Whether you’re a mom who needs to go to the office, a mom working at home, or a stay-at-home mom, you can benefit from a breast pump. It can help you pump and store your breast milk or deal with engorgement.
But why buy when you can get the best breast pump for free? If you’re a mom in the US, you may be able to get a free breast pump through your insurance for each pregnancy. Just be sure to check with your insurance to confirm this is the case for you.
This product comparison of Ameda Purely Yours Ultra vs. Medela Pump in Style Advanced can help you decide which of these two double electric breast pumps is the right one to suit your needs.
You can read breast pump reviews from other moms, and learn everything you need to know about these two breast pumps below.
Is Medela Or Ameda Better? Main Differences
Side-by-side product comparison of Ameda Purely Yours Ultra vs. Medela Pump in Style Advanced shows that the two are similar to each other in many ways:
- Pump type (double electric)
- Use of dials and buttons instead of a digital display
- Types and number of accessories included in the box
- Bottles and plastic parts made from chemical-free materials
- Both plug-in AC adapter and battery options
- Available for free through insurance
- Can be used hands-free
What Ameda Purely Yours Ultra Pump Does Better:
- It’s cheaper by nearly $10.
- It’s lighter by 4.70 lbs.
- It’s more hygienic because it uses a closed system.
- Its cooler bag can fit more milk bottles.
- It’s a low-maintenance breast pump that has fewer parts to clean.
- It has two built-in bottle holders to keep bottles from toppling over.
- It has a two-year warranty.
What The Medela Pump In Style Advanced Breast Pump Does Better:
- It’s more powerful, with stronger suction strength even during double pumping.
- It’s a heavy-duty hospital-grade pump and might last longer.
- It has a bigger bag.
- The Ameda Purely Yours Ultra costs $255.81. It’s pricier than the Ameda Finesse ($159).
- Medela Pump in Style Advanced costs $268.
Pump Type: Single Or Double Breast Pump
- These two are double electric breast pumps.
- They can be used either as a single or double pump.
- This Ameda breast pump weighs 2.30 lbs.
- This Medela breast pump weighs 7.0 lbs.
- It has a built-in battery pack, but you can also use six AA batteries to power up your Ameda pump.
- You’ll need eight AA batteries for your Medela pump.
Though both can be used with batteries, these AA batteries might not have a long battery life to cope with the demands of your breast pump.
So, you might also consider getting a car adapter or charger (usually costs $10 to $20) if you need to pump on the go.
Type Of System
- The Ameda Purely Yours Ultra has a closed system. With milk prevented from entering the tubings and pump motor, it’s a more hygienic system.
- The unique FDA-approved Airlock Protection system in the Ameda protects your breast milk from any contamination.
- The Medela Pump in Style Advanced uses an open system that might provide better suction but can cause milk to enter the tubings. These can cause the buildup of mold and bacteria in the tubes, especially if these aren’t cleaned properly.
Which Breast Pumps Are Hospital Grade?
- The Ameda isn’t a hospital-grade pump.
- The Medela may be more suited for heavy-duty pumping because it’s a hospital-grade pump.
- The Ameda Purely Yours Ultra has 32 different customizable options. But there’s no button for let down or massage mode.
- Medela Pump in Style Advanced has fully customizable settings. There’s a single knob for vacuum and speed adjustments.
- Both pumps don’t have a digital display, unlike the Spectra S1 Plus.
- Ameda Purely Yours Ultra can only go up to 200 mmHg.
- Medela Pump in Style Advanced can go up to 250 mmHg.
Two-Phase Vs. Single-Phase
- The Ameda Purely Yours Ultra only has a single-phase expression mode. It doesn’t have a massage option to promote let down.
- Medela Pump in Style Advanced uses the two-phase expression technology that promotes more milk expression with the massage button.
- Both pumps have dials and buttons for the pump controls and settings.
- The Ameda Purely Yours Ultra might be slightly bigger than the Medela Pump in Style Advanced, but it’s lighter by 4.7 lbs.
- The Medela pump comes with a battery pack that you’ll have to attach to the pump externally. That could make the pump bulkier and harder to carry around.
- The Ameda Purely Yours Ultra is slightly louder than the Medela Pump in Style Advanced.
- But the Ameda makes a beeping noise while pumping, which can be distracting.
- The Ameda has a two-year warranty.
- The Medela only has a one-year warranty.
Breast Shield Diameter
Both pumps have different sizes of breast shields and flanges:
- The Ameda pump has two sets of bigger-sized flanges plus two breast-reducing inserts.
- The Medela pump has two sets of smaller-sized breast shields.
Bottles And Accessories Included In The Box
The Ameda Purely Yours Ultra Has The Following In The Box:
- Four (4oz) bottles
- Dual HygieniKit Milk collection system
- Two 25.0 mm CustomFit flanges
- Two 30.5 mm CustomFit breast flanges
- Two 28.5 mm CustomFit breast reducing inserts
- Two silicone valves
- Dottie Tote
- Cool‘N Carry cooler tote bag with three ice packs
- Milk storage guidelines card
- Two sets of NoShow Premium disposable nursing pads
- Two Store‘N Pour milk storage bags
- Instructions for use
- One AC power adapter
The Pump In Style Advanced Has The Following In The Box:
- Four (5oz) bottles with lids
- One battery pack (eight AA rechargeable batteries not included, usually costs around $20 for eight batteries or $30 for eight batteries and a charger)
- Two 24 mm PersonalFit breast shields
- Two 27 mm PersonalFit breast shields
- Two breast shield connectors
- Two valves and membranes
- One set of complete tubing
- One AC power adaptor
- One booklet of instructions for use
- Cooler bag with one ice pack
- Tote bag, backpack, or Metro bag
- The Ameda pump has a built-in cooler in its bag that can fit six milk bottles. But there’s no extra space for other items.
- The Medela pump has a cooler bag that can fit four milk bottles. But it still has extra space for other items.
- The Ameda pump comes with a microfiber Cool‘N Carry Tote bag.
- But the Ameda bag is smaller than the Medela bag and couldn’t fit all the items in the collection system. You might end up carrying the cooler bag and ice pack separately.
- The Medela pump comes with three bag options: an on-the-go tote, backpack, or a Metro Bag.
- The Medela bags are large enough to fit the pump, cooler bag, ice pack, and milk collection bottles.
- It’s easier to find spare parts for the Medela breast pump than the Ameda pump.
Ease Of Use
- Both pumps are relatively easy to use.
- Because it’s an open system, the Medela Pump in Style Advanced can pump more milk for the same length of time. But you’ll need to run it for at least two more minutes after pumping to clear the tubes.
- Its closed system can make Ameda Purely Yours Ultra easier to use because you don’t need to clear the tubings after each use.
Other Special Features
- These two have BPA-free accessories. That means that these are free from harmful bisphenol-A chemicals usually found in plastic bottles.
Availability Through Insurance
- You can get both the Ameda Purely Yours Ultra and the Medela Pump in Style Advanced for free through insurance.
- Check your insurance policy if these breast pumps are covered.
- Currently, Aeroflow Breast Pumps doesn’t offer these two pumps. Instead, they have the following Ameda, and Medela pumps: Ameda Mya Portable ($169.99), Medela Pump in Style with MaxFlow with AFBP Sydney Breast Pump Backpack ($229.99), Medela Pump in Style with MaxFlow with Tote ($249.99), Medela Freestyle Flex ($379.99), and Medela Sonata Smart ($399.99).
- But you might still find these pumps with other medical supply companies and retailers.
- Both these breast pumps have had product recalls.
- Two lots of Purely Yours (Lot 7E058 and Lot 7E308) manufactured in July 2017 were recalled for containing a UK power adapter instead of a US adapter. Ameda replaced the affected products. (1)
- Pump in Style Advanced manufactured from February 10 to March 3, 2010, might have compromised performance due to a defect in the potentiometer used on the circuit board. The affected pumps may not turn on or may turn off on their own. Some might have reduced suction during pumping or might make a clicking noise. Medela also replaced the affected pumps. (2)
Pros & Cons
Is Ameda A Good Pump?
Ameda Purely Yours Ultra Pros:
- It costs $255.81 and is cheaper by nearly $10.
- It’s slightly bigger but lighter by 4.7 lbs.
- It uses a more hygienic closed system.
- It has a cooler bag that can fit six milk bottles (the Medela only fits four).
- It’s a low-maintenance breast pump with fewer parts to clean.
- It has two built-in bottle holders, so your bottles won’t topple over even with the flanges.
- It’s not a hospital-grade pump.
- It’s less powerful and can only go up to 200 mmHg.
- Its tote bag is smaller and can’t fit everything in the milk collection system.
- It regularly makes a beeping noise that some moms find annoying.
- It had a product recall in 2017 for incorrect power adapters.
Medela Pump In Style Advanced
- It’s more powerful, with stronger suction strength up to 250 mmHg.
- It’s a heavy-duty hospital-grade pump that might last longer even with daily use.
- It has a bigger bag that can fit the entire milk collection system, plus a few extra stuff.
- It’s an open-system pump that might be less hygienic.
- It has more parts to clean.
- It’s slightly more expensive by around $10.
- It’s heavier by 4.7 lbs.
- Its cooler bag can only fit four bottles (the Ameda can fit six).
- It had a product recall in 2010 for compromised performance that could affect the pumping process.
What Customers Say: Ameda Purely Yours Ultra
“I’m a new mommy. Like many other moms to be, I wasn’t sure which pump to buy. I received through my insurance the Ameda, and a friend gave me the Medela. I used to have my doubts with the Ameda seems cheaper than Medela. However, after trying both systems. I must say that I wouldn’t be able to have my breastmilk supply with the Medela. Ameda is a hospital-grade pump that has stronger and more effective suction power. Also, with Ameda, I’m pumping more than double than with Medela, and in less time.” – Reviewer on What to Expect Community.
“Great pump. Suction is amazing.” – Reviewer on Amazon.
“I like Ameda because it is the most affordable and functional closed system pump in the market. That was very important for me when choosing a pump since my last pump got mold in the motor for being an open system. I’m also able to express about 4 oz in 10 min, which for me is good since I’m not an over supplier and good pump responsive. I also like that you can control both speed and suction, not like Medela that the let down phase is just one setting. So I always start max speed low suction. After I get the let down, I increase suction and lower the speed. It works great for me!” – Reviewer on Walmart.
“I used a hospital one 4 years ago with my first, and now I have an Ameda (the only option I had via insurance), and I wish I didn’t have it. I have been pumping for a few days at work, and I don’t feel it does a great job. One time I got a bunch. The next, nothing. I may end up getting a Medela if it keeps up. I also noticed that the pump sound doesn’t sound consistent to me.” – Reviewer on What to Expect Community.
“I have been using this pump for over seven months. If I had to buy another pump over again, I would not purchase this one. Not because the pump is bad, but because I have spent a fortune on the replacement valves. Each set costs around $8, and I replace them about once every two weeks. With that cost (about $140 at this point), I could have bought a more heavy-duty pump. Or maybe one with better quality replacement parts.” – Reviewer on Amazon.
“I do like the small size and portability of this model, but it’s not at all quiet. In fact, with every suction cycle, the pump makes an annoying “beep” sound. After 20 minutes of 30-60 beeps per minute, either you stop hearing it, or you want to stop pumping. I normally cover the pump with a couch pillow, which helps, but still doesn’t stop the infernal beeping.” – Reviewer on Amazon.
What Customers Say: Medela Pump in Style Advanced
“Excellent Double Pump: For the new moms, “double pump” means you can pump both breasts at the same time. The pump’s letdown feature (applies pressure at a fast rate to encourage milk secretion) combined with the adjustable suction makes for effective removal of breast milk.” Reviewer on Amazon.
“This pump’s outstanding feature is its extreme portability. I used it for the first four weeks after giving birth to my first child, and it did help me to establish my supply along with occasional breastfeeding (we had latch issues; I became an exclusive pumper).” – Reviewer on Amazon.
“I got this pump to take to work. I already owned the same type of pump (stays at home), which I got from my insurance. I pump at home before going to work, and I pump at work twice before coming home. The pump in the bag is discreet and roomy; pockets help keep supplies organized. All I transport back and forth are the pump parts and the milk. The storage bag with an ice pack is handy, but sometimes I need to fit more than four bottles in that storage bag. Overall, Medela Pump in Style in a tote is affordable, compact, and compatible with my stay-at-home pump.” – Reviewer on Walmart.
“Hidden Pump: The pump cannot be taken out of the bag or opened to be cleaned. Over time and use, this could mean mold is hiding in the pump undetected.” – Reviewer on Amazon.
“The downsides that I have with this pump were that it was not powerful enough at a setting that did not cause me excessive soreness to clear painful blocked ducts – something I struggled with constantly until I switched to a Medela Symphony I rented from Babies R Us based on advice from other exclusive pumpers. If I had experienced both pumps ahead of time, I would not have tortured myself with this one.” – Reviewer on Amazon.
“This thing is not worth the money. I sat there for 10 minutes, and it only pulled out less than a teaspoon of my milk in both breasts. I am taking it back. This is ridiculous. If I’m going to spend this much money, I expect it to work better than this. I can sit there and squeeze my breasts, and a bunch of milk will come out, but this thing doesn’t even pull anything out.” – Reviewer on Walmart.
Things To Consider In Buying A Breast Pump
- Manual and single electric breast pumps are cheaper (they’re usually priced at less than $50) than double electric breast pumps (prices range from $100 to as high as $2,000).
- Double pumps are more expensive but they have more features.
How You’ll Use The Pump
- You’ll need a heavy-duty hospital-grade pump if you pump at least twice a day.
- You might consider a pump with built-in batteries if you often need to pump on the go.
- If you’ll often pump in public, such as in your office, a quiet pump is a better choice.
Weight & Portability
- If you want a portable pump, you should consider its weight and portability.
- A lighter, smaller pump can be a better choice, but you’ll also need to consider suction power.
Single Vs. Double Electric Breast Pumps
- A single electric breast pump costs less than a double pump but has lesser features. It may be an ideal option if you don’t need to pump regularly.
- A double pump is pricier but can save you time because you can pump both breasts simultaneously.
- Most electric double pumps can also be used as single pumps when you only need to pump one breast.
Manual Pumps Vs. Electric Breast Pumps
- Manual pumps are considerably cheaper than electric pumps.
- For example, the Lansinoh Manual Breast Pump only costs $28, while the Lansinoh Smart Pump 2.0 Starter Set costs $219.
- But you pump with your hands using the manual breast pumps. That might be fine if you only need a pump occasionally.
- An electric pump does all the pumping work for you, so these can be the better option despite the higher price tag.
Open Vs. Closed System
- A closed system pump is more hygienic than an open system pump because your milk doesn’t get into the tubings. In an open system, milk can get into the tubings, and could later become the breeding ground for bacteria and viruses.
- The FDA (Food and Drug Administration) recommends open system pumps for single users only.
- You can reuse a closed system pump for your next pregnancy, but some moms don’t think it’s worth it. They choose to get a new breast pump because it’s free through insurance, anyway.
Power Source Or Supply
- Having different options for your power source determines your breast pump’s convenience. For example, the Spectra S2 may be a great pump, but the lack of batteries limits it.
- If you need to pump on the go, batteries or a car adapter can be convenient.
- Some pumps are quieter than others.
- While the noise level doesn’t determine the suction power, it can affect your pumping experience.
- A noisy pump could awaken your sleeping baby, and you probably want to use a discreet pump for pumping in public places.
- This is important because the suction power often determines your milk production and level of comfort.
- Suction levels below 150 mmHg might be more comfortable but won’t produce as much milk as 250 mmHg. However, pumping at 250 mmHg or higher might be painful on your nipples.
- Because different moms have different preferences, a breast pump with more adjustable settings might be more expensive but can be worth it.
Cleaning & Maintenance
- Some breast pumps have more parts to clean than others.
- While these pump parts might provide you with more convenience or comfort during pumping, having more parts to clean can be a hassle and take more time.
Tips For Successful Breast Pumping
If you’re a first-time pumper and are having a hard time expressing enough milk, these tips might help you pump more milk:
- Before you start the pumping session, it’s better to prepare all the things and equipment you need.
- Find time to read the breast pump manual before you assemble the pump.
- Make sure to wash and sterilize the pump parts for proper hygiene.
- If you can, buy a pumping bra ($20 to $30) or Freemie cups ($87.60) for hands-free pumping.
- Find a suitable time for pumping and try to stick to that regular schedule. Sometimes, you won’t need to wait for the schedule because your breasts might already be full.
- If you’re working or busy with chores, you might be too busy to find time for pumping. So, it’s better to have a schedule.
- Breast pumps aren’t created equal. Some pumps have a massage and let down button to help increase your milk flow. You might want to choose these pumps to express more milk.
- Other pumps also use technology that mimics natural breastfeeding that can promote a better pumping experience.
- Your breast pump might provide instructions on what settings to use to promote let down and help you express more milk. If there are none, you can experiment until you find the settings that work for you.
- If you can’t get a proper let down, some lactation consultants suggest looking at your baby or your baby’s pictures.
- Your body will create more milk if there’s a demand for more. So, don’t give up on pumping and pump as regularly as you can to establish your milk supply. You can always freeze your breast milk for future use if you start pumping more than your baby can consume.
FAQs About Breast Pumps
Do I Need A Breast Pump?
One of the main reasons why moms buy breast pumps is that they are working moms who need to pump milk to leave for their babies while they are at work.
But many moms are now working from home. Also, SAHMs (stay-at-home moms) can benefit from having a breast pump.
These are some of the reasons why you might need a breast pump at home:
- You need help in establishing your milk supply.
- You need to ease engorgement, but your baby isn’t ready to feed yet.
- You want to keep some extra breast milk in the freezer for emergencies.
- Your partner wants to help feed your baby, but you prefer breast milk over formula.
How Long Do Ameda Breast Pumps Last?
There’s no specific time for changing your breast pump’s valve. But you’ll know these need to be replaced when the pump becomes less powerful.
Depending on how many pumping sessions you do per day, you might need to change the valves every one or two months.
Are These Pumps A Hands-free Breast Pump?
Both can be used as hands-free breast pumps, but you’ll need to buy the pumping bra separately. These bras cost around $20 to $30.
Do I Need To Wash My Breast Pump After Every Use?
Yes. The washable parts of both breast pumps should be cleaned and sterilized after each use. But you wouldn’t need to include the tubings of the Ameda because it’s a closed system.
Note that the pump motors shouldn’t be immersed in water. But you can regularly wipe the surface to keep your breast pump clean.
Summary & Recommendation
Based on this product comparison Ameda Purely Yours Ultra vs. Medela Pump in Style Advanced, you can see that both these breast pumps have advantages and disadvantages over each other.
Both can be great pumps, but your choice might be determined by your budget, what you need in a pump, and personal preferences.
Choose Ameda Purely Yours Ultra If:
- You want a more hygienic pump with a closed system.
- You prefer a cheaper pump. The $10 difference can be a significant amount for some moms.
- You need a lighter pump with a cooler bag that can carry more milk bottles.
- You prefer a low-maintenance breast pump with a built-in bottle holder.
- You don’t mind having a less powerful pump that isn’t hospital-grade.
- You don’t mind getting a smaller tote that doesn’t fit all the items inside.
- You don’t mind a pump that makes a beeping noise.
- You prefer a pump with a longer warranty.
- You don’t mind that it had a product recall for production issues.
Choose Medela Pump in Style Advanced If:
- You prefer a more powerful, hospital-grade pump for heavy-duty use.
- You prefer a pump that comes with a bigger bag to fit the entire milk collection system.
- You don’t mind a less hygienic open-system pump that has more parts to clean.
- You don’t mind paying the slightly higher price tag (around $10 more).
- You don’t mind that it’s heavier by 4.70 lbs.
- You don’t mind that the cooler bag can only fit four milk bottles.
- You don’t mind that it had a product recall in 2010 for performance issues.