Table of Contents
- View The Best Baby Bottles Below
- 1. MAM Easy Start Anti-Colic Bottle
- 2. Philips Avent Natural Baby Bottle
- 3. Evenflo Feeding Classic Bottles for Baby
- 4. Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature Baby Feeding Bottles
- 5. Lansinoh Breastfeeding Bottles
- 6. Comotomo Baby Bottle
- 7. Playtex Baby Ventaire Baby Bottle
- 8. Boon NURSH Reusable Silicone Pouch Bottles
- 9. NUK Simply Natural Baby Bottle
- 10. Dr. Brown’s Original Bottle
- Baby Bottles Buyers Guide
Trial and error – it may be the dream way to find the absolute best baby bottles for your little one’s mealtimes – but throwing the dice on bottle systems gets expensive fast – not to mention frustrating. Whether you’re a breastfeeding mom who’s supplementing with a baby bottle, or you’re a formula-feeding family, the ultimate prize is the same: a bottle- and nipple-combination that baby will love, and that you’ll find easy to hold, clean, fill, and sterilize.
Sound like a tall order? Throw a case of colic into the mix, and the search for the best baby bottle can make the hunt for the Holy Grail seem like an easy alternative. Baby bottle manufacturers are constantly creating and retooling their products to mimic the breastfeeding experience favorably, designing nipples that better suit baby’s mouth, venting systems that reduce colic and gassiness, and bottles that are ergonomic and easy to clean.
We staged a lineup of some of the best-loved brands and styles of babies bottles – from Philips Avent to Dr. Brown – to compare and contrast their features and effectiveness. From nipple shape and function to bottle configuration and materials, we broke down what makes the best baby bottles stand out. Check out our buyers’ guide below the reviews for a baby bottle primer on commonly used terms and features to look for on your search for the best baby bottles.
View The Best Baby Bottles Below
1. MAM Easy Start Anti-Colic Bottle
Whether your baby is battling colic or not, the features on these bottles will come in handy; the vented base is designed to reduce bubbles, which promotes comfortable digestion for all babies. The entire bottle was designed with comfort in mind: the nipple is soft and shaped naturally to avoid confusion in breastfeeding babies. The bottle itself is easy to hang onto, and we appreciated the easy self-sterilization (just fill the base with water, add the nipple, and put the whole bottle in the microwave).
+Patented venting system reduces colic
+Squishy silicone nipple feels natural (and has an air valve to keep milk or formula flowing evenly)
+Baby bottles are easy to clean and convenient to sterilize
+Made with BPA-free plastic
+Bottle design is easy to grip
Why We Like It – Field-tested with colicky babies, the venting and air valve features on this baby bottle do reduce symptoms of colic. Plus, the flat nipple and its anti-slip base encourage baby to latch on and stay on, making this an excellent choice for newborns (and new parents, as well). We liked the wide neck and bottle, too – cleanup is a breeze.
2. Philips Avent Natural Baby Bottle
Many baby bottles now feature orthodontic nipples, which are designed to mimic a mother’s nipple. This select baby bottle system takes the concept a step further – the Philips Avent Natural nipple base is shaped like a breast. This innovation encourages breastfed babies to accept a bottle but also benefits bottle-feeding babies. (It’s hard to improve on Mother Nature, but the best technology takes a few hints from her!) The nipple’s valve releases air into the baby bottle – not into the baby – which can decrease colic and gassiness.
+Best baby bottles for breastfed babies, as they mimic the mother’s nipple and breast
+Hourglass shaped bottles are perfect for adult and baby hands
+Quick assembly and take-apart
+Bottle includes 1-month and slow flow nipples
+Super soft, flexible nipple encourages latching
Why We Like It – Even if you’re on a budget, consider this bottle – it costs a little more, but if your little one is at all finicky about nipples, the Avent Natural may be your best bet. The included nipples are designed from top to bottom to encourage latch-on (and the bottles are compatible with all the nipple flow choices in the Natural line).
3. Evenflo Feeding Classic Bottles for Baby
Although these are branded as “classic,” Evenflo has improved this set with an ergonomic bottle body that also fits most breast pumps, a streamlining feature we appreciated. The set of 12 eight-ounce bottles includes Evenflo’s micro vented, soft silicone nipples, designed to restrict collapse (slow flow are included, and the bottles accept Evenflo’s other flow options when your little one is ready to upgrade).
The bottles are dishwasher safe, BPA free, and are marked with ounces and millimeters. They’re also tinted, which comes in handy if you’re alternating between bottles of breastmilk and formula. Perhaps you may even want to keep track of when bottles have been filled.
+Great price point for a good-quality, reliable bottle
+Bottles are compatible with most breast pumps
+Dishwasher safe bottles and nipples
+Slow-flow nipples are 100% silicone with venting to prevent collapse
+Bottles are tinted for easy organization
Why We Like It – These bottles are a solid choice that will help keep parents on track with their budgets, but also with their schedules. All four components – nipples, rings, caps, and bottles, are dishwasher safe, a big help for busy families.
4. Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature Baby Feeding Bottles
Another bottle option with a wide, breastlike nipple, this Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature set features six colored BPA-free bottles and the brand’s signature silicone nipples. They’re ultra-soft and flexible and are designed so that even breastfed babies are more likely to accept them.
Air bubbles in milk are minimal with the anti-colic valve, and Tommee Tippee has designed the bottles to ensure that baby is snuggled up as close as can be. Slow-flow nipples are best for newborns, and they’re included in this set, but the brand also offers medium and fast flow for this style bottle.
+One of the best breast-mimicking nipples on the market
+Vent system reduces bubbles to a minimum
+Tommee Tippee has designed the bottle for multiple feeding positions
+Differently hued bottles for color-coding
+Bottles are easy to clean and sterilize
Why We Like It – Both the baby’s bottle and nipple shape of Tommee Tippee’s Closer to Nature are engineered to make feeding easier. Still, we especially liked that the bottle goes beyond ergonomics for your grip – it can help with your overall posture during feeding, making it easier to snuggle baby close without fatigue.
5. Lansinoh Breastfeeding Bottles
With a half-century of research and design innovation behind it, this baby bottle may be one of the best replacements for breastfeeding we found. In essence, it’s specifically engineered to reduce nipple confusion. From the moment of latch-on, this nipple works with the baby’s palette and natural sucking movements to create a good seal and prevent air bubbles. The developers have put a ton of time and research into the nipple, but haven’t forgotten to create a bottle that is easy to hold and clean.
+Lansinoh is dedicated to supporting breastfeeding mothers with innovative bottles
+Bottles come with “NaturalWave” nipples, which mimic mom’s breast
+Offers effective venting without extra parts
+Helps prevent gas and colic (spit-up, too!)
+One of the best baby bottles for breastfeeding moms, whether they’re supplementing or replacing
Why We Like It – The attention to detail in Lansinoh’s bottle (and all their baby products) give them top to bottom superior designs. Thoughtful touches like the interior support on the nipple also make for less a troublesome mealtime – meaning better bonding time.
6. Comotomo Baby Bottle
Ultra-soft, grippy bottles in 5- or 8-ounce sizes are topped off with a soft, mounded nipple that’s shaped like mom’s breast. The slow flow nipples are equipped with two vents for consistent flow and minimal air intake. We loved the soft feel and rounded shape of these easy-to-clean bottles (skip the bottle brush – you can fit your hand inside). Bonus points as well for this baby bottle’s toughness – sterilize it in boiling water, the microwave, or a sterilizing unit, or throw it in the dishwasher.
+Both the bottle and nipple are made of silicone
+Breast-fed babies are likely to accept this mounded slow flow nipple
+Bottles are easy to wash and sterilize
+Silicone bottle is soft and rounded for easy gripping
+Leak-resistant bottle design with simple assembly
Why We Like It – The cushy silicone bottle body, along with the nipple designed to mimic mom’s breast, offer the best of both worlds – comfy feeding for everyone. The bottles are easy to clean by hand, and the components are heat safe up to 248 degrees F (for the cap and ring) and 356 degrees F (for the bottle and nipple). We also appreciated the leak-resistant features on this rounded bottle.
7. Playtex Baby Ventaire Baby Bottle
For serious colic relief, we recommend a bottle that has a bottom vent system, like this one from Playtex. It’s an extra component to clean and keep track of, but a venting system can do wonders for helping to prevent gas and colic.
The angled bottle shape encourages upright feeding, which also can help alleviate tummy troubles – and when we’re dealing with a colicky baby, we’ll take every advantage available. Look for the “natural latch” nipple; it features a wide, textured base that encourages latch-on. Some reviewers noted that the venting system components from this model are easier to clean than other bottom-vent baby bottles.
+Bottles’ bottom venting system works to prevent colicky reactions
+Angled bottle promotes an upright position, which can help with reflux issues
+An affordable bottom vent babies bottle
+Bottles are dishwasher safe and made without BPA, PVC, and phthalates
+Nipple is designed with a textured base for easy latching
Why We Like It – Some bottom-vent bottle systems are harder to clean, as they contain more components. We liked the simple assembly and disassembly of this design. The angle of the bottle allows you to keep baby upright without contorting your hand and arm into uncomfortable positions – especially helpful with slow eaters!
8. Boon NURSH Reusable Silicone Pouch Bottles
If you’re a fan of disposable bottle bags for the way they collapse down to prevent air bubbles, but not of the waste they generate, look to these bottles as an alternative. The silicone pouches are reusable, and another “boon” they offer is the wide opening – no more struggle to pour the breast milk into bottles or bags without spilling.
The Boon Nursh nipple will help your little one latch on and stay latched with its gently mounded shape. The components are all easy to clean and dry quickly, too. For a happy medium between disposable and traditional baby bottles, this is one of the best we discovered.
+These bottles are an eco-friendly alternative to disposable bags
+Wide neck silicone pouch makes transferring breast milk a breeze
+Nipple is designed to work with baby’s mouth
+Collapsable pouch reduces air intake
+Nipple doesn’t take a ring; it’s all one piece
Why We Like It – In addition to being gentle on the environment, these silicone bottles are easy on tired parents, too. The wide opening of the silicone pouch makes transferring liquids easy (every drop counts – pumping isn’t easy!), and we loved that the nipple is a one-and-done design that doesn’t require a ring.
9. NUK Simply Natural Baby Bottle
The nipple on this baby bottle is a little flatter than some of the other models we reviewed – that’s to mimic the way mom’s nipple is shaped when the baby is latched on. It’s also engineered with multiple holes, even on the slow-flow style, to reflect the natural nursing experience. These days, bottles for babies are often soft, but this hourglass-shaped one is made from Tritan plastic, which stays clear throughout its life and stands up to dropping and dishwashers better than run-of-the-mill plastics (it’s also BPA-free).
+Bottles will reduce colic, but have a simple nipple vent system rather than an extra piece
+Made of clear Tritan plastic, this bottle is durable and doesn’t get cloudy over time
+Bottles come with a specially designed flat nipple to facilitate latching and even flow
+Nipples all have multiple holes for a more natural feeding experience
+Flexible nipple base has a “scoop” to accommodate jaw movement
Why We Like It – The thoughtful nipple design, which includes a flat shape, multiple holes, and an anti-colic venting system, makes this a good bottle for particularly fussy babies. If you’re struggling with a breastfed baby, this may be one of the best bottles to try.
10. Dr. Brown’s Original Bottle
The science behind all vented baby bottles aims to reduce air bubble intake while keeping flow consistent; the Dr. Brown model looks a little different, but many parents swear by it. The internal vent (it attaches to the nipple and looks like a straw) moves air directly from the bottle collar to the bottom of the bottle, so it never enters the milk supply.
Flow is even and steady without creating a vacuum (bye-bye nipple collapse), and the baby is far less likely to swallow air so that colic may be a thing of the past. Brown’s bottles feature a traditional-style nipple that encourages the baby to feed at his/her own rate.
+Unique venting system keeps breast milk or formula free of air bubbles
+Dr. Brown bottles fit most standard breast pumps
+Vent can help preserve nutrient makeup of milk or formula
+Bottles help reduce colic, burping, and reflux
+Dr. Brown’s bottles are safe for dishwashers and sterilizers
Why We Like It – Innovative when they were first introduced more than 20 years ago, Dr. Brown’s bottles have stood the test of time – this unique baby’s bottle vent not only combats colic but can help with everyday feeding issues like gassiness and spit-up. The Dr. Brown vent system is a little more work to clean and assemble, but these bottles are worth the time, especially for colicky babies.
Baby Bottles Buyers Guide
On your search for the best baby bottles, you’ll notice that manufacturers put a ton of research and time into nipple design. The reasons are obvious: the closer the nipple comes to mimicking the mother’s breast, the more likely an infant is to accept it – even babies who have never breastfed. That’s because their little mouths are perfectly, naturally suited to the breast.
Newborns especially can be fussy about latching onto a nipple that doesn’t accommodate their sucking movements. When you’re a sleep-deprived new parent, the last thing you need is frustration and anxiety from a baby bottle that you’d assumed would work well for your infant.
You can lessen the chance of nipple rejection by checking customer reviews and researching bottle brand specs for nipples that are designed like breasts. Look for soft (typically silicone) materials, for starters. A nipple should be flexible enough to squish down in baby’s mouth – but not so soft that it collapses under his or her efforts to get milk.
Some nipples feature interior support to minimize collapse; others rely on venting to prevent the vacuum effect. (Bottles like Nuk have strategically flattened nipples that look a little different – they’re no more susceptible to collapse than other brands, and in fact, can help keep baby latched on properly.)
In addition to the squishiness of the nipple, look for bottle brands that offer a variety of flow rates. Flow for newborns (premies, too!) should be slow, and some baby bottle brands accomplish this with a single hole. Others will have multiple, smaller holes to simulate the nursing experience better.
As the baby grows, the best baby bottle brands will offer medium and fast flow nipples compatible with the bottles you’ve already purchased. Flow needs may vary within an infant’s age group, and nipples are fairly inexpensive, so experiment with bottles and nipples until you find the milk flow rate that the baby’s most comfortable with.
Some manufacturers take the breast mimicry beyond what’s going into baby’s mouth – they’ve rounded and enlarged the nipple base to make it more like a breast. Moving breastfed babies to the bottle can be particularly challenging, and you can hedge your bets by searching out nipple bases that closely resemble a breast. Some scoop out a little concave area, which can work with the natural jawline movements of a sucking baby; others include a texture on the base to help keep baby latched on.
While we’re on the topic of the nipple base, scope out the bottle and nipple ring situation: some nipples fit right over the bottle mouth, eliminating the need for a ring to join the two. We love this option for a couple of reasons – first, anything to streamline the process is a win in our book.
Too, the ringless design also means one less piece to lose track of when you’re cleaning/sterilizing and assembling. We’ve lost many baby products’ components to the black holes of sleep deprivation, and clutter buildup – ringless baby bottles put a new meaning on the phrase “it’s the little things.”
You can’t spell prevent without “vent,” and that’s your first clue that when evaluating a nipple for colicky babies. When it comes to battling colic, a vented nipple design can make all the difference. If a bottle doesn’t feature a bottom vent system (or an internal one, such as Dr. Brown bottles), look to the nipple for reducing bubbles. In essence, manufacturers will typically include nipple vents, which can prevent or even eliminate tummy troubles.
Even babies without full-on colic also can benefit from good venting technology; keep an eye out for clinically tested brands that prevent air from mixing with the milk or formula. The bubbles should be sent toward the base of the bottle as it empties.
Some nipples are branded as orthodontic – this designation refers to the flat side, which is sculpted to sit on the baby’s tongue to fit her/his palette best. Many orthodontic nipples put the hole(s) on the top side to help prevent gassiness and colic.
With this style nipple, you need to make sure the bottle’s right side up, so it’s one you’ll need to shed some light on – even in the middle of the night. Still, their benefits may outweigh this little nuisance factor, and if you’re in search of a bottle baby will take to easily, orthodontic nipples are worth a try. They’re available in slow flow, as well as faster options for older babies.
With the nipple details sorted out, you can move on to the bottle itself. This is where moms and dads also get some say – since you’ll be the one holding it (at least at the start), you can pick the shape, size, and material that works best for you. Glass bottles used to be the norm, but they have a clear disadvantage: breakability. If your heart desires to kick it old school, yes, you can still find glass bottles on the market, but breakage is inevitable. There are better options for hard, crystal-clear baby bottles: Tritan plastic, for one (see the Nuk model we reviewed).
Clear, hard, and shatterproof, hard plastic bottles like this stay pristine through multiple sterilizations, and won’t shatter into a million-pieced, milky mess if dropped. Hard plastic bottles are typically shaped like traditional glass bottles, are made without BPAs, and will last as long as their silicone counterparts. Dr. Brown bottles are made with BPA-free polypropylene, so they’re another hard plastic alternative that will bring you peace of mind.
Silicone and soft plastic baby bottles are hot commodities nowadays. The food-grade material is heat-safe, soft, and cushy on hands, and can stand up to daily use. We appreciated the different shapes, sizes, and textures available some baby bottles made our top ten list primarily because both parents and babies can easily grip and hold these innovative designs!
Among our discoveries were plastic and silicone bottles that feature an hourglass shape – these are great for when the baby starts to assist with bottle holding (their little hands can easily grab onto the middle of the bottle). The hourglass shape also is a nice option for couples who have drastically different sized hands. The base is comfortable for larger grips, while the narrower middle is suitable for smaller hands. (See our “premium quality” Philips Avent review for a great example of an hourglass bottle.)
Several of the soft silicone bottle models we reviewed are designed with rounded edges, and some are just outright rounded. Look for 4-, 5-, or 8-ounce variations that are soft and squishy with gradually bulging-to-narrow profiles. They may look whimsical, especially when compared to traditional bottle shapes, but these rounded versions are super-comfortable, ergonomically correct, and are easy for baby to grip, too. Bear in mind that rounded bottles have narrower bases so that they may tip easier – and that makes leak prevention even more vital. Check customer reviews and brand websites to see how these bottles manage milk leakage, even with slow flow nipples.
A variation on the silicone bottle is the reusable silicon pouch (see Number Eight on our list). Disposable bottle bags are convenient, but the silicone pouches are too. You can toss them in the dishwasher for easy cleaning, and the Boon model we reviewed has a wide mouth, perfect for transferring breast milk without losing a precious drop.
Angled bottles can help promote good digestion by working with your posture to keep the baby more upright while feeding. It’s a good workaround for those who want to snuggle in a while feeding; you can maintain the right angle without sacrificing closeness.
Several of the bottles that made it on our top ten list have bottom venting components, which are separate from the bottle body itself. Though they require an extra step or two when it comes to cleaning and assembly, you may want to consider these, as many parents will testify they’re the best baby bottles for gassy, burpy, and even colicky babies.
That brings us to miscellaneous features – some of the best baby bottles we reviewed offer advantages that you didn’t know you wanted or needed. Breast pump compatibility is a nice option for nursing moms – you can skip the bag and pump straight into the bottle (did we mention we love baby products that streamline our lives?).
Color coding is another perk of some baby bottle sets – use them for dating or organizing milk and formula. We also looked for baby bottle designs that feature wide mouths – on some models; you can forego the bottle brush and clean by hand. If you do purchase bottles with a narrower mouth, look for a bottle brush that’s closest to the internal size so that you can clean with one swipe.
Too, we took into consideration whether a baby’s bottle dishwasher- and microwave-safe (for sterilizing only – never microwave formula or milk). When you’re in the sterilization phase, you’re typically in the dazed and sleep-deprived phase, too, and you’ll appreciate having some options. Many of the bottles we looked at – silicone and plastic both – can be boiled, put in the dishwasher, a dedicated sterilizing device, or like our “best overall” choice, will self-sterilize in the microwave. A baby will eat every two to three hours – that’s a lot of bottles and a lot of sterilization. Find the baby bottle system that works with your kitchen setup.
Colic, gassiness, and other tummy troubles
The best thing we can say about colic is that babies will typically outgrow it in a matter of months. The worst thing we can say about it is that those months can seem like years (okay, decades). Colic can have a real effect on every aspect of your life – at a minimum, it’s distressing to see your baby in pain during what should be bonding time.
Okay, so you know to dread an occurrence of colic, but what, exactly, does the term mean? Is it a catchall for tummy issues in young babies, or an actual condition? And most importantly, how do parents prevent it?
Doctors typically diagnose colic by eliminating other conditions. If your little one spends long periods fussing inconsolably (especially during or after feeding), your pediatrician will take into consideration your infant’s age, the number of incidents a week (or day), and the intensity and duration of the crying fits.
Colic often occurs or worsens at night (lucky you), so if you intend to speak with your doctor about the possibility, try to keep track of when the fussiness is at its worst. A baby may start to show signs of colic as a newborn; by six weeks or so, you may have a pretty good idea if you’re dealing with it. The good news is, most babies grow out of it by four months, so quiet nights are in your future – just hang in there!
The hallmarks of colic are: crying that borders on screaming; predictability (after eating, late in the evening, etc.); a red face and tense body; and relief or partial relief after baby burps or has a bowel movement.
That last indicator is why the manufacturers of the best baby bottles work so hard to come up with nipples and bottles that address airflow, latch-on, and seal. These factors also make all the difference in reducing or even abating colic attacks, so if you suspect your infant is struggling with air intake, experiment with baby bottles that address colic.
The best nipples will promote latching and a good “seal” for babies’ mouths, as both can prevent them from swallowing air along with the milk. Also, seek out bottles that vent air either from the bottom with a separate component, from the nipple with strategically placed vents, or from within the bottle itself. Bottles baby can latch onto and that vent air into the bottom, not the milk, are best for colicky little ones.
Whether you’re battling true colic or just have a fussy baby can be a matter of perception. One of the smartest ways to ensure more peaceful feedings is to seek out the best baby bottles for colic no matter where your little one falls on the fussiness spectrum. When you’re looking for the best baby bottles, start with the ones that boast venting features, along with nipples that mimic mother nature – add milk, and if the baby goes with the flow, you’ll know you’ve found the winning bottle.