- A bottle delivers the nutrition a baby needs to thrive while offering their caregiver a chance to connect with them. But not all babies will like all bottles, so get ready to shop around.
- The Comotomo Natural Feel Baby Bottle is our top pick because its design makes use and cleaning easy and because most babies accept the bottle – even those with a tendency to fuss about such things.
The first time I fed my infant son from a bottle, the moment left an indelible mark in my memory. I truly remember the feeding as well as if it had happened yesterday, not more than four years ago. His little eyes blinked rapidly with confusion at the new sensation of the artificial nipple, then relaxed and half-closed as the warmed breast milk therein started to flow. He finished most of the bottle, drinking slowly but steadily, then lay back across my arms contentedly while I teared up and sniffled.
Most of the subsequent hundreds of bottle feedings, however? Most of those blur together. If you have a bottle-fed baby – or a baby who alternates between breastfeeding and bottle-feeding as our son did – you are going to be using baby bottles many times a day for many months on end. And this using involves not only the actual feeding, but the preparation of the bottle beforehand (filling, assembling, warming, and so on) and cleaning after meals (disassembly, rinsing, boiling, and so forth).
The long story short here is that you need to find a bottle that works for your kid as well as for the adults who manage the feedings because baby and grownup alike are going to spend a lot of time using them. This search for the best baby bottle for your little one will probably be a multi-step process. We went through three bottle brands before finding one our baby son accepted readily.
With our infant daughter, we’ve already tried four different bottles and she has let us know in no uncertain terms that none has been to her liking. Mostly she does this by spitting the bottles out and then screaming at us, a communication method that’s hardly diplomatic but highly effective.
Know going into the bottle-feeding period of your life that there might be a rocky start. Try one bottle for a few feedings and, if the baby is rejecting it, try another. Then another. It might take some time and some money, but you will eventually find one they will accept. And quite likely, it will be one of the excellent baby bottles on this list.
Here are the best baby bottles:
- Best baby bottle overall: Comotomo Natural Feel Baby Bottle
- Best glass baby bottle: Lifefactory Glass Baby Bottle
- Best baby bottle for breast milk: Nanobébé Breastmilk Bottle
- Best baby bottle for formula: Mixie Formula-Mixing Baby Bottle
- Best affordable baby bottle: Dr. Brown’s Natural Flow Baby Bottle
Updated on 1/13/2020 by Jen Gushue: Updated prices, links, formatting, and text.
The best baby bottle overall
The soft, wide body of the Comotomo Natural Feel Baby Bottle is easy for little hands to grasp during feeding and easy for larger hands to clean out and sanitize afterward.
The Comotomo baby bottles were the only ones that reliably worked with our son. We tried to use the bottles included with my wife’s breast pump, but he hated them. We tried a brand we had gotten as a gift, but he sucked in too much air along with the milk and ended up gassy and in pain. Then we tried a Comotomo Natural Feel Baby Bottle, and after that, we never tried another option with him. And once you find an option that works with your kid, stick with it – don’t rock the boat!
The Comotomo bottle’s nipple is designed to replicate the shape of a breast, helping a baby latch onto the bottle securely. Dual anti-colic vents maintain air circulation inside the bottle, helping minimize the air your baby sucks in.
The wide, soft body of the bottle is made from food-grade silicone that resists bacterial growth and can be cleaned in a dishwasher, in boiling water, or with good old hand washing. And the broad bowl-shaped design of the Comotomo Natural Feel Baby Bottle makes the cleaning process much easier than does the narrow neck of many baby bottles.
A writer from The Bump praised the design of the Comotomo for helping “prevent nipple confusion” and the fact that it’s “really easy to clean.”
Pros: Promotes good latching, easy to clean, soft easily gripped materials
Cons: Tends to leak if tipped over
The best glass baby bottle
- Life Factory
The borosilicate glass used in the Lifefactory Glass Baby Bottle prevents bacterial buildup and easily washes clean, while the silicone sleeve makes the bottle safe for and easily gripped by a baby.
A quick look in one cabinet of my kitchen revealed no fewer than six Lifefactory brand bottles – larger water bottles, a few for our son, and a few adult-sized bottles. We also have Lifefactory wine glasses that I like to bring camping. Suffice it to say, my family likes the brand. And with a few minor caveats, that feeling extends to these baby bottles.
Let’s talk about the caveats first, which mostly involve cleaning. While glass is great for rejecting the build-up of mold, cleaning the inside of this small, rigid bottle can be a bit of a chore. You need to use a bottle brush or a good long boiling session to remove every bit of dried, caked-on milk or formula, and proper cleaning of the Lifefactory Glass Baby Bottle requires removal of that silicone sleeve, too, which adds a few seconds to the chore every time.
But with that bit of extra cleaning effort comes a bottle that really can be cleaned better than most thanks to that borosilicate glass. The non-glass components of the bottle are made from FDA-approved, BPA- and phthalate-free silicone and polypropylene materials, all of which can be boiled or cleaned in the top rack of the dishwasher. The silicone sleeve, which helps a baby grip the bottle and protects the baby against bonks and the bottle against drops, can also be cleaned using the same various methods.
A BabyGearLab writer said the Lifefactory bottle was made using “quality components that, if cared for, should stand the test of time.”
Pros: Glass prevents bacterial buildup, compatible with breast pumps, can be used as water bottle for toddlers
The best bottle for breast milk
The Nanobébé Breastmilk Bottle makes every step of the bottle-feeding process easier and more beneficial by approximating the shape of a breast and preserving the nutrients in the milk.
Beyond the protein, fats, vitamins, and minerals found in breast milk, so too are there plentiful antibodies that can help strengthen a baby’s immune system. But when the milk is left too long at unsafe storage temperatures, these antibodies are forced to fight off bacteria, sacrificing themselves before getting the chance to help out an infant.
The unique concave bottom of the dome-shaped Nanobébé Breastmilk Bottle creates maximum surface area exposure, so the milk within the bottle will cool down quickly once it’s placed in the fridge after pumping. And that same bottle shape helps the milk warm quickly before a feeding, too. Every minute shaved off these cooling and warming processes means the preservation of nutrition and immunological benefits.
The broad, breast-shaped bottle and vented anti-colic nipple simulate a mother’s body, making this bottle a good choice for easy transition for exclusively breastfed babies. And that same concavity in bottle’s bottom also allows you to stack several Nanobébé bottles atop one another (with the nipple replaced by a cap), saving space in the fridge.
Now truth be told, my own daughter rejected this bottle, so don’t think of it as a magic bullet that will work perfectly for all breastfed babies. But she’s a harsh critic, having also rejected all other bottles.
A writer from WhatToExpect said that the domed shape of the Nanobébé Breastmilk Bottle mimicks “the shape of a mother’s breast” while the wide opening in the bottom makes them easy to clean.
Pros: Cools and warms milk quickly, shaped to match natural breast, easy to clean
The best bottle for formula
The Mixie Formula-Mixing Baby Bottle makes the process of preparing a bottle of baby formula quick and easy, even when you’re away from home.
Truth be told, neither of my kids has ever been formula-fed, so until recently I didn’t have much firsthand experience with formula feeding and all that goes into it. Then our friends came to stay with us for a few days, bringing their formula-fed 10-month-old daughter along for the visit. I could quickly appreciate how onerous a task formula feeding could be, what with all the measuring, mixing, warming, cleaning, and so forth.
They had the process down pat thanks to experience and a few fine pieces of hardware. The Mixie Formula-Mixing Baby Bottle features a chamber built into the bottom of the bottle that keeps the formula dry and at the ready while the top portion of the bottle is filled with water.
When it’s time for a feeding, you simply push a button on the bottle’s base to release the formula, shake the bottle to mix things up, then feed your baby.
If it gets simpler than that, I’m sure I don’t know how. And by keeping the formula at the ready, this bottle makes your life simpler whether it’s on hand for middle of the night feedings or prepared while you’re traveling, shopping, or anywhere else.
This is also a great bottle for leaving with other caregivers, either at a daycare center or at grandma’s house, as you can remove the guesswork for whoever will be watching your baby by portioning out the right amount of formula and fluid beforehand.
This is the most expensive bottle on our list, but it’s hard to put a price on ease of use and peace of mind.
A product tester from ThatBabyLife called the Mixie Formula-Mixing Baby Bottle a “one-of-a-kind” product perfect “to use while traveling.”
Pros: Makes formula prep easy, ideal for travel, dishwasher and microwave safe
The best low-cost baby bottle
- Dr. Brown
Dr. Brown’s Natural Flow Baby Bottle features an integrated airflow system that greatly reduces the amount of air a baby sucks in while feeding. Also, it’s very affordable.
Don’t think for a second that because Dr. Brown’s Natural Flow Baby Bottle is the cheapest option on our list in terms of price that it’s a cheap bottle in the pejorative sense. In fact, this bottle was designed by a medical doctor – though, I’m not sure if their actual surname was Brown. It features a patented “no vacuum” design that promotes even pressure and airflow with the bottle even while your baby is sucking away, so minimal air will go down their throat along with the milk or formula. And less air in means less gas to come out.
Dr. Brown’s Natural Flow Baby Bottles are suitable for use with breast milk or formula, and their wide-mouthed design makes cleaning the inside of the bottle easy after a feeding. You will have to devote a bit of extra cleaning effort to the airflow system that sticks down into the bottle from below the nipple, but as the components are top rack dishwasher safe, you can always let an appliance handle the work for you.
Pros: Great low price, reduces gas and colic, FDA-safe materials
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