If you haven’t spent a few minutes reading about Elastic Tissue blog do so now, then come back here to finish this comparison!
Let me begin this comparison with a quick story! Five years ago was the beginning of my pumping life; I pumped for a total of 18 months for my multiples, pumping was the name of my game. Unfortunately the beginning of this journey was a nightmare, mastitis, clogs and nipple damage really gave me a run for my money. It wasn’t until I learned of elastic tissue and had an opportunity to try LacTeck Flanges, thats when things finally turned around. Allow me to also add that what has helped correct my battle with elastic tissue may not be everyone’s experience. I will follow this up with most moms I’ve communicated with have shared similar stories; that’s said, if you’re battling elastic tissue - silicone is worth a try.
I’m an old dog, I don’t like new tricks and I know what I like and works for me. But this is bemybreastfriend, trying new things, sometimes when I most dread it- is apart of the game. My friend Tamari from @onewiththepump was the first one to inform me of Idaho Jones silicone flanges. I’ll completely blame her for that Amazon order on that day. Not going to lie, I’m not mad about it. Thanks friend 🤍
Not all silicone is created equal. You have frosted finish, what I like to call - raw silicone and different silicone molded designs that can really set options apart from each other.
As shared above I have been using the LacTeck flanges since my first pumping journey, 5 years ago. I’ve had nothing but pleasant experiences with each new generation of LacTeck flange that have been released. I’d be lying if I said I had a favorite, they’re all very similar in my opinion. One thing I can say confidently is the finish of the LacTeck flanges always has me starting and finishing every pump session in comfort. LacTeck flanges have a frosted finish that keeps the skin from being painfully dragged down the tunnel. *Fair warning* If you sit down to pump after a shower or you’ve wiped the natural oils off your body to pump, it is possible you may feel this draw down the flange tunnel, but generally speaking it should not be an issue. The LacTeck flanges are rigid enough that they don’t flop or bend in half when hanging from your breast with bottles full of milk. I will admit the only time I would use an 8oz collection bottle with these flanges is when I’m only going to be sitting for a session, otherwise I can stay mobile with 5oz collection bottles hanging from my breasts.
There is ONE complaint I do have about the LacTeck flanges, which isn’t a deal breaker but can be a real pain in the butt, flanges slipping out of the connector.. Quick TMI on my nips, I use a 21mm on one side and 24mm on the other. That said I have NEVER had my 21mm slip out of my flange connectors. Following using the fridge hack with both sizes, the 24mm have a tendency to start walking their way out of the connector. I am always on guard when I slap my flanges on after using the fridge hack, this never has happened after freshly assembling the connectors and flanges. The only attribute I can associate with why this would happen is moisture gets trapped between the connector and 24mm flange tunnel and loosens it’s snug fit. What have I done to correct this? Once I see the flange starting to slip I will push it back in, most times it locks up. When the flange doesn’t lock up in the connector I will disassemble and use a clean paper town and wipe both the inside of the connector and outside of the flange tunnel where it inserts into the connector. Voila it’s fixed, but hopefully before any bottles of milk hit the floor. I have lost bottles of milk due to this slip up (literally) but it’s only been the 24mm never the 21.
LacTeck’s Lord of The Flanges days are over, in comes their next competitor: Idaho Jones Silicone Flanges, coming up on the list next is BareShield by @baremotherhood_ (not yet launched as of 7/7/23)
The Idaho Jones flanges are very similar to the LacTeck, there’s only so many ways we can mold silicone into a traditional flange, amiright? Yes and no, the designs are very similar but the silicone is not. LacTeck’s silicone is a clear winner for me, the frosted finish is a must. I find it bizarre that the Idaho Jones flanges aren’t frosted, since this has seemed to become an industry standard. Due to the lack of finish on the Idaho Jones silicone flanges, I absolutely find them a bit pinchy and sticky. Some sessions are more uncomfortable than others, depending on how quickly milk is expressed to lubricate the flange tunnel. This said, lubricant is your breast friend 😉 with the Idaho Jones flanges. Once adding a lubricant it’s easy sailing, that’s what I’ve been doing regularly and have really grown to like these flanges. The other half of this is when it comes time to remove the flange from your breast because your session is over. Seems harmless right, just another step... meh, I wish it was that easy. My first experience with the Idaho Jones flange following a session removing the flanges felt like I was tearing bandaids off my breasts, it hurt like hell. But again that’s where the lube come into play, creating a barrier is key- you don’t need much but any oil does help.
The perk that I’m finding with the Idaho Jones flanges are that they never slip out of the Medela connectors. They’re super snug and I haven’t once been slightly concerned that they are going to dislodge, so this is huge. Also, due to the mold design, there’s no question how far they should be inserted into the connector. The flanges have a stopper molded into the design eliminating any insertion concerns, unlike the LacTeck flanges.
UPDATE 8/11/23. It's only fair to share all the information and keep it fresh as possible. Yesterday I was on the phone with Tamari and she had asked for an update on the Idaho Jones, this is what I said. "Lets just say I aim to have my IJ flanges clean for the next morning pump". Then I went on to acknowledge that they were no longer pinchy like I had shared above. I will not go back on that because that was very much in fact a thing for me. However, I do believe with all of my redundant use and body oils getting worked into the silicone- it's just not pinching like it once had. THIS IS HUGE because I have to admit my preference has def switched gears. I am loving these flanges!
I would say comparing both the LacTeck Flanges and Idaho Jones flanges are like comparing Gala apples to Granny Smith. They’re not exactly the same but at the end of the day you may not notice a big difference. The fact that the Idaho Jones flanges are available on Amazon for Prime 2 day delivery might be the icing on the cake for most. In the words of Veruca Salt, “I want it now.”
💸LacTeck $25.99 set + shipping
💸Idaho Jones $21.95 Amazon Prime
Idaho Jones are affiliate linked back to my Amazon Store
LacTeck discount code is breastfriend10 for 10% off
Looking to use these flanges with your wide or standard neck bottles? I got you!
Now as for sizing, I do not recommend sizing up or down based on your elastic tissue, what you use in plastic- assuming it fits properly- is what I would recommend when using silicone.
LacTeck sizing recommendation-