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If you are a new mother, then you know that breastfeeding can be a bit of a challenge. Thankfully, there are products out there that can help make the process easier. One such product is the nipple shield. This handy little device can provide a host of benefits for both mother and baby. In this blog post, we will take a closer look at nipple shields and discuss some of the best options on the market!
Note: Always talks to your pediatrician or lactation consultant before using a nipple shield, as it can affect your baby’s ability to feed!
Top 11: Best Nipple Shield for Breastfeeding
- Mom Blog Life’s Top Pick: Haakaa Nipple Shield
- Best Nipple Shield for Flat or Inverted Nipples: Medela Contact Nipple Shield
- Best Nipple Shield for a Natural Feel: Haakaa Nipple Shield
- Best Nipple Shield for Tongue Tie: Lansinoh Contact Nipple Shield
- Best for Transitioning to/from Bottle-Feeding: Philips AVENT Nipple Shield
- Best Nipple Shield for Sore or Sensitive Nipples: Ameda Contact Nipple Shield
- Best Nipple Shield for Comfort Between Feedings: Bamibi Silver Nipple Shields
- Best Nipple Shield Alternative: Hakkaa Breast Shell
- Best Budget Nipple Shield: Any of the above!!
Related read: Tips About Breastfeeding
Let’s dive right into all of our favorite nipple shields for breastfeeding.
Mom Blog Life’s Top Pick: Haakaa Nipple Shield
If you are looking for a nipple shield that feels as close to breastfeeding without one as possible, then the Haakaa Nipple Shields are a great option for you. These shields are made of soft, flexible silicone and feature a unique shape that allows them to move and flex with your breast.
This particular shield is a reader favorite for its soft feel and extra features to make using a breast shield while nursing feel as natural as possible.
Here’s why moms and babies love this option:
- Made of soft, flexible food-grade silicone
- BPA free
- Mimics the feel and movement of breastfeeding without a shield thanks to its ultra-thin silicone
- Designed to adjust to mom’s temperature for a natural feel
- The unique shape allows them to move and flex
- Also great for flat nipples, inverted nipples, sore nipples, and beyond
- Comes with two nipple shields in a convenient carrying case
Haakaa offers many breastfeeding products that are designed with a mom’s comfort in mind.
Best Nipple Shield for Flat or Inverted Nipples: Medela Contact Nipple Shields
If you have flat or inverted nipples, then the Medela Contact Nipple Shield is a great option for you. This shield is made from soft silicone and is contoured to fit the shape of your breast. It also features a cut-out design that allows your baby to latch on easily.
Here are our top favorite features of this nipple shield:
- Made from soft silicone
- Top product for women struggling with breastfeeding due to inverted or flat nipples
- Contoured to fit the shape of your breast
- The cut-out design allows the baby to latch on easily for optimal skin to skin contact
- Great for any baby with latching issues
- The Medela Contact Nipple Shield is designed for women with sore, tender nipples, latching issues, and/or a strong letdown that your baby has a hard time managing
Medela is a trusted brand for all of a mom’s breastfeeding needs. You can expect their nipple shields, and any other products, to be top-notch!
Best Nipple Shield for a Natural Feel: Haakaa Nipple Shields
Haakaa has some great products. This simple nipple shield is one of the best for feeling natural!
- Soft BPA silicone
- Most natural feeling design on the market for mom and baby
- Designed for flat, inverted, sore, sensitive, and/or cracked nipples
Many of the Haakaa products are mom favorites for breastfeeding.
Best Nipple Shield for Tongue Tie: Lansinoh Contact Nipple Shields
If your baby has a tongue-tie, then the Lansinoh Contact Nipple Shields are a great option for you. This shield is designed with a deep V-shape that helps to keep your baby’s tongue in place. It also has a small hole in the center that allows milk to flow freely.
Here are some of the best features of this shield:
- Deep V-shape helps to keep your baby’s tongue in place for maximum skin contact
- A small hole in the center allows milk to flow freely
- Comes with a storage case
- BPA free, super-thin silicone
- Also great for short term latching issues, sore or cracked nipples
Lansinoh is a trusted brand for all things breastfeeding. As such, you can expect their nipple shields to be of the best quality.
Best for Transitioning to/from Bottle-Feeding: Philips Avent Nipple Protector
If you are transitioning to or from bottle-feeding, the Philips Avent Nipple Protector is a great option for you. This shield is made of soft silicone and fits snugly against your breast. It also has a small hole in the center that allows milk to flow easily.
Here are some of the top features of this shield:
- Made of soft silicone
- Fits snugly against your breast
- Has a small hole in the center for milk flow
- BPA free, high-quality silicone
- Protects sore or cracked nipples for more comfortable feeds
- Compatible with Philips AVENT bottles to transition easily to or from bottle feeding as needed
Philips Avent is also a well-known and trusted brand for all things breastfeeding, bottle feeding, and baby related.
Best Nipple Shield for Sore or Sensitive Nipples: Ameda Contact Nipple Shield
If you are experiencing sore or sensitive nipples, the Ameda Contact Nipple Shield is a great option for you. This shield is made of soft silicone and fits comfortably against your breast.
- Some of the best features of this shield include:
- Made of soft silicone material
- Fits comfortably against your breast
- Full nipple coverage for the best skin protection
- Give sore, cracked, painful nipples a chance to heal and recover
- BPA free, high-quality silicone
Ameda is proud of its high-quality products for pumping, bottle-feeding, breastfeeding, and beyond.
Best Breast Shield for Comfort Between Feeds: Bamibi Silver Nipple Shields
If you are looking for a breast shield that is soothing, comfortable, and easy to wear, the Bamibi Silver Nipple Shields are a great option for you. These shields are made of silver. Why?
Let’s review why these shields are amazing for sore nipples:
- Made of silver, a material with anti-microbial properties
- Cooling, soothing feel
- Nipple shaped domes to provide protection from uncomfortable chaffing and rubbing between feeds
- Discreet enough to be worn in a nursing bra
- A great alternative, or complement, to address painful nursing- you can add nipple creams or just a few drops of breast milk to further promote healing
A great alternative to traditional silicone shields for extra healing power and protection.
Best Nipple Shield Alternative: Haakaa Breast Shell
If you are not a fan of nipple shields, or if you are looking for an alternative to traditional silicone shields, the Haakaa Breast Shells are a great option for you. These shells are made of soft, flexible plastic and fit comfortably against your breast.
Some of the best features of this shell include:
- Made of soft, flexible plastic material
- Fits comfortably against your breast to relieve nipple pain between feedings
- Allow healing of cracked, irritated nipples
- Collect any milk that is leaking for storage- save every precious drop!
- Comes with a storage case
- BPA free, high-quality plastic
- Compatible with all Haakaa products
- Haakaa is a well-known and trusted
Since breasts leak in the first few months of nursing anyways, why not collect some of it while getting nipple protection for sore and cracked nipples at the same time? Breast shells are a great option for this reason.
Best Budget Nipple Shield: Any of the Above!
Thankfully, all of these best nipple shields are budget-friendly at around $10 or less for a 2-pack. So simply choose the model that fits your needs (and nipples) best and go for it! If you don’t like one shape or brand, you can afford to try a few different ones as well without breaking the bank. It’s worth it to help you along your breastfeeding journey!
Related read: Breastfeeding Tips: Problems and Solutions
Benefits of Using a Nipple Shield
So, what are the benefits of using a nipple shield?
Some benefits of using a nipple shield include:
- Allows you to continue breastfeeding when you have sore, sensitive, or, cracked nipples
- Prevent onset nipple irritation with inverted or flat nipples
- Can help to increase your milk supply if it improves baby’s ability to latch
- Help baby latch better
- Can be used with premature babies struggling with nursing
- Prevents nipple confusion when switching between bottle and breast (if needed)
- Can help to calm a fussy baby
- Help with a strong letdown when baby sucks to prevent frustration with feedings
- Is discreet and can be worn under clothing
- Can help some moms enjoy their breastfeeding experience when they are struggling with latch and other supply issues
- Easy to use: just rinse in soapy warm water between uses
Why You Might Not Want One
On the flip side, there are a few reasons why you might not want to use a nipple shield:
Some potential drawbacks of using a nipple shield include:
- Can cause baby to prefer latching exclusively with the breast shield only
- Can lead to over-use of the shield, which can then lead to problems latching on when the shield is not used
- Can decrease milk supply over time if not used properly
- Can cause mastitis if not cleaned and stored properly
- Can be uncomfortable and create more chaffing and rubbing
What to Look for When Choosing a Nipple Shield
When choosing a nipple shield, there are a few things you should look for:
- Nipple shield size- it should fit comfortably over your nipple without being too large or too small. Try different sizes if you’re not sure! (Or as a specialist for a recommendation).
- Shape of the shield- some shields are more rounded than others, which can be more comfortable for some women. Make sure the shield is comfortable for baby’s mouth and baby’s nose as well.
- Material- silicone is the most popular material for shields, but some women prefer plastic or latex versions. Make sure it’s BPA-free!
- Ease of use- look for shields that are easy to clean and store with a carrying case that you can throw in your diaper bag while on the go.
When to Ask for Help
The right support can make a huge difference when it comes to nipple shields and your overall breastfeeding routine. A lactation consultant can provide you valuable insight when you aren’t sure if you’re making enough milk, the baby has a poor latch (or tongue-tie), or you are simply feeling exhausted and want some encouragement!
Most hospitals and pediatric clinics provide access to a lactation specialist these days that you can chat with. Always ask for help (from them and from friends and family), when you need it most!
Relief for Your Own Nipple Challenges
Everyone’s breastfeeding journey is different. It can be very rewarding, but it usually starts with a few road bumps- such as sore or cracked nipples. A nipple shield may help you persevere. Before using one, always talk to your doctor or consultant first! Best of luck mama!
What is your favorite way to get nipple pain relief?