A breast pump, whether manual or electrical, can be an extremely helpful device for new moms. By imitating the sucking action of a baby, they allow you to express and store milk at a time to suit you.
You can then have a supply of milk on hand at all times to suit the feeding schedule of your baby.
Pumps have been around for a while of course, and while electric versions are popular, manual pumps also have a loyal following. Their very design makes them both simple to use and easy to transport, and the fact they don’t rely on battery power means they will never let you down in an emergency.
New Medela Harmony Manual Breast Pump, Single Hand Breastpump with Flex Breast Shields for More Comfort and Expressing More Milk
Breast Pump Kit for Medela Pump in Style Advanced Breastpump. Includes 2 Tubing, 2 Breastshields (25 mm, Medium), 4 Valves, 6 Membranes; Replacement Kit for Medela Pump Parts, Made by Maymom
Best Manual Pump Reviews
1. Madela Harmony Manual Breast Pump
A premium price tag accompanies this product that brings a range of useful features to the market. This looks to be a well-thought-out, well-designed product – but can it justify that high price?
If one of the selling points of a manual pump is its sense of simplicity and ease of use, it could be seen as a bad sign that we are starting with what is in many ways the most complicated design on the list.
That the design is slightly more complex, that doesn’t mean it’s bad – in fact quite the opposite, it’s highly innovative. What we have with this product is a double pumping action. So you place the pump onto your breast and then depress the short end of the handle to stimulate milk flow.
Once you’re ready, you switch to the other end of the handle for longer pumps that maximize milk flow for effective expression. It really is a very good design, and the soft touch and ergonomically designed handle make it easy to use.
The price is high – it is the most expensive item on the list – however for that, you get 2 bottles, a stand, and 2 membranes along with the excellent pump itself.
- Two-stage pump action
- Well built
- Soft, ergonomic handle
- Large size
2. Haakaa Manual Breast Pump
These very attractive-looking pumps eschew the traditional handle-equipped style that is seen on the majority of these products. Simple to use and convenient to carry, could this be the pump you’re looking for?
This is an exceptionally streamlined, very simple design of a pump. The size and ease of use, in particular, could lend it to being a better travel pump than an everyday model. It’s going to very easily slip into any bag, and its design is remarkably unobtrusive.
It is completely made of food-grade silicone, so there are no worries of any plastic taint at all. In operation, it is very simple to use – it barely even has any working parts! That fact will though be either its downfall or saving grace.
Frankly, many moms will simply need more of the features that a traditional pump will bring – this product design is all well and good when everything is fine and free flowing, but it’s a very simple product that lacks things like the double-action pump ability we talked about on the product above or even things like ergonomic breast shields that some moms are going to need in order to express properly.
Bottom line – it’s cheap, it’s effective, it’s portable – but it may be a little too basic for some. That, by the way, is nothing to be ashamed of either. The world of breastfeeding is very much a “Horses for Courses” kind of game, and not every product will suit every Mom.
- Very simple design
- Easy to clean
- 100% food-grade silicone construction
- Too simple for frequent use
- Not very ergonomic
3. Maymom Medela Manual Breast Pump
This is essentially third-party support for the popular Madela brand of breast pumps such as the product at the top of this list. Does Maymon bring enough to the table to warrant their inclusion here?
This is more of a supporting act than the main star, but it does add a degree of customization to the existing Madela range of breast pumps.
Essentially what we have here is a very well-designed pump attachment without any bottles. Instead, it is designed to work with the bottles and valves of the Madela brand. The point of this product is that it has a range of different breast shield sizes. That means that if you are struggling to use the shields supplied with the Madela pump then take a look at this kit.
Construction is BPA-free plastic and what’s more, this is also a US FDA-registered medical device, so you know you are buying quality here.
Just take note that this is not a complete kit, and you are not buying a ready-to-use pump – this should be seen more as an accessory to potentially help you get better performance from your Madela products.
- Excellent size range
- Well-made products
- No bottles
- Third-party product
4. Lansinoh Manual Breast Pump
This product was designed by a nursing mom and quite frankly it shows. It brings a range of extremely useful features and a very innovative design.
As a nursing mother designed this product, you can bet it has a number of unique features. One of the standouts is the simple fact it has clearly been designed with the mother’s comfort as paramount importance. For evidence of this look no further than the soft silicone-tipped breast shields (which come in 2 sizes by the way).
Operation is straightforward and efficient, with the ergonomically designed handle a pleasure to hold. This is also a closed-system design that prevents any milk from being drawn up into the mechanism. This makes it easier to keep clean and helps prevent the spread of bacteria.
All in all, this is a very good product; it’s just with a slightly lower price tag than some of the pumps on this list, it is missing some of the features you would find on higher end models. In particular, the breast shield is not as well designed as the Phillips Avent model we will discuss below, and the pump action itself is not as advanced as the double pump action on the Medala model above.
This is a very good, if somewhat basic, model that still has a lot going for it and comes with a very reasonable price tag.
- Ergonomic and efficient
- Comfortable design elements
- 2 flange sizes (25mm & 30mm)
- Not for frequent use
- Overall quite simple design
5. Phillips Avent Manual Breast Pump
The name Phillips Avent has long been recognized as a market leader in the baby care market, and with good reason. Their designs mix simplicity with innovation to bring products to the market that do exactly what you want them to with the minimum of fuss. Will this breast pump keep up that tradition?
This is an excellent product from the recognized market leader Phillips Avant. What they do so well with these products is to look at what other companies are doing right, and then add their own little touches. This helps to elevate what are essentially quite basic designs to new levels of comfort and usability.
The first thing you will notice is that the breast shield and handle are angled slightly differently from other products. This has been done to help to achieve the most natural – and comfortable – pumping position possible.
The breast shield itself is remarkably soft, and contains a built-in textured massage cushion to make the pump feel as comfortable as possible during use.
The construction is tough and hard-wearing and utilizes the kinds of materials you would expect, such as BPA-free plastics. The pump is also completely compatible with many products across the entire Avent range, so if you already have a bottle of this brand they will attach seamlessly.
This is an excellent, premium-level product – the only drawback of which however is the accompanying premium price tag, this being one of the more expensive items on the list.
- Comfortable pumping position
- Soft and textured breast shield
- Compatible with the complete Avant range
The best model on the list has to be the Phillips Avent Manual Breast Pump. As we said in the reviews, these guys are the market leader and with very good reason; this is simply a very well-designed product that does exactly what you need it to.
The Madela Harmony Manual Breast Pump ran a very close second though, with that double-action pump impressing us very much, and for a budget option definitely go for the Lansinoh Manual Breast Pump, a very good product that doesn’t quite have the list of features to cut it with the truly premium products.