Best Baby Bottles 2021
Feeding is a great way to bond with a baby as well as providing nutrition and comfort. If you’ve decided to use a bottle to feed your baby expressed breastmilk or infant formula then you may be overwhelmed with the plethora of different bottles available. There are many different features to consider when buying bottles, and the best bottle for your baby may not be the best bottle for another which is why we’ve brought together a list of 8 different kinds of bottles for you to consider.
Before you choose a bottle, here are a few things to keep in mind;
Whether you’re feeding your baby expressed breast milk or formula may make a difference to the type of bottle you decide to use, but why?
Well, firstly if you’re using expressed breastmilk you may be exclusively pumping, which is hard work! and bottles that fit the breast pump you’re using eliminates an extra step of transferring milk from one bottle to another and saves an extra bit of washing up. Bottles that attach to the pump can be expressed directly, speeding up the whole process.
Alternatively, you may be giving breastmilk in a bottle just occasionally or while mum is at work, in which case you’re going to need to look for a bottle that baby is happy to accept, and helps to maintain a natural latch so that baby will find it easier to switch back and forth between breast and bottle.
Infant formula is fine to be used in most bottles, though it does need shaking vigorously during preparation so if you’re thinking about using a transitional cup with a spout or a straw this is something you should bear in mind!
The teat of a bottle is extremely important as it is the piece that the baby will use to latch onto and drink their milk. Bottle teats come in a range of different flow rates, sizes and even materials so selecting the right ones for your baby is very important.
Some babies prefer latex teats as they feel softer and warmer in the mouth, this can be comforting for a baby transitioning from breast to bottle and back again. Latex is also a natural material so might be preferable to some families because of this. On the other hand, silicone teats are made with synthetic material and are not as flexible as latex but they do tend to age a bit better, standing up to heat more easily.
Babies who are being breastfed as well as drinking from a bottle should always be given the slowest flow teat that they will tolerate. This prevents them from developing a preference for the faster flow of a bottle and helps them to retain a good latch and efficient suck. Breastfed babies should be pace-fed, that is slowly, taking plenty of breaks, in an upright position to help mimic the jaw work required to breastfeed well.
Babies being fed exclusively by bottle should be given a slow flow teat until at least 3 months to prevent overeating or choking, after which they can move onto a medium flow teat. Around about age 1 babies should be weaned from the bottle to prevent dental issues and can instead be given a regular cup, or a lidded cup.
The composition of infant formula doesn’t change, so the amount that babies drink overall and at each feeding will. Smaller bottles will be fine for the newborn stage but will need to be swapped out as your baby grows and requires more milk at each feeding time.
Breastfed babies, once they are about a month old, don’t tend to take more milk at each feeding, instead, the composition of mum’s milk will change to suit the growing baby’s needs so it may be that smaller newborn bottles of expressed breastmilk will see the baby through.
No one’s quite sure what causes colic but it is thought to have something to do with the digestive system and in any case, swallowing excess air is likely to upset your little one’s tummy so bottles with anti-colic valves or systems can be incredibly useful. These are designed to stop babies from swallowing air by allowing it to escape through a hole. Some have this integrated into the usual teat whilst others use tubes which might require some extra cleaning.
For babies with reflux, a slower flow can help babies to keep milk down, or a bigger teat may be required if the baby is using prescribed milk thickeners.
Many baby bottles are made from plastics and Bisphenol A (BPA) is used in the manufacturing of many of these. BPA has been linked to many health issues, and is likely to be carcinogenic, that is; cancer-causing. Luckily most bottle manufacturers are well aware of this and bottles are now usually BPA free, but always check the label!
With all of this in mind, you can begin your search for the right baby bottles. We’ve put together this list of 8 of the best to help you with this;
- Top 8 Best Baby Bottles 2021
- 1. Best Premium Baby Bottles: MAM Easy Start Self Sterilizing Anti Colic Starter Set
- 2. Best Budget Baby Bottles: Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature Clear Baby Bottles
- 3. Best Anti-Colic Baby Bottle: Tommee Tippee Advanced Anti-Colic Bottle Starter Set
- 4. Best Straw Cup: Munchkin Cool Cat Stainless Steel Straw Cup
- 5. Best Baby Bottle Starter Set: Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature Newborn Baby Bottle Starter Set
- 6. Best Toddler Cup: NUK First Choice Kiddy Cup Toddler Cup
- 7. Philips Avent Natural Bottle
- 8. Dr. Brown’s Options+ Anti-Colic Baby Bottles
- Final words
Top 8 Best Baby Bottles 2021
A complete starter set, the MAM Easy Start Self Sterilizing Anti Colic Starter set has everything you need for four complete bottles as well as a spouted lid, a newborn soother and bottle handles for when the baby is bigger and starts to feed themselves. Mam bottles feature cute designs and are really practical as they can be sterilized by themselves in the microwave by filling with 20 ml of water, no separate sterilizer is required! So they’re perfect for traveling or visiting friends.
The anti-colic system is built into these bottles with a vented base design to prevent the build-up of air bubbles. This should keep the flow relaxed and stop the baby’s tummy from becoming unsettled. Everything in the MAM Starter Set is 100% BPS and BPA-Free so it’s completely safe for babies and the set comes with MAM SkinSoft teats, which are accepted by 94 Percent of babies according to MAM. There are two different bottle sizes and handles and a spout included so this set will last your baby through their first year.
The Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature Clear Baby Bottles have won several awards and are ideal for those who want to combine breast and bottle feeding, whether that’s offering expressed milk in a bottle or combination feeding with infant formula milk. These bottles are ideal for mums expressing breastmilk as they attach directly to the Tommee Tippee breast pumps.
To help encourage babies to accept the bottle the teats are designed to help baby maintain a natural latch-on and feeding action and the bottles themselves are wider, and therefore shorter so that baby can be held much closer at feeding time. In fact, Tommee Tippee says that 97% of mums would recommend these bottles for babies. Completely BPA free and with an anti-colic valve these bottles are reassuringly safe for your little one.
Tomme Tippee says that these bottles are proven to reduce colic as up to 80% of mums who tested them agreed that the bottle had successfully reduced their baby’s colic symptoms. The Tommee Tippee Advanced Anti-Colic Bottle Starter Set has specialized anti-colic tubes integrated into the bottle, which draw air away from the baby’s milk to reduce colic symptoms, wind, discomfort and reflux. They also have color-changing heat-sensing plastic to let you know if the milk is too hot, and a valve to stop milk from entering the tubes and causing leaks.
The shape of the teats is also designed to help prevent the baby from swallowing excess air as they encourage a more natural wide latch-on action, ensuring that there are no gaps at the edge of the mouth where air can be swallowed. The teat flexes and stretches to ensure that good jaw motion occurs helping babies to maintain a good latch.
Around about age one children can start to use cups with straws, and as they transition away from bottles the Munchkin Cool Cat Stainless Steel Straw Cup is ideal. It has a cute, toddler-friendly cat design as well as being incredibly practical.
Insulated, double-walled stainless steel helps to keep drinks cool for up to 15 hours and the flip-top lid is easy to open and close to help to encourage your little one’s independence. The spill-proof straw and easy-grip handles also help your child as they gain control over their drinking action. This straw cup is completely BPA free and also dishwasher safe, making it easy to clean.
If you’re looking to use bottles from birth, or at least fairly early on in your baby’s life then the Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature Newborn Baby Bottle Starter Set is ideal. The teats are designed to be easy for babies to use, and 92% of babies will accept them in the first few tries, they encourage a very natural latching on position and jaw motion so are good to use if you are choosing to combine breastfeeding and using bottles.
The closer to nature teats have a built-in anti-colic valve to reduce excessive airflow and ensure that babies aren’t swallowing too much air which would later cause tummy discomfort. All Tommee Tippee bottles are BPA and phthalate-free for extra reassurance and this set includes both small and large bottles so it should last you through a baby’s first year.
Toddler cups have to go through a lot! Between nibbling spouts, throwing from high chairs and dragging around the great outdoors these cups need to be tough. The NUK First Choice Kiddy Cup Toddler Cup is a toddler cup that is designed to withstand a toddler’s lifestyle.
It is lightweight, so easy for a toddler to use but also extremely hardwearing with a toughened spout to prevent bite marks. The contoured shape makes it easy for toddlers to grasp and hold on their own, increasing their independence and self-care skills. With a fun bumblebee and strawberry design, toddlers will love using this cup, and as an added bonus, it’s designed to be leakproof! This toddler cup is also compatible with all Nuk first choice+ products and for use with any first choice drinking lid, spout or teat, so it can be used with younger children too.
The Philips Avent Natural Bottle is a simple, straightforward polypropylene bottle with only four pieces making it incredibly easy to clean and prepare. The wider teat is designed to help the baby latch-on naturally and feed with an instinctive action, this means that it may be better for babies who are being both breast and bottle-fed by helping to prevent bottle preference or nipple confusion.
This pack of two bottles is completely BPA free, so you can rest assured that it is perfectly safe for the baby to use. It also incorporates a twin-valve venting system, meant to reduce gassiness from air swallowed during feedings to prevent colic, reflux and tummy ache. If you’re looking to use this bottle for expressed breastmilk it has the added benefit of being compatible with the Philips Avent breast pump, so you can express milk directly into the bottle.
Dr. Browns is a brand with a great reputation for quality products, and specifically for products that help reduce the symptoms of colic. For over 20 years the brand has been researching colic and creating products to help alleviate its symptoms. These Dr. Brown’s Options+ Anti-Colic Baby Bottles are ideal for encouraging a deep, intuitive latch meaning that the baby can transition from breast to bottle and back again much more easily and with fewer issues.
As you may expect from Dr. Brown’s these bottles feature an anti-colic vent system that has been clinically proven to reduce colic-like symptoms and aid digestion for a peaceful night’s sleep. The bottles are completely BPA free and can be used with or without the vent system as needed. This set contains two 150 ml bottles, a 270 ml bottle, two level 2 teats, two level-3 teats, two specialised vent cleaning brushes and level 1 teats are already supplied on each bottle, so they will grow with your baby.
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Getting the right baby bottles is key to a relaxed, comfortable feeding time and since little babies feed so frequently this is really important in both the early days and as babies grow. So, whether you’re looking to feed using only bottles, or to combine using bottles and nursing we hope that this list has highlighted the features to look out for in feeding bottles and helped to introduce to a range of the best ones available in 2021.
Luckily in 2021, there’s a huge range of different baby products available, so you’re bound to find just the right product for your baby and your family. If you run into any difficulties along the way there’s sure to be a product to combat it too, ensuring that feeding time is easy!