In the days of old, parents had to heat baby bottles on the stove in a small pot of water. This method may still be used today, but manufacturers and modern technology are making parenthood much easier with electric bottle warmers for their busy lives. Most of the models on the market today are simple to operate because you just plug them in, fill with water, and set the temperature control.
They will sound an alarm when the bottle is warmed or stop heating and just keep the bottle warm when you are ready to use it. The models we highlight here can also warm baby food jars and sterilize bottle nipples and pacifiers. They come with little baskets that fit in the warmers to make lifting them out easy and safe. Several of these warmers also have a cooler to keep liquids cool for up to eight hours. This is an important feature when you are the one that must get up in the middle of the night for feedings. The cooler makes the trip to the fridge unnecessary because the cold bottles are right there with the warmer.
One model is a portable warmer that does not need electricity to operate and can be used for traveling purposes or away from home occasions. It works much like a Thermos, but with the proper fittings and requirements of baby bottles. All of these warmers will warm formulas, breast milk, and baby food jars. The best brands of baby products are found right here, such as Tommee Tippee, Munchkin, The First Years, Dr. Brown, and Philips.
Our Top 3 Picks
- The First Years
- The First Year Quick
- Dr. Brown's
That said, to ensure that selecting the best warmer is easier for you, we have tested and researched a broad variety of bottle warmers to provide you with 10 of the best ones on the market today.
Criteria Used In Evaluation of the Best Bottle Warmers
Making use of a baby bottle warmer is a seamless way to suitably feed one’s baby regardless of the time. Therefore procuring one is a wonderful idea. Nevertheless, questions remain as to what other services should a bottle warmer offer other than just warming the baby bottle, as its name implies?
To respond to this query, one’s needs, as well as the baby’s needs, must first be identified before proceeding to procure a baby bottle warmer. The following are a few of the deciding factors we considered after carrying out extensive research in selecting the best baby warmers.
Health and safety
In the hopes of avoiding the possibility of overheating, the heating system coupled with the technology employed in warming up the bottles must be considered when buying a baby bottle warmer. The majority of the widespread bottle warmers use either water or steam bath. Usually, overheating results in damaged or ineffective crucial nutrients in baby food and breast milk. The correct device is one that heats the bottles to temperatures akin to body temperature such as 37 Celsius. Any device with an abnormally high temperature (100°C for example) is one that should be steered away from, as breast milk, and baby foods are unsafe after being heated at that temperature.
This is the capacity of any prospective baby warmer to rapidly and consistently warm formula, breast milk, or baby food. Situations often arise, mostly in the dark of the night where the baby is hungry and breast milk or formula must be warmed quickly to placate the baby. The bottle warmer chosen must be able to warm up the milk quickly and continue to do this on a consistent basis. In that regard, the products above can be used.
Ease of use
The selection of baby bottle warmer is one that should also be founded on its operating simplicity. It should be one that is not only easy to use but also easy to maintain. In summary, it should not be tedious nor time-consuming to understand, and thus, operate any time of the day, or at night when one is most likely a little groggy and sleepy. This condition should also be applicable to the cleaning of the bottle warmer.
If varying bottle types and sizes are used, then versatility should not be left out when considering a bottle warmer. It’s very ideal to get a bottle warmer suited to both wide and narrow mouth bottles consisting of different materials. A material limitation may suggest certain bottles are not compatible with a specific bottle warmer. So, we ensured that the products above can easily hold bottles of different sizes/types.
How easy is it to carry around and exactly how much counter space it takes up? This is an important factor to consider when procuring a bottle warmer. If it is a bottle warmer that is going to be for stationary use, perhaps in a nursery, then portability doesn’t matter. Alternatively, if it is one that will be traveled with, portability is crucial to comfortably use the bottle warmer.
Water Bath vs. Steam Heat Technology
There are typically two comprehensive groups of bottle warmers to ponder upon. This is based on the kind of heating technology used to warm baby foods and breast milk, namely; water bath and steam heat technology.
Bottle warmers employing the water bath technology are typically endorsed as the best baby bottle warmers to be considered. Notwithstanding the fact that they have the tendency to be slower heaters, they do heat uniformly and consistently with no need for the extremely high temperatures often required in steam heat technology. Baby bottle warmers that use the water bath, heat formulas, baby foods, and breast milk gradually, with warm water dispersed around the bottle. This ensures critical nutrients and the necessary maternal antibodies are not damaged and are retained. Summarily, a little bit of patience is needed to use warmers that use water bath technology since they’re slower than the other option.
Baby bottle warmers that employ this heating technique do this by having water inside a reservoir heated to extremely high temperatures by a heating element such as a hot plate to provide steam. This is then used to heat up the formula or breast milk in a bottle.
As the steam heat technology is faster to heat than water baths, the temperature of the exterior of the bottle is sure to rise to extremely high levels thereby needing a cool down period before being handled. High temperatures as such frequently come with certain risks which include burns, spillage of contents on the skin, as well as destroying important nutrients in breast milk. It is thereby important to note that steam heating doesn’t always result in the even warming of the bottle’s contents. In other words, temperature isn’t consistent throughout the baby food. This result means thorough mixing and inspection is necessary to extricate occurrences of hotspots that are sure to hurt the baby.
Auto shut-off and timer features
When purchasing a baby bottle warmer, it is important to consider one designed with an auto shut-off feature that allows it to automatically switch off when the set temperature or time is exceeded. This is vital to evading the contents of the bottle overheating and thus, voiding some benefits on the part of the baby.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What is the best temperature for a baby bottle of formula or breast milk?
A: The optimum temperature is 98.6 degrees F for baby bottles of formula or breast milk. Anything less than this may give the baby indigestion and any hotter will burn their mouths. You can test the formula on an open wrist. If it is hot there on the wrist, then it will be too hot for the baby. Older babies than newborns can tolerate cooler temperatures of formulas, so it greatly depends on the age of the child.
Q: Which of these warmers does not need electricity to work?
A: The only one that is portable is the Tommee Tippee Travel Bottle and Food Warmer. This one can be used while in the car or away from home. It works much like a regular thermos but uses the lid as a holder where the hot water and bottles are put to warm. It is perfectly suited to the various sizes of popular baby bottles and food jars.
Q: Which of these warmers works for food jars too?
A: Each of one of them can warm baby foods as well as the milk and formulas. Some of them even have a basket that fits in the warmer, so you can remove the warmed jars without burning your fingers on the jars or in the hot water. Pacifiers can even be sterilized in these units with the baskets.
Q: What is the point of the cooler with some of the warmers? Is this like a refrigerator that stays cold?
A: The warmers with coolers prevent you from having to go to the refrigerator to get the food or formula, especially in the middle of the night. The coolers will keep bottles cool for up to eight hours and some of them hold two bottles. One of them uses ice packs to keep the bottles cool.
Q: What type of bottle can be put in these – glass or plastic?
A: Glass bottles heat faster than plastic bottles, but both can be put in any of these warmers.
Q: Which warmers can be put in the nursery or the parent’s room instead of the kitchen?
A: All of these can be put in other rooms other than the kitchen. Most of them have a short electric cord, so they are usually put in the kitchen for simplicity. The portable one is great for the nursery and traveling. It is the Tommee Tippee Travel Bottle and Food Warmer.
Q: Do any of these have a light on the settings so they can be seen in the dark for night feedings?
A: The digital display on the Munchkin product lights up to be seen in the dark to help with nighttime feedings.