Beautiful Bras for Really, Really Big Breasts

Our boutique prides itself on carrying beautiful bras for all breasts. Miekke bra

We’ve got lovely options (options!) for women with a small band size and large cup…large as in I or L cup breasts. L for large!

We get messages from loyal Elomi fans–while this bra doesn’t have lace or pretty pink trimmings, it’s got an underwire, and it elevates and separates up to a K-cup bosom.

Women rave over our Biscuit or Kamea bras, which are lacy and lovely and sexy, even for cup sizes that fall toward the middle of the alphabet.

But some women have larger breasts even than this. Some women have P-cup breasts, and now we have a beautiful bra to accommodate them.

Meet Miekkie. Miekkie is designed by our Polish supplier Ewa Michalak. The bra is made to lift the bust, and the strong cup bottoms are designed to hold the breasts high.

The bra is so new, there are no professional photos yet, and so we asked a customer to model for us. The bra is shown on a model wearing a 36P. Look at the lift she gets from the bra!

Miekkie is topped with lace and tulle, which adds a little loveliness for a bra that’s doing some serious lifting in addition to smoothing the shape, even if a woman’s breasts are asymmetrical.

The Miekkie band is firm, not stretchy, so it’s meant to support the weight of the bust. It’s available in band sizes 32-60 and cup sizes ranging from D on down to W.

In other words, if you have an ultra-large bust, we just might be able to fit you into this nursing bra.

Have you tried an Ewa Michalak bra for your very large bust? Leave us a comment to share your experience.

What Makes a Good Breast Pump?

Many women with a good health insurance plan are able to purchase a double-electric breast pump through their insurance at no cost to them. This is fantastic!

Except that many insurance plans are only covering a low-end pump that many lactation consultants refer to as “mastitis machines.” This widely-sold pump is so infamous for causing issues that the company has, thankfully, planned to stop making it. Unfortunately, this pump might be the only insurance option for moms for a while longer…Ameda Purely Yours breast pump

So. What can you do? If feeding your baby your expressed breastmilk is important to you, purchasing a quality pump to express this milk makes financial sense. A proper pump will help you avoid mastitis, maintain your supply, and feed your baby while you are separated.

We know it’s a large expense, so we want to make sure you know what to look for before you invest.

Closed System.  A closed system pump means that contamination can not get into the pump motor or into your milk. In a closed system pump, the milk never contacts the motor, and the motor never contacts the milk. Other pumps are open system and can grow mold inside of the motor and can get contamination inside of your milk. The Ameda and Hygeia pumps are the only pumps that are CLOSED systems.

Suction. A good breast pump should generate between 220-275 mmHg suction. We are able to test your pump motor efficiency in our shop locally–most small businesses selling breast pumps should be able to test your pump for you to determine whether yours is generating proper suction. Our personal pumps generate between 225-250 mmHg, while hospital grade pumps have an even stronger motor.

Easily-changed accessories. Valves, tubing, flaps–these parts of your breast pump should be changed regularly, and changing them should be easy for you. Some manufacturers have different accessories for each different model, which can be confusing if you’re trying to order replacement parts in a hurry. We sell Ameda pumps, which all use the same accessories, from the hospital grade platinum models to the manual pump. Ameda has not switched their design, so today’s accessories still fit last year’s pump.

When purchasing a pump, make sure you know what parts you need and how to order them if they’re not sold in the same store as the pump.

Custom-sized flanges. Not all nipples are size medium, yet that’s the size flange that comes standard with breast pumps. A woman’s breast and nipple size can fluctuate through her nursing career, or even through the month as her cycle returns! A good pump offers a variety of flanges to make sure you get the best “latch” you can with your pump and maximize your output. Here’s a great chart with pictures to help you figure out which size you might need.

We know a great many of you will return to work while your baby is still breastfeeding, and a good pump can help to make sure you’re able to maintain your nursing relationship. Hopefully this information makes it easier for you to weigh your options.

Did you purchase your breast pump out of pocket to avoid a low-quality insurance pump? Leave us a comment to share how you made your decision. 

Put a Little Windex On It: Breastmilk As Magic Elixir?

“Just put a little Windex on it,” is my very favorite running gag throughout the movie My Big, Fat Greek Wedding. I’ve been thinking about that a lot lately not only because the trailer was just released for the sequel, but also because I hear so many breastfeeding mothers say, “Just put a little breastmilk on it,” regardless of the complaint. pinkeye

Ear infection? Just spray a little breastmilk in there. 

Sore nipples? Just put a little breastmilk on them and let ’em air dry.

Pinkeye? Just spray a little breastmilk in there!

So does it work?

An Internet search will bring up lots of blog posts and discussion forums. Polling your mom friends will result in lots of feedback about the miracle of breastmilk in [insert infection/wound of choice here] as the easiest cure.

As a breastfeeding counselor with Breastfeeding USA, I can’t just go off the Internet or anecdotal evidence. I need to think about what the evidence-based research tells us.

Kellymom has gathered a nice collection of information about the Immune Factors in Human Milk. How wonderful to learn that our milk is antimicrobial, filled with antibodies, and even high in folate! We know all these wonderful properties are perfect for our babies (and toddlers) to drink, but this doesn’t necessarily mean our milk can substitute as medication when our kids are sick.

Breastmilk for Ear Infections

“Squirt some breastmilk in there,” is the rallying cry moms hear when their baby or toddler gets an ear infection. The American Academy of Pediatrics tells us most kiddos’ ear infections are middle ear infections, which means the infection lies behind the ear drum. The ear drum is a barrier–breastmilk won’t pass through it to reach the infection.

Breastmilk in the ear would be warm and soothing for a few minutes, but it won’t cure a middle ear infection.

Could the antimicrobial properties help cure an outer ear infection? Dr. Sears has some tips for recognizing whether your child has swimers ear or a middle ear infection. It’s best to consult with your doctor before you put anything into your child’s ear.

Breastmilk for Pinkeye

This article actually reviewed the scientific studies conducted related to breastmilk and pinkeye. From the looks of things, there’s just not enough research about it to determine whether mature milk will cure pinkeye in an older child. I know it won’t hurt, the milk is free, and I’ve got plenty of it to spare. But I don’t know whether it will cure oozy conjunctivitis as quickly as antibiotic drops will. Currently, my big boys both have pinkeye, and my husband has it, too. Nobody is allowed to go to school or work, because it’s very contagious.

My kids are in public school, and for everyone’s health, their school wants the kids on antibiotic drops for a full 24 hours before they’re allowed to return. So what did we choose?

We’re using the prescription drops in their eyeballs, and putting my expressed breastmilk in strawberry/banana smoothies for all the boys as a special treat. Breastmilk is always good for babies, toddlers, or children to drink–it’s biologically designed to nourish our offspring. We’re just not so sure it works as medication. Hopefully, by the time you read this, my kids will be healthy and back in school! 

Watching Birth on Sitcoms While Pregnant?

When I was pregnant, I had to be really choosy about what I watched on television…or read, for that matter. I was so sensitive and everything made me upset. But nothing made me more upset than watching the way birth gets depicted on a lot of shows.

If it’s not a dramatic debacle involving husband-choking, it’s often a frenzied affair that’s unrealistic at best. It was really important to me to avoid things that made birth seem scary, because I believe in women’s innate ability to birth their babies. It’s important to me to support positive, realistic depictions of birth!television set

I mean, of course they can’t prolong a birth on a half-hour sitcom and nobody really wants to watch a baby crown in between laugh tracks. But it doesn’t have to be a train wreck!

I will say there are 2 shows I recently re-watched that do a pretty good job of depicting birth, or at least showing some empowered characters rocking their inner birth warrior.

The Office. I know the show jumped the shark in later seasons, but back when Pam was having her first baby, I thought The Office did a great job depicting birth. This is one of the only shows I’ve seen where the character doesn’t panic when her water breaks (I’m looking at you, Parenthood!). Pam just changes her clothes and keeps on working.

Her labor takes a longish time, because she’s a first-time mom and those labors usually do! They did a great job showing this passage of time in a short television program.

This show did a fair job showing the process of early breastfeeding, too. Pam works with a lactation consultant and later gets her baby to latch on her own while waiting for Jim to locate the car.

Friends. I started watching this series from the beginning while I was packing up to move, and I really like the way birth gets depicted throughout the whole series. Phoebe delivers triplets vaginally. Erika delivers twins vaginally. Rachel delivers her breech baby vaginally. Nobody ever gets an epidural, and Rachel labors for 17 hours without anyone panicking. Her OB even tells her, “You’re progressing. Just very, very slowly.”

I wish they hadn’t rushed her to the hospital for braxton hicks contractions in an earlier episode, and I wish Rachel had a chance to learn her baby’s hunger cues rather than have the nurse bring the baby from the nursery to try breastfeeding, but I love how we at least got to see Rachel leaning over the bed a bit in labor and moving her body through contractions.

Have you seen birth depicted realistically on television recently? Leave us a comment to share which episodes we should check out!

Image credit: JVC America via Flickr

Halloween Costumes for Pregnant Ladies

I have never been largely pregnant at Halloween, much to my disappointment. Halloween has always been one of my favorite holidays. I love looking at the ideas other ladies come up with for pregnancy costumes, though.

I chuckle at beach balls and basketballs, pumpkins and Santa suits.

Image credit: Instagram user megansherwood

But. . . . → Read More: Halloween Costumes for Pregnant Ladies

Sweet Embrace Giveaway

In honor of A Mother’s Boutique‘s 20,000th online order, we are hosting a series of giveaways to share our favorite products with you, our wonderful customers!

For our final giveaway, we’re gifting one customer our Sweet Embrace necklace. 

Judy often has clients and colleagues tell her our Mother’s Boutique logo is so beautiful, . . . → Read More: Sweet Embrace Giveaway

One Creative Mama Giveaway

In honor of A Mother’s Boutique‘s 20,000th online order, we are hosting a series of giveaways to share our favorite products with you, our wonderful customers!

Today, we’re giving one winner one baby outfit and one mom shirt from One Creative Mama in the winner’s choice of style/color.

This company is a sister site to A . . . → Read More: One Creative Mama Giveaway