The two most popular breastfeeding pillows are the Boppy and the My Brest Friend. I’ve used both for over three years and I write this to share my observations (and my top pick!) with you. Read on for the good, the bad, and the ugly of each of these two pillows: Boppy vs My Brest Friend.
I do have affiliate links for products I’ve already bought myself. No company’s given me anything, nor have I been paid to say anything. So I can do what I want, ha!
I’ve also put the direct links to the products themselves at the very end of the post.
So why use a pillow in the first place? To save your arms! When you bring home a newborn you’ll basically be in “nursing marathon mode” for a good 4-6 weeks, until your milk supply stabilizes. Even once your body learns just how much milk to make, your baby will have periodic growth spurts and bouts of comfort nursing.
A nursing pillow helps hold Baby at the right height to be in line with your breast, and assists with the cradle or cross cradle hold.
I do definitely recommend that you use a pillow especially if you’re new to nursing. I still use mine daily and I’ve clocked almost three years’ worth of breastfeeding my littles! The pillows are quite convenient and can really help you out.
The Similarities: Boppy vs My Brest Friend
Neither are waterproof, which is ironic considering you often get milk (or spit up) on them. Both of mine have stains. Not that big of a deal (I always use mine with covers), but that’s rather silly, don’t you think?
They both do sell covers – the MBF comes with one when you buy it; the Boppy can be bought with a cover or just “naked.”
The Boppy is the quick, convenient, multi-purpose pillow. You can easily grab it with one hand (while holding Baby with the other), shove it on your lap and put Baby on it.
The Boppy also advertises that you can use it for Baby throughout different stages – propping them up in modified tummy time, helping them sit supported, etc. We did that quite a bit with my first baby, not so much with this one.
The size and cushiness of it feels great – it’s built more like a traditional pillow than the foam firmness of the MBF. I like the feel of this one better.
I do sometimes feel that the Boppy can slip out of place, making me yearn for the buckle strap on the MBF. I’m able to use a free hand and put it back where it needs to go, but sometimes it almost feels “slippery” and doesn’t want to stay.
Because it’s just a pillow, it also has to sit down on your lap. The MBF can be strapped to hold in place just below your breasts, but this one has to rest on your legs. So if you’re a much taller woman, you may find that the Boppy causes you to lean over your baby when nursing. And that’s no good for your back! (Luckily, at 5’2″, I will never have that problem).
This may just be my sensitivity, as I do really notice changes in temperature, but I feel like the Boppy also holds heat. Basically after holding my daughter in my lap for a little while, I feel like the pillow gets really hot. Not super fun when you are trapped on the couch. Especially when you live in South Texas. I have a feeling that this may be just my oversensitivity, since I have never seen any other review complain about this.
Lastly (and I just discovered this recently), the Boppy and its covers are all machine washable! Old brown milk stains come out beautifully in the machine washer, and then the Boppy can be air-dried or tossed in the dryer while being agitated with something like a pair of shoes or a tennis ball.
The My Brest Friend
The unique thing about the My Brest Friend is the buckle – it has a piece of foam which goes all the way around your back, and an adjustable buckle strap which clips the whole thing around you. The pillow doesn’t budge. It’s designed to sit right under your breasts – so you wear it high, not down on your lap. The pillow becomes a sort of soft shelf for Baby to lay on.
It also has a raised spot next to each breast for Baby’s head.
I feel like the overall size of the pillow is good. It may be a little large, but I realize that they’re designing for a wide range of babies.
Their covers are not soft at all, and seem to be made cheaply. (This is also the part which had the buckle and strap on it, so you really do HAVE to have a cover.) They just don’t feel like quality material; I’ve owned three different ones over the years and felt that way about all three. I do appreciate that the covers do also have a pocket which lies on the outside of the pillow. It’s awkward to get to, but it’s a nice size for a phone or a granola bar.
Speaking of being made cheaply… look at the photo of the “naked” MBF. It’s just a few pieces of foam cut out and glued together. I guess the first time I removed the cover to wash it, I was a little surprised. Like, “Really, that’s it?… oh.” I’m not sure what I was expecting, but it made me feel a little silly that I paid that much for it!
The MBF is not machine washable, since it’s just those pieces of foam; yep, spot clean only. (The covers are machine washable.)
I used this pillow on and off with my first child, but I hate it now with my second baby for some reason. I think it’s just because it’s so inconvenient. With my first baby, my husband was around to hand me the baby once I’d strapped this pillow on and sat down. But doing it all alone is a pain: put Baby down, clip on pillow, awkwardly lean over (wearing the pillow) to grab Baby without pillow-punching them in their cute squishy face… I’d rather just grab my Boppy with one hand and stick it under my arm real quick.
My Recommendation: Boppy vs My Brest Friend
If you have a more quiet, relaxed home environment (aka this is your first baby) and you have help, I think the MBF is great! It’s a handy idea if you have someone to hand you the baby. The buckle and pocket on the cover are nice touches. It takes some of the guesswork out of “Do I have Baby at the right angle, and the right height?” You may feel a little bit like you work at a circus, but… oh wait, that’s just parenthood.
If this is not your first baby, or if you’re going it alone at home, I definitely recommend the Boppy more. It’s just way more user friendly if you only have two hands (and one’s gotta hold your kid), or if you have other children to watch. It’s also the more comfortable of the two, as far as foam/pillowyness. I just feel like it’s a more practical, more diverse product.
The MBF is also only used for a nursing pillow, while the Boppy is much more versatile. The Boppy can be used to help with tummy time, or to help Baby learn to sit unassisted. So you’ll find it useful way past the newborn “how in the hell do I breastfeed” phase.
Overall, in the battle of the Boppy vs My Brest Friend… if you can only get one, I definitely recommend the Boppy. If you can get both (or put them on your registry, hint hint) the MBF is a great investment for Breastfeeding 101. The MBF just has a way more limited usage.
Tell me your thoughts, opinions, experiences, and questions in the comments! And as always, thanks for sharing!