Selecting a Breast Pump

As lactation consultants, we talk to moms about their pumping experiences and hear the pros and cons they encounter with various brands of breast pumps. We consistently hear the best feedback about Spectra pumps with Motif Luna as the closest runner up. Sometimes brands that have been around the longest, like Medela, have not kept up with the latest technology and have actually downgraded the quality of their pumps over the years. We appreciate Spectra's two year warranty and hospital-strength motor, which we find is less likely to putter out when a mom is working full time and relying on efficient milk extraction to maintain her milk supply. The quiet rhythm of the Spectra motor sounds more like a soft sound machine than a whirling factory machine. And its gentle pull and release cycle makes for a more comfortable pumping experience. We recommend choosing a pump with closed system, which indicates the pumped milk is unable to get into the tubing or motor so you can rest assured your pump will stay clean and hygienic.

In a prenatal consult or lactation consult, we can also help moms discern if a non-conventional pump might be the right fit for them. For example, the Elvie is an in-bra breast pump that is popular with mothers who anticipate having a difficult time fitting in pump sessions. Wearable breast pumps do not typically work as well as standard breast pumps but can be a great compliment to a standard pump when discreet, on the go pumping is necessary.

How to Order a Pump

Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, most women are able to get a free breast pump through their health insurance with the birth of each baby. We recommend going through The Lactation Network or Aeroflow Breast Pumps to order an insurance covered breast pump during your third trimester of pregnancy. If your insurance does not cover a breast pump or you would like to purchase an additional pump, you can purchase through us or other retailers like Amazon or Target. We keep our prices competitive and below retail value, and you can use your Health Savings Account if desired to purchase breast pumps, parts and accessories.

Spectra Breast Pump Comparisons

The Spectra S1 pump is recognized by its blue face. Its standout feature is the built-in rechargeable battery. It can run off its battery for 3 or more hours of use (that's a least a full workday of pump sessions!) and can also be used while plugged in. It has a 2 year warranty and is ideal for moms who are working full time, pump exclusively or have twins. Because of its portability it's easy to walk around pumping, pump in the car or pump wherever an outlet is not accessible. With this pump you are able to separately change the speed/cycle and the vacuum, which operates at a hospital-grade level. It comes with 24mm and 28mm flanges, nightlight, and timer. We offer it for $195, or Amazon has it for $199.* Typically there is an upgrade fee for this pump if ordered through insurance.

*Not including tax. Pricing as of May 2021 but subject to change.

The Spectra S2 pump is recognized by its pink face. It has all the same features as the S1 including the hospital strength motor with two year warranty, separate cycle and vacuum settings, nightlight, timer, and 24mm and 28mm flanges but it does not have a rechargeable battery. Because of this, you'll need to stay connected to an outlet during use or purchase a car adapter plug for pumping on the go. We offer it for $155 or Amazon has it for $159.* Typically this pump is fully covered by insurance if ordered through The Lactation Network or another durable medical goods supplier.

*Not including tax. Pricing as of May 2021 but subject to change.


The Spectra 9 Plus pump is about the size of your hand and very lightweight. After charging it can run on its built-in rechargeable battery for about two hours of use. Although it does not have a hospital grade motor, it offers plenty of adjustable vacuum for most purposes. Its perfect for occasional pumpers such as stay-at-home moms who primarily feed at breast, or as a secondary pump used for travel and when out and about. We offer it for $125 or Target has it for $169.* Typically this pump is fully covered by insurance if ordered through The Lactation Network or another durable medical goods supplier.

*Not including tax. Pricing as of May 2021 but subject to change.

How to Assemble & Use a Spectra Pump

Mamas in the north Charlotte and Lake Norman area, we encourage you to setup a home visit so we can help you address these issues. If you are out of our travel area, you can setup a virtual consult with us or google "lactation consultant near me" to find local help.