Pumping and Milk Storage


Many mamas have a love-hate relationship with the breast pump. While it may not be as fun as feeding the baby (it is a machine after all), it’s a great tool for helping build supply, preparing for a night out, returning to work or to just to give mamas a break!

Hospital Grade Pumps vs Personal Pumps

Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, your insurance company is required to cover the cost of a breast pump.

Hospital Grade Pumps - Best for maintaining or building a supply if baby is having trouble nursing in the early days or you are dealing with low supply. (These are available to rent from the mama ‘hood for $65/month or $4/day. We will prorate if it’s beneficial for you).

Personal Pumps -  Best for pumping for the occasional bottle or for when you return to work.

How much milk will my baby need?

Day 1: 5-7mls per feeding

Day 3: Approximately 30mls per feeding

Week 1: 45-60mls (1.5-2 ounces) per feeding

Week 2+: 2-4 ounces per feeding

Unlike formula, which has a static calorie formulation, your breastmilk changes with your baby’s needs & age. Consequently, rarely will you baby ever need more than 4oz per feeding.

Building a Stash

In the early days, don’t worry about building up a stash - feed the baby what you pump when you need it.

If you are returning to work, start to think about building a stash about a month before you go back. You only need to store 1 or 2 days worth.

Start with pumping 1x/day.  Most mamas find that pumping after that first morning feed works well.  To calculate how much you need to pump: babies need approximately 1oz for every hour mom is gone. For example - if you feed at 6am and are gone until 6pm - baby needs 12 oz plus a little extra = 4 (3oz) bottles + 2 (1oz) snacks.

Storage Guidelines

Follow the “Rule of 8s”:

  • 8 hours at room temperature

  • 8 days in the fridge

  • 8-12 months in the freezer

Note: These guidelines are for a healthy, term baby. For ill or early term, please follow your pediatrician’s guidelines.

Milk Storage

Breast milk may be stored either in bags or in special bottles that can be used for both storage and freezing. It is best to store milk in feeding-sized quantities, about 2-3 ounces to start since you don’t want to thaw out more milk than your baby will take in 24 hours. After you have a sense of how much your baby takes from a bottle, you can freeze milk in that quantity.

Milk State Temperature Safe Storage Time
Freshly expressed breast milk Room Temperature (65-75°F) 8 hours
Freshly expressed breast milk Insulated cooler (below 60°F) 24 hours
Freshly expressed breast milk Refrigerator (at or below 40°F) 8 days
Thawed Milk Refrigerator (at or below 40°F) 24 hours
Frozen Milk Freezer (0°F) 8-12 months

Product Resources at the 'hood

Order online or stop by our Retail Store for one-on-one help from our expert Retail Mavens. Some of the products we recommend for help with pumping and milk storage are:

  • Simple Wishes hands free pumping bra
  • Hospital Grade Pump Rental available for $65/month or $4/day - Call 303-643-5662
  • Medela milk storage bags
  • Pumpin Pals flanges for breast pumps
  • Milkies Milk Savers
  • Medela Accessories 

Classes and Groups:

Breastfeeding Group - led by one of our expert IBCLCs, this group is for any mama who wants help with breastfeeding, has questions, or just wants to come for support. We will do a pre and post-feed weight for baby. 

  • Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays at 1:00pm
  • Fridays at 3:30pm

Postpartum Support Group - If you are a mama to a baby - this group is for you. This is a time to get out of the house, connect with other mamas, and discuss the joys and challenges of mama ‘hood. This group is completely open and non-judgmental. Come for advice, support, to laugh, or just to get out of the house. 

  • Wednesdays at 1:00pm

Private Consults: Our expert lactation team is thrilled to work with moms, babies, and families to meet their breastfeeding goals through in-office, in-home lactation or Skype consults. To schedule a consult, call the front desk at 303.643.5662 or text the Boob Hotline at 303.887.9161