Note: There is no one universal “best,” especially when it comes to parenting. These are “The Best Nipple Creams” based on Also Mom's strict criteria, detailed here.
We have one clear favorite in the nipple cream category, and that’s Motherlove Nipple Cream. Realistically, you’ll only go through one, maybe two containers of this goop before you don’t need it anymore, so it’s worth it to splurge on the good stuff and pass on other options. But here are some of the other options, in case you feel like you need a choice.
These are the best nipple creams (all rated a wonderful 1 on the EWG scale)…
- Motherlove Nipple Cream ($10.40/1oz) – This stuff works. It's made with 100% organic ingredients, which is awesome, since your baby will definitely be ingesting a little bit of it. It is scent free, though those with extra sensitive noses may be able to pick up a little eau-de-something (calendula flower maybe?). This is our hands down favorite nipple cream, and considering you'll only need one jar (maybe two if you're a liberal slather-er), it's worth the extra few bucks.
- Earth Mama Organics Nipple Butter ($8.99/1oz) – Less expensive than MotherLove with similar main ingredients, Earth Mama Organics Nipple Butter is also 100% organic. It also has a pleasant but present scent, which some like and others don't prefer.
- Bamboobies Boob-Ease Organic Nipple Balm ($12.99/1oz) – Made with the exact same organic ingredients as MotherLove, but 25% more expensive.
- Honest Co Organic Nipple Balm ($13.95/1oz) – An all-organic nipple balm that is nearly 40% more expensive than MotherLove, and includes a few ingredients that give it a stronger (albeit pleasant) scent. Totally fine, but we wouldn’t choose it.
- Organic Coconut Oil (~$0.50/oz) – On a tight budget? Organic coconut oil will work as nipple balm in a pinch! (Hippies have said it for ages, but coconut oil really is magical.)
What's the Deal with Nipple Balm Anyway?
Lactation consultants maintain that if breastfeeding hurts, then something is amiss. And while we’ll concede that this is one totally plausible explanation for why breastfeeding might hurt, here’s the thing– there is a tiny human, who has never eaten before, sucking on your nipples, which have never fed a tiny human before (or haven’t for a while if it’s not your first rodeo). Nipples are sensitive. They are going to get sore, just like your soft hands would get sore if all of a sudden you had to swing hammers for a living.
That’s where nipple balm comes in. Use that stuff like your life depends on it. Slather it on after every feeding, and things will ease up in about a month of so. It’s not forever!
We prefer 100% organic nipple butter since your newborn will inevitably be ingesting small amounts of this stuff. This is another reason we say “no thanks” to lanolin-based creams, which is derived through a chemical process that doesn’t make us super comfortable. Many nurses swear by lanolin, but we’d rather spend an extra $5 and get something that works just as well without possible impurities.
By the way, this stuff will get everywhere. To protect your bras and tops, stick some nursing pads over the top of your well-balmed nips. Those pads will also double as protection against leaky milk stains. You're welcome.
Featured image courtesy of @sabrinagrantn.