I cannot even imagine the train of thought that lead to the naming of this product, but it probably went along the same lines as when a startup I was working for was trying to come up with a name for the company. Each of us bandied about a number of options, none of which were unanimously accepted until I threw out a name on a whim. It was the kind of name I had not expected anyone to take seriously, but it was the only one approved of by everyone else. And thusly, we were named. True story.
Disclaimer: This product was provided for review by Apikali, however the opinions expressed here are my own.
Having a little winter bub comes with a variety of seasonally related challenges. Learning where there is undercover parking so that you can pack and unpack the car without getting wet. Keeping everyone in the house warm when you’re used to warmer heating, but apparently the optimal temperature for bub is between 18-20C…
I’m finding it especially challenging because I don’t do well with the cold, and yet breastfeeding at night means I’m constantly partly exposed to the cooler air. I’m the kind of person who wears thermals and socks to bed even with a heater running, but regular inner layers don’t have breastfeeding access, leaving me down a layer of warmth regardless of whether I’m using button up flannel PJs or purpose-built nursing sleepwear.
A good option for layering is a nursing tank or camisole, but the local fare from places like Kmart or Target have built-in bras with soft foam cups that are difficult to drop down because of their thickness, and gets in bub’s way creating a great source of frustration for her.
There are a few other vendors online that have nursing camis with removable cups or no cups at all, but these can end up being quite costly as it’s something you will likely need multiples of.
Lengthwise, the Breastvest is about the same length (from the bust-line) as this basic Kmart nursing tank, so it has great belly coverage for both warmth and modesty. The underbust cut allows you to wear your preferred bra, which is helpful if you don’t like the drop cup style access of most camis on the market. Clearly it won’t be suitable for tops with top access, but that’s not the purpose for which it has been designed.
The fabric seems to be of a decent weight. It’s not too sheer, though in white it may still show any post-partum lumps and bumps you may not want seen. The straps are adjustable as well, though the positioning causes the straps to keep slipping off my shoulders even when shortened. Could just be my build, but if you have that problem normally, you’ll likely notice it with the Breastvest as well. At the top of the vest, along the bust-line, there is an additional layer of fabric, bit like facing or a partial lining. Not entirely certain about its function, but it could be reinforcement for durability.
I must admit my primary interest here is layering under PJs, and this definitely fits the bill. It allows me to nurse using regular PJs, both button up or loungewear style, giving bub the comfortable access she needs without getting cold myself. Except for when she vomits down my front and leaves a nice wet patch. Ah well.
In terms of day wear, I have some tops specifically designed for nursing, but in these early days, I’m still trying to get a feel for the styles of access which I find easy and comfortable to use. I haven’t committed to a specific style of access yet, but most of what I’ve tried so far leaves bub drowning in the extra fabric incorporated into the design for modesty and access. This leaves me a little short on nursing-friendly clothes, but I’m loath to buy more when I have an already full wardrobe, so being able to use my existing clothing for nursing would be a great help.
For this reason, the Breastvest is definitely useful for wearing with regular clothing which you can pull up for access. The vest covers your torso, and combined with a centre opening nursing bra, provides somewhat easier access (in my opinion) than a drop cup style bra. Comfort for bub and ease of access will depend on what you’re wearing, but I’ve felt able to successfully and comfortably nurse wearing my existing loose-fitting tops over the vest.
Note: The hoodie is nursing friendly, with contrast cuffs, but I promise you that’s the Breastvest you can see there.
Over the few weeks that I’ve been using the Breastvest, it’s been worn to bed, and out. It has also held up to the many washes it’s had in that time, though admittedly I wash small items like this in delicates bags, so YMMV. Would I buy one or more? Sure, it’s a great item to have in your nursing cami arsenal, and I love being able to use my regular clothes which would otherwise go unworn for many months to come.
Do you have any questions about my experience with this product? Let me know in the comments below.
 It’s not visible in the photo, but the Kmart tank has the built-in foam cups which are quite stiff for a drop-cup.