There are a million different options out there for bottles for our kiddos. Even a simple search for 'baby bottle' on Amazon will give you 19,423 results. I don't know about you, but I don't have time to search through and read almost 20 thousand different listings just to find the best one for our family!
To add onto the confusion of what bottle is the best for you and your little one, glass bottles have reemerged on the market, giving us even more options to choose between. So why should you go with glass over the plastic we've been using for years now?
Plastic bottles are, for the most part, a very new concept. For many many many years, glass was the only option, so that's what was used. However, the glass was heavy and breakable, so when plastic bottles came along that were much lighter and didn't break as easily, they quickly replaced the glass bottles.
In recent years, though, it has come to our attention that certain plastics are actually potentially harmful to our sweet developing babies, and has caused many parents and caregivers to look into other options that are safer.
So - what is safer for our little ones? Glass bottles or plastic bottles?
BPA is the buzzword of the day. Those three little letters can incite worry in the best of us. It has been found in bottles, toys, sippy cups, food storage containers, the lining of canned foods, and more. In previous years, most plastic bottles were made with polycarbonate plastic, a hard, shatterproof plastic, that is now known to leach bisphenol A (aka: BPA). BPA is a chemical compound that mimics estrogen in the body, and therefore may possibly cause developmental hormonal disruptions in young children. So, these baby bottles were strong and lightweight, but the chemical that was causing them to be unbreakable was also causing concern over contributing to cancers, as well as changes in the reproductive changes and in the brain, and also causing early puberty. Nowadays, all baby bottles and sippy cups sold in the USA are required to be BPA-free.
Advantages of Glass:
The biggest advantage to glass is the fact that glass is naturally BPA free. This means that you don't have to worry about any chemicals that could potentially leak into your baby's milk, formula, water, etc - and is the biggest draw to make the move to glass bottles. Glass bottles are, in my opinion, much easier to clean, due in part to the fact that the glass can be boiled, heated and easily sanitized. Glass is also incredibly long lasting, as most are made of tempered glass which is harder to break, and many companies nowadays, like GoGlass, are including silicone sleeves, etc, to help protect and keep the glass from breaking. For crunchy mamas like myself, you'll also appreciate that glass bottles are made without using petroleum, and they can be recycled more readily than plastic baby bottles, both of which make glass baby bottles a much more eco-friendly choice.
Advantages of Plastic:
The biggest advantage to plastic is that it is lighter than glass. This means a lighter diaper bag, and plastic bottles are typically easier for babies to hold themselves at an earlier age. Plastic is also unbreakable, which I would argue is a huge reason why it overtook glass as the baby bottle material of choice.
Disadvantage of Glass:
I see two main disadvantages of glass bottles for your baby. 1: They are more likely to break than plastic bottles, and glass is also heavier. Not that in my journey to motherhood perfection I have ever experienced this, of course, but if you were to hypothetically drop a bottle on your child, the glass bottle would probably hurt more than its plastic counterpart. While most glass baby bottles are made of tempered glass, they can break when they fall, which means having to deal with shards of glass - not something you want in a home with a baby, especially if they're crawling or walking. Most companies combat this worry of a broken bottle with silicone features to help protect the bottle if it falls, however there is no complete guarantee that these silicone sleeves, etc, will completely prevent against breakage.
Disadvantage of Plastic:
My personal main 'issue' (if you can even call it that), is with the materials used to make plastic baby bottles. Yes, BPA has been banned since 2012 in use for baby bottles and sippy cups, but many older plastic baby bottles are still floating around out there, especially in thrift stores (I can't tell you the number of time's I've found #7 printed on the bottom of bottles I see at our favorite Goodwills, etc). However, the new materials that are being used to make bottles are still not completely safe, and leave a lot of room for needed improvement. For example, newer baby bottles are made from BPA-safe plastics, such as polypropylene, aka: #5 plastic, but polypropylene was discovered to leach two types of chemicals: "an antimicrobial chemical known as quaternary ammonium and a plastic softening agent called oleamide"(source). Plastic bottles also don't last as long as glass bottles, and having to hand wash every bottle each time we use it is time consuming and an unnecessary tedious chore.
So yes, BPA was banned years ago, but with all the new research being shown that our #7 alternatives may not actually be all that safe either, glass is looking better and better. The most common exposure to these plastics is in their baby bottles, and knowing how easy it is to combat and prevent that with just purchasing a glass bottle instead of a plastic one is such an easy switch. While glass may seem a little nerve-wracking to some, I promise making the switch is super easy!
The glass bottle is a little bit heavier in my diaper bag or purse than a plastic bottle, but knowing that the chemical makeup of my Baby GoGlass Glass Baby Bottle is far more safe than it's plastic counterpart will always make me choose glass over plastic! I don't mind the little bit of extra weight (I honestly barely even notice it, especially since I never pack that much in my bag), and knowing that I can throw everything into the dishwasher is my lazy-mama self's favorite aspect. I have not personally experienced any downside to using glass bottles at all, but if you're concerned over the breaking issue, check out companies like Baby GoGlass! As you can see, at 20 months, it's still a hit!
What about you?
Have you considered replacing your plastic bottle with glass ones? What about in your daily life?
Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Baby GoGlass, and this post does contain affiliate links. Regardless, all opinions are my own.