track the pumping time, history, how much milk has been expressed, and a lot more on your smartphone via this app.
To put it simply, even though Willow’s price is one the higher side, the revolutionary pumping technology makes it one of the best wireless breast pumps you will find today. And that, my friend, makes it worth every penny.
- Only two parts two clean- the cup and the flextube (and the reusable bottle if you are using one).
- Truly wireless and tube-less wearable design.
- Since pump while working and never have to miss a session due to workload in the office.
- App tracking for real-time pumping session info.
- The battery takes roughly 2 hours to charge and lasts all day.
- Takes a while to get used to the feeling of moving out and about with a pump under your bra.
2.Elvie Double Silent Wearable Breast Pump
Since we are on the topic of the best wearable breast pumps money can buy, it would be silly of me not to feature Elvie Pump on this list. Like Willow, this one too doesn’t burden you with wires, tubings or any pump accessories attached to the flange.
The double pump lets you pump into two 5 oz (150 ml) bottles simultaneously, meaning you will be able to express 10 Oz. of milk at a time. To help you keep track of how full the bottles are and how long you have pumped to prevent, making sure you remain consistent in every session.
If you are not exclusively pumping and will be staying at home most of the time, I’d advise you to go for the relatively cheaper single pump version. Both versions come with 24 mm and 28 mm flanges.
You can also order 21 mm shields separately if that’s what will ensure the right fit. The best part is, you can use a breast pump cushion with the Elvie pump as well if your nipple demands a smaller size than 21 mm.
- Low maintenance.
- Extremely quiet.
- One full charge will give you about 80 minutes of runtime.
- Gentle suction mimics the feeding style of babies for faster yet pain-free expression.
- Comes with two sets of chargers and bottles.
- Sloppy Bluetooth connectivity.
- The sensors are not as accurate as they are on the Willow pump, seldom resulting in an inaccurate read-out of expressed milk volume.
3.Freemie Liberty Mobile Hands Free Breast Pump
Breast pumping in an office is a whole different ball game, you know? Not only you need something fast and portable but also noise-free because let’s face it, you don’t want your boss and colleagues to hear your breast pumping noise. Do you?
Now, it’s not just the superior noise reduction technology and amazing mobility that makes Freemie one of the best hands-free breast pumps for working moms. The smart pump lets you easily adjust the suction strength, speed, and tubing length to ensure optimal pumping comfort.
Not just that, there’s an auto shut-off timer that will stop pumping on its own between 5-40 minutes. Plus, the programmable memory buttons on the pump will remember your preferred speed and suction strength to relieve you from the hassle of resetting the device.
- Each cup of the double pump can hold about 8 ounces of milk.
- You can attach the thick tube of Freemie pump to the flanges or reusable bottles of other brands as well.
- Freemie offers silicone Fitmie inserts to help you adjust the cup size from 15-28 mm.
- Virtually noise-free operation.
- Not the ideal fit for women who are looking for anything larger than C cup size.
- The tubing is kind of long and thick. Unless you put a jacket or something on top, the cups won’t be fully concealed.
- The cups leak if you don’t align them properly.
4.Medela Freestyle Double Electric Breast Pump
If you have filtered out the battery-powered options and kept your research strictly limited to the best electric hands-free breast pumps, I’m sure you have come across Medela electric pumps. It’s impossible to miss.
The biggest USP of the double electric pump is its ability to replicate the breastfeeding suction strength and rhythm of a baby. This increases breast stimulation, improves the flow, and subsequently, speeds up the letdown. It’s a closed-system pump.
So if you are dealing with overflow/breast engorgement issue, rest assured that will empty the load without creating a big mess. Its in-built overflow protector prevents the excess milk from entering the motor and tubes.
I also loved the backlit digital display and streamlined speed and vacuum strength control buttons on the device. It’s very basic but super functional and really makes the pumping sessions roll and flow smoothly. It also has a built-in memory that remembers your preferred settings.
- Comes with a rechargeable battery to help you pump freely on-the-go.
- Portable pump console, adjustable speed and suction strength settings with built-in memory feature.
- Comes with a 24mm and 27 mm breast shield along with four 5 Oz. bottles, a nice tote bag, one cooler case, and one ice pack for fuss-free storage.
- Lightweight enough to let you multitask while pumping.
- Supports max 220V. You need a universal adapter to use it in countries with 230 to 240V.
- Somewhat weaker suction power compared to higher-end models. If you are dealing with slow let-down, there are better options for you out there.
5.BabyBuddha Portable and Compact Breast Pump
If I have to name the best hands free portable breast pumps solely on the grounds of suction strength and speed, BabyBuddha will win the round hands down.
I love the inclusion of cup cushions in the kit which reduces the strain on the nipples. It might sound minor but mothers suffering from sore nipples will be forever grateful to BabyBuddha for it. The pump console on this genuinely best-in-class. It has a trackball on it which you have to swivel to toggle between 14 comfort settings.
Each setting activates a different suction, stimulation, and speed combination, making it totally safe for mothers with some kind of medical issue related to breastfeeding as well.
- Has built-in backflow protectors.
- Takes roughly 15 minutes to complete a session.
- As lightweight and portable as they come.
- Virtually noise-free.
- The ribbed silicone membrane quality is fantastic.
- Can be used with wide-mouthed bottles and Freemie cups as well.
- The kit includes only one size (24 mm) of flange while its competitor brands are providing at least two cup sizes. However, there’s a hack to get rid of this problem. You can simply buy an adaptor off the internet and make the pump work with any size of flange you have. Pretty easy, huh?
6.Bellababy Pocket Double Electric Breast Pump
No matter whether you want a budget-friendly hands-free pump for exclusive pumping or as a backup option, Bellababy fits the bill. True that doesn’t come will all the rich features of higher-end models like Willow, Elvie, or BabyBuddha. But if your primary concerns are limited to mobility and comfort, this one won’t let you down.
Although the kit only includes a set of 24 mm flanges, it also includes two adaptors to let you use the pump with varied sizes of flanges and tubings from other brands like Freemie for Medela. I am also super impressed by the quality of gel inserts for the shields you get with the pump.
They are ultra-soft, gentle, and comfortable on the skin. It also comes with a bunch of storage bags, bag adaptors, and the rechargeable battery holds the charge very well. One full charge will give you around 2-2.5 hours of backup.
- Comes with a lanyard, allowing you to wear the console around your neck while doing chores for extra stability.
- Great battery life.
- Compatible with wide neck bottles.
- The kit includes a couple of storage bags and travel-friendly bag adapters.
- The controls buttons are a snap to use.
- Since the shield and vacuum is one piece, the pump is slightly on the bulkier side. You need to wear proper fitting pumping bras to support the flanges when going out in public.
Wireless vs. Hands-free Breast Pumps: The Core Differences Explained
No, you are not stupid to believe that wireless and hands-free are two terms used for denoting the same thing. A lot of people often use these two terms interchangeably but there’s a difference:
Hands-free breast pumps are mostly powered by electricity, meaning you’ll have to stay near the electrical outlet while pumping. While this will leave your hands free to read a magazine, play games on phone, or quickly go through your emails, you won’t be able to roam freely. True wireless breast pumps are battery-powered. They have no wires or tubings hanging from them.
Therefore, no need to buy any accessories for hands-free pumping. Plus, you can wear them under any nursing bra and let it do the work for you. Hence, you can move around, do your paperwork, grab some snacks, or maybe, you know, just hang out in your room while pumping.
The only downside of battery-powered wireless pumps is that you will have to remember to charge them from time-to-time. Electricity provides a consistent power source, so there will be no need to worry about dead batteries in the times of an emergency.
Best Hands-free Breast Pump – Buying Guide
Every mother’s body has different needs. Just because one particular model worked brilliantly some woman in your neighborhood doesn’t mean it will work out for you in the same way. To clear up every last ounce of confusion that you may have in your mind, here’s a list of key aspects to consider while shopping for a hands-free breast pump for yourself:
You have to understand that our body produces only as much milk as your little one needs. Yes, mother nature is that precise. If you buy a pump whose suction power doesn’t mimic the suction strength of the baby during nursing, it might either delay the letdown.
You can leave the whole guesswork fuss out of this equation by opting for a model offering adjustable suction strength. It’s not only the most feasible option for moms with underactive letdown reflex but is also a blessing for women dealing with breast engorgement immediately after childbirth.
It’s not unusual to have low during the first few months after childbirth. Some bodies just need more time to adjust to this new phase than others. If you can afford to stretch your wallet a little more, I’d suggest you go for a hands-free pumping equipped with 2-phase expression technology.
These pumps will stimulate your breast for 2-3 minutes to increase the flow and then start expressing. Some models also have a dedicated letdown button to help you speed up the letdown for pain-free yet fast pumping.
Double vs Single Pump
Single pumps are lightweight and easy-to-use but can be a liability when you are running late for something and you have pumped only half of the required amount. In that case, a double pump can cut your pumping time and effort in half. Won’t that be amazing?
Flange or Breast Shield Size
Most brands offer breast shields/cups/ flanges in two sizes: 24 and 27 mm. It’s important to ensure the right fit for optimal suction strength and flow. If either of the two sizes is either too tight or loose for you, look for a pump that supports multiple shield sizes or comes with an adaptor to let you hack your pump for different flange sizes from other brands, like BellaBaby.
In order to pick the best hands free breast pump for your specific pumping needs without exceeding your budget, you need to determine how much mobility you really need. If you want the freedom to roam around with a tiny, truly wireless pump under your nursing bra, go for a battery-operated pump by all means.
However, most mid-range battery-powered models have substantially less suction strength than electricity-powered counterparts. If you have already determined to get an electrical pump, try to get your hands on a model that comes with a DC power adapter. This tiny adapter will allow you to pump in the car as well.
However, power outage is not a rare phenomenon in our country. So it will be good to have a battery-operated pump as a backup for those long city-wide blackout days.
Some models come with reusable 4 oz. bottles that swiftly connect to the flange while some pumps come with easy-to-use bags. Bags might be easy-to-carry but if you are pumping a lot every day, you have to buy a few dozens of bags which won’t be cheap.
In that case, you should keep two or three reusable bottles handy for your frequent pumping sessions and reserve the bags only for storing, refrigerating, and freezing the freshly expressed milk.
Discreetness & Portability
Portability and discreteness might not be a huge concern for stay-at-home mamas but if you are going to pump in the office, they will matter a LOT. Choosing a lightweight device that doesn’t get louder than 45 dB will save you a lot of hassle and embarrassing situations while doing the needful in your workplace.
It’s not just annoying but also insanely difficult to clean and sterilize a breast pump that has dozens of removable parts. You would want to keep things as simple as possible. I’d say two to five washable parts are acceptable but anything more than that is not worth the effort.
Remember that at the end of the day, a breast pump needs to be functional. And functionality doesn’t necessarily have to come at a cost of high maintenance.
Some of the quality hands-free breast pumps from A-list brands like Willow, Elvie, Medela offer app monitoring of real-time pumping session data e.g how much you have expressed, daily expression volume, stash volume and more of such info in the pump log section. Not just that, the app will also alert you when it’s time to pump and feed your baby. It’s not a necessity but will definitely make your life easier.
The best hands free breast pump for you doesn’t have to be fancy, it has to be functional. No need to go for a model with lorry-loaded features if you are not going to utilize all those bells and whistles.
On the other hand, if you are okay to pay the premium for extra convenience and comfort offered by a modern marvel like Willow Breast Pump, I can assure you it will be worth it. Willow isn’t flawless but it’s the next best thing, considering the pros outweigh the cons by a huge margin.
That’s pretty much all for today. I hope you find what you came here looking for.