Whether you are an expectant mom or a parent to several kids, you do everything for your children. You pick out the safest car seat, you read all of the parenting books, and you buy them cute and stylish clothes that make them look adorable. (Well, until you have three kids like me and then it’s all hand-me-downs). But what about baby bottles? What happens if the expensive and fancy bottles that you buy spill all over your new car seat and leave the cute clothes soaked with milk? It will leave you wanting to throw the parenting book against the wall in frustration.
There are lots of different bottles on the market, but there are two brands, Tommee Tippee and Avent that are both extremely popular with parents today. Which one really works best? In my opinion, I think that the Avent bottles are better. BUT in all honesty, bottles are really about trial and error for each baby. Your first child may love one brand and your second absolutely hate it. This article spills the details about each bottle and why I think that Avent bottles are better.
Tommee Tippee Bottles
These bottles seem to be popular with everyone that I know. The brand markets that there is a “just like mom” feel to the nipples so that babies are able to continue to breastfeed even after taking a bottle. Tommee Tippee makes several different types of bottles with special claims.
- Closer to Nature– These bottles are shaped like a breast with a nipple just like moms.
- Ultra– The off center nipple takes a breast like shape.
- Anti-colic– A unique venting system that uses a wand to decrease the air in the milk.
- Added Cereal– This bottle is for thicker milk (like Enfamil AR) or for formula that has rice added to it. It has a special Y cut nipple that decreases clumping.
- First Feed– This bottle is intended for preemies or newborns. It has an extra slow flow nipple.
- Glass Bottle– This eco-friendly option is available and uses the Closer to Nature nipples.
The Avent bottles are also popular, but I don’t seem to hear people talk about them as much. Maybe it’s because they have been around longer and the name isn’t as fun to say. Who knows? I have several friends that swear by them and won’t use anything else. Just like the other brand, Avent has a few different bottles for different needs.
- Natural Baby Bottle– The soft and flexible nipple has a petal design to mimic a breast.
- Avent Natural Glass– These eco-friendly bottles are heat resistant and easy to sterilize.
- Avent Anti-colic Bottles– The special valve allows air into the bottle but not out into your baby’s tummy. The nipple flows at your baby’s pace to decrease overeating.
Please be advised not to count too much on these reviews. Many reviews that are online were written in exchange for a free product. Although some parents may be honest, I don’t think that I would rely on those people’s opinions very much! Plus, each different bottle and different size package is rated separately, so it isn’t very accurate.
Tommee Tippee reviews:
- 4.5/5 Stars with 863 reviews on Amazon
- 4.9/5 Stars with 129 reviews on Target
- 4.5/5 Stars with 630 reviews on Amazon
- 4/5 Stars with 208 reviews on Target
So what are the good, bad, and ugly details about these bottles?
Both of these brands of bottles are relatively the same price. There are always deals and sales that are going on (shout out to my budget mommas!) whether you shop online or in a store, so price shouldn’t really be that big of a deciding factor.
Neither bottle is perfect when it comes to cleaning.
The Avent Anti-colic bottles are easier to clean than the Tommee Tippee Anti-colic ones because there aren’t as many pieces that you have to deal with. The Tommee Tippee Anti- Colic bottles have A LOT of parts to clean. Plus, if you lose one small part to them, then the entire system no longer works.
It is hard to get the Tommee Tippee bottles perfectly clean and get all of the bacteria out. Sterilizing bottles is always great, but that takes even more time and energy, which are very precious for new moms.
The Avent bottles can get milk trapped in the top of the bottle and the nipple and it is very hard to clean out.
I’m just going to say it. Both of these bottles leak. BUT WAIT. The thing is that they both have tricky lids that make closing them a pain. And that saying “No use crying over spilt milk” is not true. (Especially when you worked hard to pump that liquid gold.) Also, having to change your baby after every feeding is a pain the butt!
For the Tommee Tippee bottles, there is a line that you have to match up exactly to have a correct seal to prevent leaking. This is very difficult to do when you have a hungry baby, or if it is in the middle of the night and you can barely open your eyes to see anything. Also, you have to tighten it so much that opening a bottle with one hand is nearly impossible.
The Avent bottles are also difficult to screw on correctly. Just like the others, they leak if the lid is not on perfectly. They can also be hard to open too, especially with one hand or if your hands are wet.
Both brands of bottles have lots of different sizes and packs available for purchase, so you can find exactly what you need for your baby. The nipples are available in different flow speeds, which is great for a growing baby.
All of the bottles are easy to find in stores as well as online. They can be added to registries at various stores too, which is always great!
The like or dislike of the size of the bottle is going to depend on the individual parent’s opinion. I like a bulkier bottle with a wider mouth because I can pour things into them easier without spilling. However, some parents prefer a less bulky bottle. Go look at them in a store and see how they fit in your hand and how you like each of them.
Both of the bottles are cute and they both come in solid colors too, not just clear. They are actually pretty nice looking and they don’t have super tacky designs.
Tommee Tippee bottles and Avent bottles both have a problem with the measurement numbers fading. This can make it difficult to measure out formula or calculate how much your baby has drank for that feeding.
The Tommee Tippee bottles are hard to empty, and your baby has to almost be reclining completely to get everything out. Wasting just half of an ounce of hard earned breastmilk or expensive formula can be heartbreaking!
Both of the bottles are supposed to mimic a mother’s breast. This is great, but it does also come with downfalls.
For the Tommee Tippee nipples, the flexible nipple is just too flexible and makes a mess. It can collapse at times, which frustrates your hungry baby. Sometimes moving up a flow rate can help that since the collapsing means that your baby must be sucking pretty hard, but not always.
The Avent bottles also have a problem with the flexibility of the nipple causing it to collapse. Also, the nipples on these bottles can be fragile and tear.
For the Tommee Tippee brand, not all of the bottles and the nipples are compatible with each other, which can be frustrating. The Ultra and Anti-Colic nipples only work with those exact bottles. If you stick with one type of bottle, that won’t be a problem for you, but if you do change as your baby changes, you’ll need to purchase more.
Unfortunately, when it comes to baby bottles, trial and error seems to be the best way to go about it. I know that isn’t what you wanted to hear, but it is the truth. Although I do recommend the Avent bottles over the Tommee Tippee bottles, the Nuk bottles were the ones that my son actually loved.
There were definitely downsides to the Nuk bottles, but my son loved them and he didn’t reject the nipple or have a problem breastfeeding while using them. We never had a problem with the nipple collapsing, or the bottle leaking. They were kind of tacky looking though, with elephants and other designs on them. The nipples were really hard to clean and I had to sterilize them often. They are pretty cheap bottles too, which is always a plus for me.
When you are purchasing bottles or making your registry, only buy 1 or 2 of each bottle until you know exactly what your baby will like. You can read all of the reviews in the world and pick the best bottle that they make, but ultimately it is up to your baby.