A good baby bottle sterilizer protects your newborn from harmful germs and bacteria. Bacteria can spread easily on milk that has been left at room temperature for just 2 hours! Bottles and teats are not correctly washed and sterilized are hazardous for your baby.
And all Moms know, newborns are especially vulnerable to illness. Their immune systems aren’t yet strong enough to fight off bacterial infections like oral thrush. That’s why many parents invest in a good bottle sterilizer to help reduce of bacterial infection.
There’s many different types and brands of baby bottle sterilizers on the market today. We hope our reviews of the best models on the market will make things easier for you!
Best Baby Bottle Sterilizers
Table of Contents
Types of Baby Bottle Sterilizers
There are 3 main types of bottle sterilizers:
- Electric Steam Sterilizers
- Microwave Steam Sterilizers
- Cold Water Sterilizers
Each different type has its own pros and cons. We shall take a look at them in turn now.
Electric Steam Sterilizers
With most electric steam sterilizers, you simply need to place the bottles in upside down and add water. After around 10 minutes the sterilization process will be complete. Most of these sterilizers will sound an audible alarm and shut-down automatically. Providing the bottles aren’t removed, they’re kept sterile for up to 6 hours.
Most of these sterilizers will sound an audible alarm and shut-down automatically. Providing the bottles aren’t removed, they’re kept sterile for up to 6 hours.
- Easy to use.
- Efficiently Kills 99.9% of germs.
- Quick at under 10 minutes.
- No prep time needed.
- Most expensive type of bottle sterilizer.
- The inside of the unit can get hot enough to burn hands.
- Need for descaling.
Microwave Steam Sterilizers
The bottles are placed in the microwave sterilizer unit and a small amount of water added. It’s important to ensure the lids are all on tight before putting inside the microwave. From there, you need to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines, but the sterilization again takes around 10 minutes.
- Convenient & can sterilize with your existing microwave.
- Space Saving.
- Fast and Simple.
- Relatively Cheap.
- Some sterilizers only fit 4 bottles.
- Some are too big for smaller microwaves.
- A burn risk from the hot water inside the sterilizer.
Cold Water Sterilizers
Cold water sterilizers (a.k.a “Chemical Sterilization”) may sound the least effective of the three, but they are used in hospitals to sterilize baby bottles. This method uses sterilizing tablets or a special liquid that is mixed with cold water in the sterilizer’s tank. The liquid contains a form of diluted bleach. The baby bottles are then completely
This method uses sterilizing tablets or a special liquid that is mixed with cold water in the sterilizer’s tank. The liquid contains a form of diluted bleach. The baby bottles are then completely submerged in the solution.
Great care needs to be taken that there are no air bubbles created. Bacteria and germs can survive inside the bubbles. You need to be especially careful when the bottles are lying on their side.
The cold water process takes about 30 minutes. Once completed, the bottles need to be rinsed out completely in hot, boiling water. Ensure that there’s no sterilizing solution left on the bottle.
- No burn risk as no heat required.
- Suitable when traveling as doesn’t need electricity.
- Bottles are still sterile when you open the lid.
- Lower carbon footprint.
- The Solution needs changing every 24 hours.
- Up to 3 times slower than the Electric / Microwave method.
- The bottles, solution, and sterilizer are heavy to move when filled.
The Boiling Water Method
If you don’t want a baby bottle sterilizer or are only sterilizing the occasional bottle, the boiling water method could be appropriate for you. It’s cheap, effective and relatively quick.
To sterilize a bottle in boiling water, you need to set aside a dedicated pot or pan for this task alone. First, place the feeding accessories to be sterilized into a boiling pot or pan of water. Then, bring the water back to the boil and let simmer for 10 minutes. Remove all the items afterward with a pair of metal tongs.
- Quick – Almost the same time as the electric steam method.
- Easy – Just like boiling an egg!
- Cheap: No need to buy a sterilizer, just a cheap pot or pan.
- Rubber teats can become swollen and spongy through boiling.
- You need a big, dedicated saucepan.
- Increased risks of burns.
You need to put the bottles somewhere to dry off.
Do you really need a bottle sterilizer?
There is a lot of debate among pediatricians and parents whether a baby bottle sterilizer is all that necessary nowadays. Many people regard them as left-overs from our grand-parents and parents generation when hygiene standards weren’t as high as today.
The argument goes that as long as your drinking water is safe to drink, you can get away with washing bottles in hot, soapy water. This also assumes that you follow a rigorous handwashing regimen too. The FDA found that many parents forgot to wash their hands after changing diapers,
The FDA found that many parents forgot to wash their hands after changing diapers, petting cats and dogs and handling raw meat. With or without a bottle sterilizer, this is essential advice.
Do I have a bottle sterilizer?
Yes, I do. An electric steam one. And here’s why.
When you have your first baby, you’ll know that parents and grandparents provide a lot of support. It can be a bit smothering at times! They might not understand your decision to forgo a bottle sterilizer.
You can also bet that if your newborn becomes sick, the fingers will be pointing at where the bottle sterilizer should be. And those fingers are usually attached to the in-laws…For around $30 you can get a top rated bottle sterilizer and reduce the risk of bacterial infection. A lot less hassle in the long run!
I have to say though after reviewing the evidence, the hot water method does seem safe enough. We just enjoy the convenience and peace-of-mind of using our sterilizer. Plus, there’s usually a lot of things going on at our house. I’d rather keep both eyes on the baby than juggle hot water at the same time…
Baby Bottle Sterilizer Reviews
|Philips Avent 3-in-1 Electric Steam Sterilizer for Baby Bottles|
|Philips Avent Microwave Steam Sterilizer for Baby Bottles|
|Dr. Brown’s Deluxe Bottle Sterilizer|
|Papablic Baby Bottle Eletric Steam Sterilizer and Dryer|
Low Price Favorite
|Munchkin Steam Guard Microwave Bottle Sterilizer|
Wabi Baby Electric Steam Sterilizer and Dryer Review
If you’re searching for a top-of-the-line baby bottle sterilizer, the very latest Wabi Electric Steam sterilizer could well be it.
Steam sterilizers are criticized because bottles are often left sopping wet and can’t be used immedialtey. Well, with the Wabi this does not happen. It has an inbuilt drier and you can choose to dry for 30, 45 or 60 minutes depending how much of a rush you are in.
If you choose 45 minutes, the complete cycle will take 1 hour. The sterilizer can fit 8 standard size bottles. It can also sterilize all the baby essentials like nipples, teethers, breast pump parts, plates, bowls, and cutlery.
What I really like about this sterilizer is the “One button descaling” feature. This removes a lot of hassle associated with steam sterilizers. Usually, you have to mix a vinegar and water solution every 4 weeks to do this. Many sterilizers have been returned due to brown spots appearing on the heating plate, so it’s reassuring to know the Wabi sterilizer addresses this common problem.
If you’ve got the money (or a dear friend wants to buy you a really, really nice gift) the Wabi Sterilizer and Drier is a great investment.
- Has A dryer – Makes things quicker, more sterile and convenient.
- Easy to use – Just add water and press a button.
- Large Capacity – Fits up to 8 baby bottles of any brand.
- Countdown Timer – Many steam sterilizers don’t have this feature.
- Automatic Storage – Automatically dries the bottles every hour for 10 minutes.
- Automatic Descaler – No need to manually descale the sterilizer.
- Sterilizes Everything – Teethers, Breast Pump accessories, and dinnerware.
- The Price
This model is almost 3 times more expensive than other top rated steam sterilizers (without dryers admittedly).
Tommee Tippee Electric Steam Sterilizer Review
The Tommee Tippee steam sterilizer is a really innovative design that promises to remove 99.9% of all germs in 5 minutes flat. A great feature of this sterilizer is it has a top tray for all the small things that you need to go in like plastic nipples, teethers and pump parts.
The sterilizer takes 6 bottles of any brand. If they are a bit tall you can just remove the top tray so everything will fit. You can also use it plates, bowls, spoons, forks, etc, etc. So you can continue to use it when your little one becomes a toddler.
Also, the lid is reversible so you have a sterile prep area, too. If space is at a premium in your kitchen, this is a big plus. Tippee also include some free gifts. You get a sample 5oz bottle, a formula dispenser and nipple tongs.
For parents looking for an easy-to-operate “Worry Free” sterilizer, the Tippee Electric Steam Sterilizer is a great choice at this price point.
- Easy Operation – Just push a button and off it goes.
- Large Capacity – Fits 6 Bottles of any brand.
- Fits All Sizes – Remove top shelf to fit taller bottles.
- Quick Cycle Time – Takes just 5 minutes.
- Reversible Lid – Flips over to double as a sterile preparation area.
- No Residue – No dishwasher or detergent residue.
- Multi-functional – Can sterilize nipples, teethers and breast pump parts.
- Easy to clean – Easy to de-scale & no water in hard-to-reach places.
- Sterile 24 Hours – Keeps the bottles under the lid sterile for 24 hours.
- Free Extras – Tommee 5oz Bottle, Formula Dispenser, and Tongs.
- Still need to wash bottles before sterilization.
- Sterilizer doesn’t dry bottles.
AVENT 3-in-1 Electric Steam Sterilizer Review
The Avent 3 in 1 is a compact yet versatile Steam Sterilizer that many parents love. It’s called “3 in 1” because it has an adjustable size. The smallest size can be used for nipples, pacifiers, and teethers. The second for breast pump parts and toddler plates, bowls, etc, etc. The largest size is for the baby bottles.
The sterilizer is very easy to operate. Just push add water, push a single button and wait for the 6-minute cycle to finish. It’s very easy to clean, too. There’s only 3 pieces to wash – the cover, the big compartment, and the small compartment. The unit itself can be easily wiped down with a hot, damp cloth.
The Avent 3 in 1 is available for about $50. You can check today’s price here and get a great deal on an Electric Sterilizer.
- Fast – The cycle takes just 6 minutes.
- Effective – Kills 99.9% of germs and bacteria.
- Easy to Use – Just press one button and wait.
- Adjustable Size – 3 sizes, pacifiers right up to 11 oz Bottles.
- Big Capacity – Can hold six 11 oz bottles.
- Any Brand – Will work with any brand of bottle.
- Wide Neck o.k! – Can sterilize both wide & narrow neck bottles.
- Easy to clean – The heating plate and filament easily wipe clean.
- Compact – Smaller than other Electric sterilizers so saves space.
- Doesn’t fit tall bottles.
Some bottles like the Dr. Brown 8oz bottle are too tall for this sterilizer.
- Doesn’t dry bottles.
- Scale Build-Up.
The sterilizer needs to be de-saled once every 4 weeks. Philipps recommend 100ml white vinegar and 200ml of cold water for this.
Munchkin Steam Guard Microwave Sterilizer Review
If you’re looking for the best microwave sterilizer for the money, the Munchkin Steam Guard could well be it.
Just add water, place in the microwave for around 4 minutes (depending on the wattage output of your microwave), wait for two minutes afterward and that’s it. So at around 6 minutes it’s as fast as an expensive steam sterilizer.
The sterilizer is good for all bottle brands like Avant, Dr Brown and Playtex Ventair. It holds four small 4oz bottles standing up, or 4 larger 9oz bottles lying on their side. It’s also super-easy to clean as it’s dishwasher safe.
The cheapest sterilizer on our list, the Munchin Steam Guard is superb value-for-money. Check today’s price here.
- Quick – The whole process can take as little as 6 minutes.
- Easy – Just add water and put in the microwave.
- Cheap – Around $15!.
- Any Brand Bottle – All brands bottles up to 9 oz are o.k.
- Familiar – Very similar to standard microwave operation.
- Easy to Clean – Can be put in the dishwasher.
- Portable – Can be taken out when visiting friends, relatives, and hotels.
- Tongs Included – Tongs that attach to the sterilizer are included.
- BPA Free
- Need to follow instructions carefully.
- Hot Water can pour everywhere when the lid is removed and you don’t follow instructions.
- The unit gets very hot.
- Tongs are included to handle the unit but a burn risk is still present.
AVENT Microwave Steam Sterilizer Review
The AVENT microwave bottle sterilizer is incredibly fast and easy to use. It takes just 2 minutes for a 1100 W microwave and 4 minutes for most other models.
You can sterilize up to four 8oz bottles at one time. Or three bottles and their plastic nipples and other feeding accessories. Any brand of bottle is compatible with this sterilizer.
Avent has also made a nice, secure lid for this unit. Some other brands we checked out had problems with their lids staying shut. The sterilizer’s lid is nice and tight so the steams stay in and the germs stay out.
- Incredibly Fast – Just 2 minutes in a 1100W Microwave.
- Clear and Concise Instructions included.
- Any Brand – Fits and brand of bottles as long as 280ml / 8oz or less.
- Fits up to 4 * 9oz Bottles.
- Not just bottles – can also be used for nipples, teethers and breast pump parts.
- Lockable Clips – ensures the bottles remain sterile for up to 24 hours.
- BPA Free.
- Made in the USA.
Takes up the space of about 12 stacked plates.
- Not Very Portable
It won’t fit in some hotel’s smaller microwaves.
Milton Cold Water Sterilizer Review
A lot of parents prefer cold water sterilizers like Milton’s instead of expensive steam sterilizers.
One of the main reasons is that they find the process a whole lot easier. Just immerse the bottles and baby paraphernalia under the solution and wait around 15 minutes and that’s it. No microwave, no steam and no descaling to deal with.
Another reason is once the lid is opened, steam sterilizers lose their sterile environment. With the Milton Sterilizer, you can open and close the lid as many times as you want.
The submerged bottles will be good for up to 24 hours. This really suits us Moms as you the process only needs doing once-a-day. And the bottles and nipples will keep sterile for when we really need it.
- Fast – Completely Sterile in 15 Minutes.
- Easy – No complicated instructions, simply immerse the bottles.
- Any Brand – Any bottle is o.k as long as they ft!
- Large Capacity – 5L capacity can fit up to 6 bottles.
- Multi-Use – Suitable for pacifiers, teethers & breast feeding equipment.
- No Burn Risk – This method doesn’t use heat so much safer.
- No De-Scaling – No rust, no need to descale every 4 weeks.
- Power Saving – Doesn’t rely on Electricity.
- Perfect for Travelling – Can even take to remote camp-sites.
- Used in Hospitals.
- You need to keep buying the sterilizing tablets or fluid.
- Hard to retrieve bottles.
- The bottles just float around in the liquid. This means sometimes you have to fish them out and get liquid on your hands and arm.
Be sure to check out our reviews on the best baby bottle warmers, too!