Disclosure: this article contains affiliate links. All opinions are 100% my own.
Why I wanted (and needed!) a double electric breast pump
When I found out I was pregnant, my first thought was “yay, maternity leave!”. Then I thought a little more and realized maternity leave is short. I’d have to go back to the office and if I wanted to continue breastfeeding, I’d need a breast pump.
So, I did some research and asked my doula for advice. I quickly realized I’d need a double electric breast pump, since this would be the most efficient way to pump each day in the office. I didn’t have a clue how breast pumps worked at this point, but I was determined to buy one before my son arrived so I would be all ready to go from birth.
What are double electric breast pumps and how do they work?
A double electric breast pump consists of a motor unit to create suction, and a set of two milk collection bottles with flanges that are connected to the motor with tubing and are worn on the breasts. The motor creates suction so breast milk can be expressed. Double electric pumps allow lactating women to express milk from both breasts simultaneously, so milk can be collected quickly.
Double electric breast pumps are quite straightforward but there is a learning curve for each mom as she determines which settings work best for her. The pump will have various settings for suction strength and suction speed, so you can approximate how your baby nurses in order to express your milk.
At the start of a pumping session, the pump will be used to stimulate letdown with a fast suction speed and low suction strength. Once letdown is stimulated, the pump can be adjusted (or some will automatically change) to stronger suction strength and slower suction speed, just as a nursing child would do.
Do you need a double electric breast pump?
I do not think double electric pumps are a necessity for everyone, but many moms prefer the speed with which they can express milk thanks to a double electric pump. Anyone who will spend extended periods away from their child should invest in a good quality double electric pump as they are the best choice for women who will be pumping to replace a direct breastfeeding session.
Mothers who plan to breastfeed directly most of the time likely do not need a double electric pump. A single electric or manual pump would be sufficient so milk can be expressed when needed (from one breast at a time).
Which are the best double electric breast pumps?
There is a wide variety of double electric pumps available. I have tested and written detailed reviews of the following pumps. The first four in the list are my most recommended options for women who will pump regularly.
Spectra S1 – Hygienic closed system, powerful, quiet
Ameda Purely Yours – Hygienic closed system, small and portable
Philips Avent Comfort – Very comfortable, not too heavy
Medela Pump In Style Advanced – Extremely popular, but heavy to carry and not a closed system
Medela Freestyle – Small and portable, suction can be weak
Hygeia Enjoye – Hygienic closed system, a bit noisy
Spectra Dew 350 – Hygienic closed system, but limited settings
Rumble Tuff Serene Express – Hygienic closed system, but limited settings
Should you invest in a double electric breast pump?
Most of the time, my answer to this question will be a “yes”. Double electric pumps are by far the most efficient way to express milk and are ideal for any mom who needs to spend time away from her child. Double electric pumps can also be used for single pumping by closing off the tubing for the second milk collection bottle, so they are worthwhile for less frequent pumpers as well. Of course, a double electric pump is more expensive than a single electric or manual version, so infrequent pumpers may prefer to invest in a less expensive option instead.
Have additional questions about double electric breast pumps? Contact me and I’ll be sure to reply.