Prior to having my daughter, I planned on exclusively pumping. To me, breastfeeding was something I didn’t want to do. Having my nipples touched really grosses me out, so I thought it would be a complete no for me. I ended up nursing the majority of the time and pumping the rest. Throughout my pumping journey, I have found pumping in public or around people when they visit to be very awkward for me, and pumping in the car to be near impossible. I searched and searched for something to help and I found the Freemie Cups.
I found the Freemie Cups on Amazon (click here to check them out). For just the cups that I could use with my Medela pump, it was $59.99 with Prime shipping. I quickly added these to my cart and purchased them. Two days later, they came to my front door and I excitedly opened them and got ready to try them out. I wanted to use them with my Medela Freestyle, which is a portable pump. I tried to hook up the Freemie Cups to my Freestyle and had no luck. Upon further investigation (aka watching 27 YouTube videos), I found out that for the Freestyle pump, you have to have extra parts that do not come with the Freemie Cups to hook them up. Luckily, I have a Medela Pump In Style, so I watched some videos and tried it that way.
The Freemie Cups come with 2 sets of flanges. One is 25 mm and one is 28 mm. I was quite nervous because usually I need a 21mm or 24mm, depending on the brand of flange. I went with the 25 mm flange. I followed the instructions that come with the portable pumps and hooked them up to my pump. Since the Medela Pump In Style is not portable, I had to try the Freemie Cups hooked up to the wall. This definitely wasn’t ideal, but when life gives ya a pump, you gotta make some milk.
I was wearing a nursing bra, so I put my cups directly into them. It is important to make sure that the hole of the cup is facing upwards, so to your face, otherwise the milk will spill out. It felt a little uncomfortable with the pressure of the cups against my boobs because I was so full. However, once I got the pump going, it wasn’t so bad. The suction from my Pump In Style to the Freemie’s wasn’t the greatest compared to what I was used to. Usually, I pump on a 4 or 5, but I had to turn my pump up to a 9 to get the same result with the Freemie’s.
For the milk output, I noticed my supply was a little low. I normally would pump 2-3 ounces total in a 20 minute session. During this first session with the Freemie’s, I had 1.5 ounces of milk in 25 minutes. Not ideal, but for the convenience of being able to pump on the go, I wasn’t too unhappy.
When the milk was coming out, the cups got a little foggy. This made is hard to see how much milk I was pumping and if the cups were getting full. In the first pumping session, I didn’t have much production, so it wasn’t a big deal. But, while driving, I have pumped 7-10 ounces, so the fog was quite annoying during those sessions. Luckily, I didn’t overfill, but I was nervous the whole time.
Freemie Cups With Medela Freestyle
Since the Freemie Cups didn’t come with a hookup for the Medela Freestyle, I had to order extra parts which added an extra price to these cups. When I first ordered and they were $60 for the cups, I was like “yesss, so cheap!” Then, I had to order $30 worth of extra parts. This made the total for the Freemie Cups $90. This still wasn’t a horrible price, but it wasn’t ideal. I love to save money, who doesn’t?
A negative of these extra parts is that they are constantly coming apart. During my first adventure using the Freemie cups, extra parts, and my Medela Freestyle, I was all hooked up, living the dream of pumping and jamming to some Cardi B, when my pump all of a sudden stopped pumping. I looked down and the middle barrier part disconnected from the tubing that hooked into the pump. I had to reconnect it 3 different times on a 40 minute drive. Not only is this inconvenient, but it also isn’t safe. HOWEVER, it was still more convenient than using the typical flanges and bottle pumping. On this trip, I pumped 8 ounces.
Pouring Milk + Cleaning
Pouring the milk into bottles is super easy. You just position the hole from the Freemie Cups over your bottle and tilt. I was nervous I would spill, but by being slow and careful is key. Pouring the milk into breastmilk bags to freeze is a different story, though. I recommend pouring into a bottle and then into a bag OR using a flange inside the bottle as a spout. It dirties another dish to clean, but it really makes the process a lot easier because let me tell ya, it’s not pretty to cry over spilt milk.
Cleaning the pump is a constant thing if you’re on the go. I would recommend getting some quick clean wipes for the instances you may not have a sink nearby. The way the Freemie Cups are made requires cleaning between each use. This can be a hassle if you are on a long road trip where there aren’t pit stops between pumps. Otherwise, it isn’t an issue.
Are the Freemie Cups worth the price?
YES. Compared to some other hands free pumps, the Freemie Cups are much more affordable. Although there are the cons of the foggy cups while pumping and the parts disconnecting, the pros definitely outweigh the cons. Convenience is key, especially with a little one, or multiple little ones in some of yalls cases! Pumping on your commute versus in the morning can allow you more time to sleep in, or just an extra pump session. I also think these would help with pumping at work. If you have a Spectra, I have read that it is unnoticeable when using the Freemie Cups. As you can see in the photo below, the cups are hidden but the tubing shows. I was wearing a dress, but I had I been wearing a t-shirt, I would have put the tubes underneath my top to conceal them completely. It is much better than big ol’ pumps hanging out, in my opinion!
What pump necessity did you use while pumping? Let me know below!
Buy the Freemie Cups here: http://bit.ly/2FHUdL1
Buy the parts here: http://bit.ly/2FHUwpi