Breastfeeding mothers in Singapore often invest in a breast pump, which gives them the option of pumping milk even when they cannot be with the baby 24/7.
Working mothers can continue to feed their babies breastmilk by pumping every few hours at the office and storing the milk in the fridge. A breast pump is also useful for relieving engorged breasts, keeping up or stimulating the milk supply, and enabling mothers and babies to continue the breastfeeding journey even when the baby has latching issues.
You can buy breast pumps from online stores like Pupsik and Amazon, or brick-and-mortar stores like Mothercare. Alternatively, you can search for secondhand breast pumps on Carousell, and simply replace the parts with new ones for hygiene purposes. It’s usually the motor that’s expensive anyway.
Here is a round-up of the different breast pump brands that mothers in Singapore love, and why they are the top of the pick.
Medela Breast Pumps
|Medela Pump In Style Advanced Double||$349||4 kg||Moderate|
|Medela Freestyle Double||$699||3 kg||Very quiet|
|Medela Swing Maxi Double||$399||1 kg||Very quiet|
|Medela Harmony Manual Breast Pump||$89||340 g||Very quiet|
The Medela brand of breast pumps is very established. Every nursing mum would have at least considered, if not owned, a Medela pump. The nice thing about Medela pumps is that all of them are very efficient. On the downside, certain models can be pricey.
Medela Pump In Style Advanced Double
This is an electric double pump that is designed for heavy duty daily use. It works on a two-phase pumping system. In the beginning, the pump works harder (120 cycles a minute) to stimulate milk flow. When the milk is flowing, it switches to a steadier 45 to 78 cycles per minutes, mimicking the way a baby nurses. It’s the heaviest of the Medela pump at 4kg, but it is very efficient. If you are intending to leave it in the office or home, then weight is not much of an issue. The noise of the Pump In Style is pretty significant. Some reviews describe it to sound like a ticking clock.
Medela Freestyle Double
This model is very similar to the Pump in Style except that it’s smaller, lighter, quieter and has a hands-free option. Tuck it into your bra and you can work while you pump. These conveniences do come with a price tag – it costs twice as much as the Freestyle Double.
Medela Swing Maxi Double
While this breast pump has all the features of the other two Medela models, it is lighter and cheaper. There are some reviews from mums that it isn’t as efficient as the Freestyle, however. But for the price tag of $349, you’re paying for the compact size and an amazing weight of only 1kg.
Medela Harmony Manual Breast Pump
The Medela Harmony Breast Pump is a manual pump. Using an ergonomic swivel handle, you pump with your hand. The pump is equipped with 2 phases, a stimulation phase and an expression phase to mimic a baby’s feeding action.
The good thing about the Medela Harmony Manual Breast Pump is that you can easily pump on the go (in a bathroom or your office cubicle) without the need for a power supply.
Spectra Breast Pumps
This South Korean brand specialises in ultra compact, super lightweight portable breast pumps. They also claim to be the only ones to feature a massage mode to stimulate milk production.
|Spectra S1+ Double Electric Breast Pump||$398||1.12 kg||Quiet|
|Spectra S2+ Double Electric Breast Pump||$348||0.99 kg||Quiet|
|Spectra S9+ Double Electric Breast Pump||$318||293 g||Very quiet|
*Prices from Pupsik
Spectra breast pump S1+ (Single or Double)
The Spectra breast pump S1+ is a hospital grade pump that is the most advanced model of the brand. It offers a 5 Cycle Frequency of sucking with 12 levels of suction. That’s 60 combinations to choose from.
Spectra breast pump S2+ (Single or Double)
Spectra S2+ is a newer model, this is a very similar to the S1+. It has hospital grade efficiency and is even lighter than the S1+ at only 0.99 kg. The noise level is low as well.
Spectra breast pump S9+ (Single or Double)
This personal electric Spectra breast pump S9+ is super light (less than 300g). What you gain in convenience and portability, you lose in the number of combinations that the S1+ and the S2+ provide. It’s probably awesome for working mums who need to go out for meetings a lot, or have work that is more freelance in nature. Note that it also won’t be as efficient as the S1+ or the S2+.
Philips Avent Breast Pumps
Philips Avent has made its name selling baby bottles, teats and sterilisers. Their products function in an ecosystem of their own much like Mac products. If you are already using Avent bottles, you might want to go with the Avent pump as you can simply place the lid on the bottles after pumping, without the need to transfer the breastmilk.
|Philips Avent Comfort Double Electric Breast Pump||$399||1 kg||Quiet|
|Philips Avent Comfort Single Electric Breast Pump||$199||762 g||Quiet|
|Philips Avent Easy Comfort Single Electric Breast Pump||$239||300 g||Very quiet|
|Philips Avent Manual Comfort Breast Pump||$99||Very quiet|
Philips Avent Easy Comfort Single Electric Breast Pump
The Easy Comfort Single Electric Breast Pump is incredibly lightweight and portable.
There are four stimulation modes and four pumping modes to let you adjust the suction strength for maximum efficiency and comfort. There’s also a memory function, where the pump can remember your preferred setting for you. The Rhythmic Wave Technology mimics the way babies suck, swallow and breathe to stimulate milk flow.
The pumps also warm the nipple area at the start to stimulate milk flow. The suction tends to be lighter, too. While it is gentler, some mums feel that that is the reason why Avent pumps seem less efficient.
You can either plug it in or use 4 AA batteries to use it cordless. It also comes with a backlit display, so you can use it in the night when the baby sleeps.
Philips Avent Comfort Double & Single Electric Breast Pump
The Double Electric Breast Pump is a little bulkier, but it has all the same technologies of the Easy Comfort Electric Pump. The motor is designed to support either one or two tubes, so you can choose to pump one breast or two breasts at one go.
Currently the Comfort Single Electric Breast Pump Value Pack (contains a single electric pump, nipple shields, nipple cream and breast pads) is going for $199 on RedMart, which is a steal.
Philips Avent Manual Comfort Breast Pump
The Philips Avent Manual Comfort Breast Pump is easy to use and comfortable, with a five textured petals design on the pump that mimics baby’s natural suckling motions.
Ardo Calypso breast pumps
Ardo Calypso is a Swiss brand. Its pumps are made with precision and efficiency.
|Ardo Calypso Single Electric Breast Pump||$338||1.45 kg||Quietest in the market|
|Ardo Calypso Double Electric Breast Pump||$399||1.45 kg||Quietest in the market|
Ardo Calypso Single & Double Electric Breast Pump
The Ardo Calypso Single Electric Breast Pump is has an independent vacuum and cycle adjustments as well as three breast shells to fit different breast sizes. There’s an Optiflow massage insert that massages the breast, making the pumping action gentler.
The Ardo Calypso electric pump beats the Spectra S1+ as it has 64 settings in all (with independent vacuum and cycle adjustments). Also, the Ardo brand apparently carries the quietest pumps in the market.
The Ardo Calypso Double Electric Breast Pump costs $399 and has all the features of the single pump, but it is able to connect to two tubes in order to enable pumping two breasts at one go.
This is for time-strapped working mums who need to get done with pumping quickly during breaks and get back to work.
Haakaa Breast Pump
It’s a New Zealand family-owned breast pump known for their natural, non-toxic, eco-friendly products. How does the Haakaa breast pump work? It actually doesn’t use the traditional electric or manual suction. Instead, you put the silicone pump on your breast and it will draw the milk using the suction. The Haakaa breast pump can help you draw the breastmilk from the letdown from the other breast when you are using a single breast pump for one side. This “pump” produces no sound at all.
This is great for eco-conscious mums or stay-at-home mums who just need to relieve engorgement or catch letdown, without the hospital-grade efficiency of electric breast pumps.
So, how should you choose?
Best for stay-at-home mums: Haakaa or Philips Easy Comfort Single Electric Pump. If you’re with your baby most of the time and just need something to stimulate your milk supply or relieve engorged breasts, you can go for the Haakaa. The Philips Easy Comfort Single Electric Pump is great for pumping even in the same room as your baby as it has a backlit function.
Working mums: For fast pumping between work breaks, you may want to opt for a more efficient double electric pump, such as the Medela Pump In Style Advanced Double, the Ardo Calypso Electric Breast Pump, or the Spectra S2+ Double. Assuming you work from an office, you can also leave the pump at work, so you can sacrifice the portability for efficiency.
Mums on the go: If you will be frequently on the go, you might want to invest in a manual pump like the Philips Avent Manual Comfort Breast Pump or the Medela Harmony Breast Pump. If you still prefer the efficiency of an electric breast pump, you can go for the Philips Avent East Comfort Single Electric Breast Pump, as it is very light and compact.
Header image credit: Jim Champion via Flickr