Are you looking for a portable breast pump? The Willow Go is one option that is completely hands-free and wireless, and just goes in your nursing bra! Here’s a Willow Go breast pump review.
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What is the Willow Go?
The Willow Go is a more affordable hands-free breast pump from Willow, as compared to the Willow 3.0. It doesn’t have all of the features of the Willow 3.0 or the Elvie, but it still makes pumping on the go much easier.
You can see more of the Willow Go in the below stories:
What are the pros of the Willow Go?
This pump has some great features, including:
1. It’s wireless
The Willow Go is hands-free and wireless – everything goes in your nursing bra, there’s no tubing to deal with, and it’s easy to pump on the go.
2. Suction strength and flexibility
It uses “tug and release” suction as opposed to the Willow 3.0 “continuous latch” suction, which some people in our Facebook group prefer. (They’ve noted that their output is similar to a traditional breast pump. However, this may vary from person to person.)
Also, if you respond better to different levels of suction on each side (for example, if you need strong suction on the left and gentle suction on the right), you’re able to set the expression levels separately.
3. App integration
Using the app, you can see how long you’ve pumped, the settings on each side, and the level of charge on each side.
4. Pump parts work well
Putting together and taking apart the breast pump parts is straightforward.
The breast shield sizing options are pretty flexible – 15mm, 17mm, 19mm, 21mm, 24mm, and 27mm are available (the three smallest sizes are via flange inserts).
The pump comes with 5 oz collection cups on each side, but if you pump more than that at some sessions, you can buy 7 oz cups.
What are the cons of the Willow Go?
The Willow Go also has a few disadvantages:
1. Not spill-proof
This version of the Willow isn’t spill-proof, so while it’s wireless and you can easily move around, you can’t bend over or lie down while using it.
2. Can’t see volume pumped
You aren’t able see how much you’ve pumped until you remove the pumps from your bra.
If you tend to pump a larger amount, it’s possible that the pump could overflow if you don’t keep an eye on it. (The 7 oz collection cups might help with this.)
3. Operating life
The operating life is listed as three 15 minute sessions per day for a year.
This is plenty for some people, but it’s a good thing to keep in mind if you need to pump frequently and plan to use the Willow Go as your primary pump.
4. Can’t control pump from the app
You control the pump using the buttons at the top of each hub; you can’t control the pump from the app. This makes using it in public a little less discreet.
Will people be able to tell you’re wearing it?
Here’s a photo comparison of me wearing no pump, the Willow Go and the Willow 3.0 under a black long-sleeve t-shirt.
It will be obvious to you and probably to people who know you that your chest has suddenly grown, but strangers likely wouldn’t notice.
Is the Willow Go worth it?
This really depends on your budget and your lifestyle.
If you need to pump on the go frequently and you have the extra money (or are able to use your FSA/HSA), then I think it could be a really good investment.
On the other hand, if you’ll mostly be pumping at work in a lactation room with an outlet available, it may not make as much sense.
Or, if you’ll be pumping on the go frequently but don’t have the budget, you can make that work with a traditional pump if necessary.
Willow Go vs. Willow 3.0
The main differences between the traditional Willow and the Willow Go are in how the app works (the Willow 3.0 is “smarter” than the Willow Go pump and app), having the spill-proof option with the Willow 3.0, and the type of suction.
Here is a more detailed breakdown of the two pumps:
|Willow 3.0||Willow Go|
|Price||Check Price||Check Price|
|Storage Capacity||4 oz bags or 4 oz containers||5 oz (7 oz cups are available)|
|Spill-proof||Yes (with bags) – you can lay down, bend over, etc.||No|
|Sizes||15mm, 17mm, 19mm, 21mm, 24mm, and 27mm||15mm, 17mm, 19mm, 21mm, 24mm, and 27mm|
|App||Can control pump; tracks sessions and volume pumped in real-time||Can see suction level (but not control it); tracks sessions (but not volume)|
|Apple Watch Compatibility||Yes||No|
|Suction||“Continuous Latch Technology”||“Tug and Release”|
|Sound||Quiet||Not quiet, but not loud|
|Max Suction||245 mmHG||280 mmHG|
|Warranty||One year from purchase date; 90 days on pump parts||One year from purchase date; 90 days on pump parts|
Willow Go vs Momcozy
The Momcozy is another lower cost hands-free breast pump option.
|Price||Check Price||Check Price|
|Storage Capacity||6 oz||5 oz (7 oz cups are available)|
|Sizes||21mm, 24mm, and 27mm||15mm, 17mm, 19mm, 21mm, 24mm, and 27mm|
|App||No app||Tracks sessions (but not volume)|
|Sound||Loud||Not quiet, but not loud|
|Discreet||No (motor sticks out)||Somewhat|
|Max Suction||280-300 mmHG||280 mmHG|
|Warranty||7 days||One year from purchase date; 90 days on pump parts|
Keeping a wearable pump safe
If you decide to get a Willow Go, you might also want to look into getting a wearable breast pump bag to keep it safe. There are a few different options.
What’s in the box?
The following comes in the Willow Go box:
- 2 Willow Go breast pumps (with 21 mm breast shields, pump, pump diaphragm, container back, valve, and container bowl),
- A set of 24 mm breast shields,
- A nipple sizing tool ruler,
- Two chargers, and
- An instruction manual and quick start guide.
Using the pump
Here are some tips and tricks for using the Willow Go breast pump.
Charging the Willow Go
The Willow Go comes with two USB-B charging cords. (A wall charging block is not included.)
To charge the pump, remove the flanges and plug the pumps in.
You can see the charge level in the app or by pressing the power button.
A red, orange, or green light will display.
Green means there is enough charge for two or more sessions, orange means there is enough for one session, and red means there is not enough charge for a full pumping session.
Do you need a special bra?
No, any stretchy nursing bra will work.
Finding the correct settings
You can control mode and suction level on the top of the Willow Go.
The pump starts in stimulation mode, and auto switches to expression mode after 2 minutes. There are six suction levels in stimulation mode, and nine in expression mode.
Using the app
The app allows you to view the current settings being used on the pump, as well as the length of your current pumping session.
Storing your milk
When you’ve finished pumping, flip the pump over a storage bottle or bag and pour your milk in.
Cleaning the pump
To clean the pump, disassemble the collection cup, connector, valve, diaphragm, breast shield, and pump hub.
Everything except the breast pump hub should be washed in warm soapy water and air dried. The breast pump itself can be wiped with a disinfectant wipe.
Willow advises that the washable pump parts should be sterilized by boiling them for 5 minutes. Microwave and steam methods should not be used.
Willow Go breast pump review – bottom line
The Willow Go is an affordable hands-free option! While it’s not perfect for all circumstances (for example, if you need to be able to bend over while using it), it can be a very useful tool if you need a portable breast pump.
If you’ve used this pump, leave your Willow Go breast pump review in the comments!