Breastfeeding is a beautiful bonding experience, but let’s be honest, it’s not without its challenges. One of those challenges? Pumping on the go. You need to carry a lot, and I mean a lot, of stuff. Let’s dive into best breast pump bag options to help you find the perfect fit for your unique pumping situation. We’ll look at some of the best options for work, travel, and more. Let’s make your breastfeeding journey a little easier with the perfect bag for you.
The Best Breast Pump Bags for Work, Travel, and More
What are the Features to Look for When Choosing a Breast Pump Bag?
When choosing the perfect breast pump bag, look for features such as insulation to keep milk cool, compartments to organize various parts and bottles, a discreet design, and comfortable straps or handles. Additionally, consider the size, durability, and ease of cleaning when making your decision.
Size and Capacity
Here’s where size does matter. Your bag needs to fit your pump, of course, but also consider the other must-haves: spare parts, storage containers, a cooler if needed, snacks (these apricot almond coconut bites are my favorite for energy and lactation!), and personal items. You don’t want to end up with something that’s too small for your daily essentials, so make sure you have plenty of room.
Insulation and Cooling Features
For those long days out or the commute back home from work. This is where the insulation comes in. Your breast milk stash is going to need to stay cold! Some come with built-in cooler sections, others have space for you to add your own. When you’re not near a fridge, this feature is a lifesaver for keeping your liquid gold cool and safe.
Portability and Convenience
You’re going to be carrying this bag around, a lot. You’ll want it to be easy to transport. Look for ones with a variety of carry options like thick straps, a shoulder bag, crossbody straps, or even a breast pump backpack (I definitely preferred a backpack for long days). Some even have straps that allow you to attach it to the stroller. Comfort is key.
And let’s not forget the occasion. A stylish bag that looks like a purse might be perfect for a night out. But for work, a day at the park or a long trip, you might prefer something more casual and sporty. Some moms find it handy to have two bags for different occasions. I switched between a larger personal tote bag, and a backpack depending on the situation.
Not all pumps will fit in every bag. Some bags are designed for specific brands or models i.e. standard electric vs. a wearable, so make sure your purchase will fit your model. You can typically get away with a smaller bag if you are using a wearable pump.
Finding the perfect pump bag is all about balancing your personal needs, lifestyle, and taste.
What Accessories Should I Pack in My Breast Pump Bag?
Once you’ve found the perfect bag, it’s time to start packing! Here are some essentials that you won’t want to forget:
- Breast Pump
- Extra parts
- Milk storage bags (highly prefer the Lansinoh brand vs. Medela) with insulated pack and an ice pack or portable cooler. Pro tip: if you know you’re going to be pumping less than 16 ounces of milk while you are away, I highly recommend this milk cooler option by Willow which is about the size of a water bottle. Its so easy and convenient!
- Pump wipes
- Hand sanitizer
- Pumping bra (for a standard pump I use either pack this wrap to wear with a normal nursing bra, or use The Do Anything pumping bra from Bodily; for a wearable pump, I use this bra or this bra)
Best Bags for Standard Breast Pumps
Navigating the world of breast pumping on-the-go is a breeze when you have the right gear. And the bags we’re about to introduce are clear winners in our books. Let’s dive right into our top picks!
A personal favorite of many working moms, the Sarah Wells Norah Breast Pump Backpack marries functionality with style. This spacious backpack offers compartments designed specifically for pump storage, making it a perfect choice for a working mom who’s looking for the best option. A thermal-lined pocket keeps the milk chilled, ensuring your precious cargo stays safe. But that’s not all – with its sleek design and high-quality materials, it looks just like a well-made backpack. So you can walk into your office or meetings with confidence, knowing you’re prepared and stylish. The Norah is also handy even after your pumping days are over. The insulated pockets can be snapped up and out of the way to create more room for use as a diaper bag, overnight bag, or camera bag.
Next up, we have the Willow Pump Anywhere Bag. This design is all about convenience – it’s compact yet spacious enough to carry your pump, accessories, and a few personal items, such as a small wallet. The bag’s structure allows you to pump directly within it; no need for the awkward shuffle of setting up. And, with its sturdy build and waterproof material, it is perfect for those unpredictable, sometimes messy moments that come with being a mom. We also love how it’s made from a water-resistant material and features an adjustable strap.
Last but certainly not least, the Dagne Dover Large Indi Diaper Backpack is a versatile, travel option. This backpack not only houses your pump and accessories but also comes with bonus features like a changing mat, stroller straps, and multiple pockets for baby essentials, including interior pockets. Despite its large size, the bag’s backpack style makes it easy to carry around. And, with several stylish color options, it’s the perfect blend of functionality and fashion for moms on-the-go. I know several mom friends with this bag.
Best Breast Bags for Hands-Free Breast Pumps
Meet Momcozy – your new insulated cooler bag for work. It’s compact, chic, and designed to make your pumping routine smoother. Inside, you’ll find a universal design that fits most major pump brands. And the great part? There’s enough room to tote your laptop, too! The insulated cooler, easy-to-clean pockets keep your milk safe and cool. For your comfort, it features a long, adjustable shoulder strap, making it a great option for work or traveling. So, whether you’re heading to the office or out for a lunch date, this choice has got your back, quite literally! It also comes with a removable shoulder strap, allowing you to wear it as a crossbody.
Introducing the NCVI Breastmilk Cooler Bag, designed to take your breast milk storage to the next level. This extraordinary item features a premium insulated lining, guaranteeing the freshness and coolness of your milk for a remarkable 8 hours. The term ‘cooler’ doesn’t do justice to its sleek style, seamlessly fitting into your daily routine. And as if that wasn’t enough, we’ve added convenient two-way zippers for effortless access. Say goodbye to worrying about your milk’s temperature while embracing a touch of elegance in your feeding journey.
When it comes to the Dagne Dover Medium Indi Diaper Backpack, imagine it as the more compact sibling of the Large Indi. It retains the same stylish and functional qualities, making it an ideal choice for carrying around town. Whether you’re having a lighter day and don’t require packing the whole house or if you plan on bringing along a compact wearable model, this backpack will have you covered and organized in style. With its thoughtfully designed compartments and durable construction, it ensures convenience and ease while on the go.
Finally, we have the 3 PC Mesh Zipper Bags. Although they are not specifically designed as a bag for a breast pump, these mesh waterproof dandies are incredibly versatile and perfect for safely storing a wearable model and all its accessories. Their lightweight and durable construction, coupled with their see-through design, make them a convenient choice for on-the-go moms. Simply toss them into your tote and rest assured that all your pumping essentials are neatly concealed and easily accessible whenever you need them. As a second-time mom, this was my personal option of choice paired with this milk cooler by Willow so that I could feel more put together with my favorite tote bag, and feel less weighed down.
How to Clean and Maintain Your Bag
Let’s have a chat about maintenance. Ensuring your bag remains in tip-top shape isn’t exactly rocket science, but it does require a little tender loving care.
- Exterior cleaning: Wipe down the bag’s exterior with a damp cloth to keep dirt and stains at bay.
- Interior cleaning: Use soap and water to clean the interior, paying special attention to hidden corners.
- Air-dry: Allow to air-dry to prevent mold or mildew.
- Regular maintenance: Check straps and zippers for signs of wear and tear.
- Additional protection: Consider using a waterproof liner or pouch to protect from spills or leaks.
By regularly cleaning and organizing your bag, you can prolong its lifespan and keep it looking as good as new. Additionally, taking the time to inspect and maintain any zippers, compartments, or straps will help ensure that your pump bag continues to serve you well, providing convenience and peace of mind during your breastfeeding journey. Remember, a little bit of extra effort goes a long way when it comes to maintaining your bag, including the tubing for your pump parts.
In the world of motherhood, every small convenience counts and a good bag for a breast pump might just be your unsung hero. Happy pumping, moms!
Featured Image by Sarah Chai