It might be easier to build a spaceship entirely out of aluminum foil than it is to find a way to clean the nooks and crannies of your baby’s bottle.
You’ve tried everything, and you don’t want to use that bottle again until the milk scum can be removed.
Luckily for you, help is only one brush away. Check out our reviews below and those bottles will be clean in no time.
|Product||Best For||Our Rating|
|1. OXO Tot||All Round|
|2. Playtex SmartSpace||Nipple Brush Combo|
|3. Philips AVENT||Everyday Brush|
|4. Munchkin Sponge||Narrow Bottles|
|5. Dr. Brown's||Budget Pick|
What Is The Best Way To Clean My Baby’s Bottle?
The most important rule of bottle cleaning is to do it right away. If you toss the empty bottle in the diaper bag, forget about it and then find it a couple of days later, you’re going to have a nasty mess on your hands.
The milk will have caked onto the bottle, creating a crusty or filmy layer that’s hard to remove because your hand can’t fit in the bottle. You need a brush that can go where your hand can’t, and you need it to be stiff and flexible enough to do the job.
Shouldn’t Cleaning A Bottle Be Easy?
Thoroughly cleaning a bottle is one of the greatest aggravations new parents will face. Choosing your cleaning arsenal carefully will help you in your quest for clean bottles.
When I was a new parent, I didn’t own any bottle brushes. I had bought the standard sized bottles, never dreaming how gunky they could become in just a couple of weeks. When I started seeing a slimy build-up in the hard-to-reach places, I realized that just swishing hot, soapy water around in each bottle wasn’t going to be enough to give it the deep clean it needed.
So I ran to the store and bought two bottle brushes – one for the nipples and one for the bottles. That was a total waste of money. The nipple brush tore up the nipple, and I had to throw it away. The bottle brush couldn’t reach the gunky areas, and I couldn’t get the bottle clean anyway.
I left it soaking for a day and then tried to use the spray nozzle from my kitchen sink in an attempt to remove the gunk with the pressure from the water stream. That helped, but it didn’t fully work. I ended up throwing that bottle away and looking for one that didn’t have a weird angle to it, hoping it would be easier to clean.
I’ve been reading everything I can get my hands on about bottle brushes since then, determined not to lose more precious minutes of my life to a cleaning process that should be so simple to do.
What Should I Look For In A Bottle Brush?
The next time I buy bottle brushes, I have a checklist I’ll be consulting to make sure it meets all my criteria.
- Length: The brush should be long enough to reach the bottom of the bottle and still give you enough handle space to move it around.
- Two types of bristles: The best brushes have a mix of bristles – some soft for gentle cleaning and some hard to scrape off the serious gunk that will build up.
- Non-slip handle: Trying to scrub a bottle when your hand keeps slipping off the brush doesn’t work so well.
- Sponge tip: Some brushes have an added feature, a sponge tip that makes it easy to scrub off build-up with a simple twist of the brush. But, if you do go for a product with a sponge tip, make sure you wash it thoroughly when you are done cleaning because sponges can get filthy quickly. Also, keep in mind the sponge part won’t last as long as the rest of the brush because it typically tends to tear off in chunks with repeated use.
- Flexible neck: Having a flexible neck on the brush makes it easier to manipulate, which is important when you’re trying to reach the spots that a regular brush can’t reach.
The Best Baby Bottle Brushes of 2018
Now that you know about the importance of thoroughly cleaning your baby’s bottle, and what to look for when buying a brush —
Here are our 5 favorite products in 2018:
This brush has every feature that’s important in a bottle brush. The brush head has two different kinds of bristles to cover you whether you need gentle cleaning or something that will scrub away layers of film.
It has the flexible neck all good bottle brushes should have. It has a grip on the end of the brush, which means it won’t be slipping out of your hands while you are furiously scrubbing away. Moms may like that it comes with a silicone nipple cleaner, which will help keep nipples and breast pump parts gunk free.
- There are ventilation holes to help the nipple cleaner dry fast.
- This brush has its own stand, which will help it stay fresh.
- Dishwasher safe.
- This brush is large and won’t fit well into smaller bottles.
- The bristles tend to get flattened fairly quickly with repeated use.
This brush is softer, but will still scrub away filth while not scratching your bottles. It has a non-slip grip and an ergonomic design that makes it comfortable to hold during lengthy washing sessions. The brush’s wide bristles can get to the inner ridges of bottles, which can be hard to reach, and that results in a more thoroughly cleaned bottle.
It comes with a nipple brush that fits in the handle for easier storage. Moms may appreciate that the soft nipple brush won’t tear up nipples like some brushes do.
- The nipple brush has bristles on every side for fast, effective cleaning.
- Fits narrow bottles.
- You have to keep the attachment part inside the brush, or it won’t be long enough to reach the bottom of the bottle.
- The handle sometimes comes loose when you are cleaning.
This brush comes with a curved brush head, which moms may like for cleaning the rounded sections of baby bottles. The handle part of the brush has an attached molded tip for cleaning nipples.
The brushes are durable enough to withstand repeated cleanings but soft enough that they won’t scratch bottles, nipples or other feeding equipment.
This brush is BPA and dishwasher safe. It can also be hung up in the cabinet underneath your kitchen sink so that it will dry quickly and won’t take up much storage
- This brush holds up well with repeated uses.
- Works well for washing dishes too.
- The nipple brush is easy to access – there’s no cover over it.
- The brush won’t fit in the smallest of bottles.
- The bristles are only on one side of the brush, not all around it.
This brush can stand upright, keeping it free from germs, and it can be cleaned in the top rack of your dishwasher. According to the company, the brush should be replaced every month or month and a half. It has a sponge at the tip of the brush.
The nylon bristles are soft and scratch free, and work on both plastic and glass baby bottles. It comes with a small nipple brush that is stored in the handle end of the brush.
This brush has a non-slip handle to help you get a grip on the task at hand.
- Thin stem fits in very narrow bottles.
- Sponge tip evenly and quickly cleans bottoms of bottles.
- No suction cup on the stand, which makes it easy to knock over when standing upright.
- The metal end of the brush isn’t covered by the sponge, which means you scrape the item you are cleaning with the metal.
Moms may appreciate that this brush fits both standard and wide-neck bottles. It has both a sponge and bristles on the brush head which helps the brush get in all the crevices that can be hard to reach with a traditional brush. Because the sponge isn’t designed for long-term use, moms may want to replace this brush every month or two.
Although this brush stands up on its own, it also comes with a storage clip. At the base of the unit, there are fixed chevron channels for nipple cleaning. It also has a no-slip handle, which makes it easier to use in soapy water.
- This brush comes with a suction cup stand.
- Cheaper than many of the other brushes available.
- This brush splatters a lot of water when you remove it from narrow bottles.
- The sponge sometimes falls off the brush.
Our Favorite Is…
The OXO Tot bottle brush is the hands-down winner. The two different kinds of bristles on the brush head offer a good mix. It can handle the bottles that your baby just finished drinking from or the ones you left sitting on the counter for a couple of days because you were too busy to wash the dishes.
The flexible neck on the brush will help you reach all the crevices you need to, and the silicone nipple cleaner is gentle on nipples, unlike nipple cleaners that have brushes, which can sometimes scratch or tear up nipples.
Because this brush can stand up on its own, you’ll feel confident that it isn’t picking up any unwanted germs from your kitchen counters.