When a family is about to welcome a new baby, some baby products are much more important to have than others. Along with the crib, baby clothes and diapers, having the right baby bottle ready for the new arrival is essential. Your baby’s diet will greatly depend on this very item, which is why you should make an informed shopping decision.
During the first months of his life, that baby bottle will be with your baby day and night. You may already know that these products come in different shapes, sizes and materials, and knowing the needs of your baby will help you in buying the right bottle. We’ve designed the following guide to answer all your questions about this product, so that you have all the information you need to make your purchase.
- 1 Key Facts
- 2 Ranking: The best baby bottles on the market
- 3 Shopping Guide: Everything you should know about baby bottles
- 4 Shopping Criteria
- 5 Summary
- The bottle size and its manufacturing material are both intimately linked to the age of your baby, each stage of life presenting specific needs.
- You should consider your child’s sucking capacity, as this will determine whether you need a bottle with a slow, medium or fast flow teat.
- The hygiene of your baby’s bottle should always be your main concern, especially during the first few weeks of life. If you notice any scratches, cracks or wear, replace the product immediately.
Ranking: The best baby bottles on the market
Whether you have decided to breastfeed your baby or not, you will eventually need to have a bottle ready for your little one. The Australian market is filled with different models that are tailored to each stage of development. In the following section, we’ve selected some of the very best baby bottles available right now, along with the characteristics of each model.
No. 1: Tommee Tippee Standard Neck Bottle (Set of 3)[amazon box=”B0774XH3VB” description_items=”0″]
Tommee Tippee is a brand of UK-based company Mayborn, whose goal is to develop top-of-the-line products to fulfil the needs and wants of both children and parents. This set of three 250-ml bottles features a very traditional design, with lovely animal decorations in three different colours to please your baby. They contain no chemicals (BPA-free) and are very comfortable to hold.
The teats are made from soft silicone, a material that is extremely hygienic and resistant so you won’t have to change it so often. Since they are slow flow, they are ideal for newborns. This Tommee Tippee set is a customer favourite, and it is Amazon’s Choice in the baby bottle category. This product offers incredible bang for your buck.
No. 2: Comotomo Set of 2 Baby Bottles[amazon box=”B009QXDE4G” description_items=”0″]
Comotomo is a baby bottle company from California, and it has designed innovative products for our little ones since 2008. Available in two different sizes, this set of 2 bottles features a wide-neck design that will make cleaning all that much easier. This product is also dishwasher safe for when you simply don’t have time, and it’s one of the reasons why this product is an Amazon Best Seller.
Made from top-quality silicone, these bottles are also adapted for all types of sterilisation methods. The anti-colic vents on the teat are perfect to avoid any discomfort while your baby is feeding. The teat easily latches into the bottle, and its design facilitates the transition from breastfeeding to bottle. This specific model has a capacity of 150 millilitres.
No. 3: Philips AVENT Natural Bottle (Set of 2)[amazon box=”B013TBC57W” description_items=”0″]
AVENT is a brand of Dutch multinational Philips, and it has been creating quality baby accessories since 1984. This is a set of two bottles with a capacity of 330 millilitres each. They are made from BPA-free polypropylene, meaning they are easy to clean, lightweight and difficult to break. These ergonomic bottles are designed for maximum comfort.
The wide teat is designed to reproduce the latching feeling of a breast for your baby, therefore making the transition from breastfeeding to bottle easier. These products also feature an innovative dual valve design, which contributes to reducing colic in children as the air remains inside the bottle rather than going into their stomach.
No. 4: MAM Self-Sterilising Anti-Colic Bottle (Set of 2)[amazon box=”B00E1JJT6M” description_items=”0″]
Founded over 40 years ago in Vienna, Austria, MAM designs baby products to contribute to the healthy development of our little ones, while making our lives easier as parents. This set contains 2 bottles with a capacity of 260 millilitres each, with a wide mouth for easy pouring and cleaning. A spill-proof lid is included to keep the teat clean at all times.
The patented SkinSoft teat is made from silicone. One great feature of these baby bottles is their self-sterilising function, which makes them ideal products for when you’re on the go with your little one. The vented base allows smooth flowing of the food, hence reducing colic and other potential discomforts. This has been backed up by previous customers.
No. 5: NUK Baby Bottle (Set of 3)[amazon box=”B01G3JYBJC” description_items=”0″]
The NUK brand was founded in 1956, and has been providing quality baby feeding accessories ever since; it has become a favourite amongst parents over the last decades. This particular set comes with three bottles of 300 ml, made from BPA-free polypropylene. Their design makes them ideal for a smooth transition from breastfeeding to the bottle.
For that reason, they are recommended for babies between 0 and 6 months of age. These anti-colic bottles feature a wide neck, making cleaning easier; they are also dishwasher safe. The silicone teats have a medium-sized hole, and are shaped to naturally fit your baby’s jaw. Past buyers have praised the overall quality and value for money of this NUK set.
Shopping Guide: Everything you should know about baby bottles
While you might think at first that these products are extremely simple, the baby bottle world is a vast one. It is essential to take several factors into account if you want to choose the perfect model; these include your baby’s stage of growth, the bottle’s ergonomics or the feel of the teat. In the next section, we’ll talk about some of the most frequently asked questions by parents regarding baby bottles.
What types of bottles are available out there?
There are different ways to classify baby bottles: using their manufacturing material, the type of teat or your baby’s growth stage. These products are generally made from either polypropylene or glass. The former models are lighter and practically unbreakable, while the latter won’t absorb odours and can easily resist temperature changes.
Teats, on the other hand, are generally manufactured with silicone or latex. There are two main shapes of teats: round or orthodontic (imitating a female nipple). On top of this, the hole of the teat further divides baby bottles into slow, medium and fast flow. The type of flow is directly linked to the suction speed of your baby.
During the first month of life, babies should start off with slow-flowing teats, before moving on to modem flow around 3 or 4 months of age. When you start giving more solid foods to your little one, it is recommend to opt for rapid flow bottles, which generally happens between 8 and 10 months.
What are anti-colic baby bottles?
Your baby generally swallows air while sucking on his bottle during mealtimes, which can lead to the appearance of gas or colic; This can create great discomfort for your little one. This is why most modern bottles feature special anti-colic valves, which are conceived to always keep the teat full of food.
Swallowing more air than usual can lead to other discomforts such as hiccups or regurgitation, and the specific design of these teats will contribute to minimising those risks. Anti-reflux teats are larger and present an inclination of 30º.
Which bottles are most suitable for newborns?
The time may come when you have to start looking for a bottle for your newborn baby. in such a situation, glass models should be your option of choice, since they are more easily sterilised. Generally offering a capacity ranging from 90 to 120 millilitres, these bottles remain immaculate since they do not absorb odours.
The shape is naturally another aspect you have to keep in mind. In their first month of life, babies will drink milk slowly, so you want the bottle to be very comfortable for your baby to hold. This is why it is recommended to opt for an ergonomic or triangular design. Last but not least, it is advisable to choose an anti-colic or anti-reflux model to prevent your newborn from feeling any of the discomforts mentioned earlier.
What is the best way to sterilise a bottle?
The maintenance of your baby’s bottle is absolutely key. Since babies’ immune systems are still developing, it is essential to maintain top hygiene. This is the reason why you should go for bottles manufactured with materials that can withstand the high temperatures required for sterilisation; this is particularly true during the first months of life of your baby. In that regard, glass is the ideal choice.
Two different sterilisation methods currently exist: hot and cold. In the former case, the bottle is sterilised by boiling it, or by using a machine that transforms water into steam. The cold method, on the other hand, consists in placing the bottle into a liquid to which certain antiseptic substances have been added.
When should I change my baby’s bottle?
When sterilising the bottle isn’t enough anymore, it means it’s time to replace it. You’ll know it’s that time when you notice the bottle is scratched, cracked, or worn. you are also encouraged to regularly check the state of the teat, which can deteriorate over time. If that’s the case, make sure you change it immediately.
Both the bottle and the teat should therefore be replaced once their condition is not suitable for your baby’s health anymore. You’ll also need to change them depending your little one’s needs and growth. The time will come, for instance, when the the bottle becomes too small; your baby will want a larger size or a teat with a greater flow.
There are a certain number of aspect that you’ll need to take into account when the time comes to pick the ideal bottle for your baby. Please keep in mind that this will be the item he uses for feeding during the first few months of life, which means that this decision should be carefully taken. In the following section, we’ll detail the most important shopping criteria that you should consider.
- Recommended age of use
- Manufacturing materials
- Shape of the baby bottle
- Anti-colic valve
Recommended age of use
This important aspect is closely connected with the size of the bottle itself. Naturally, the smaller your baby is, the less milk he will need to feed himself. This is the reason why our little ones need smaller bottles during their first month of life: a capacity of 90 to 120 millilitres will be plenty enough.
During the third and fourth months of life, your baby will start needing a larger bottle. You’ll therefore be looking for models with 120 to 180 millilitres of capacity. In that regard, please note that feeding times usually remain the same as during the first month (approximately every 3 hours), but the quantity should be greater. Starting around 6 months of age, your baby should drink between 180 and 240 millilitres per meal.
Parents also often wonder which manufacturing material is most adapted for their baby’s bottle. As we mentioned earlier, these products tend to be made from glass or polypropylene, each material offering its own advantages and disadvantages. Glass, for instance, stands out for being heat-resistant, easy to sterilise and for not absorbing odours.
On the other hand, polypropylene bottles are lighter, and therefore more comfortable to handle than the former. They are virtually unbreakable and can also be sterilised at high temperatures. On the downside, this type of bottle may take on the colour of certain drinks, which means that the passage of time will be more visible.
|Polypropylene bottle||Lighter. Unbreakable. Your baby can grab it.||It may absorb odours. It will wear faster.|
|Glass bottle||It doesn’t absorb odours. More hygienic. It has a longer lifespan.||More fragile. Heavier.|
Shape of the baby bottle
Your baby may take a while to eat his food, especially as a newborn. This means that you should settle for a bottle that is also comfortable to hold for you as a parent. The shape of the most traditional models is cylindrical, and they are amongst parents’ favourites. You can also find triangular bottles, which are particularly easy to grab.
Ws’ve also briefly talked about ergonomic baby bottles earlier on in the article. While these won’t make it easier for parents to hold the bottle, they are designed to help the baby learn to hold them himself later on. Certain parents have a preference for wider bottles, that offer the great advantage of being easier to clean.
We’ve already discussed teats, but we can’t emphasise enough on how important of a factor they are. They can be made from two different materials: latex or silicone. The former present a softer texture and are ideal to facilitate the transition from breastfeeding to bottle. Silicone teats, on the other hand, are more hygienic and resistant. Their main downside is that they are not as soft as latex.
As we talked about before, teats have different flows: slow, medium and fast. Your baby should use each one over time.
Slow-flow models are designed for the first month of life, and naturally feature a smaller hole. On the other hand, fast-flowing ones even let solid food through, such as porridge.
|Latex teat||Softer. More flexible. Natural.||It may absorb odours. It will wear faster.|
|Silicone teat||More hygienic. More resistant. It won’t absorb odours.||Harder texture. Less flexible.|
Nowadays, more and more manufacturers are integrating anti-colic systems into their baby bottles. You are encouraged to opt for a model with this system if you want to prevent your baby from swallowing air during mealtimes.
Certain models also include a teat with a 30-degree inclination. These anti-reflux bottles will contribute to minimising the risk of gas or hiccups. Another common option is the presence of a ventilation system in the bottle itself, which means that the air is trapped inside and cannot reach the teat.
Baby bottles are children’s products that you’ll have to think about buying eventually if you are a parent. It is so important to make an informed purchasing decision, since they are your baby’s food source for the first few months of his life. Remember to consider aspects such as the manufacturing material, the size of the bottle and the type of teat.
It is also essential that you keep in mind that your child will require several different bottles throughout his growth. These products tend to wear over time and use, and therefore need to be replaced. Your baby’s needs will also change over these first months, and you have to be ready to adapt to them.
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(Source of featured image: Famveldman: 60418002/ 123rf.com)