Articles & Guides
What can we help you find?

The 10 best nipple creams, according to breastfeeding moms and experts

On the hunt for the best nipple cream for breastfeeding? Experts and moms weigh in.

The 10 best nipple creams, according to breastfeeding moms and experts

Some nursing moms sail through breastfeeding with nary a wince or twinge of discomfort while quite a few others experience pain in the form of sore or even cracked nipples. A potential solution for the latter group: nipple cream.

“Nipple pain during breastfeeding is highly prevalent, with up to 10% of moms experiencing it one week into the process,” says Dr. Felice Gersh, a board-certified OB-GYN in Irvine, California. “I’ve even heard some moms describe the pain as ‘excruciating.’ Nipple creams can help soothe tender areas and allow moms to comfortably continue nursing. However, nipple pain is often an indication that the baby isn’t latching onto the breast properly and positioning and technique need adjusting.”

Can’t take the pain or discomfort anymore? Here are 10 nipple creams to consider when breastfeeding.

1. Best overall

best nipple cream for breastfeeding
Image via Lansinoh

Peruse the breastfeeding section of any store and you’ll likely see a tube of Lansinoh Nipple Cream (which, by the way, boasts a 4.8 out of 5 rating on Amazon from almost 54,000 customer reviews). The reason for its pervasiveness? Lanolin is the No. 1 nipple cream ingredient recommended by doctors. 

“Unless there’s an allergy, look for a nipple cream with lanolin,” says Gersh. “Studies confirm that lanolin comforts the nipples the best. That’s not to say that other products aren’t effective, but in head- to-head studies, lanolin comes out on top or equal to the alternatives.”

Where to buy: Lansinoh Lanolin Nipple Cream ($10, Lansinoh)

2. Best for pumping mamas

best nipple cream for breastfeeding
Image via Bamboobies

Not all nursing moms breastfeed. Some pump exclusively or do some combination of both breastfeeding and pumping. For women who have a close, personal relationship with their breast pump, Boob-ease Organic Pumping Lubricant is a good choice. While it’s not a nipple cream in the traditional sense, it helps to reduce friction while pumping for more comfort. And it’s made from all-natural ingredients, like coconut oil, beeswax and cocoa butter to boot. 

Where to buy: Boob-ease Organic Pumping Lubricant ($12, Bamboobies)

3. Most readily available (and affordable)

best nipple cream for breastfeeding

OK, so technically speaking, breast milk isn’t a nipple cream, but if you ask some moms and experts, it’s the best remedy out there. 

“Whenever my nipples got sore, I put a little breast milk on them and it worked great,” says mom of two Michele Lee, of Garwood, New Jersey. 

Breast milk is the first recommendation for moms who are experiencing nipple discomfort from University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing Professor Diane Spatz, who is also a Nurse Scientist for the Lactation Program at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

“One of the best treatments for nipple pain is to express a little milk after breastfeeding or pumping and apply it all around her nipple,” she says. “Human milk is anti-microbial and healing to the skin.” 

After applying the milk, Spatz advises letting the nipples air dry. 

4. Best vegan option

nipple cream for breastfeeding
Image via Handmade Heroes

For natural mamas who are looking for a completely plant-based balm for their sore breasts, Free the Nips Nursing Balm is a great option. We love it not only because of the all-natural, cruelty-free ingredients (think mango butter and calendula extract), but also because of their all-inclusive advertising. 

“Whether you are expecting, breastfeeding, bottle feeding or simply tired from trying, you and your breasts deserve to be treated well,” their campaign boasts. 

Where to buy: Free the Nips Nursing Balm ($13, Handmade Heroes)

5. Best all natural

best nipple creams
Image via Earth Mama Organics

Looking for the best natural nipple cream for breastfeeding? You just might have met your match with Earth Mama Angel Baby Nipple Butter, which contains organic olive oil and organic shea butter. 

“I try to use products that are as natural as possible in every aspect of my life, so Earth Mama Angel Baby hit the mark for me,” says mom of one Maria Tennant, of Maplewood, New Jersey. “I didn’t want to use something with lanolin in it.” 

(Note: Lanolin is derived from sheep’s wool and can be irritating to anyone with a wool allergy. In the past, pesticide residue has been found in lanolin, but is now considered safe and even recommended by doctors.)

Where to buy: Earth Mama Organic Nipple Butter ($9, Earth Mama Organics)

6. Best non-greasy formula

best nipple cream for breastsfeeding
Image via Amazon

The unfortunate reality is that many nipple creams can leave a greasy residue behind, staining clothes, bras and nursing pillows. For something lighter — and non-staining — try Nemah Renewing Nipple and Lip Balm, which absorbs quickly, is made with all-natural ingredients and — we’d be remiss if we didn’t say this — comes in a chic little jar. 

Where to buy: Nemah Renewing Nipple and Lip Balm ($25, Amazon)

7. Best cream-free alternative

best nipple cream for breastfeeding
Image via Target

Not everyone is keen on using a cream on their breasts when they’re nursing. But everyone wants relief from sore nipples. Enter the Medela Tender Care Hydrogel Pads. 

“The only products that have been researched in regards to nipple pain are hydrogel pads and lanolin,” says Spatz. “I’ve heard many mothers comment on how soothing the hydrogel pads are.”

Where to buy: Medela Tender Care Hydrogel Pads ($9/four-pack; Target)

8. Best for cracked nipples

best nipple cream for breastfeeding
Image via Amazon

Sadly, cracked nipples can happen. And when they do, consider reaching for Motherlove Nipple Cream, which is rich (without lanolin) and contains soothing marshmallow root and calendula. This all-natural cream has more than thousands of positive reviews on Amazon, with some mamas claiming to use it as a double-duty salve for breasts and chapped lips!

Where to buy: Motherlove Nipple Cream ($13,

9. Best for sensitive skin

best nipple cream for breastsfeeding
Image via Bella B Naturals

Moms with sensitive skin may want to be extra careful when choosing a nipple cream. It may take a little trial and error to find the right one for you, but for one mom, Nipple Nurture Butter was the best pick. 

“Someone gave me Nipple Nurture Butter at my shower, and I didn’t think to use it until a few months into breastfeeding,” says mom of one Allison Green-Priddy, of Brooklyn, New York. “Initially, I tried one of the popular, super-thick ones, but I had a reaction. This one seemed to be the most soothing for me.”

Where to buy: Nipple Nurture Butter ($10, Bella B Naturals)

10. Best smelling

best nipple creams for nursing
Image via Palmers

Indulge in the teensiest bit of luxury when you’re breastfeeding by using a nipple cream that smells good. Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Nursing Butter smells like — you guessed it — cocoa butter. While you may not feel like you’ve been transported to a tropical beach or are spending the day at the spa, you can relax a little more knowing it’s free of parabens and phthalates and contains soothing pro-vitamin B5.

Where to buy: Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Nursing Butter ($7, Palmers)