Whether you plan on breastfeeding, formula or mix feeding your newborn, choosing the right baby bottles is crucial and exciting too. Not to mention confusing. In this article, we will look at the best baby bottles there is right now available in the market.
Best Baby Bottles
According to last year’s 2020 What to Expect Award, the best baby bottle and a clear favorite among mothers, is the Dr. Brown’s bottles. It has a special tubed venting system that is designed to reduce gas and colic in babies.
The air is forced out of the tube into the base of the bottle so the baby does not reingest it during feedings. The nipple design on Dr. Brown’s bottles slows down milk flow to prevent spit-ups, gas and burps. The starter kit comes with a 4 and 8-ounce size bottle, nipples, vents and cleaning brushes for the baby bottles.
There are still many kinds of bottles to choose from that are available in the market. What may work for your baby might not be best for others. It can be hard to figure out in the beginning and may take a few trial and error on your part.
So before you choose a bottle, let’s find out the different types of bottles to choose from. You can also buy a few bottles to test out first before buying the whole lot. Different babies also have preference in their feeding bottles. They may not express it well yet, but their body reaction will surely hint you up on what is best for your baby.
Better tune in and use your mother’s instinct to know what is best for your baby.
Do you need bottles?
Most likely yes. Especially if you are formula feeding your baby, you will need tons of bottles of all sizes to begin with. We will look into the choices later on as to what will be the best baby bottle for the formula-fed baby.
You will need bottles to use for the baby when you are planning on leaving the baby when you get back to work within the first year after giving birth. You will need someone to feed your baby even when you are away and the easiest way is through bottle feeding.
Even if you plan to exclusively breastfeed your baby, which means your baby only feeds breast milk directly from you. Another option for pure breast milk feeding is through pumped milk. You might find that letting other family members feed the baby a bottle of pumped milk is convenient for that much needed breather as a new mom.
How to choose a baby bottle?
The bottles are designed mostly for the purpose that it will be used. Some bottles are designed to work for the breast milk content for that close to breastfeeding experience. Other bottles are best for formula fed babies, with built in valves to prevent colic and gas in babies.
Making the transition from breast to bottle, if you are training your baby for bottle feeding, can be tricky. You’ll want this experience to be as smooth as possible. Most moms who are transitioning from breast to bottle, either with pumped breastmilk or formula, buy a few bottles first to try out.
Another concern for babies is the nipple confusion. Moms want to avoid this if they want to mix feed their babies. Meaning a mix of direct latch breastfeeding and bottle feeding.
Here’s the breakdown of the kinds of baby bottles available and how to compare them?
Baby bottles by shape:
- Standard bottles:
The traditional designed bottles have plain and straightforward design. Most common in the market and the one that works well with most babies. They have plastic, glass and even stainless steel kind.
- Angle-neck bottles:
This type is bent at the neck to prevent air from filling up in the nipple, which is better suited for a gassy baby. Though the angle shaped bottles are harder to clean.
- Disposable liner bottles:
This is usually a plastic type hard shell that holds an individual pouch of milk. The bag collapses as the baby drinks which is supposed to reduce gassiness. This is built for easy clean-up and convenience. You just use and toss each bag. Though not too eco friendly and mostly expensive too.
- Wide-neck bottles:
This kind is the short and squat type with a wider opening on top. This type uses a wider nipple, mimicking the breastfeeding experience. Best used for babies transitioning from breast to bottle. This kind of bottle is also very easy to clean.
- Vented bottles:
These bottles have a built-in tube to prevent air pockets from going to the nipple and forming in the bottles. This is best used to prevent gas being ingested by the baby. However, vents and other extra parts make it harder to clean.
Baby bottles by material
Baby bottles are mostly made of plastic, glass, stainless steel or silicone. Each type has its pros and cons, and depends on what type will be best suited for your baby or your lifestyle for that matter.
This is the lightweight and inexpensive kind of bottle that is most popular in the market. Plastic is the standard for baby bottles, especially that the FDA no longer permits the use of bisphenol A (BPA) or labeled BPA free. It is generally safe and convenient to use. It is less durable though tham stainless or glass, and should be replaced every few months.
- Stainless steel
This kind is sleek and sturdy and most preferred by parents who want a longer lasting option for bottles. Another advantage for this is it is insulated to keep your milk at the preferred temperature. This can be a little pricey though but rarely needs replacing.
- Glass Bottles:
This type used to be the norm decades before the plastic became popular. These bottles are made of tempered glass that is extra durable and can withstand being dropped or banged.
- Silicone Bottles:
These are the newest types of bottles in the market. They’re made of silicone which is soft and flexible that is also free from chemicals like BPA, PVC and Phthalate,the harmful substances that are banned now for usage.
Baby bottles by nipples
Baby bottles come with nipples or packaged in a set. But nipples can also be bought separately and come in a variety of shapes and sizes depending on the feeding needs of your baby. You can try a few sizes and see what fits your baby’s needs at the moment.
- Traditional nipples
These are bell-shaped, latex types of nipples that come with most baby bottles. This is very common and easy to find.
- Orthodontic nipples
These are bulbous top and flatter base, designed to protect your baby’s palate.
- Flat-topped nipples
This one mimics the shape of the breast. It has a bigger base bulb and a flatter top.
- Anti-vacuum nipples
This is a specially designed nipple to prevent colic and gassiness in babies.
- Multi-flow nipples
These are designed to be able for babies to adjust to different kinds of flow (stage 1 and 2 combination) in the same nipple. You can rotate the bottle to adjust to a different flow.
- Disposable nipples
These are the single use type of nipples, kept in a sterile, individually wrapped for easy use and clean up. This must be thrown after each use.
Generally, there are two types of material for nipples, latex and silicone. Latex is the more traditional kind with its soft and pliable texture. But this needs replacement often as it deteriorates after a few months. Some babies are also allergic to this kind.
Silicone is the firmer and more durable kind of nipple. This food grade type of nipple lasts longer than latex, but should also be replaced every few months.
Nipple sizes also vary in terms of the flow rate. For newborns, the slow flow nipples are designed for slower flow of milk or formula so the baby won’t gulp too much milk too fast. It is meant to slowly distribute milk when the baby sucks.
After a few months, the baby will then have gotten used to the bottle feeding and would require a medium flow nipple or the stage 2 nipple. This kind of nipple lets milk flow quicker and faster.
The Stage 3 nipple or fast flowing nipple is for older babies or kids. They now have better control of fast flowing milk.
Newborns up to six months old generally drink an ounce or two every meal, while older ones may eat six to eight ounces at feeding. Some parents buy a few small bottles or 4-ounce size and many larger ones of 8-ounce size which will be used longer as the baby grows.
Best baby bottles depend exactly on your baby’s needs. All babies would need a bottle or two in their first year of life, whether they are formula or breastfed babies. In some rare cases that the mother chooses exclusive breastfeeding by direct latch, then there is no need for baby bottles.
There are many variants available in the market. You can choose what is best for your baby, depending on the cost and the durability of the brand and type.
FAQ’s on “Best Baby Bottles”:
What is the best baby bottle overall?
The best baby bottle is the Dr. Brown’s bottle, winner of last years’ 2020 What to Expect Award, and a sure clear favorite of moms. The bottles have a special tube venting system that helps reduce gas especially for colicky babies.
Which baby bottles are the best for newborns?
Best Overall for newborns is the Comotomo Natural-Feel baby bottle. It has dual vents on its nipple that prevents gas from building up thus prevents any discomfort and gas in babies.
Which is better, Tommee Tippee or Avent?
Comparing between the two, the Avent anti-colic bottles are easier to clean than the Tommee Tippee anti-colic because it has too many parts to deal with. And if you lose one part of the Tommee Tippee, the bottle will be unusable already.
How many bottles should I buy for a newborn?
For newborns, it is good to have at least five to ten bottles of 4-ounce size so you’ll always have a clean bottle ready to use. It will minimize the washing cycle if you have many bottles. At around months, you can slowly transition to a bigger size bottle which is the 8-ounce size.
Is it okay to just rinse the bottles?
Unfortunately no. It is definitely not okay. Milk will turn rancid after a few hours, and you don’t want to harbor bacteria in your baby’s milk bottle.Milk bottle should be clean, rinsed thoroughly and sterilized to ensure that it is thoroughly cleaned and disinfected.