Feb 13, 2024

9 Best Baby Bottles of 2023

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The truth is, your baby will have the final say on which baby bottle they're going to take. But these top-tested picks are a great place to start.

Even if you plan to breastfeed, a baby bottle is a key item for your baby registry so that others can help with feedings during the first year. But this is a baby-gear category that might cause genuine decision paralysis, because there are so many bottle brands, shapes and materials, from BPA-free plastic to glass and silicone. It's overwhelming trying to intuit which bottle your baby will take.

In the Good Housekeeping Institute, our parenting product experts have logged thousands of hours testing more than 20 different bottle brands over the past decade, In addition, we've tested 15 different bottles with consumer testers around the country in the past three years. We can't guarantee which one your baby will settle on, but we can tell you our tried and tested favorites.

Matching your baby to a bottle is trial and error, says Los Angeles-based pediatrician Harvey Karp, M.D., author of Happiest Baby on the Block and creator of the Snoo bassinet. "The good news is that babies have a built-in reflex that makes them want to suck on whatever you put into their mouth, from a finger to a paci and everything in-between," Dr. Karp says. "You just may have to try a few bottles until you find your baby’s preference." He suggests not buying too many of any one brand until you're sure it's a winner according to your child.

At the end of this guide, you'll find more on how we test baby bottles, our shopping guide, tips for cleaning and caring for baby bottles, advice for parents who want to pair breastfeeding with bottle-feeding, plus our glossary of baby-bottle jargon to help you make sense of all the claims and attributes. You might want to check our list of the best breast pumps and hands-free nursing bras, too.

Dr. Brown's bottles are easy to spot and have been a leading brand for several decades. Each has a distinctive anti-colic vent down the middle, which you can leave in or take out (hence the name "Options"). They come in this classic long, narrow shape as well as in short, wide versions and there are Dr. Brown's glass bottles too.

Dr. Brown's bottles are a Good Housekeeping Parenting Award winner and they have 33K five-star reviews on Amazon. "Dr. Brown's was the one I used most in my household," says Chief Technologist & Executive Technical Director Rachel Rothman. "I had three kids with reflux and found the anti-colic feature helped with that."

"What I especially like about these bottles is that they have grown with my baby," says Nutrition Lab Director Stefani Sassos, whose daughter is now a year old. "You can upgrade to a sippy spout, which helped us transition as she got older and saved me from having to spend money on new cups and bottles."

Note that the vent, if you use it, is an extra part to clean. This set comes with a tiny bristle brush to help with that. The Dr. Brown's Bottle Cleaning Brush with a sponge top is a popular tool for cleaning the bottles themselves.

While manufacturers work to innovate the baby-bottle market, these traditional, affordable bottles continue to be a favorite of both babies and parents. In this century, they've been given a "twist" design that makes them easier to grip.

"I picked these up from the supermarket in a pinch and my son really liked them. They actually became his preferred bottle," one mom told us. The price almost can't be beat, with the plastic version coming in at a little over a dollar per bottle and the glass version priced at a little over $3 dollars a bottle.

It's a little tough to see the ounce marks on the side, since they are clear like the bottle. But with some practice and time, it seems most parents get used to expertly filling even half or three-quarters of any bottle in the dark with their eyes closed.

Nearly every bottle on the market will say it's the closest to nursing. We give props though to this bottle for the controlled-pace nipple that doesn't overwhelm a nursing infant with milk but responds well to their stop-and-start sucking. Phillips Avent sells nipples in five different flow rates so you can adjust for a faster flow as your baby grows and takes in more milk, more quickly.

This brand's big innovation about 40 years ago was introducing the fat, wide shape of both the bottle and the nipple. The roundness of the nipple might feel more like a breast to babies (hard to say, since they can't tell us!) and as parents, we can vouch that wide bottles can be easier to clean. Now many other companies have taken note and also sell wide versions of their bottles.

MAM bottles unscrew at the bottom and the top, which allows you to clean them really well. They also have a unique "self-sterilization" feature wherein you unscrew the bottle parts, add an ounce of water to the bottom piece, load in the nipple top and then the main sleeve and finally put the cap on top, and microwave it all for three minutes. "I’ve never seen anything like that with any other bottle," one tester noted. "It would be a great bottle for traveling when you don’t have access to your sterilizer or to boiling water."

But the sterilization feature is only useful if your baby likes the bottle, and we have had slightly less luck with our tester babies taking this brand over others. We've also had some complaints that these bottles can be more prone to leaking, perhaps because of all the screw-on parts.

In this century, amid the plastic-vs.-glass debate, Comotomo introduced a third material for baby bottles: soft, squishy silicone. The material is lightweight, durable and easy to clean. It also doesn't get stained with milk residue like some plastic bottles.

"When my daughter was in one of her bottle-rebellion phases, she did still accept the Comotomo," Rothman says. That was echoed by a tester who told us, "When my daughter was refusing to suck on a bottle, I liked that I could squeeze some milk out of these right into her mouth."

The material can also be easier for independent-minded older babies to hold by themselves. However, silicone can be a little unsteady when placed down on a surface (some online reviewers say their Comotomo bottles sometimes tip over). Plus, it's tough to get a name sticker, like you might use for daycare, to adhere on a silicone bottle (we recommend placing one on the colored rim).

Fans of these silicone bottles praise them for being virtually leakproof when assembled correctly and easy for an older baby to hold and drink to the last drop. The silicone sleeve collapses as your baby sucks, forcing out all the milk without letting a baby take in too much air. This collapsible design helps cut down on gas and reflux without any special vents.

Aesthetically, we appreciate the cute mushroom shape these take on when you add the lid, and they come in a bunch of fun colors too. "I really liked how these worked down the line with their sippy-cup lids," says Rothman. To clean them, you can flip the silicone part inside-out to really scrub them well.

To assemble these properly so they don't leak, you do need to take the time to line up the silicone inner pouch with the exterior plastic holder and be sure they're sealed tightly together. Then you add the nipple. If you're in a rush, it can feel like one extra step compared to a traditional bottle.

Lansinoh is a nursing-first company; it tracks that their bottle nipple is designed to compliment breastfeeding and that their bottle was easily accepted by some of our testers with newborns.

"My first child wasn't picky at all," one tester said. "But my second was super picky and we finally got her to take the Lansinoh bottles. They seem most comfortable and similar to breastfeeding for her. My only complaint is that they only make glass bottles in the 8-ounce size so we have to wait until she's older to use glass, which we prefer."

Similar to other bottles on this list, Lansinoh bottles use a vented nipple to cut down on gas and reflux; it's also a controlled-flow nipple so that your baby should use roughly the same actions to drink from this as they use while nursing.

When we gave the Chicco Duo Hybrid a GH Parenting Award, we noted that they combine glass and plastic to get the benefits of glass without the breakage potential. "An inner glass layer touches the milk, and there's an outer coating of plastic to prevent shattering," says Rothman. If your child's daycare won't accept glass bottles, but you're trying to avoid traditional plastics, they are a great solution.

In a category where some brands have been around for generations, the Duo technology is still new, so you won't see as many online reviews to guide you (though there are still thousands). Note that these can be cleaned in the dishwasher top rack and can be sterilized in an electric sterilizer or by boiling them for a few minutes, but you shouldn't use microwave sterilizers with the Duo.

NUK's newest bottle has a vented nipple to cut down on gas and reflux, and the brand touts the nipple's soft texture and ergonomic design made to accommodate the way a baby holds their tongue while feeding.

We've had many current testers tell us their baby took a liking to this one. Said one, "My son is exclusively drinking breastmilk and mostly directly from me, so I was pleasantly surprised to find he liked drinking expressed milk out of this bottle too."

A temperature indicator on the side disappears when the milk is too hot for a baby to drink, then reappears as the milk cools down and is safe and ready for feeding. It's one of the only bottles we know of with that feature. The brand designs the bottles in plastic only, not glass.

The babies of the Good Housekeeping Institute's scientists and analysts have all been baby-bottle testers over the past 10 years. We've also sent out 15 different bottles to consumer testers over the past three years — with more going out this year as well. Baby bottles are a category we are constantly testing and revising, just like other important baby-gear categories such as infant car seats and strollers.

We look at over a dozen different factors when testing a baby bottle, including:

We also ask our testers whether they plan to buy more of a brand they've tested themselves or recommend the brand to friends.

Since your baby doesn't speak words yet and can't give you any hints on their preferences, it's up to you to decide which bottle to try first. These tips can help you sort through the options:

✔️ Material: Many new parents, who are eager to avoid plastics whenever possible, initially want a glass bottle for feeding a baby breastmilk or formula. However, glass bottles are heavier, sometimes a little harder to grip, tougher for an independent-minded older baby to hold themselves and more expensive. For all those reasons, the top-selling bottles in the U.S. continue to be BPA-free plastic versions. Five options on our list are sold in both plastic and glass versions, including our best overall and best value bottle.

Silicone is a new option and also popular. It's soft, lightweight and durable, and it's tough to crack, unlike plastic or glass. Two of our options are silicone baby bottles.

✔️ Size: Newborns drink less but need to be fed more frequently than than 6-month-olds. It's useful to read the AAP guidelines on how much babies eat. Many parents start their baby on a 2-, 4- or 5-ounce bottle and then work up to 8-, 9-, 10- or 11-ounce size as their baby grows. Every baby is different, so keeping all of your well-baby appointments will help you and your pediatrician track your baby's growth and discuss feedings.

✔️ Nipple: New parents may not know that nipples are sold with different flow speeds, meaning milk comes out faster or slower depending on the number and size of milk openings. Check a bottle's packaging to see which nipple is included and consider buying a few of the brand's other nipples just in case. Then if your baby seems to be mad about the bottle, swap out the nipple for one with a faster or slower flow speed to see if that helps. Younger babies need a slow flow so they don't get a face full of milk; older babies can handle a faster flow and might act hangry if they can't gulp as much as they want.

"If you are trying a bottle and the baby spills, coughs or chokes, the flow may be too fast," said Beth Iovinelli, BSN, RN, IBCLC, a Registered Nurse and Certified Lactation Consultant who owns the Milk Street Lactation Support Center in Norwalk, Connecticut. "If the baby takes a long time to take the bottle, you may need to try a different nipple with a faster flow."

✔️ Pump compatibility: If you'll be expressing breastmilk, you can pump into storage bags or pump directly into a bottle. Most major plastic and glass bottle brands can screw right onto a traditional breast pump, though some require an adaptor. Silicone bottles don't work with many pumps although there are exceptions. Wearable breast pumps each have their own milk-collection containers. The bottom line is: Don't stress too much about this. If your baby loves a bottle but it doesn't screw onto your pump, you'll need to do some delicate milk transfers but it will all work out.

There are several methods for cleaning, but whichever you opt for, it's important to follow these guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control:

• Baby bottles must be cleaned (with soap, not just rinsed) after every use. • Feeding items should be sanitized once a day if your infant is younger than 2 months, a preemie, or health-compromised. As your baby grows older, a regular cleaning after each use is enough, with occasional sanitizing for peace of mind (if there's a cold going around, if the bottle landed in the playground dirt, etc.).• Be sure to wash your hands before handling your baby's bottles for cleaning and drying.• At room temperature, expressed breastmilk or formula is safe for only two hours. If you come across a bottle that's been sitting out for that long or longer, you need to toss the milk or formula that's inside and clean the bottle thoroughly.

The easiest way to clean any baby bottle is in the top rack of the dishwasher. It helps to have a dishwasher basket to hold small parts, like bottle nipples. The CDC says that if you use a sanitizing cycle and heated dry cycle, you’ve effectively sanitized everything. If you wash baby bottles on a normal, quick or eco cycle and opt to air dry, you’ll want to occasionally sterilize in addition to using the dishwasher.

Hand-washing a baby bottle and its parts also works and is necessary if you don't own a dishwasher, and it's bound to happen when your dishes get backup up. (New parenthood is messy!) There are many bottle brushes you can use and any dish soap is good, though there are some brands such as Dapple Baby Bottle Soap that specifically target fatty milk residue to help remove stubborn stains. The CDC suggests you put the parts in a large, clean bowl and add soap and water before scrubbing, rather than letting parts fall into the sink, in case the sink harbors germs. As far as a drying rack goes, we gave a Parenting Award to the Boon Groove.

You might want to hang onto your bottle's packaging for clear directions on occasionally sterilizing the bottles. The inexpensive, old-fashioned way to sterilize is to boil a pot of water and add the bottle parts to it for five minutes; remove the items with clean tongs. However, many of us have a story of needing to tend to the baby halfway through the process and the parts being accidentally left to melt. New parenthood is truly a fog!

Another method is to invest in a microwave steam sterilizer; with just a bit of water and about two minutes, you can sterilize bottles and parts quickly. Some bottle brands sell their own sterilizers such as this Avent Microwave Steam Sterilizer.

Finally, there are electric sterilizers that will keep your baby's accessories off your stove and out of your microwave. These plug in and heat all the parts to kill germs. They're also sold by some bottle brands; the Dr. Brown's Deluxe Electric Sterilizer is one such model.

Some parents work to exclusively nurse and others begin with formula from day one. But these days, it's common for parents to pair breastfeeding with bottle feeding—using either expressed breastmilk or formula (called combination feeding).

If a nursing mom wants others to help with feedings, it's smart to introduce a bottle by the one-month mark. "Once your baby has the hang of nursing — usually around 2 or 3 weeks old, 4 weeks max — I recommend offering one bottle a day (whether that’s breastmilk or formula)," says Dr. Karp of guiding families through bottle feeding with breastfeeding.

"Most babies happily partake in both," says Caroline Long, M.D., a pediatrician at Manhattan Pediatrics. "However, occasionally there will be a finicky baby who strongly prefers one to the other. For a mom who wants to continue to nurse, I would usually suggest not giving more than one bottle a day of formula so as to maintain milk supply." One favorite tip is to have anyone but the nursing mom bottle-feed the baby, to help establish that it's the other parent, grandparent or caregiver who delivers the bottle.

And Dr. Karp offers this smart insight: "If a nursing baby is resisting taking the bottle, some parents are told to wait for the baby to get 'really hungry' before trying to give the bottle. They think that, when hungry, the baby will have no choice but to take the bottle. Unfortunately, babies who are very hungry often have no patience to try to suck from anything other than their beloved breast. Instead, if a breastfed baby resists latching onto the bottle, try offering a bottle with some warm breast milk at the end of a baby’s nursing session, when the baby is getting comfy and sleepy and is less likely to notice the difference."

If you're a first-time expectant parent you might be swayed, confused, impressed or overwhelmed by the claims made by baby-bottle manufacturers. We've compiled a litany of attributes you'll likely read about and might question.

Ready for the confusing part? Colic is not actually caused by gas or reflux. Parents may be quick to say a crying baby is "colicky," but as noted by the Mayo Clinic, Dr. Karp and many other experts, colic is defined as frequent, prolonged and intense crying for no apparent reason. So if you clear up your baby's crying by switching bottles, they probably didn't have colic, just bad gas or reflux. If your baby is actually suffering from colic, a bottle switch will not make a difference. What can help, says Dr. Karp, are his five S's: swaddling, swinging, sucking, shushing, and holding your baby in the side/stomach position.

"The notion of nipple confusion does not give baby enough credit," Iovinelli says. "If breastfeeding is going well and baby is latching well, most can go back and forth between bottle and breast without much issue." See the tips in the box above for pairing nursing with bottle feeding, which pediatricians have assured us can be done successfully more times than not.

For more than a century, the experts in the Good Housekeeping Institute have educated consumers on making good product choices for their homes and families. In our Parenting Lab, we regularly review products that parents will want and need while raising their children, from the initial baby cribs and bassinets to toys they'll be using later such as swing sets.

Between raising three children ages 6 and younger and leading data collection at the Institute for more than 15 years, Chief Technologist & Executive Technical Director Rachel Rothman has had extensive first-hand experience with baby bottles in her home and at the Lab. She's also pored through consumer reviews from Good Housekeeping testers. Rothman is a trained mechanical engineer who has also helmed reviews on breast pumps and baby monitors.

This article was written by contributing writer Jessica Hartshorn who nursed and pumped for bottle-feeding her two kids for two years each. She covered the baby-gear market most recently for Parents magazine and prior to that, for American Baby magazine. You can also see her write-up of the best baby carriers.

Jessica (she/her) is a freelance writer with several decades of experience writing lifestyle content and evaluating home and parenting products. A mom of two teens and two cats, her previous work can be seen in American Baby and Parents.

Rachel Rothman (she/her) is the chief technologist and executive technical director at the Good Housekeeping Institute, where she oversees testing methodology, implementation and reporting for all GH Labs. She also manages GH’s growing research division and the analysis of applicants for the GH Seal and all other testing emblems. During her 15 years at Good Housekeeping, Rachel has had the opportunity to evaluate thousands of products, including toys and cars for GH’s annual awards programs and countless innovative breakthroughs in consumer tech and home improvement.

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distinctive anti-colic vent down the middlea "twist" design that makes themeasier to gripcontrolled-pace nipplethat doesn't overwhelm a nursing infantunscrew at the bottom and the top, which allows you to clean them really wellsoft, squishy siliconevirtually leakproof when assembled correctly and easy for an older baby to hold and drink to the last dropdesigned to compliment breastfeedingcombine glass and plastic to get the benefits of glass without the breakage potentialvented nipple to cut down on gas and reflux✔️Material:Five options on our list are sold in both plastic and glass versions, including our best overall and best value bottle✔️Size:start their baby on a 2-, 4- or 5-ounce bottle✔️Nipple:nipples are sold with different flow speeds✔️Pump compatibility:pump directly into a bottle top rack of the dishwasherbottle brushesoccasionally sterilizingboil a pot of watermicrowave steam sterilizerelectric sterilizerspair breastfeeding with bottle feedingaround 2 or 3 weeks old, 4 weeks max — I recommend offering one bottle a dayAnti-colic:Most like Mom:Easy latch or "accepted" by baby:Nipple confusion: