July 20, 2012 12:00 AM by Beth Starkey
I was very excited to try the Simplisse Breast Pump and when it arrived I couldn’t open the box fast enough. The Simplisse Double Electric Breast Pump comes neatly packed in a large box and includes everything you need for pumping, plus 4 collection bottles, a small cooler, 2 gel freezer packs and 4 breast pads. It all comes packed in a cute nylon over-the-shoulder purse style bag.The breast pump comes fully assembled but must be sterilized before using. Before taking it apart and washing it, I followed the instruction booklet to familiarize myself with how all the pieces fit together. The instructions were easy to follow with photos that corresponded with each step of the instructions.After a wash with hot soapy water, a quick dry on the bottle drying rack, I was ready for my first session with the Simplisse Breast Pump. The pump has 2 different knobs, one for suction type and another for strength of the suction. I followed the instruction booklet’s recommendation and started on suction type “C” and Level 2 for suction strength.I pressed the button, turned it on and waited. Along with some loud noise, I didn’t feel much. In fact I had to check and see if was working. The silicone breast cups felt much too comfortable for a breast pump and I could barely feel any suction. Previously I had been using a Medela suction style pump for the past 3 weeks since my daughter’s birth. With the Medela pump I was used to super rough suction which pulled my nipples so hard that they looked like golf pencils and left my breasts sore and tender after each pumping session. I assumed that because I wasn’t in pain and my nipples had their natural shape, that the Simplisse pump must not be turned on high enough. I cranked both knobs up to the highest levels and waited. Still no pain or pencil nipples. What was going on?The Simplisse pump works differently than most other styles of pumps. The large silicone cups (we’re talking the size of a tea-cup saucer) actually they are more like domes, fit around your breast. The gently rest a few inches away from your nipple and you can barely feel the domes as the pumping begins. The pumping mechanism on this breast pump uses compression technology which gently extracts the milk from the breasts. The breast domes (or cups as the company refers to them) are double layered which creates a unique type of suction. This suction mimics the way a baby uses it tounge to suck and bring down ‘high milk’.
Let’s get back to the first time I used the pump. It felt super comfortable and I had to check and double check to see if it was working. There was no pinching or tugging, it was compeltely painless. However, I only pumped 20 mls of milk. This was a far cry from the 3 oz that my old suction style pump pummels out of me. During my first day with the Simplisse pump, I kept pumping between feeds and through the night and still had only 20 mls per pump to show for it. The next day I pumped 50 mls. each time I pumped. An increase, but not much. I was a bit frustrated with the transition to this new style of pump, but the company assured me that transitioning from suction type pump to Simplisse can take time, so I decided to stick with it. I really wanted to be able to have a comfortable pumping experience for the next 6-8 months and was willing to put up with a few days of “transition time’. After the 6th day my breasts adjusted and I started pumping my usual 3 ounces.
I’m now using the Simplisse Pump every day on a regular basis. And have come to be quite familiar with the ins & outs.
- Comfort: AMAZING! So comfortable to use. No pinching, no tugging, no scarily stretched out nipples after pumping. No more having to massage and push the milk out of each breast while pumping.
- Control: The two dials on the Simplisse pump allow for customized levels of milk expression. I use the highest settings on both dials to expedite the process.
- Cup: The cup is made of double layered silicone which is soft, supple, flexible and gentle on the breast while pumping. The inside of the cup contours to your nipple and doesn’t chafe, pull or tug.
- Fit: Fits almost everyone! No need to order special cups like with other pumps.
- Bag: Comes in a cute, black bag that looks like a purse.
- Time: It takes me double the length of time to pump the same quantity of milk. It now takes me 25 minutes to pump, whereas before it took me 7-10 minutes. However it is a comfortable 25 minutes.
- Noise: All breast pumps make noise and this one is equally as loud and as annoying as other breast pumps.
- Cleaning: There are many parts in this breast pump. Each breast pump has 6+ pieces that need to be taken apart after every pumping session and cleaned. It doesn’t take long, but keeping track of all the pieces to make sure each one is cleaned properly and then reassembling the pumps takes time.
I’d recommend this breast pump to all my friends and to all nursing women looking to add pumping to their regime. I would especially to women that are have not started pumping yet, as transitioning from a suction style pump was frustrating, but well worth it in the end. I’d also recommend this pump to women that have very sensitive, raw or sore nipples. The comfort of the Simplisse Pump cannot be found in any other breast pump.