Hailey Eisen: Our Happy Place


A Guide to Bottle Feeding Your Baby

Why Bottles Make This Mama Happy

A Guide to Bottle Feeding Your Baby

Once upon a time there was a baby who loved her mama's boob. But her mama loved her freedom. She loved doing yoga on Wednesday nights. She loved going to movies with her girlfriends on the weekends. And, she loved (once in a while) to have a civilized dinner out with her hubby. Sadly, none of these things involved her baby. But all required she bring her boobs along with her.

Enter the bottle!

When this mama discovered a bottle her baby was happy to drink from, her freedom was granted.

Fill it with breast milk or formula and baby is fed. Fill it with water and baby's thirst is quenched.

A happy baby.

And a happy mama!

But with so many bottles to choose from, how do you know what type of bottle is best?

I was given the opportunity to try out the Playtex offering, and I must say, I've been more than impressed. Since my baby is primarily breast fed, it was really important for me—at first anyway—that the bottle I used not cause "nipple confusion." That means finding a nipple that's as close to the real thing as possible with a similar "flow." Enter the Playtex Nurser with Drop-Ins Liners.

The Playtex Nurser With Drop-Ins Liners

These bottles have a number of appealing features. First, the NaturaLatch Nipple is designed to mimic the breast and the breastfeeding process. With a wide, textured base similar to the boob, it encourages baby to latch-on like she would your own nipple. For my baby, it worked like a charm! She had no trouble switching between this bottle and my breast. We started with the slow flow nipple around one month, ensuring she still had to work for the milk, then switched to fast flow as she got a bit older, around five months. Around the same time, we transitioned from bottles of pumped milk (The Breast Milk Storage Kit allows you to pump, store, and feed with one Drop-Ins Liner) to bottles of formula—and the transition was seamless.

My favourite feature of these bottles is the Drop-Ins Liners and this is why. You know that little thing called bottle cleaning? The task that takes a whole lot of time; time you'd rather spend reading a book or watching shows on your PVR. Well, some of that cleaning can be avoided, thanks to the simplicity of these disposable liners. When it's time to feed baby, you simply pop a pre-sterilized disposable liner into the bottle, fill with breast milk or formula, put the cap and nipple in place, and feed. When the bottle is finished you pull out the liner and throw it in the trash. It does mean a bit more waste, which can weigh on the mind of an eco-conscious mama, but considering the amount of dishes in my sink and the number of items on my 'to-do' list, this little convenience is like a gift to myself (and to my husband, who often gets stuck cleaning the bottles!).

Another great feature of these liners is that they're designed to collapse as baby drinks to keep air from mixing with the milk. This means less gas for baby. Happier baby = happier mama! The only thing to consider when choosing these bottles is that liners cost extra, so once you've bought the bottles, you have to continue to stock up on liners. Personally, I think this is a small price worth paying for convenience.

Side note: When I was a baby, my mom fed me with Playtex bottles with disposable liners. In those days you had to 'burp' the liner, pushing on it to eliminate the gas bubbles before feeding baby. Flash forward to 2013, my mom is babysitting my baby girl and I leave her with a bottle. Despite my warning, my mom feels she must 'burp' the bottle (perhaps for old time's sake). With milk all over the floor, she was finally able to admit that just a few things have changed in the 33 years since I was a baby!

*This is my uncle feeding me a bottle during one of his first stints as babysitter circa 1981. 

The Playtex VentAire

Now that my baby girl is nine months old, there's another bottle that I find myself reaching for more often. It's called the VentAire. And while it may look a bit crooked—it's really quite straightforward to use.

These bottles are pretty awesome for a number of reasons. First, in the words of Playtex: the Advanced Micro-channel Technology Venting System allows the bottle to vent through the bottom so NO AIR mixes with breast milk or formula. That's a lot of words, but if it means less gas for my baby, I'm happy! Second, the angled bottle allows for semi-upright feeding which helps prevent ear infections—sounds good to me! And, finally, the slim design makes it really easy for baby to pick up and hold.

My kiddo is getting the hang of it...all by herself!

This is what they mean by semi-upright feeding, which works a bit better with mommy's help.

I've been really pleased with both types of Playtex bottles and find myself using them interchangeably now. Freedom makes me a much happier mommy. And so I say: Yay for bottles!