A Review of the Elvie Pump
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I am fortunate to have insurance that allows me to obtain an electric breast pump free of cost to me. However, when I found myself back at work and in meetings that would last all day, pumping at work soon became a challenge. I was very determined to make breastfeeding work this time and seriously began considering purchasing a portable pump. After much research, I found two wearable breast pumps in today’s market: the Willow and the Elvie. After much research, I decided to opt for the Elvie.
Price: $279 for a single pump, $499 for two pumps
Worth it for traveling and working moms or moms who just want the convenience of not being tied to the wall by their electric pumps.
- Performance Level: Great. I’m able to express milk just as much or an ounce less than my Spectra S2 pump. I do notice that if I go too long in-between pumping sessions (such as overnight), it doesn’t completely empty my breast. How do I know? By the end of the session, I notice that my milk still has a bluish tint to it telling me it hasn’t completely removed my hind milk as efficiently as my electric breast pump has. It does well during the day when I go 2-4 hours between pumping sessions.
- Comfort Level: Great (with the right shield/flange). Tugging is so gentle that it surprises me how much milk has been expressed.
- Noise Level: Quiet
- Controls: Vacuum strength can be controlled manually or by your phone.
- Size: Truly small and fits in your bra. Smaller than any wearable pump in today’s market.
- Battery life: May last 4 pump sessions at 20 minutes per session. Chargeable via USB. It takes 1-2 hours to get a full charge.
- Breast Shield/Flange Size: When you purchase the pump, it comes with a 24 mm and a 28 mm breast shield. A pack of two 21 mm breast shield is available for purchase.
- HSA and FSA Eligible
- Noise Level: First few letdowns, you can hear your milk drop down making a splashing sound into the container. Tip: First pumps and letdowns, do it in privacy before going into the public. Sometimes, a loud noise can be heard (sounds like a cavitating pump) if the letdown valve backs up your milk. Fix: Re-adjust the position of the breast shield/flange or the whole pump. Make sure the nipple is properly positioned.
- Controls: If controlling vacuum strength through your phone, the pump needs to be close to the phone to pair the device. Sometimes, the app cannot detect the pump. I suspect it to be a proximity issue to the device.
- Cleaning: Pump parts come in 5 pieces. Washing can be a chore, but the convenience of portable pumping outweighs this.
- Sterilization: I’ve read (not tried) that sterilizing in steam sterilizer systems can cause deformity to the parts. I did have some luck with microwave steam sterilizers. I use the Philips AVENT Microwave Steam Sterilizer. For smaller microwaves, I use sterilizer bags like the Munchkin Latch Microwave Sterilize Bags. I run mine for 2 minutes. The official Elvie website recommends boiling your pump parts, but honestly, I just don’t have time for that.
Cost Saving Tip:
Being the cost efficient mom that I am, I decided to invest in only one pump. I had my reservations because 1) it was an additional investment for me when I already have two electric breast pumps and 2) these pumps are first generation pumps and wary about the bugs that come with first generation technology. So, what do I do? I purchased breast shells through Amazon. I insert the breast shell on the opposite breast so I can catch the milk that lets down while I’m pumping – which can be up to an ounce per pump. That adds up!
I recommend the pump. The reasons why we make these purchases are very personal. Mine was so that I can express milk in my packed day… A commitment I made to continue to provide breast milk for baby even after I’ve returned to work. Now that you know what to expect, I hope you can make an informed decision. Every person’s experience is different. Do share yours!
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. This means that there are product links in this article. If you decide to purchase using these links, it should be at no additional cost to you. None of the product recommendations here are sponsored.