When I created the first nursing cover for my own use in 2003, my main concern was covering my front area while breastfeeding. As a new, second-time mom, I wasn’t comfortable breastfeeding in front of friends and family, or a crowd of strangers at a soccer game of 15,000 people. No matter how many people told me it was easy to breastfeed in public without a cover, it just wasn’t for me.
So, I set about designing and sewing our first nursing cover. This was not a business idea, but rather a cover for my own use.
My baby was born in July, and we live in California, so the heat was a factor. I knew 100% breathable cotton was a must, and I wanted to see what I was doing while nursing. I designed and sewed an apron-style nursing cover using beautiful fabric and I added a rigid neckline that allowed me to bond with my newborn by seeing her during nursing.
Photo: Me using one of the first Nursing Covers at a San Jose Earthquakes game.
I began using it everywhere – the park, restaurants, and at my husband's pro-soccer games. So many other moms would ask me where I got the cover, so I knew I was not alone in wanting a little more privacy while nursing and a business idea was born.
Since then, we have designed other types of covers with different fabrics. It can be difficult to figure out which style of cover to buy, so here is a list of the benefits of the different covers we at Bebe au Lait design.
Photo: A mom using our cotton apron-style nursing cover.
Open neckline: This is the main feature. You can easily see baby, and baby can see you, ensuring a perfect latch and bonding with your baby.
Airflow: Angle yourself and the cover to catch a breeze on either side of the cover. The open neckline also allows for the air to flow up.
100% breathable cotton – this is a must. Breastfeeding can get warm due to the close contact, so breathability in a fabric will make you more comfortable than a cheaper polyester one.
100% breathable cotton muslin – a much lighter weighted fabric for indoor use or warmer climates. Only the shadow of the baby’s outline will be visible, not your breasts.
Photo: A mom using our muslin cotton apron-style nursing cover
Not another layer: This style of cover drapes in front of you and your baby so it is not another layer of clothing you are putting on, making it significantly cooler.
Movement: The cover allows for movement underneath, giving more freedom – baby can kick their legs.
Adjustable: The neck strap allows for a custom fit.
Best for first-time moms: There is a major learning curve to breastfeeding, at least there was for me. This style of cover is great to use from the very beginning. An older baby will not be happy about being covered, but a younger baby will begin to associate the cover with breastfeeding, making it easier to nurse.
Terry cloth pockets: The pockets come in handy for quick wipe up after nursing because they are made of terry cloth. They are also great for stashing breast pads and/or pacifiers.
Save money: This style of nursing cover means you do not need to buy expensive nursing tops or dresses. If you can pull your top up or down, you can nurse your baby anywhere.
Keep it clean: A dedicated nursing cover is cleaner. This cover is only for nursing or draping over a stroller. It is not being stretched over a car seat, a swing at the park, or picking up germs on a Target shopping cart.
Front coverage: With its generous size, this cover provides complete coverage for your front and sides.
Easy to Use: This cover is incredibly user-friendly. Set the D-rings once, and then pop it over your head every time you use it - which can be several times a day.
Durability: While it's sad for us, it's great for you! Moms have reported using the same cover for multiple babies. We are committed to making quality products that stand the test of time.
Photo: a mom using jersey cotton 5-in1 style nursing cover
Many Uses: As the name, 5in1 suggests, this cover is a versatile workhorse. It can be used in five different ways:
o Car Seat Cover – Stretch it over your baby's car seat for added protection and privacy.
o Nursing Cover – Provides 360-degree coverage for breastfeeding.
o Shopping Cart Cover – Shields your baby from germs while you shop.
o Scarf – Can be worn stylishly around your neck until needed.
o Baby Carrier Cover – Offers a little extra warmth and security.
Stretch: This style of cover features a 4-way stretch that allows for movement and comfort for both mom and baby.
Easy: The cover can be worn around your neck like a scarf until it's needed as a nursing or car seat cover.
Visibility: The neckline can be stretched away from you to allow you to peek down at your baby.
Discreetly breastfeeding in public can be challenging, but a nursing cover can make it more comfortable and private. When choosing a nursing cover, consider factors such as size, fabric, design, ease of use, and durability. With the right nursing cover, you can feel confident and comfortable breastfeeding your baby, no matter where you are.