Baby Talk

What to Consider When Choosing a Baby Bottle Glass, Plastic, Silicone, or Stainless Steel – Oh My!

Choosing a baby bottle

Congratulations! You’re having a baby. And, just as you begin to wrap your mind around THAT amazing event you realize your baby is going to need... things. Lots and lots of baby things.

It can easily become overwhelming (and sometimes just plain confusing) when researching and comparing baby products like bottles, nipples, and pacifiers. Chicco can help you navigate the information overload, giving you the facts so you can feel more confident choosing products that fit your baby’s preferences, your needs, and your lifestyle.

So, let’s get started – first up, baby bottles.

Feeding time is bonding time for everyone in the family. So, whether you choose to exclusively breastfeed, combination feed or to use formula – you’re going to want baby bottles on hand.

When should you try to give a bottle to your baby if exclusively breastfeeding

Valerie Trumbower, a DONA Certified Postpartum Doula (PCD) and a Certified Lactation Counselor (CLC) recommends that you wait until your baby is between 4-6 weeks old if everything is going well. The following video from Valerie features some great tips for when and how to introduce a bottle to your little one.

Chicco Introducing a Bottle to your Baby

Video courtesy of Valerie Trumbower, DONA Certified Postpartum Doula (PCD) and Certified Lactation Counselor (CLC).

What are the BEST baby bottles for my baby?

The simple answer is the bottle your baby prefers. Obviously, this involves some trial and error. You’ll also want to consider what type of bottle works for you and your family. As a parent, you’ll want to consider if the bottles you want to try are comfortable to hold, easy to use, and most importantly, easy to fill, clean and sterilize.

Spend two minutes researching baby bottles and you’ll see just how many options are out there. Baby bottles come in a wide variety of shapes and materials with nipples just as varied in design. For this discussion, we’re going to review basic baby bottle materials – glass, plastic, silicone and stainless steel.

Glass and plastic are the most popular choices as far as material goes, but silicone and stainless steel are also available. Each material comes with pros and cons and reviewing these can help you choose.

Silicone Bottles

PROS:
Lightweight and unbreakable. BPA-free, soft and comfortable to hold.

CONS:
Silicone bottles are more expensive than glass or plastic. And, depending on the size and shape of the bottle, you may find they topple over easily. This can be heart-breaking when you’re trying to fill the bottle with your precious breast milk.

It should be noted that silicone is not completely non-toxic. Synthetic chemicals can leach from the bottle at high temperatures or when in extended contact with high-fat substances, like breast milk and formula. Over time and with heavy use, silicone can discolor or stain.


Stainless Steel Bottles

PROS:
Not a material you normally associate with babies, stainless steel bottles are sturdy and long-lasting. Some are double walled for insulating and some have silicone sleeves for a softer, non-slip feel when handling. BPA -free.

CONS:
Because the material isn’t see-through, it’s difficult to gauge how much your baby is drinking. Also, making up bottles isn’t as easy as glass or plastic since the measurement markings are on the inside, and they can’t be used in bottle warmers. Stainless steel bottles can be heavy and could dent if dropped. Typically, these bottles are at the top end in terms of pricing.


Glass Baby Bottles

PROS:
Glass bottles last longer than plastic and are dishwasher, sterilizer and bottle warmer safe. There are no potentially harmful chemicals in glass that could leach into baby’s milk. Most glass bottles today are thermal shock-resistant (like you find in cookware) so they can easily go from refrigerator to warmer without concern. Some even come with silicone sleeves for easier handling and to help prevent breaking or contain the glass if it does break.

CONS:
Heavier than plastic, could chip, shatter or break if dropped – one of the main reasons glass bottles often are not allowed in daycare centers. Due to the weight and concern of breakage, they are generally not used for babies who are self-feeding.


Plastic Baby Bottles

PROS:
Less expensive generally (depending on the type of plastic), convenient and lightweight.

CONS:
Will need to be replaced every few months because they can easily stain, scratch, collect odors that can't be removed or bacteria over time with use. As a material, plastic is not recommended in the microwave or dishwasher to avoid potential leaching. For this same reason they should be washed carefully to avoid scratching. If you decide to use plastic, choose bottles that are free from BPA, BPS, PVC and Phthalates.

Glass or plastic baby bottles are good choices for most families. So much so that, at Chicco, we started thinking, “Wouldn’t it be great if you could combine the best of glass AND plastic – with none of the drawbacks – in a single bottle?” We’re excited to say the answer is Yes! Chicco partnered with the manufacturer of an advanced patented technology, used in medical and pharmaceutical products, that permanently bonds pure glass to the interior of a crystal-clear, premium plastic exterior. This technology is used in products ranging from syringes delivering medicine into eyes to covid vaccine vials.

Hybrid Duo baby bottles

Introducing the first HYBRID baby bottle. Ever.

Chicco DUO combines the wellness benefits of glass with the convenience of plastic in one remarkable bottle. The combination of the Invinci-Glass inner layer with the plastic outer layer means these bottles are lightweight, breakproof and that baby’s milk only touches pure glass. DUO just might be the baby bottle for you.

  • Invinci-glass inner layer shields milk from plastic
  • Won’t shatter, chip, crack or flake
  • No nasty smells or aftertaste
  • Stays clear – won’t stain or discolor
  • Wide neck for easy filling
  • Long-lasting
  • Free of BPA, BPS, PVC & Phthalates
  • Lightweight & comfortable to hold for mom & baby
  • Durable and break-proof
  • Easy-to-clean, dishwasher and sterilizer safe
Duo baby bottles

Throughout development, DUO was thoroughly tested for safety, function, ease of use, and acceptance by both babies and parents. Chicco DUO delivers peace of mind for parents and premium comfort for babies.

After reviewing the pros and cons of glass, plastic, silicone, stainless steel and the newest hybrid baby bottle, you’ll want to consider a few additional factors. We mentioned budget, lifestyle and personal preferences earlier, but most parents tell us that the second biggest concern for them is their baby’s acceptance of the nipple.

There may be as many kinds of nipples as there are bottle shapes and materials, but don’t worry! We’re here to help you understand the differences in shapes, flow rates and more. For all you need to know about baby bottle nipples, check out our guide: How to choose the right nipple for your baby.