I don't typically use that term lightly. So you might be surprised that this is a review post. Yes, there is actually a product that I feel this strongly about. But I wouldn't call this a review as much as a story about my personal experiences.
If you read my blog or follow my tweets, you probably know that I'm a huge fan of PumpEase hands-free pumping supports. As an exclusive pumping mom, I have quite a close relationship with my pump. Well, pumps. I have two breast pumps – one for work and one for home.
Just how much pumping do I do? Let me break it down:
There are 24 hours in a day. I pump about every 4 hours, which is about 6 times a day. Each pumping session takes approximately 20 minutes. That means I spend, on average, 2 hours of each day pumping. That's a lot of time. Especially when you consider it on a weekly basis. 2 hours per day x 7 days per week = 14 hours. Or monthly. 14 hours per week x 4 weeks per month = 56 hours pumping each month.
I don't know about you, but I don't have a ton of time to waste. There's always a diaper to be changed, a bathroom to be cleaned, laundry to be washed, a meal to be cooked, well, you get my point.
I originally bought a PumpEase because I was ready to give up on breastfeeding. Pumping was a lot of work, it was taking up a lot of my time, and I was ready to quit. I needed something to motivate me to keep going. I had heard of PumpEase, and decided to give one a try. I figured if I invested in a breastfeeding accessory, it would help keep me going when I felt like I was ready to give up. Just looking at the PumpEase ad made me smile:
I ordered the Forget Me Not print online, and it arrived much quicker than I expected considering it was coming from Canada. I opened the pretty package and was surprised just how soft and light the fabric was.
Admittedly, the first time I put it on, I was a bit confused how to fit the pump parts in correctly. Because I don't read directions. You know, the ones right on the box that make it almost idiot-proof. Yup, those. So what did I do? I tweeted. And sure enough, PumpEase has twitter and helped me out. They didn't make me feel stupid, either, which was awesome.
Pumping with the PumpEase on was awesome. Suddenly I had two hands free. TWO FREE HANDS! Squeee!
You know what sucked, though? One of those free hands knocked over my bottle of red Powerade. All over the floor. I had a towel next to the bed. After yelling “shit!”, I grabbed the towel and bent over to mop up the mess.
Jason came running when he heard me swear from the other room. Instead of helping me clean up, though, he just stood in the doorway laughing. I was about to yell at him, when I realized that I looked pretty damn funny. There I was, bent over, mopping up the floor with two 8oz bottles half full of milk dangling from my chest. Since I had been pumping hands-free, I hadn't even given it a thought when I bent down to clean up the mess, and I was still hooked up to my pump. Needless to say, I was awfully damn impressed with my PumpEase. Even with several ounces of milk weighing things down, everything was still held in place and not a single drop spilled.
Since that day, I've used my PumpEase a LOT. I've even used it to pump while shopping on Black Friday. It's opened up a whole new world for me. Remember, I spend an average of 56 hours per month pumping. With my PumpEase, I can use those 56 hours to do other things at the same time. Like folding laundry, addressing Christmas cards, reading a magazine, or writing this very blog post. Yep, I've been pumping while writing this. Pretty cool, huh?
To me, getting back some of the time I would normally spend pumping is definitely life changing. I don't feel like pumping is a burden, because I can use that time to get other things done, or I can just sit back and relax and have a little bit of “me” time.
Not only does my PumpEase transform pumping time into productive time, it's also just more comfortable to pump with it on. Do you know what this is?
If you've ever used a Medela Pump In Style, you probably know that you have to carefully hold things in place just right, otherwise it's difficult to pump. You lose suction, your nipple gets pulled the wrong way, etc… For me, having a PumpEase means I don't have to worry about any of that. Once I get set up, my PumpEase holds everything in the same spot for the entire pumping session. Meaning I can reach over and turn the pump on or adjust the settings without having to use my forearms to hold the flanges in place. It's a lot less painful, and no more red marks!
Since I guess this has turned into a review, more or less, here's my quick overview:
Ease of Use – Good.You simply secure the front hook & eye closures, pop your flanges in, and you're ready to go. There are a lot of hook & eye closures to do, but that's what keeps things securely in place, so it's a good trade off. My tip to prevent spilling any precious liquid gold is to unhook the PumpEase before removing the flanges.
Material Quality – Excellent.I've used my PumpEase regularly, and it's retained it's original shape and softness. Line dry like you would any other “delicate” item and you won't have to worry about shrinkage.
Support – Excellent. I've pumped 6 oz per side in one sitting and still had everything stay in place.
Color/Variety – Fun! The PumpEase comes in a variety of prints, and I have to admit, I do feel pretty when I wear mine. I keep my Tuxedo print at work, which seems fitting since our dress code is business casual 🙂
Value: Excellent. At first I was a bit intimidated by the $38.00 retail price tag, but considering just how much I use my PumpEase, it's totally worth it. Add on all the hours I'm able to multi-task while pumping, and this has become an invaluable breastfeeding accessory.
Who Should Get One – Anyone who pumps a lot and is interested in using that time to multitask or just wants to have both hands free. I've found that sometimes it's relaxing just to be able to lean back with my hands resting in my lap instead of holding pump flanges against my chest.
You can get your very own PumpEase Hands Free Pumping Support on their website: http://www.PumpEase.comUse promo code LWLSAVE15 for 15% off your purchase.
While you're at it, go ahead and follow PumpEase on Twitter and become a Facebook Fan. Once you start using your PumpEase, you'll actually have time to keep up with their interesting posts on breastfeeding and pumping.
Disclosure: I bought my first PumpEase all on my own. My second PumpEase was provided by the manufactured in partnership with my Pumping In Public experiment. I was not compensated for this review, and the opinions expressed are all my own honest feelings toward the product.