Friday Close-Up: Best for Babes

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Best for Babes is an organization dedicated to giving breastfeeding a much-needed makeover. Moms who breastfeed are gorgeous, smart and trendy. BFB Co Founders Bettina Forbes and Danielle Rigg have set out to remove the “booby traps”- the barriers to breastfeeding that keep tripping women up! These savvy moms know that a new mother doesn’t need more judgment, pressure, or to be discriminated against for nursing, they deserve to be cheered on, coached and celebrated!

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They run a non-profit organization, and have an incredibleinformation-packed website (with some cool gear--love the tees!). The #1 goal is to get the message out that support is available for moms who want to try to breastfeed. I caught up with the founders to learn more about BFB.

Why did you launch the ad campaign?
To shift the focus off moms—who don’t need more judgment, guilt or pressure—and put the focus on helping moms “beat the booby traps”—the cultural and institutional barriers to breastfeeding that are keeping them from achieving their personal breastfeeding goals and enjoying what can be a tremendously empowering experience. 60% of new moms don’t achieve their personal breastfeeding goals and 89% don’t make it to the minimum six months of exclusive breastfeeding recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics! We’re especially thrilled that the ads help change the perception of breastfeeding with their fresh, appealing and provocative visual and by bringing some lighthearted humor and glamour to this issue. We knew an independent ad campaign was needed after the government’s campaign was derailed by industry lobbyists. (see ad right)

Favorite New York City Breastfeeding resources?
New York moms are lucky because New York City is much more progressive regarding breastfeeding than other parts of the country! Breastfeeding in public is generally more accepted, and many employers accommodate nursing moms with pumping breaks, rooms, and flexible work arrangements. Also, New York City is one of the few cities to have a designated “Baby-Friendly Hospital”—Harlem Hospital follows a protocol proven to result in breastfeeding success, and the free formula giveaways that have been shown to interfere with breastfeeding and shorten duration have been banned from all 11 public hospitals and their discharge bags! All moms deserve to decide what is best for their babies and their families, and those moms who choose to breastfeed deserve not to be sabotaged in their efforts. NYC moms also have access to great birthing and breastfeeding classes like those offered at Power of Birth and great lactation consultants like Kate Sharp, IBCLC.

Breastfeeding Must-Haves?
The good news about breastfeeding is that all you really need are your boobs, and your baby! For first-time moms, though, a few things can make the “learning curve” (the first 6-8 weeks of mastering breastfeeding) easier and more enjoyable. Our favorites are the My Brest Friend nursing pillow which can dramatically improve breastfeeding success, the Earth Mama-Angel Baby Breastfeeding Support Kit (includes totally toxin-free nipple butter, breast compresses, “booby tubes” and milkmaid tea), and a good nursing stool.

What exciting things are in the works for Best for Babes?
Stay tuned for more clever and revealing (pun intended, haha) ads—we hope to be able to get them onto subways and bus stations—and plan to do a big bash “Help Moms Beat the Booby Traps” fundraiser in New York City next year. New York is leading the way in inspiring the rest of the country to become more “breastfeeding-friendly!” Check out www.bestforbabes.org to get involved.

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