[UPDATED 16 NOVEMBER 2020]
Unless you’re exclusively breastfeeding without using the bottle at all, breast pumps are essential for every breastfeeding mum’s journey. The different types of breast pumps available are designed to suit different needs.
Depending on whether you’re doing mixed feeding, exclusively pumping, or only pumping at work, the frequency of your pumping sessions will differ, which in turn will become a factor in your choice of pump.
The Australian Breastfeeding Association has drawn up this quick guide on which type of breast pump you should choose based on your needs.
In this article, I’ve compiled a list of all breast pumps that are readily available in Australia, plus my top picks for each category.
To further help you make an informed decision, I’ve included the lowest cost online that I found and customer ratings on ProductReview as well as various stores and review sites.
Best Manual Breast Pumps
Manual breast pumps are affordable, lightweight, portable, and easy to clean with very few parts. They don’t require batteries or power and are great for occasional or light pumping.
They are best for travelling, pumping at work or relieving engorged breasts. Without electric motors, they are also almost completely silent.
However, the major disadvantage of manual breast pumps is that their suction strength is fairly weak and is better suited for mums who have quick letdowns or a good supply of breast milk.
Spectra Handy Plus Manual Breast Pump (Editor’s Choice)
- Best small portable breast pump
- Powerful suction up to 350 mmHg
- Ergonomic, lightweight design
- Slow flow teat suitable for newborn feeding
- Certification CE, FDA, ISO13485, ISO9001
Made in South Korea, Spectra is still gaining popularity in Australia. They are more well known for their electric and hospital grade pumps, but their lesser known manual pump – the Handy Plus – is a top rated option on our list.
Its price point is also very affordable compared to other manual breast pumps, and it’s the most economical choice for manual pumping.
I have 4 month old twin boys so to say I need effective pumping is an understatement. I have the Spectra S2 but I wanted something more compact for the times I am out and about without easy access to electricity. Another pumping mother recommended this product (Spectra Handy Plus), it’s everything that I needed and super effective.Natalie Clarke – March 17, 2018
Manual Breast Pump – Brands, Ratings & Costs
|*Editor’s Choice* Spectra Handy Plus Manual Breast Pump||$54.95||4.3|
|Medela Harmony Manual Pump||$59.99||4.1|
|NUK Jolie Manual Breast Pump||$59||4.0|
|Philips Avent Comfort Manual||$72.93||3.7|
|Tommee Tippee Manual Breast Pump||$59.85||2.7|
Best Single Electric Breast Pumps
Electric breast pumps have stronger suction than manual ones. They are relatively compact and are a great middle-ground option for those who pump at home and also on-the-go.
The battery life is usually quite decent on a single charge. Single electric pumps are perfect for mums who are combining breastfeeding and expressing or doing mixed feeding.
However, electric breast pumps are 2-3 times more expensive than manual pumps, and a bit heavier. They also have a lot more parts to clean. The tube, in particular, can be prone to mould growth if not cleaned and dried properly.
Spectra M1 Portable Single Electric (Editor’s Choice)
- Built-in rechargeable battery for portability
- Can also be used with power plug
- Letdown mode with adjustable cycle speeds and suction strength
- Closed system design – this is most commonly seen in hospital-grade breast pumps and very rarely in normal electric pumps
- Convertible to double pump with additional accessories
Made in South Korea, the Spectra M1 is the most affordable option in the Spectra range and is long established in Australia as one of the top choices for high quality electric pumps.
With a 98% 5-star rating from over 100 customers on the Spectra Australia site, it also has a fantastic rating of 4.6 on ProductReview, some reviews from early as 2014 so it is indeed a longstanding brand that has proven its quality over many years.
It is really easy to use. I have been using this machine for 10 months already. Very easy to clean and maintain. It very light, so it easy for me to carry when i’m going out.ProductReview.com.au
Single Electric Breast Pump – Brands, Ratings & Costs
Best Double Electric Breast Pumps
Double electric breast pumps are much more efficient than single ones. They are the best option for power pumping to increase milk supply, or for those who are exclusively pumping.
They are only slightly more expensive than single ones, and in fact many single ones easily convert to a double pump with an additional kit.
Vice versa, most double electric pumps on this list can be used for single side pumping, so in terms of cost effectiveness, a double electric breast pump gives you the best value for money.
Pumpables Genie Plus Double Breast Pump (Editor’s Choice)
- Hospital grade closed system design
- Lightest portable electric breast pump at 220g
- Comes with 3 shield sizes included
- Powerful suction up to 300mmHg
- Save memory settings with one touch
- 20 different massage and expression modes
- Single or double pumping
- Built-in rechargeable battery and power plug
A product of Singapore, the Genie Plus by Pumpables is a fairly new contender in the category of electric breast pumps but it has very quickly proven to be well received by mums around the world.
They offer 2 years warranty instead of the standard 1 year, which shows how much confidence they have in the built of their product.
It comes with a lot of useful features that many bigger brands lack, such as 3 different shield sizes included so you can rest assured you will find your perfect fit for highly effective pumping.
It is also the most lightweight electric breast pump weighing at just 220g, so if you are looking for a good balance of affordability, portability, and high performance, this new kid on the block is one to watch out for.
Use code SHOP10-BLISSFULMATERNITY for extra 10% off
Double Electric Breast Pump – Brands, Ratings & Costs
Best Hospital Grade Breast Pumps
Hospital grade breast pumps are very powerful suction strength to maximise pumping sessions, yet at the same time are also very quiet.
They generally don’t cost much more than a double electric breast pump. Designed for multiple users (like maternity wards in hospitals), these ones have a closed system breast pump design that eliminates the problem of mould growth in tubes.
However, hospital grade pumps are extremely bulky and needs to be plugged into a power outlet. They are not even great for home use if you don’t usually pump in one set place.
There are also very few brand options on the market on hospital grade breast pumps.
Unimom Forte Hospital Grade Breast Pump (Editor’s Choice)
- Patented genuine closed system design
- Single and double pumping
- Vacuum range: 50-300mmHg
As an official partner of the Australian Breastfeeding Association, Unimom products are highly recommended by hospitals and midwives across Australia. Part of the proceeds from every Unimom sale also goes toward supporting breastfeeding mums through the ABA.
Hospital Grade Breast Pump Brands – Rating & Cost Comparison
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