The idea of a self-heating bottle could be the solution to many mamas’ woes so when we had the opportunity to try out some Yoomi Self Warming bottles, we immediately set it to the test. Here, two mothers share their views on whether the Yoomi lives up to expectations.
MUMMY #1: POON SHEN LI
A self-warming bottle? YES PLEASE. After having lugged around bottles of cold milk in a thermal bag together with a chunky (and not to mention heavy) travel bottle warmer, this product seemed like the all-in-one solution to space-saving in the diaper bag, so we gladly took on the challenge to measure its efficacy.
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Using the bottle:
The system consists of a feeding bottle, a warmer, and the warmer charging pod. The idea is simple: Charge warmer, let it cool down, stick it into the bottle, activate to warm feed, feed baby.
For first time users, clear instructions are given so that calibrating the warmer is relatively dummy proof. I used the microwave method because it’s the fastest and let’s face it – every time-starved mother needs every minute’s worth of saving she can get.
There are plenty of warnings throughout the instruction manual that the warmer will be hot when it’s freshly charged, but out of curiosity I checked on it immediately after it came out of the microwave oven and was pleased to find that it was not dangerously hot i.e. you will not accidentally burn yourself if it slips your mind when you’re in a hurry. In case you need some form of mental comparison, a freshly charged warmer is less hot than a freshly boiled potato.
Cooling the warmer:
It takes 75 minutes in room temperature, or 20 minutes in cool water, to get the warmer to settle down. I dunked mine in a cup of cold water, waited 10 minutes, replaced the water and dunked it for another 10 minutes. It still felt a little warm, so to be extra careful I let it sit on top of my air purifier for a while more.
Road Test #1:
To give it a real go, I stuck the entire bottle together with the charged warmer and 80ml of water into the fridge.
(You can see it here, just chilling.)
Left the bottle in there for 2 hours, then took it out and followed the instructions to let the liquid run over the activated warmer for 60 seconds.
The Result: Water still felt a little too cold, not the perfectly toasted 32-34 degrees that they claimed it would be. However, when I left it to sit for a few more minutes, the water eventually became lukewarm to the touch, a temperature that felt ‘ideal’ for feeding. It was also great to find that after about an hour of sitting out, the water was still warm and did not overheat.
What did alarm me though was when removing the bottle cap for the first time, the water came squirting out in a steady flow from the teat. Even after adjusting the teat in the collar, there were times when it would still leak. This is not something you would appreciate if the leaking liquid is your precious breast milk.
This time I used a full 150ml formula feed and left it in an air-conditioned environment to cool, and then activated the warmer and waited 60 seconds.
Result: The feed came out nice and lukewarm, exactly as I would expect the ideal temperature to be for feeding.
Plus point: As my fellow road tester, the bub (9 months old at time of testing) took to the teat will no issues at all. (Note though that she regularly switches between Nuk, Nuk wide neck, and Pigeon teats, so she is used to different feeding receptacles. I cannot say if a younger or more fussy baby would have taken to the teat in the same uneventful way.)
Functionality as a whole:
This is a product that you’ll only fully enjoy if you give yourself a good few hours to really understand the product, how it works, and what the steps are in making the warmer function properly. If you have no patience for this, it will likely just be a fancy gadget that you’ll set aside and forget about, and revert to traditional heating methods.
I find that it does take a bit too many steps to get the warmer ready, and if you hadn’t taken the effort to understand what you were doing when charging the warmer and why you were doing it (I read up the FAQs online), and you accidentally misplace the instruction manual, chances are you’ll likely have difficulty remembering the steps required (heat, shake, wait, heat again, shake, what…?). The danger in forgetting the steps is that the manual issues several warnings that if you overheat the warmer you will spoil it. Or if you don’t let it cool down and use it straightaway, you will spoil it. Basically, if you use it too quickly, misuse it, forget a step, or add a step, yada yada, you are going to spoil it.
The concept of a self-warming bottle is brilliant, but the execution could be improved. Less steps in the charging process or indicators as to when the warmer is ready for use would be useful additions I’d like to see in any further iterations of this product.
It’s good to have around, but not an immediate must-buy unless you would like to use the yoomi bottle as your regular feeding bottle, with or without the warmer pod.
When you will appreciate this most:
- When travelling, and you don’t have convenient access to a kitchen or hot water facilities
- When out for extended hours (e.g. when we had a family outing to the zoo)
I can see how the self-warming function will be great for parents who are constantly on-the-go. Bringing out one self-contained bottle certainly beats having to bring your regular milk bottle + a chunky warmer + extra hot water, or, as the creators of this product say, beg a restaurant to lend you a bowl and hot water.
Rating: 3.5 Fiques out of 5
+ The bottle itself, with its wide-neck construction, looks like a viable starter bottle for babies who are still transitioning between latching and bottle feeding.
+ Great for outings of extended hours.
+ Convenience when on-the-go. Less devices to carry.
+ All-in-one solution for heating one milk feed.
– I reckon it would only last for one milk feed. If you’re out and about for the length of time where more feeds are required, you will need to beg a restaurant to let you charge your warmer, or for that hot bowl of water.
– It is hefty when all the parts come together, and wider than a regular wide neck. It’s almost as large as an adult cup. All of this combined makes it not easy to hold when feeding.
– The silicon teat is the largest I have ever seen. And because it makes a lot of contact with the collar, it’s hard to get it to sit flush without getting crumpled. (See picture)
MUMMY #2: DANIELLE CHOW
My first family outing with my breastfed baby was a nightmare. She was only a few months old at the time and we were going for a birthday celebration. It started out well enough; uncles and aunties cooing over the new arrival as she snoozed away.
Then the inevitable cry for milk came. A bottle of pumped milk was packed for the occasion and quickly whipped out only to have to wait a whole ten minutes before it could be warmed up for the baby.
As any new mum knows, those ten minutes are agony. You have a bunch of old people clucking around and judging you while you’re trying to pacify a squalling baby that will not be distracted from her hunger. It was an experience I did not want to repeat!
So when I heard about the Yoomi, a self-warming bottle, which can get expressed breast milk (EBM) warm in under one minute, I just knew I had to try it out! The time came while out shopping with the hubs. While trying on shoes at Ferragamo, the baby started rooting. The Yoomi was brought out, the orange warming button pressed, and after 60 seconds, the milk was warm and the bottle in the baby’s mouth! Till this day (and my baby is now 18 months), my husband considers feeding the baby in Ferragamo a highlight of his fatherhood journey.
Washing the bottles and rechargeable warmer was a breeze. The bottle and the teat was sterilised with our steriliser while I cleaned and charged the warmer at the same time through boiling. I found the boiling method the most tedious part of the experience, as it had to be boiled for 30 mins to ensure full power. There is another way to charge which is to put it into the microwave, which is faster, but I didn’t enjoy because I thought it didn’t charge as fully.
All in, the Yoomi was a really good buy and I’ve been recommending it to everybody! Can’t wait to use it for the next bub!
Rating: 4 Fiques