Setting Up A Breast Pumping Station: Tips, Ideas and Essentials

I remember my breast pumping station before. It was practically half of the living room at my in-law’s place. 

They prepared a bedroom for me but my C-section was more comfortable sleeping on their living room couch. So I set up camp there. 

I had my breast pump, my snacks, my water, phone, etc. Everything I needed was just within reach. 

Even my baby in her pack n play was just right beside the couch!

There are better ways though to set up your own pumping station. 

And if you’re looking for some ideas, you’ve come to the right place.

In this article, I’m going to share some tips on:

  • What is the best place to set up your breast pumping station
  • What essentials do you need in your pumping station
  • How to organize and store your breast pumping essentials
  • Plus some breast pumping tricks and advice

Let’s start with what to consider when setting up an area for your breast pumping station.

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What to Consider Before Setting Up Your Breast Pumping Station

There’s a few things to think about when setting up a breast pumping station, such as:

Multifunctional

Are you solely using the station for pumping and breastfeeding or do you also want to work and/or do light chores at the same time?

If you want to multitask while pumping, is there enough space for you to work or move around?

Are you comfortable tucked away in a private area or would you like to be where the action is and just wear a nursing cover?

Comfort

Would you prefer to get your nursery glider or are you okay with just a regular chair or couch?

Would you like to have pillows?

If it’s cold, is there a space for a blanket? Is there an AC or fan if the area gets too warm?

Kid-Friendly

Would you like to have your baby within reach?

If you have younger kids, is it safe for them to roam around and stay with you while you’re pumping or breastfeeding?

Do you have a place for them to play or hang out with you in the room?

Multiple Stations

Would you like one dedicated breast pumping station or would you prefer setting up multiple stations, eg. your bedroom + baby’s room?

After you’ve considered the perfect place for your breast pumping station, think about what kind of storage system is suitable for your pumping station.

Below are some ideas.

Breast Pumping Station Storage and Organization Ideas

3-Tier Rolling Carts

Best used for small spaces

You can use this to store other items such as cleaning paraphernalia for your breast pumps, diapers, baby wet wipes, etc.

Not recommended when you have toddlers

They might go through your breast pumping cart or worse, try to climb on it

Tips For Using:

Store your breast pumping basics in the first tier of the rolling cart such as your breast pump, milk storage bags, marker for writing on the storage bags, nipple cream, water and cleaning materials.

Use the middle tier for the next important items, such as burp cloths, wet wipes, snacks, nursing pads, etc.

Use the bottom tier for supplies that you don’t use often but are still important, eg., extra breast pump accessories, nursing covers and such.

Here’s some samples of highly rated rolling carts. Click or tap on the images below to find out more

Bin Drawers

Best used for a permanent pumping station

You can also get the ones with wheels but the plastic bin drawers are usually best left alone permanently

Tips For Using:

Put heavy items and things you don’t normally use on the last drawer, so the whole thing doesn’t tip over.

Get a transparent one so you can easily see what’s inside or place a label on each drawer.

Remember to baby proof them if you have other more mobile, younger kids. And get a collared drawer, not a transparent or white one, so your toddlers won’t get curious to see what’s inside it.

Click or tap on the images below to find out more

Basket/ Diaper Caddy Organizer

Best used for small spaces

You can easily put it away out of reach from toddlers or place it on top of tables or inside the cabinets, so you can have more space.

Best used for multiple breast pumping stations

You can have a pump anywhere in the house if you feel like doing it in the kitchen or bedroom or your kid’s room.

Tips for Using:

Look for one that can fit your breast pumps plus the minimum essentials like water, wipes, snacks, marker, phone and charger, etc.

Make sure it’s sturdy and has preferably multiple pockets for organizing.

Check out these beautiful diaper caddies below by clicking or tapping on the image.

Bedside Table With Drawers

Best used to save space and money

If you already have one, then just utilize that and just place the bare essentials for pumping.

You can also utilize it to store other baby items and supplies.

Best used for a permanent pumping station

Usually it’s your bedroom or your baby’s bedroom

Tips for Using:

Make sure to clean it thoroughly before putting in your pumps and other pumping accessories

If you can, baby proof it as well, so toddlers can’t open it.

Check out some table with drawers below, click or tap on it to find out more.

Minimum Essentials For A Breast Pumping Station

Here are the basic items you would need in a breast pumping station:

Breastpump

Electric breast pumps are much more convenient to have so you don’t have to manually express milk.

Those that need to be plugged for use are better to have if you have a permanent breast pumping station.

While portable, battery-charged ones are better if you want to move around.

Check out some of my reviews on various breast pumps right here.

Milk Storage Bags or Containers

A lot of moms swear on the Kiinde Twist Pouch.

You can directly pump into this pouch and keep them in the freezer OR even turn it into a bottle and give them to your kid immediately!

Fuckity fuck, why didn’t I hear this pouch before! Could have saved me so much time transferring the milk from the bottle, cleaning bottles, and worse, when you accidentally spill some milk from the bottle. That’s the worst.

But these are not reusable though so just use the regular milk bottles for storing milk. Then transfer it to a milk storage bag after freezing.

Click or tap on the images below to find out more

Permanent marker

For writing in the date and time of pumping and amount of pumped milk

Water bottle

Pumping and breastfeeding releases oxytocin which triggers your thirst.

So have a water bottle by your breast pumping station and drink plenty before and even during nursing/ pumping.

Click or tap on the images below to find out more.

Snacks

There’s a lot of reasons why you get hungry after breastfeeding or pumping.

So remember to have some snacks nearby that are healthy and can help increase your milk supply.

You can have some protein bars and nuts, as those have a longer shelf life.

For boosting milk supply, many moms turn to lactation cookies, fennel + fenugreek, malunggay, etc.

Click or tap on the images below to find out more.

Phone with charger

A must-have to keep you entertained when pumping.

Wet wipes or Tissue

Just always have them at reach for easy cleaning when you spill some milk or to wipe your baby’s face after nursing

Chapstick

It’s also normal to get dry, chapped lips after pumping or breastfeeding, so have a chapstick on standby.

Click or tap on the images below to find out more.

Nipple cream

Not only can your lips get dry after nursing, your nipples can crack and get sore too! 

Especially if you’re using a less gentle breast pump like Baby Buddha.

So prepare your nipple cream as well, just in case you need it.

Click or tap on the images below to find out more.

The Ultimate Breast Pumping Station Essentials

If you want to set up the ultimate breast pumping station, check out these must-haves and other nice things to have while pumping or nursing your baby:

For Pumping

For Storing Milk 

For Cleaning

For Relief

For Entertainment

  • Books
  • Reading glasses
  • Phone
  • Charger
  • Power adapter extension
  • Laptop
  • Tablet
  • Earphones

For Nourishment

  • Vacuum insulated water bottle
  • Snacks with long shelf life like protein bars, granola bars, nutri grain bars, fier bars, crackers, dried fruit, nuts
  • Lactation cookies
  • Herbal supplements to boost milk supply

For Comfort

  • Nursery chair or rocking recliner chair
  • Breastfeeding pillow
  • Dimmable lamps or nightlight
  • Blanket
  • Nursing cover
  • Hair accessories
  • Baby photos and/or inspirational wall or desk art

For Baby

When you’re breastfeeding or looking after your baby in your pumping station:

  • Vitamin D drops
  • Baby blanket
  • Pacifier
  • Toy
  • Baby nail clippers

For Extra Supplies

  • Pump accessories and extra supplies eg., nipples, flanges, tubes, pump membranes, valves
  • Storage box organizer
  • Clean bottles and caps

Misc

  • Pumping bag or tote (so you’re always prepared to be on the go)
  • Breastfeeding and Pumping Tracking Notebook (if you don’t like using an app)

FAQ on Breastfeeding/ Pumping Station

Do I need a breastfeeding station?

No, it’s not a necessity.

But it would certainly make you feel more comfortable and less stressed if you have a dedicated place for pumping and/or breastfeeding.

Does pumping ruin your breasts?

It will change how your breasts look. 

Some moms had lopsided breasts, others noticed that one has gotten a bit larger, others became wrinkly and deflated, etc.

Pumping shouldn’t cause permanent damage to your nipples or breast in general though.

If it feels painful when you pump, try to change your flange size, adjust your pump settings and check also if you have clogged milk ducts or other issues.

How often should breasts be pumped?

Pumping every 3 hours for at least 20 minutes should give you a good milk supply. 
But it really depends on your body and how you can handle pumping a couple of times per day.

Quick Tips on Pumping Milk

  • Ask your insurance if they can cover not only your breast pump but also milk storage bags, your pumping bra, and even other extra pumping parts.
  • Massage before and after pumping or breastfeeding.
  • Nurse and pump regularly to prevent engorgement.
  • Eat foods that have naturally slippery fats and oil, like avocado, tomato, vegetables, etc. to help prevent clogs.
  • Focus more on time spent on pumping, rather than pushing to get your targeted milk output. Stressing about your output will affect your milk supply and might even lower it.
  • If possible, get an app that lets you record and track everything – pumping sessions, diaper changes, how much your baby is eating, etc.
  • Milk supply regulates between 6-12 weeks for most moms. So keep pumping to establish your milk supply!
  • If help is available, don’t be shy to ask for it. You need all the rest, food and sanity you can get.

Takeaway on Having a Breast Pumping Station

I understand the need to breastfeed your child because of the antibodies and it’s cheaper but it’s not for everyone. It certainly wasn’t for me.

So don’t set up everything yet on day one as you wouldn’t know if you’re ready to breastfeed and/or pump all the way.

Breastfeeding is brutal. It’s challenging, it’s hard and it doesn’t come easy for most women.

If you keep pushing to breastfeed or pump at the expense of your mental and physical health, you will break down. You will easily burn out.

So try to take things one day at a time.

Get only the bare essentials for your breast pumping station first.

Then slowly build up your supply. Once you’ve established a steady milk output by around 3 months, then go crazy with having a super comfortable nursing and breast pumping station.