Despite the fact that Breastfeeding is one of the greatest things a mother can do for her infant, most of the women still feel a bit apprehensive about feeding their little ones in public. That’s probably because either they don’t feel comfortable breastfeeding in public or else because they don’t want their baby getting distracted by other people in public places.
To deal with such situations, you as a nursing mother can take advantage of Nursing Covers, which are specifically designed to make breastfeeding in public more comfortable and secure. This quick guide is written with the intention of providing you all the information related to nursing covers at one place, including what nursing covers are, why you should use them and much more.
So, let’s get started!
What is a Nursing Cover?
A Nursing Cover, also known as a breastfeeding cover, is essentially a piece of fabric that nursing mothers use to cover up their breasts when breastfeeding in public. Eliminating the fear of being exposed, it provides mums the most comfortable way to breastfeed their infants in public.
Nursing covers are a must have for any breastfeeding mother to maintain privacy and comfort outside the home. They give you extra freedom and confidence so that you could comfortably breastfeed your baby in public. In other words, a nursing cover allows you to breastfeed anytime, anywhere.
Types of Nursing Covers
Since there are many different types of nursing covers available in the market today, it becomes quite crucial to find out what type of cover is perfect for you and your baby. To help you, below are some most common types of nursing covers with their pros and cons. Choose the one that you feel will work best for you:
Designed the same way as a kitchen apron, a nursing apron comes with a loop that goes over the mother’s head. Having a loosely fitting lower part, it is open on the back and sides.
- Pros: Extremely lightweight. Even, you can use it with one hand. Longer in front side as compared to other types of nursing covers.
- Cons: Being open on the back and sides, it doesn’t fully cover you. That means you’ll need to wear something, like a nursing blouse, to stay covered.
Unlike an Apron, Poncho fully covers the front, sides and back of nursing mothers. It goes on directly over the mom’s head and falls down to her hips.
- Pros: Provides you the full coverage along with functionality and style. You can also use it as a blanket, stroller cover and more.
- Cons: Because Ponchos are made of high-quality ultra soft fabrics, they are a bit more expensive than other types of covers.
Similar to a Poncho, Shawl is usually much shorter and falls just below the tummy button. Loosely worn by a nursing mother over the shoulders or head, it doesn’t have any arm holes.
- Pros: Easier to hold and more lightweight than other types of covers.
- Cons: Difficult to keep in place due to the large neck hole. Leaves the skin exposed in front and back. Not so fashionable.
Sling hangs over one shoulder of the nursing mother and crosses her body to the opposite hip and around her back. Thus, the baby rests in the sash on mother’s tummy.
- Pros: Doesn’t fully cover the baby and therefore good for hot climates. Great for carrying newborns.
- Cons: Not specially designed but can be used for nursing. Difficult to put on and get situated. Need to wear a nursing blouse or button shirt while using it.
As you can see, each type of nursing cover has its own advantages and disadvantages. So, the type of nursing cover you should use totally depends on what level of comfort you need and how much coverage you want in public.
Why Should You Use a Nursing Cover?
A Nursing cover offers a myriad of benefits, especially when you’re out in public. Here are a few reasons why nursing covers are great for nursing mums:
Provides Comfort and Privacy:
When it comes to breastfeeding, about 60% mothers feel shy. Even, thinking of what people would think, they sometimes ignore the baby’s demand for breast milk in public places. In such a situation, a nursing cover makes you feel comfortable to feed your baby along with protecting your privacy.
You can Breastfeed at Your Convenience:
Suppose if your baby is crying for milk in a public place and you don’t have a nursing cover to cover up your breasts, then what will you do? Obviously, you’ll either try to find a suitable place to breastfeed or wait for the right time to feed your baby. But if you have a nursing cover, you’re able breastfeed your baby whenever and wherever he/she wants.
Prevents Your Baby from Getting Distracted in Public:
When you breastfeed your baby in public, chances are he/she will get distracted and consequently stop nursing. To minimize the chances of such distractions, nursing covers are made. Under a nursing cover, your baby is unable to see anything outside. Hence, he/she is able to nurse without any distractions.
Helps You Avoid the Hassle of Pumping:
Taking advantage of nursing covers, you can avoid the hassles of pumping sufficient milk before going out. Since a nursing cover allows you to breastfeed your baby anytime and anywhere, you don’t need to carry extra weight of filled milk bottles while you’re on the go.
Prevents Breast Infections:
Maybe you don’t know it yet but if you don’t empty your breast properly, you may experience different types of breast infections that can cause some serious health complications to both you and your infant. A nursing cover helps you properly empty your natural milk supply, no matter where you are at the time of lactation.
Things to Consider Before Buying a Nursing Cover
A good nursing cover is the key to secure, comfortable and successful breastfeeding in the public. Below are some tips to help you choose the right nursing cover:
Breathable and Soft Fabric:
This is the first and foremost thing you should keep in mind while purchasing a nursing cover. Your baby has a very soft and delicate skin, which is nearly five times thinner than your skin. If the nursing cover you’ve chosen to buy is not breathable and soft, your baby may feel uncomfortable as well as overheated during lactation. So, always go for a nursing cover made of high-quality, lightweight and soft fabric.
Will the nursing cover you’re going to buy provide you proper coverage for your breasts? Is it able to cover your front, back and sides? Will it also cover the top and sides of your breasts? Ask yourself such questions before making any nursing cover purchase decision. Make sure the nursing cover will provide you sufficient body coverage, especially if you want to stay comfortable in the public.
The next important thing to consider is the Flexibility of nursing cover. Is it easy to take on and off? Does it allow you to make proper eye contact with your baby? Does it have an adjustable neck strap? Is it easy to fold? All these things should come to your mind while buying a nursing cover for a better, safer and faster breastfeeding experience.
A good nursing cover is not limited to just cover up your breasts in public. Rather, you can use it in many different forms like a scarf, blanket, car seat or stroller canopy, baby carrier sun shade etc. So it would be much better if you buy a nursing cover that can be used for more than one purpose.
When you’re going to purchase a nursing cover, don’t forget to check wash care symbols available on it. This will help you easily understand how the nursing cover will best be cleaned. We suggest you to buy machine washable nursing covers because they will not only save your precious time, but also will reduce a lot of your washing efforts.
Fashionable yet Affordable:
As most of the mums today are fashion-conscious, they prefer to buy fashionable nursing covers that could be used well with their daily outfit. In the search for a beautiful and fashionable nursing cover, they sometimes forget about the most important buying factor i.e. affordability. Since fashionable doesn’t necessarily mean expensive, always try to buy a nursing cover that is affordable along with being fashionable.