Juno Blu Review: Breastfeeding, Pumping and Returning to Work

I have not been sponsored to write this post. The ideas and thoughts here are my own, my personal experiences and opinions. I have been provided with a product sample to facilitate my review. The photos here are of my product sample and have been taken and edited by me. I am a working and pumping Mom. Please consult a certified (the certified part is important) lactation consultant with any breastfeeding needs.



     I returned to work PRN almost two months after my 3rd son was born. I knew I was going to pump and prepare bottles for him, but needed to figure out how to pump at work, transport everything I need, and determine how much milk I needed to leave at home. Luckily, there are some great products out there to help me accomplish this, and my insurance covered a double electric pump.
     I took advantage of the Affordable Care Act legislation that encouraged my insurance company to cover the costs of a breast pump. I selected the Ameda Purely yours, a closed system dual electric pump. I purchased a Medela Advanced pump-in-style (open system) pump with my first son; Unfortunately at nearly $300 it wasn't a great fit for me. I was thrilled to have this expense covered for baby 3, and currently have both pumps at home. Although the Ameda came without a bag, my Medela came in a black synthetic tote. It's the black bag that anyone who has shopped for baby items can recognize...it doesn't match anything and my bag always looks like it needs to be washed.


      The first few weeks after each of my babies' births I was engorged (common). I used my pump to both relieve pressure and prepare freezer bags for my return to work. It can be tricky to pump the first few weeks. It take almost 6 weeks for supply to regulate, and if there is an oversupply it can be increased and aggravated by pumping. I waited for a meal my nursling slept through, or pumped one side while he nursed on the other and soon I had a little stash. As I placed a few 2-3 oz bags into the freezer my confidence grew. I knew that there would be enough milk on standby if the fresh milk I left ran out while I was gone.
     When my Ameda pump arrived, I was shocked to see that it was just the pump..... 1 pump, 1 tubing set, 2 breast shields, 2 valves, 2 bottles...the end. I tried using several bags including our diaper bag, a tote, and a bag the hospital gave me to carry these items. None of them worked well and I found myself fumbling with my supplies at work. I even dropped parts on the floor trying to get everything together. I was thrilled to find an amazing fashionable-breastfeeding-Mom-discovered company that makes beautiful functional pump bags; Juno Blu.  


     At first I wasn't sure what items to take with me, how many bottles and bags, adapters and other accessories. It took me a few time pumping at work to determine just what I needed to take with me, and how much I needed to pump and bring home. Having a bag to help me organize and gain easy access to my supplies really helps boost my confidence. I clean my pump parts and pack the evening before, so I can grab my bag and go in the morning. I head to work with a beautiful bag that everyone compliments and I feel great toting around (pun intended)!


     Juno Blu bags are designed for breast pumps. This bag is the Esalen tote in Mushroom Ostrich. It's made of a fantastic Vegan Leatherette and can be wiped clean both inside and out! The interior boasts both zippered and easy access pockets to hold all kinds of supplies. With this bag I have no need to carry a purse! My cell phone and wallet fit great into these compartments and overall the bag is both stylish and functional. (Inside compartments pictured below)



     The bag features: 
  • adjustable optional shoulder strap
  • gold hardware finish
  • exterior front pockets for pump and storage
  • exterior side thermo-insulated pocket, keeps liquids warm/cool for up to 4hrs (time will vary depending on external temperature)
  • 2 reusable ice packs for insulated pocket
  • washable, blue dirty bottle bag
  • interior zipper, cell phone pockets and key ring clasp
  • wipe clean lining
  • pump pocket size (compatible with various pump sizes): 6" deep x 6" wide x 6" high
  • tote dimensions: 15" wide x 11.5" high x 7.25" deep      (find bag here)
     

     In addition to the well organized interior, both sides of the tote are functional. The side shown both above (closed) and below (open) comes with ice packs and is insulated to keep pumped milk cool for up to 4 hours! Obviously you wouldn't leave this in the sun or by a heater, but adding an additional ice pack, or storing in a fridge is a great way to keep milk an an ideal temperature for longer periods until it can be placed in the refrigerator or freezer at home.


      The opposite side of the tote houses the pump body. The is plenty of room in here for my Ameda and I have the plug cord tucked in as well. This makes pumping easy because I just slide it out, plug the pump in and go! The fabric inside this compartment pushes back and up to allow the pump to fit, but can also be expanded from the inside to allow the tote to be used for other purposes.


      The supplies you need to pump may vary, and are determined by how much you pump in a session, and how many times you pump. I have been working half day shifts and typically pump twice. Here are the supplies I take, I use a combination of Ameda and Medela bottles (parts fit both pumps) because the Medela bottles hold 5 oz and the Ameda bottles only hold 4.
  • Ameda Pump
  • Plug outlet cord
  • Plug with AC adapter cord for car
  • 2 Medela Bottles
  • 2 Ameda Bottles
  • Stack of storage bags
  • 2 bag adapters for pump
  • 6 bottle caps (extra for instances when I drop one)
  • Hands-free pumping bra 
  • Breast shields with properly fitting phlanges, valves and tubing. 
  • Quick clean wipes and hand sanitizer

      The Juno Blu Breast Pump Bags come with a reusable storage bag that is great for holding clean parts. Not only does it help keep your pump parts clean, but it also provides easy access to them when you're ready to pump. It also comes with this fantastic cotton storage bag, a removable shoulder strap, and two handles great for a shoulder carry.


     The top of the bag is secured with a zipper and there is room on the sides to allow air to circulate through the bag. As you can see, the great tote material covers the entire tote and it looks fashionable from every angle. The blue liner gives a great pop of color and compliments every season.

      Okay, so now you're wondering who came up with this amazing fashionable and functional tote ....and are probably shopping on the website. Juno Blu was founded by not one...but two Moms! Co-creators Shannan and Kelley, both breastfeeding and working moms, were astounded by the lack of alternatives to toting around a black bag that “screamed” breast pump. This, coupled by the embarrassment of TSA security checks, which inevitably resulted in having to dismantle the contents of their pump bag to an audience of travelers. Shannan, an interior designer with a love for materials and Mom to 2 small children, and Kelley, a Mom and successful shoe designer who developed Ipanema Inc. and Klub Nico, decided to develop their own line of mom-centric gear that would not only work well but look fabulous. (1)       

 (Photo above is from the Juno Blu Website

     
     So if you are making your baby registry, planning a Mother's Day present, or just want to have something really special for yourself...this is for you! I'm really excited to take this to work every time I go, and instead of trying to hide an unfashionable bag my pump parts are pouring out of, I get to take this beauty with me. 
     As always thank you for stopping by. I'm happy to answer any questions you may have, please take a moment and stop by Juno Blu's Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube and Website to peruse their line and follow for great tips, giveaways and promotions!






4 comments:

Martina Huntington said...

Thanks for the recommendation! The bag looks awesome! Will definitely look into it when I'm in the market again :)

Tanya @ Moms Small Victories said...

Wow, that is so cute! I had an Ameda Purely Yours and a big black clunky bag. This sure is prettier, wish I had known about it when I was a nursing working mom!

Thanks for sharing with Small Victories Sunday linky last week, Hope you link up again this week!

Kelly F. said...

I have never heard of this brand before, but I love it! It is totally my style! I have the Ameda pump and it works great also! I want this bag now...so stylish!!

Janna said...

This bag is beautiful. I return to work in a month I'm going to have to check them out!