baby

ROAD TEST: The new electric breast pump that's easy on the boob, and fits in your handbag.

Tommee Tippee
Thanks to our brand partner, Tommee Tippee

As a first-time mum, I’ve been dreading the thought of going back to work at the end of my maternity leave.

Being separated for more than a couple of hours from my baby is scary enough, not to mention the added stress of switching my sleep-deprived brain into ‘work mode’.

I travel quite a bit for work, which will be a new challenge to add to my struggles with breastfeeding; my milk didn’t come in for five days despite the best efforts (more like excruciating pain) of an overenthusiastic midwife trying to ‘milk’ colostrum from me.

Ensuring my baby continues breastfeeding and maintaining my supply is one of my biggest concerns.

There’s always the worry in the back of my mind – will I have a place to pump at work? Will there be a power point free? How do I discreetly pump in the car if I’m desperate? Will it mean lugging around an additional machine everywhere I travel?

I’ve also had mastitis a few times after inadvertently skipping feeds when going out without my baby, so not pumping is a mistake I don’t want to make again.

Being asked to review the Tommee Tippee Made for Me single electric breast pump has been great timing to confront these fears.

The first thing I noticed when opening the packaging for the Made for Me breast pump is how small and light it is – it is small enough to fit into my handbag.

I was given a mini insulated lunch cool bag for Christmas and it fits perfectly in there with space for an ice brick to keep the milk cool during storage.

tommee tippee
Cool bag and handbag friendly. Image: Supplied.

I’ve tried a few other breast pumps during my breastfeeding journey and love that the flanges of these are soft moulded silicone, which are so much more comfortable than the hard plastic some others have.

Having previously gotten cracked bleeding nipples from a hospital pump which a nurse had turned up too high, I’m super sensitive to the potential for abrasions with incorrect positioning, but the clever design means I don’t need to be worried as there is plenty of room in the flange.

In the past I’ve tried pumping bras in an attempt to go hands-free, but they’re not something I want to have to wear all day, so the ergonomic body is also surprisingly comfortable to hold compared to other pumps I’ve tried.

The pump part is very light considering how strong the pump is. I found I could express a normal feed in about 10 minutes which is the same volume in the same amount of time I get from my non-portable breast pump which is much larger and heavier.

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What I was impressed about this pump is how quiet it is. As someone who is always trying to multitask, getting a few emails done or writing reports is so much easier when your thoughts aren’t being drowned out by loud repetitive mechanical noises. The battery is charged through a USB port which makes it easy to recharge. It took about 40 minutes for a full charge to start.

tommee tippee made for me
Portable? Check. Discrete? Check. Quiet? Check. Image: Supplied.

The breast pump has five massage and nine express modes, which makes it easy to find a setting which is comfortable.

The massage mode has short pulses and then a longer pump, and it’s meant to mimic the way you baby latches on. I found the massage mode good to start with until the milk started flowing, so then I’d switch to express which is more of a pumping mode.

I liked that I could adjust the settings depending on how I was feeling and used different settings on each side at different times of day. There’s a timer so you know how long you’ve been pumping for.

Cleaning the pump is easy - I just used my microwave steriliser. But you can also use cold water sterilisation, boiling water or electric steamer. It’s very hygienic as the one-way valve in the pump prevents any backflow. It’s important not to sterilise the air tube though.

The pump came with a Tommee Tippee bottle with a slow-flow teat, which is handy if you want to use the feed in the next few hours. If you already have the Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature (except the glass ones) or Advanced Colic Baby Bottles they’re compatible too.

I didn’t try that aspect as I’m freezing and trying to build a bit of a stash in preparation to go back to work.

I’m really happy to have such a light, portable, quiet but strong pump on hand going back to work.

Our family plans to travel overseas to visit relatives in the next few months, too. I'll definitely be bringing this pump.

Tommee Tippee's new Made for Me breastfeeding range includes electric, manual and new silicone breast pumps, as well as sterilising bags and nipple cream. Visit their website for more.

Tommee Tippee

Tommee Tippee offers a range of award-winning baby feeding, soothing, sleep and hygiene products to help with the rollercoaster ride that is parenthood.

The Made for Me range celebrates that special time in a mothers life and supports her through the many unique experiences of her breastfeeding journey. The range was developed specifically with mums in mind because they understand that each mum is truly one of a kind.

For more information on the Tommee Tippee Made for Me range or to purchase, visit Tommee Tippee website: www.tommeetippee.com.au

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