Breast milk is precious, and especially in the early days, most moms save every drop they can. However, after a few months of pumping or expressing, you might find yourself with extra milk on your hands. (For milk storage guidelines, check out our post on the topic.) Here are some creative ways to use leftover breast milk so that none of your liquid gold goes to waste...even if you have more than your baby can drink.
Breast Milk Jewelry
Breast milk jewelry is a meaningful way to commemorate your time spent breastfeeding, pumping, and making milk for your baby. You can purchase jewelry made with your milk, or make your own. When ordering it from someone else, you typically mail in a small amount of milk and they dehydrate the milk and use the powder to create a keepsake. DIY breast milk jewelry kits are available from companies like Milk + Honey Jewelry.
Breast Milk Lotion
Breast milk has a number of antimicrobial, antibacterial, and antiinflammatory properties. You might notice that if your baby gets some milk on their cheeks or bottom, scratches and rashes heal up more quickly (assuming the area is generally clean and dry). These healing, soothing, and germ-fighting properties mean that breast milk can be a great ingredient in a homemade lotion for your family. Check out this breast milk lotion recipe from the breast pump company Medela.
Breast Milk Soap
Similarly, you can use your breast milk as a key ingredient in homemade soap. Medela also has a breast milk soap recipe. The vitamins, nutrients, and minerals in human milk are great for your skin, and the other ingredients in popular breast milk soap recipes help make for a cleansing and pleasant soap.
Breast Milk Bath
Studies have shown topical use of breast milk to be equally effective as hydrocortisone cream in the treatment of atopic eczema. Many moms put their leftover breast milk to use at bathtime, drawing a skin-soothing bath for their little one with breast milk added to the water. This post from Elvie covers some of the benefits and how-to’s of a breast milk bath.
If you’ve got extra milk on your hands, there are many creative ways to use it for you, your baby, or your family. Especially for mothers who spend a lot of time pumping, these crafts and activities are a great way to honor the time spent making milk for your baby without letting a drop go to waste.