If you choose to breastfeed your baby, or even if you end up bottle feeding, a nursing pillow is something you are definitely going to want to have. Unless, of course, you like having your baby's heavy head up against one arm with no support for long periods of time. I guess that's one way to build up some arm muscles. But if toning up isn't on your to-do at 2AM, you'll want to use a nursing pillow.
Boppy Pillow | $40 on Average
Hands down, the most well known nursing pillow in existance, and probably the most used, is the Boppy Pillow. I cannot even remember the last time I went to a baby shower and one was not on the mother's registry. It's both affordable and functional, as well as easy to come by (Target, WalMart, Amazon, consignment shops and sales, etc.). It also serves many functions!
Pros: Not only does it properly prop your baby for nursing, you can also use it to prop your baby to just chill out with you on the floor. It can assist in sitting in those early, wobbly days. It can also be used for that oh-so-important Tummy Time that everyone always talks about. And it works for all of those things well.
Cons: Here's my one issue with the Boppy Pillow: there is not enough padding at the ends! You know, the part that is designed to go under your arm. If you are just sitting on a couch those go down too low and makes it almost worthless for feeding a small baby (like a newborn). I had to prop pillows under mine to get it to the height I needed to nurse Bear in the beginning. It was annoying enough that I actually stopped using it for a while. But by 5 months I had rediscovered it and now it's my go-to.
My Brest Friend | $50 on Average
My Brest Friend Pillow. This pillow doesn't try to just be a Boppy Pillow knock-off, it's completely different in design and even a bit in function.
Pros: The My Brest Friend Pillow wraps around your body and includes a supportive back pillow for mom. This is great because it not only gives you 360 degree support, but you also can wear it while standing, so if you need some added help with holding baby, or just want to nurse comfortably while standing for whatever reason, you can. There are also well placed little bumps that help with support even more. When sitting down I could nurse hands-free thanks to those little bumps. The pocket in the front is also extremely handy for storing things like pacifiers and nipple shields, should you use those. When my son was a newborn I quickly fell in love with this pillow and used it exclusively.
Cons: It's pretty much just a nursing pillow. It's not really designed in a way that would allow it to be used for tummy time or support during sitting. Also, it's pretty big and bulky so it takes up a lot of space. I found it to be a lot hard to shove into a suitcase than The Boppy, although I could clip it onto my luggage and still use it during flights. However, due to its bulkiness, by the time my son was 5 months I had stopped using it at all, except for flights.
Blessed Nest Nursing Pillow | $95 on Average
Blessed Nest Nursing Pillow. I won one of these on a giveaway (I mean, my frugal self wouldn't DREAM of spending that sort of money on a nursing pillow), and it remains, to date, one of the best things I've ever won on a giveaway. I use this pillow for so many random things, including, occasionally, nursing.
Pros: The pillow is filled with buckwheat hulls which allows you to shape it however you need it to be shaped. Need more support on the head? Move some hulls up that way! Need more support by your left arm? Move them hulls! It's also American made, organic, and the buckwheat hulls come from a domestic farm. So every penny of your money is going to a US company. That's pretty awesome! This pillow also has so many other uses! I would put it between my legs during pregnancy to get the support I needed to be comfortable. You can prop baby on it and it also helps with sitting. Lately I've been shoving it in the crack between my bed and the wall so Bear doesn't fall through. It's great for nesting the remote on so you don't lose it, too. :)
Cons: The price, for sure. That's a steep price to pay for a nesting pillow, although it's well worth the price. It's also really heavy, like twice the weight of the Boppy and the My Brest Friend pillows, so it's not easy to travel with. I've never used this pillow as my main go-to nursing pillow, usually only reaching for it when my other pillows were in the other room or something. But as far as all three pillows go, this one has been used the most for other things.
So... This or That (or That)?
Ugh, I have to pick just one? Let me just say that I am happy that I have all three. At one time or another, they have all been invaluable to making my life a little bit easier. But if I HAVE to pick just one, I'd have to go with the Boppy Pillow. It's the most affordable and functional and it's not my favorite gift to give to a mom-to-be. But seriously, all three are fabulous.