It can be difficult finding a comfortable position for breastfeeding your baby. If you are experiencing aching, burning, or stabbing pain from sore arms and wrists, a nursing pillow might be what you need to alleviate some weight. Breastfeeding for newborns can last anywhere between 1 to 2 years. The right pillow can help make breastfeeding easier and reduce pain during this time, then be used for sitting or sleeping for your baby afterwards. Let’s take a look at what the best nursing pillows are.
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How Do You Use a Nursing Pillow Properly?
There are several ways to position yourself for breastfeeding:
Sitting on a comfortable chair – You can have your child positioned across your lap with your nursing pillow supporting your baby’s head and neck. This is especially important for newborns and young babies who have not developed their neck strength yet.
Positioning your baby off to your side – You can feed your baby by holding him/her by your side under your arms like a football. Your nursing pillow can support you and your baby comfortably on the side.
While lying on your back – Your nursing pillow can prop your baby at a comfortable angle. It can also prevent your baby from slipping off your chest during breastfeeding.
What Should I Look For in a Nursing Pillow?
There are three things you should look out for when shopping for a nursing pillow:
- It fits comfortably: Most nursing pillows wrap around your body, so it needs to fit comfortably around you.
- It is thick: If you are breastfeeding your baby, it needs to be tall enough for your baby to latch on properly. Especially if you use your arms as well, the pillow must have the right height so you don’t have to bend forward and develop back and shoulder pain.
- Easy to clean: There can be a little accident sooner or later. We want a nursing pillow with a cover that can be taken off and thrown in a washing machine for easy cleaning.
Other additional features you might like include:
- Extra storage pockets: When you know you need your nursing pillow often, some diapers, burp cloths, a water bottle, and your cell phone, you may want a nursing pillow that lets you carry all that in one go.
- Fancy designs: If you want a nice pleasing design for the eyes, you may want a pillow with color and pattern designs that match your taste.
Reviews of the Best Nursing Pillow – Top Picks
- Best nursing pillow all around
SaleMy Brest Friend Original Nursing Pillow, Fireworks
- Wrap around nursing pillow design secures to the body helping mom and baby maintain positioning and latch-on
- Back rest helps you maintain good posture during feeding and prevents sore back and neck
- Arm and elbow rests eliminate shoulder stress
- The My Brest Friend XL burp cloths are 50% larger and 100% softer than the leading brand with an extra absorbent, protective leak layer.Firm, flat cushion keeps baby from rolling when breastfeeding
- Convenient pocket keeps water bottles, burp cloths, phone, and other breastfeeding accessories or items within reach
- Best premium nursing pillow
My Brest Friend Deluxe Nursing Pillow - Evening Gray
- Extra soft baby-plush fabric slipcover stays fresh through dozens of washes
- Wrap around design secures to the body helping mom and baby maintain positioning and latch-on; Double-featured strap with velcro and silent-release buckle for easy, one-hand use
- Back rest helps you maintain good posture during feeding and prevents sore back and neck; Arm and elbow rests eliminate shoulder stress
- Firm, flat cushion keeps baby from rolling. Machine washable cover
- Convenient pocket keeps water bottles, burp cloths, phone, and other items within reach
- Best nursing pillow for bottle feeding
SaleLeachco Cuddle-U Basic Nursing Pillow and More, Sage Pin Dot
- Seat wrap helps hold wigglers in place while reclining to prevent sliding
- Proper reclined positioning may enhance digestion and reduce reflux
- Generously sized and self-adjusting nursing pillow for all-around comfort
- Great for tummy-time and sit-up support as baby grows older
- Cover is not removable on Cuddle-U Basic
- Best plus size nursing pillow
Luna Lullaby Bosom Baby Nursing Pillow, Chevron Grey
- 100% polyester, and the pillow cover design does not utilize zippers or velcro
- Largest and most luxurious breastfeeding pillow on the market.
- Fits women of any size comfortably and great for twins
- Removable and washable luxurious covers
- No flame retardant chemicals used to irritate delicate skin
- Best nursing pillow for twins
SaleTHE TWIN Z PILLOW- GREEN -The Only 6 in 1 Twin Pillow Breastfeeding, Bottlefeeding, Tummy Time & Support! A Must Have for Twins! - LIME GREEN
- As seen on ABC's Show SHARK TANK- The Twin Z Pillow!
- The New 6 in 1 Twin Support and Feeding Pillow!
- Amazing back support for nursing 2 babies at one time! A true must have for parents of Multiples!!
- For embroidery customization see our website!
- Best travel nursing pillow
SaleThe Nursie Slip-on Breastfeeding Arm Pillow | Nursing Pillow | Baby Shower Gift | Arm Cusion for Breastfeeding or Bottle Feeding| Best Nursing Pillow | Travel Breastfeeding Pillow (Lucky Southern)
- Portable, Compact, and Travel Friendly for Busy Families, Fits in your Diaper Bag!
- Easily slides over your forearm to provide the ultimate support for your Baby.
- Allows mom to maintain Better Posture eliminating Back Pain while Reducing Gas and Reflux for your Baby.
- Dads & Siblings love The Nursie too! Supports Baby's Head and Neck providing comfort to your Baby. It makes bottles feeding a breeze!
- Machine Washable! Simple Design allows for Easy use. No Velcro or Snaps!
- Most simple nursing pillow design
SaleBoppy Nursing Pillow and Positioner - Bare Naked
- Boppy Bare Naked Now with Miracle Middle "Stretch Panel" to fit all waists
- Product guaranteed for one year
- Strengthens muscles and coordination
- Completely machine washable
- Best inflatable nursing pillow
SaleMy Brest Friend Inflatable Travel Nursing Pillow in Green Paisley
- Note:The valve stem has two caps. please follow the instruction carefully and close the cap tight in order to keep the product inflate.
- Same patented design as the original my best friend pillow"Same patented design as the original my best friend pillow; Wrap around design secures to the body helping mom and baby maintain positioning and latch on "
- Easily inflatable; packs flat to fit in a diaper bag or purse
- Ideal for airplanes and overnights
- Lightweight and easy to store
- Best latch-on nursing pillow
Boppy Best Latch Breastfeeding Pillow, Windsor Trellis Taupe, Taupe
- Two surfaces - one firm, one soft to meet your needs
- Designed with a lactation consultant specifically for breastfeeding
- Removable and adjustable belt
- Firm side features contoured, removable foam insert
- Machine washable after removal of foam insert and belt
- Best adjustable nursing pillow
Leachco Natural Boost - Adjustable Nursing Pillow - Denim
- Adjustable boost pillow provides the lift baby needs to create the perfect angle for you and baby
- Boost pillow flips from side to side as baby changes nursing positions
- Firm contoured support lessens strain on back and shoulders
- Use pillows together or separately. Smaller booster pillow is velcro adjustable
- Boost pillow is the ideal size for travel
Considerations When Shopping for a Nursing Pillow
Safe and chemical free for the baby – The nursing pillow should be phthalate free, latex free, lead free, BPA free, and does not use fire retardants.
Thick/tall enough and suitable shape for use – One of the common frustrations mommies have is when the baby slips into the gap between herself and the pillow. Depending on how you want to hold your baby and what position to place them in, you will want a pillow shape that will support your more comfortable position. The best nursing pillows are also thick/tall enough to support mommy when she sits upright on a chair and is holding her baby in her arms.
The most popular nursing pillow design is the crescent C-shape that goes around the body and support the baby in front and your lower back from behind. You may also want a pillow that can wrap around your body securely so it doesn’t slip off you.
Fabric type for easy clean up – Most nursing pillows come with polyester and/or cotton fabric that prevents milk, projectiles, and accidents from seeping into the pillow. Since most mothers tend to support their baby still while resting their arms on the pillow, a waterproof and soft fabric makes it easier to clean any surprises. The fabric should preferably be removable for easy washing.
Nursing surface size – Depending on the size of your baby, you may want a surface that is wide enough so he/she does not roll off or a hole that is just enough to fit their bum bums in and lay back comfortably.
Versatility of the nursing pillow – Most nursing pillows allow for several positions and uses for the baby. Aside from nursing comfortably on the pillow and in your arms, most nursing pillows can wrap around your baby while they sit upright and enjoy their day.
Comes with storage pockets – Some nursing pillows come with pockets for conveniently water bottles, burp cloths, diapers, or your cellphone. With pockets, you can carry the pillow around with everything else that you need when you are nursing your baby.
Potential Frustrations with Nursing Pillows
Initial odor – There is an initial odor for pillows made from foam as they tend to be packaged in plastic to prevent any contamination. After a day of airing out, the pillow should not have any odor. Most pillows come with a fabric that also reduces any smell significantly.
Non-removable cover – Some nursing pillows may not allow for a removable cover for safety reasons. This may make it difficult to clean any surprises or spilled milk and allow for air drying your covers. The pillows without removable covers tend to be extra comfortable for the baby.
Lack of support for mommy – The last thing we want is a lack of support that causes back or neck pain for mommy. We are looking for a pillow to reduce the physical stress from holding our baby daily. A common complain is that a pillow may not provide adequate support for mommy, especially for the back and arms. Although nursing pillows are built to support your arms, sometimes an extra pillow to prop up your nursing pillow and an extra pillow behind your back against furniture can help with your posture and allow you to lean back comfortably. You might also want to consider pregnancy pillows or body pillows for support.
Ease of use – Some nursing pillows may use buckles and nylon straps for customizing the size and comfort when wrapped around mommy. Some consumers may find it difficult to use or have some nuisance having to flip their nursing pillow the right way as intended for use.
Pillow surface too small or not stable – If a pillow is too big in design and doesn’t fit comfortably under your arms, your baby may roll off the pillow or fall into the gap between you and the nursing pillow. We want a nursing pillow that fits around you comfortably with a surface that can hold your baby steadily. There should be consideration to the size of your baby.
Our Final Thoughts
There are many choices for nursing pillows to take care of you and your child. Depending on your needs and preference, you may want a pillow that can be used for not only feeding but also for play time as well. The best nursing pillow can fit you very well, is thick enough to prop up your baby, and is easy to clean. Some premium pillows can have extra storage pockets for diapers and burp cloths or fancy designs that suit your taste. In this guide, we recommend the best 10 nursing pillows on the marketing for your specific needs and the considerations for when shopping for the right pillow.