Breast Pump Comparison: Which Medela is for You?

It can be hard to decide which breast pump may be the best fit for you and your breastfeeding goals. Here are some important questions to consider.

Ready to Do Your Breast Pump Comparison and Find Yours?

Understanding Medela Breast Pumps and Their Features and Benefits

As the #1 physician recommended breast pump brand*, we are proud to offer new and expectant mothers a diverse range of manual and electric breast pumps designed to meet their unique needs and individual lifestyles. With a full suite of manual, single electric, and double electric breast pumps to choose from, it can be challenging – particularly if you are a first-time mom – to decide which breast pump may be the best fit for you and your breastfeeding goals. Here are some important questions to consider when reviewing our breast pump comparison below and when ultimately making your final decision on which breast pump is right for you:

  • How soon are you planning to return to work after giving birth, and do you intend to continue breast milk feeding after your maternity leave is over?

  • How active is your lifestyle? Do you travel often, or do you plan to mostly stay home after your little one arrives? Will you need to pump while on the go or away from home?

  • How busy are you, even while at home? Is multitasking an important aspect of your day, or are you in and out of the house often? Do you have other kids that you also look after?

Like most new or expectant moms, research and due diligence is completely normal when bringing new products into your home – especially those that will affect how you feed, nourish, and care for your baby. Each Medela breast pump is carefully crafted with the quality, materials, and workmanship that moms like you expect from our brand while offering unique features and benefits to help you seamlessly provide breast milk to your little one for as long as you choose – from hospital to home through going back to work and beyond.

Our manual breast pumps and electric breast pumps are as unique as you. Some moms prefer the lightweight, easy mobility of Freestyle Flex™, while others like the connected innovation of Sonata® or the classic on-the-go ability and research-based technology of Pump in Style® with MaxFlow™ Technology. Find out more to identify the pump that might work best for you in our breast pump comparison below.

The Ultimate Breast Pump Comparison

Finding the Medela Pump that Best Fits You and Your Unique Life

Pump in Style with MaxFlow Technology:

  • Hospital performance (inspired by our Symphony®) in a highly effective, yet easy to use, personal use breast pump
  • Efficient milk expression and clinically proven to increase milk volume by 11.8%^^^
  • Advanced motor generates vacuum with MaxFlow micro-vibrations for optimal breast milk expression and designed with 2-Phase Expression Technology to mimic your baby’s natural suckling rhythms
  • Closed system prevents milk from entering the tubing and fewer parts means easy to use and simple cleaning and assembly
  • On-the-go portability includes everything needed to pump at home or away, including a cooler bag, carrying bag, and battery pack for convenient pumping when away from a power source
  • Intuitive control through combined speed and vacuum settings, pre-programmed based on our extensive breastfeeding and pumping research

Pump in Style Advanced:

  • #1 breast pump among moms** and the BabyCenter Moms’ Pick Winner since 2014***
  • Double electric breast pump designed for moms who pump multiple times per day
  • Designed for uncomplicated portability and comes with your choice of discreet microfiber tote bag, Metro Bag™, or backpack for easy carrying and organization of breast pump parts and accessories
  • Battery pack included for simplified pumping anywhere, anytime
  • Also includes cooler bag with ice pack, power adaptor, breast milk bottles and lids, and double pumping kit with PersonalFit™ breast shields

Freestyle Flex:

  • Lightweight, easy to carry, and fits in the palm of your hand weighing in at less than 1 pound; designed for your active, busy lifestyle
  • Closed system with Overflow Protection means your milk is prevented from entering the tubing and motor
  • Built-in, USB-chargeable battery with 2-hour battery life between charges allows for convenient pumping wherever you are (only use the power adaptor and cable that came with your breast pump!)
  • Backlit touchscreen for easy pumping at night
  • Breast pump comes with portable microfiber carry bag, 2 sets of PersonalFit Flex breast shields and connectors, breast milk bottles and lids, cooler bag and cooling element, and double pumping kit
  • Includes free trial to 24/7 LC™, providing you with anytime access to lactation consultants right from your phone

Symphony PLUS®:

  • #1 breast pump brand used in hospitals^
  • Hospital-grade (multi-user) breast pump, with kit separate from the pumping mechanism and protected from overflow by a specially-engineered membrane
  • Designed to initiate, build, and maintain breast milk supply, even in special situations where direct nursing is not possible or you are separated from your baby for any length of time
  • Developed with input from pumping moms and made for exceptional comfort through an individually-adjustable vacuum and convenient let-down button
  • Easy switching between single and double pumping as desired, backed by two independent membrane units
  • Includes program card, Quick Start card, container stand, and card/cord protector
  • Rental options also available – see MedelaLocator.com for more information and to find rental options near you

Sonata:

  • Awarded 2018 Best Breast Pump by Parents Magazine
  • Double electric, daily-use breast pump for moms who pump multiple times per day
  • Smart connectivity to the MyMedela® app for easy tracking of your pumping sessions and baby’s overall development, backed by a touchscreen display and two clinically-tested pumping rhythms for optimal efficiency
  • Hospital performance inspired by Symphony® in a thoughtfully-designed personal use pump; rechargeable lithium-ion battery provides convenient, portable pumping anytime and anywhere while eliminating the need for an outlet
  • Whisper-quiet for discreet pumping – day or night, at home or away – that won’t disturb your little one or other family members
  • Includes carrying bag, rechargeable battery, power adaptor, double pumping kit with two sets of PersonalFit breast shields, breast milk bottles and lids, cooler bag with ice pack, and two bottle stands

Swing®:

  • Single electric, occasional-use breast pump for moms who wish to collect and store breast milk complementary to nursing their baby
  • Compact, lightweight motor fits easily and discreetly into your purse, tote bag, or backpack
  • Comes with AC adaptor and battery power options for easy mobility and convenient pumping anywhere
  • Easy-to-use vacuum controls so you can always choose your most comfortable settings
  • Includes discreet drawstring carrying bag, single pumping kit with PersonalFit breast shields, breast milk bottles and lids, power adaptor, bottle stand, and shoulder/neck strap

Harmony®:

  • Best-selling manual breast pump^^
  • Hand-powered breast pump designed for occasional use, short periods away from your baby, or as a back-up supplement to nursing and/or pumping with a double electric breast pump
  • Soft touch swivel handle for enhanced ease of use and a comfortable grip
  • Compact mobile breast pump conveniently fits into your purse, breast pump bag, or diaper bag and is easily accessible when you need it most
  • Pump directly into breast milk bottles for simplified pumping, storing, and feeding using the same Medela containers
  • Includes single pumping kit with PersonalFit Flex™ breast shields, breast milk bottles with lids, and bottle stand to help prevent unexpected spills

Additionally, all Medela breast pumps equipped with our patented, research-based 2-Phase Expression® technology, which is shown to express more milk in less time when double pumping (compared to single pumping). This is because our 2-Phase Expression technology closely mimics a baby’s natural nursing rhythm to enhance both milk flow and the volume of milk expressed while pumping.

All Medela breast pumps adhere to high quality standards and are engineered with a protective barrier located at either the breast shield connector or at the pump. This flexible membrane prevents milk from entering other areas of your breast pump and is referred to as Overflow Protection or, more commonly, a closed system. Learn more about open and closed system breast pumps and how Medela’s built-in protection blocks milk from entering your pump’s tubing and/or motor at MedelaDifference.com. Additionally, all Medela breast pump parts, breast milk bottles, and accessories that come in contact with breast milk are – and have always been – made without BPA so you can feed your little one with the peace of mind you deserve.

Obtaining Your Medela Breast Pump

Once your breast pump comparison is completed and you are set on a pump of choice, it’s important to order it in advance of your expected delivery date. This provides ample time to familiarize yourself with your breast pump, so you can begin confidently and regularly pumping soon after initiation. The timing of how soon you can order your breast pump is dependent upon your health insurance coverage, though we can send you a friendly reminder when it’s time to order – simply confirm your insurance-covered breast pump eligibility, and we’ll take it from there.

Additionally, breast pumps vary significantly in price. That’s another reason why we always advise checking your eligibility through your health insurance plan, as you may qualify for a discounted breast pump. You may be able to order your preferred breast pump directly through us, or we can connect you with one of our qualified suppliers. Visit MedelaDelivers.com today to see what’s covered under your health insurance and feel free to take a look our FAQs if you have any questions – We look forward to helping you find and receive the best breast pump for your needs!

*IQVIA ProVoice Survey; September 2019 - August 2020
**Medela Tracker Study 2018, Wave 7. Medela Global Brand Assessment Study 2017
***BabyCenter Mom’s Pick Awards, 2014-2018
^Medela Tracker Study 2018, Wave 7
^^2011 Medela Tracker Study
^^^Clinical studies, PersonalFit Plus compared to PersonalFit data on file