NURSING NEED-TO-KNOW

Nursing can be complicated. What you wear shouldn’t be.

Nursing Essentials 101

WHERE TO START

Some women change a lot while nursing. Others don’t change that much at all. It’s hard to predict what your body will do, especially if this is your first pregnancy. Here are some tips to make sure you buy the right pieces at the right time.

Made to grow with you, for supreme comfort and added belly support. Buy in your third trimester or once you’ve sized out of your bras.

FIRST: NURSING CAMISOLE

Made to grow with you, for supreme comfort and added belly support. Buy in your third trimester or once you’ve sized out of your bras.

Designed to be forgiving, without any cumbersome clasps, this multipurpose bra is great in the beginning as your breasts adjust. Buy just before baby arrives.

NEXT: CROSSOVER + SLEEP BRA

Designed to be forgiving, without any cumbersome clasps, this multipurpose bra is great in the beginning as your breasts adjust. Buy just before baby arrives.

Designed to be forgiving, without any cumbersome clasps, this multipurpose bra is great in the beginning as your breasts adjust. Buy just before baby arrives.

LAST: DROP-CUP BRA

Wireless support, with one-handed clasps and an adjustable under-band that offers flexibility. Buy 4–6 weeks postpartum, once your milk settles in.

Designed to be forgiving, without any cumbersome clasps, this multipurpose bra is great in the beginning as your breasts adjust. Buy just before baby arrives.

ASK A PRO

If you need more support, get fitted for an underwire bra, which can relieve some of the neck and shoulder pain caused by nursing. Buy 4–6 weeks postpartum.

When Fashion Meets Function

We spent more than two years perfecting the fit and function of our nursing bras and camisoles. The result? Soft, wireless support in crossover and drop-cup styles that grow with you throughout pregnancy and postpartum.

When you’re on the go, our innovative maternity nursing clothes combine fashion with function. Think wraps with magnetic closures, zip-front dresses, and more. We can’t make time stand still, but we can make life a little easier, so you don’t miss a single precious moment.

Smooth, supportive silhouettes cut extra-long to cover and hug your belly. Available in drop-cup and crossover styles.

TANKS + CAMIS

Smooth, supportive silhouettes cut extra-long to cover and hug your belly. Available in drop-cup and crossover styles.

Supreme comfort and support, with ultra-soft fabric that contours to your body and returns to its original shape every time. Available in drop-cup, crossover and sleep styles.

BRAS

Supreme comfort and support, with ultra-soft fabric that contours to your body and returns to its original shape every time. Available in drop-cup, crossover and sleep styles.

Supreme comfort and support, with ultra-soft fabric that contours to your body and returns to its original shape every time. Available in drop-cup, crossover and sleep styles.

WRAPS

Innovative and discreet. Our wraps, kimonos and more are made with magnetic closures, perfect for nursing on the go.

Supreme comfort and support, with ultra-soft fabric that contours to your body and returns to its original shape every time. Available in drop-cup, crossover and sleep styles.

DRESSES + TOPS

Zip-front and pull-away, crossover styles add nursing functionality into your everyday wardrobe.

Learn More About Nursing

5 Things That Can Make All the Breastfeeding Difference

Jul 28, 2019 | Health

5 Things That Can Make All the Breastfeeding Difference

Here are 5 Tips that'll ease your mind when it comes to breastfeeding! Read on!

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What I Wish I Knew About Nursing

Jul 31, 2020 | Preparedness

What I Wish I Knew About Nursing

 We asked our team what they wish they knew about nursing before they had their babes.
Here's what they said.

Jennifer Howard
Jennifer Howard 
Head of Ecommerce

1. Breastfeeding is hard and people will tell you that you cannot do it.  You will be told that your nipples are not big enough. You will be told that you are not producing enough milk. And maybe some of that is true. But keep trying until you are satisfied. And then remember that you are a mama whether you breastfeed or not. Remember that skin to skin can be done at anytime. Take the time to bond while breastfeeding or not!

Tanya Wu
Tanya Wu
Merchandising Inventory Planner

2. Remember to try to enjoy your breastfeeding journey- no matter if it's joyful or painful. It is the path to bond with your lovely babes, and it's amazing to see them growing up in your arm!

Whitney Valentine
Whitney Valentine-Wafer
VP, Finance

3. It can be so hard at the start, and it isn’t natural and easy for everyone. We had 2 lactation consultants and a tongue tie before it clicked. 

If you pump, don’t feel bad if you are an exact producer - not everyone has a freezer full of milk. I stopped pumping at 12 months and had exactly 2 bags of frozen milk left. 

One morning you might realize you are no longer nursing a sweet tiny baby and instead nursing a toddler doing gymnastics

Jenna Arthur
Manager, Production

4. No one told me how hard it would be. I felt it was harder to nurse than be pregnant. It was exhausting and emotional. The first 2-4 weeks were by far the hardest but every week it got easier and easier. By 2 months in it was much easier and was one of the most rewarding things I felt I could do for my baby.

I do always tell my friends when they are in their first few weeks that sometimes breastfeeding might not be for you and thats ok. You need to do what is best for you and baby. However, as hard as it felt they all stuck it out and made it through.

Lastly 2nd time mom and soon to be 3rd I can say from my experience it does get easier with each child. You are more relaxed and equipped to handle the cluster feeding, your body and mind is more prepared than with your first.

 

 

Andrea Petrone
VP Operations

5. I wish someone told me how physically and mentally challenging it was. You are their lifeline, their source for food. That adds a tremendous amount of pressure. Trying to navigate this new skill, while also healing from major surgery was a HUGE feat!  I also had a hard time not knowing exactly how much she was consuming. Babies are smart and they will let you know when they are hungry. If you need help – ask for it! Lactation consultants are a great resource. If you need to supplement with formula – do it! Fed is best. You got this mama! 

Jessica
Jessica Jalowiec
Associate Director, Marketing

6. Our baby fell off the growth chart when she was 2 months old and it was heartbreaking. I felt like I failed her, and failed at being her Mom. In between all the clogged ducts, blebs (yes its a thing, google it...and I'm sorry for those who suffer with these), salt water soaks, nipple creams, tears, and everything else...we somehow found our way to exclusive breastfeeding (going on 7 months strong with a healthy baby who is now in the 50th percentile for weight). #happyhormonaltears

For all the new mamas out there, I am with you wholeheartedly.

1. Believe in the magic that is in the bodily form of lactation consultants. They are incredibly helpful.

2. Get a Hakka silicone pump.

3. Learn how to hand express...its daunting but its so helpful.

4. Call your mom friends who have walked the road before you. They are a wealth of knowledge and will be able to help you!

5. If you have a partner, believe in the power of their help. They should be armed with the knowledge to support you. Snacks, water, emotional understanding and empathy. 

Your body literally makes milk that keeps a tiny human alive.

Yep...we think you're doing pretty great, Mama.

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Going Back to Work: A Pumping FAQ

Sep 10, 2018 | Preparedness

Going Back to Work: A Pumping FAQ

By Michelle Clookie

It can seem like just as soon as you start to get the hang of new motherhood, it’s time to go back to work, which can present a whole new learning curve—especially if you’ve been breastfeeding and want to keep doing so. But with a little planning and know-how, you can totally do it mama! Pumping is a labor of love, and I think you are making a great choice, for both you and your baby—one that you will never regret. As a lactation consultant who’s supported numerous moms as they return to work, I’ve put together answers to the most frequently asked questions to help make it a little easier for you, too.

Q: How do I create a 'milk stash' before returning to work, and how much will I need? 

A: There is a common misconception that you need a huge “milk stash” saved for when you return to work. This can be stressful if you’re not pumping a ton beyond your baby’s immediate needs. Have no fear! That 100-ounce stash you may have seen recommend elsewhere online is not a necessity. Realistically you only need about two days’ worth of milk to be on the safe side. Though it depends on their weight, if your baby is 3 to 6 months old, they will most likely need 3 to 4 ounces every 2 to 3 hours. This means that if you’re away at work for eight hours, you will need about 24 ounces in your ‘stash’ to get you through that first day of work, with a little emergency backup. To prep, start pumping once a day after your first morning feed, about one month before returning to work (avoid pumping in the first 6 weeks postpartum so as not to mess with your milk supply). Don’t worry if you are only pumping 1 ounce at a time—save it in the fridge until you collect about 3 to 4 ounces then pop it in the freezer!

Q: How do I create a pumping schedule?

A: This can seem daunting, but it’s actually very simple. If your baby is eating every 2 to 3 hours, pump every 2 to 3 hours. You don’t need to pump at the same time your baby eats every day—if your baby eats at 9:30 a.m. and you can’t get out of a meeting until 10:30 a.m., that’s ok. The same goes if your pumping times change based on your day’s work schedule—don’t stress! Here’s the best rule of thumb to keep in mind: If baby is eating three times while away from you, try and get three pumping sessions in. If you are making way more milk than baby needs, and freezing milk that is not being used, you can try cutting out a pumping session, just be careful to assess your supply. If you notice a dip, add that pumping session back in.

 Q: Do I freeze all my milk every time I come home? 

A: The short answer is no! The long answer is that fresh breast milk contains the most valuable nutrients, so feed your baby fresh milk first. On Monday (or your first day of work for the week) feed your baby the oldest milk in the fridge. On Tuesday offer them Monday’s pumped milk (no need to freeze), on Wednesday offer Tuesday’s pumped milk (no need to freeze), and so on. On Friday (or your last day of work for the week), put that pumped milk in the freezer. Voila, you now have a pro-pumping-breastfeeding-badass-mama schedule!

 Q: How do I clean my pump and store my milk at work?

A: Washing pump parts can be a pain. Nobody wants to clean a pump more than once a day, so my recommendation is to throw the milk and all the pumping parts in the fridge after you are done pumping. This means you only need to wash your pumping parts when you get home at night. When it comes to storing, have milk storage bags with you and place the full ones in the fridge at work towards the back. Depending on the length of your commute, you may want to bring a small, insulated lunch bag for transporting your milk home, but if it’s not a long trip or drive, you can do without. Keep things as simple as possible! For more detailed milk storage guidelines, click here.

Q: My baby's caregiver is asking for more milk? How much milk does my baby need? 

A: The amount of milk a baby needs is based on their age and their weight. In the United States moms typically return to work between 3 and 6 months postpartum, which means babies that age need about 3 to 4 ounces per feed. Breastfed babies tend to top off at 4 ounces around 5 to 6 months of age, and rarely need more than that at one feeding. Consider visiting a breastfeeding support group or a lactation consultant in your area to get your baby’s accurate weight, a weighted feed, and to discuss the amount needed for your baby. Sometimes babies take milk faster from a bottle than they do from the breast, which can lead to that baby’s tummy not having enough time to tell its brain that they are full. To prevent this from happening, keep your bottle nipple at a size 1 (rarely do breastfed babies need to go above this level).

Another helpful tip for preventing baby from being overfed with the bottle is to practice paced bottle feeding, which more closely mimics breastfeeding. Find more information about it here. Don’t be afraid to advocate for this even when working with seasoned caregivers and daycare centers!

Q: What are my rights as a working mom? 

A: Regulations vary from state to state, but most workplaces are required to be supportive of new moms and their need to pump, including service industry jobs. If your company has a Human Resources department, set up a meeting with an HR representative and your manager (or only your manager if there is no dedicated HR department) to discuss how often you’ll need to pump, to designate a private space where you can do so as well as where you can store your pumped milk if a break room fridge is not available. For more information about your working mama rights, visit the Thrive Momma resources page here.


For more information on going back to work, if you have questions, or if you just need to be reminded that you are capable of doing hard things, feel free to email me at hello@michelleclookie.co. Also, visit my website for upcoming online classes that cover this topic!


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