January 30, 2014 10:00 AM

Courtesy Ameda

Who tried it: Julia Wang, Features Director

Why she did it: As any mom who plans to continue breastfeeding after returning to work knows, your breast pump becomes your best friend. It’s the one piece of equipment you turn to to continue providing nourishment for your little one when you can’t be there in person to nurse. Plus, it has to be discreet and can’t let you down — all of which amounts to a lot of pressure to find “The Pump That Will Deliver.”

I started using the Ameda Purely Yours Ultra after a week of trying to express milk — and failing miserably — with another double electric pump. Already frazzled that I wasn’t able to properly express milk for several days, my Ameda arrived in the mail. Hallelujah?

The pros:

The settings. I needed to find a pump that provided good suction given my 6-month-old daughter can conceivably suck an escargot out of its shell. The Ameda has two individually adjustable dials — one for speed, the other for suction — to let you customize and, ultimately, mimic your baby’s natural nursing rhythm. While I doubt anything could match my daughter’s incredible Dyson-like sucking power, the four speed and eight suction levels add up to 32 possible combinations to express milk. For me, it was more than enough to get the job done.

Closed system. The Ameda uses a patented HygieniKit Milk Collection System, which is a fancy way of saying they’ve found way to prevent your milk from leaking into the pump’s tubing. While that may not sound all that revolutionary, trust me — it is. When you’re pumping two, three, four times a day at work, you don’t exactly want to spend so much time in the women’s restroom washing your breast pump parts that it becomes your hangout — or you start receiving tips because coworkers think you work there.

Noise. The pump does emit some low-level sounds, but with the office door shut it seems fairly unobtrusive so as not to announce to passers-by: Ladies and gentleman, she is using her breast pump!

Add-ons. The kit comes with BPA-free bottles, a cooler with ice packs, a car adapter and more, all of which fit into a black tote bag.

The verdict: I’ve come full circle with breast pumps having used a single electric pump (with my first child), tried a lower price point double electric pump that didn’t work and on occasion turned to a manual pump to get the job done. Now that I have a reliable double electric pump, expressing milk has become easier and way faster. A 15-minute break is more than enough time for me to collect milk and get back to whatever business is at hand — that’s lots of peace of mind for me and really good news for my baby.

Cost: $300

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