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Searching for breast pumps as a new mother can be a pretty overwhelming task. There are so many brands out there and conflicting opinions over who provides the best products. Even if you find a brand that seems like a great fit, you then have a wide range of products to compare.
One company with a good range of products and positive consumer feedback in Ameda. They have a wide range of pumps and other products designed to make life even easier for parents. One product that you will see mentioned a lot online in blogs and review sites is the Ameda Finesse Double Electric Breast Pump. Is this one of the better options?
This guide is an in-depth Ameda Finesse pump review of its different features and accessories. I want to highlight the benefits that could make this portable machine a good choice, as well as some of the drawbacks in the design and features provided.
I will also compare the Finesse to some of the other products in the range to see if it is the best fit for your needs. Before that, let’s learn a little more about Ameda as a company and how the team can support parents beyond these products.
Who is Ameda and what can they offer parents?
Before we look a the details of this breast pump and the packages you can get, let’s look at the company. There is a reason there are so many positive Ameda Finesse pump reviews. Ameda is a respected name in the world of breast pumps because of its history and influence on designs.
Ameda also boasts that they are a brand loved by hospitals, with many choosing to use hospital-grade machines in their maternity wards and clinics. As a result, many parents – either new or experienced – will turn to this company for guidance and find the best products possible.
Ameda creates quality products that follow key codes and guidelines.
A lot of the respect for Ameda as a company comes from its history and long-running connections with the medical world. The company has been in operation for more than 75 years. It all begin with the invention of a pump that could mimic the rhythm of a suckling infant.
This discovery led to the creation of many products with improved comfort levels and sensations. This continues into the broad range seen today, such as the Ameda Finesse.
Ameda is said to be one of the few companies right now to comply with the WHO Code and its guidelines on care for lactating mothers. The International Code of Marketing Breast-Milk Substitutes covers breastfeeding solutions and ensures the best quality care and support.
This level of professionalism continues with the dedicated team of advisors at Ameda. They help to not only improve product lines but to provide support for parents online. Various nurses and other support workers offer guidance on subjects related to pumping, feeding, pregnancy, and more.
What is the Ameda warranty like?
Most products in the Ameda line seem to have a 2-year warranty. This is helpful in case of faults. It is, however, important to be aware of strict guidelines in place with the returns policy. Returns and exchanges only relate to items purchased directly from their online eCommerce store where there is proof of purchase. Furthermore, pumps must be unopened with all the original packaging materials intact, as well as the inserts and instruction books.
What do you get in the basic package of the Ameda Finesse Double Electric Breast Pump?
There are different versions of the Finesse depending on whether you want a budget solution with the basic tech or something more comprehensive. The standard version doesn’t come with much, which means that it isn’t the most recommendable choice.
However, you do get the same benefits in the pump itself and a few accessories to get you started. There is also the option to purchase some of the items mentioned below at a later date if you feel they would be of use. The basic package gives you the following.
1) The pump.
First and foremost, you get the pump itself. The machine is a pretty compact and portable device with a closed system and high-end tech for comfortable and realistic pumping. You can set it up at home or on the go with ease. I don’t want to go into too much detail about the pump here as I will cover the features and their benefits and disadvantages below.
2) The HygieniKit® Milk Collection System.
The HygieniKit® Milk Collection System is one of the main selling points of this pump because it is essential for health and safety. It is a system that is FDA-cleared to provide a barrier against bacteria and viruses. The design protects all aspects of the pump, tubing, and the bottle collection bottles for a hygienic approach from start to finish.
3) Two sets of CustomFit Flanges.
Breast shields are important when pumping for added comfort and protection. A choice of sizes does help as some will find the smaller too small or the largest too large. The range isn’t that broad, but it is a start.
4) Extra valves.
A pair of extra valves doesn’t hurt in case you run into problems with your device. Hopefully, you won’t need them.
5) The AC power adapter.
This system is a battery-operated device for portability. But, there is also the option to plug this into the wall instead. This could be a better choice for reliable power when at home.
6) The instructions.
Finally, a good set of physical instructions is an underrated feature these days. Too many companies rely on online manuals or YouTube videos when it is nice to have a real manual. This can help first-time users that have never seen a pump before.
Why is the full package of the Ameda Finesse breast pump the better choice?
Some parents may feel that there isn’t much point in opting for a larger package with too many items when all they need is a functional pump. However, there are features in this comprehensive Ameda Finesse bundle that can make day-to-day experiences of pumping and feed a lot easier. Even if you don’t use an item as much as others, it still helps to have it on hand for that one time it is essential.
In this set you get the following:
1) The Ameda Finesse Cooler
The cooler is a nice addition to the package because it makes such a difference to a portable solution. You can express milk away from home, such as in a break room at work, put the milk in the cooler, and keep it fresh until you get home.
There is less panic about providing the best quality milk for your kids. There is room in the cooler for 6 of Ameda’s bottles and you get those in the bag. There are also three ice packs for the right temperature and a little card with guidance for new parents.
2) The Ameda Finesse Tote.
The Tote is a brilliant addition to the package because it makes what is already a portable solution. I like that Ameda knew where to stop with this product. It would have been very easy for them to have an oversized bag with lots of pockets and other details.
But, that would have been too much to handle. Instead, there is just enough room here for the cooler with all the stored milk, and pump, and shields. With that said, it is still bigger than the toe that comes with the Ameda Purely Yours. So, if you are familiar with that model, you might find that this is a step up.
The bag is practical in many ways. You can sling it over your shoulder, put it in the back of a car, and not worry about it. There is nothing about the design either that makes it obvious that the bag contains anything related to breast pumping. You can still be discrete. Also, the material is heavy-duty and seems to be water-resistant in case you are caught in a shower.
3) The Ameda Finesse Breast Shields.
Then there are the breast shields that come with this bundle. Ameda is pretty good at providing shields of different sizes that are comfortable and easy to use.
The number and sizes can differ depending on the bundle. Here there are three different options. They are 25mm, 28.5mm, and 30.5mm. Hopefully, you will be able to get these to fit nicely and work effectively. There are few complaints – but we are all made differently.
Don’t forget that if somehow there is something not included here that is important, you can search for add-ons. There are individual shields, spare parts, and more for sale. Also, I want to point out that you still get some of the more basic features of the previous set with this model. You still get the valves, the all-important HygieneKit, and the instructions for new users.
What are the benefits of choosing an Ameda Finesse double electric breast pump?
The benefits of this Ameda Finesse pump go beyond the additional accessories mentioned above and there are positive Ameda Finesse pump reviews from parents celebrating many features.
There is a sense of quality to this machine where the mechanics and pumping tech seem more high-end and provide a better experience. There are also aspects that help to bring peace of mind to uncertain mothers. This machine offers the following advantages.
1) A high-tech pumping action
This is one of the most important benefits here as the tech used in this product isn’t the same as some other models. Lots of Ameda products, and those from competitors, aren’t hospital grade. That’s fine for most needs. But, here you get the same waveform technology that is used in the Ameda Platinum, which is their hospital pump. You learn a little more about this model below.
2) Plenty of settings to customize the experience
From there, you also get the benefits of customization. There are two dials on the device and while the design isn’t ideal, it does allow for easy access to controls for speed and suction. You can adjust to get comfortable with 32 options in total.
3) A more comfortable experience than some other pumps.
Comfort is a big deal with this machine. It isn’t just seen in the use of different breast shields, but also in the use of the Comfortflow™ technology.
The aim here is to provide a smoother flow and a more natural sensation. This takes the technology highlighted above and improves it further for modern devices. It should feel as though your baby is feeding and not that you are in the clutches of a machine. Most parents seem to appreciate this consideration.
There is a downside to this portable set-up, as you will see below. However, most users are happy with the design and the lighter weight than some other products. It is 6.7 inches long and 4.25 inches wide, so won’t take up much space on a table or desk. It is also 1.1 lbs, so doesn’t add much weight to that tote bag.
5) Peace of mind over hygiene and safety
Finally, there is the added peace of mind for parents over the safety of this system. There are a few elements here that add to create a practical and baby-friendly system. The first is the hygiene kit mentioned before. This can’t be oversold because it is so essential for health and safety.
This is enhanced by the use of the closed system in the pump. Closed systems should be the norm now, but you do find open systems still where there is a risk of bacteria building up. Finally, there is the fact that Ameda doesn’t use any plastics with BPA or any latex.
What are the downsides of choosing an Ameda Finesse breast pump?
Despite all of this, there are also some downsides to consider. Some of these won’t seem that bad when weighed against the benefits. You may be more than happy to put up with some factors if it means you get that comfortable and reliable pumping experience. Still, others may find them to be a turn-off and will, therefore, prefer to look for another model or brand. Those disadvantages include the following.
1) The lack of digital controls
This first issue is one that may divide opinion. I have seen reviews from parents that love the simplicity of the manual dials. It is easy to turn them to the right setting and understand where things stand. But, others prefer digital systems with streamlined remote controls. These can offer a more hands-free solution with a device that is easier to clean. It all depends on how smart you want your breast pump to be.
2) No stored preferences
On the subject of the intelligence of these machines. It is also worth noting that you can save any sort of preferences to a user profile. Some high-end machines take note of what you like best in terms of speed and suction and tailor the experience a little better. It is a minor loss as it doesn’t take much effort to set this up each time.
3) The use of AA batteries.
This is perhaps a bigger issue for users because it plays into those ideas of portability and reliability. The device takes 6AA batteries and has a wall adapter for when the batteries die – or if you simply prefer to use a wall outlet for consistent power.
That’s a lot of batteries to have spare when it does die. Some alternative brands lean towards rechargeable batteries and they can be more convenient.
4) The potential for breakdowns.
I have seen mixed comments about the durability of this machine. There are some parents that have no issues at all with the features and mechanisms of this pump. Others talk about receiving their basic model on insurance and it breaking down within months.
5) Competition with other machines and brands.
Finally, there is the simple fact that there is such strong competition from other brands. Companies like Spectra and Medela all have some impressive machines with similar tech and accessories, but also more modern features and designs.
Some would also argue that there are more interesting models in the Ameda line. With that in mind, let’s compare the Ameda Finesse with these alternatives.
How does the Ameda Finesse double electric breast pump compare to other products in the range?
With that last point in mind, it is important to consider other options in the Ameda range. The company has a series of different products available depending on your needs and preferences. So, are any of the alternative models a better choice?
There are some obvious pros and cons here to take into consideration when choosing the best Ameda breast pump. It also helps to see what the Finesse can do compared to its sister products and how they compare in Ameda Finesse pump reviews from parents. Let’s take a brief look at some of those products.
1) Ameda Purely Yours Breast Pump
A lot of parents will love the Purely Yours Model because it has the Cool’N Carry™ tote. This could be a step up from the combination of the tote and cooler seen with the Finesse model You also get two Stores N Pour™ Milk Storage Bags. However, some find that the power and rhythm of the Purely Yours model aren’t quite as good or as realistic. There is a custom control feature to help mothers find the best setting they can. It all depends on how it feels. The Finesse may be the more effective option.
Then there is the newer Mya Joy model. This is the one I think has the most benefits for new parents. This is partly down to the improved size and portability options over the Finesse. There is a clip so it fits onto your clothing for a more hands-free approach.
The smaller size also means you only need 4AA batteries rather than 6. I also like that there are six levels of stimulation and 12 expression modes for impressive customization. There are also plenty of the same beneficial features with the shields, the realistic simulation, and that all-important HygieniKit for health and safety.
The only thing to be aware of here is that Ameda sells this in different bundles. The bigger the bundle, the better the chance of getting the tote and cooler. But, it also makes the price jump up.
Finally, I want to quickly mention this Platinum model. This isn’t something you can buy like an ordinary breast pump. Ameda does, however, have a partnership with hospitals and a rental scheme. I just wanted to talk about it as this is the model the Finesse borrows the hospital-grade equipment from. Mothers really struggling with pumping could benefit from this rental as it is clinically proven to be the best option for maintaining milk production and has great controls and design features.
Is the Ameda Finesse the best choice for you and your child?
To summarize, there are lots of pros and cons to this Finesse model. You could find that the benefits are strong enough to make this pump suitable for your needs over the other options. The hospital-grade system with the hygiene kit is one of the best features and the comfort offered does make it a hit with a lot of users.
However, the controls and lack of a rechargeable battery do make this a little old-fashioned compared with other machines on the market. To be fair, this is an issue across much of the Ameda breast pump range, so it may not be that avoidable if you have your heart set on an Ameda product.
Personally, I feel that the Mya Joy is the better option for parents on the go because of the additional features for portability. The Purely Yours is nice too with the nice cooler and storage bags, but there are those mixed comments about the suction.
The Finesse is a great option if you want that better suction. But, make sure to get the more comprehensive package for a better deal. You are paying more in the short term for the cooler, tote, and extra shield, but you will find them useful.