Should I buy a Breast Pump Before Baby Arrives?

I have been doing some breast pump research, first time mum-to-be. I am l unsure whether I should buy a breast pump before baby’s arrival, or after labour.      We are hoping that my husband will be able to do at least one feed a day. So we are really keen on a pump to enable this.  But obviously wont know what our actual needs will be, would you advise to buy a breast pump before baby arrives?

And, if so, what do you think would suit us best?


This is quite a common question that we get from customers, particularly first time mums, who don’t really know how breastfeeding will go for them and if they should buy a breast pump.    If you are already thinking about doing some shared bottle feeding, then it would be advantageous to buy a breast pump before baby arrives.   This way you’ll have the pump at home and available incase you need it in those early days with baby when you are both learning how to breastfeed, perhaps to relieve some breast engorgement, or to give sore nipples a rest from baby’s mouth so they can heal etc, then at least you’ll have it handy. And you won’t be stressing about the courier arriving with it.  So yes, it can be very important for those early days after labour when you are learning how to feed, in addition to time further down the track, when you want to start properly expressing to share feeding with Dad.

In terms of breast pump recommendations;  Based on your plan of pumping so Dad can help with feeding – great idea!   This is a good way for you to get a bit more sleep if he can do the 11pm feed or example.   If you did this every few days, or low frequency of pumping, I would recommend a manual breast pump (eg the medela harmony or Unimom Mezzo).

Though using a manual pump can feel a bit like a chore.   It’s like squeezing a spray’n’wipe trigger to get 5mls, so it can take a bit of time.   A lot of mums get annoyed with this and find they don’t use them as often.

I typically recommend electric breast pumps,  and just leave the manual ones for those times of relieving engorgement or sore nipples.     In terms of an electric pump for your needs, I would lean towards the Unimom Allegro.

It’s a single pump which is quick and efficient.   This one has an advantage over the other models – in that it does have capacity to be able to use as a double pump (with an extra breastshield kit).   Which could be useful in the future if you needed to pump more often, or perhaps return to work, or future babies!    The other single breast pumps can only be used as a single, they can’t double pump at all.

Hope that helps – but if you have any other questions just let me know as I’m happy to help.  I know it can get confusing when this is all new!