You’ve probably heard the praises heaped upon the power of breast milk. You might have sung some of those praises yourself from time to time. From reportedly being able to clear up your baby’s skin to soothing your own sore nipples, breast milk is a marvel. But did you know that there are many incredibly things you can make with your own breast milk?
There’s a reason why breast milk is called liquid gold. “First and foremost, it is Mother Nature’s breast cream,” Michelle Collins, Ph.D., a Women, Children and Family Nursing professor at Rush University College of Nursing. “No need to purchase fancy breast/nipple creams when all mothers should so is, after each feeding (particularly just starting out breastfeeding) squeeze out a few drops and rub it into the nipple and areola.” The specific fats, proteins, and antibodies in the milk help heal any tiny cracks or fissures that may have incurred during breastfeeding.
And then there’s the crafty aspect of breast milk. Need a new ring? Express some of your BM and you’ll have some shiny new bling on your finger in no time, according to The Bump. Lips are chapped? Yep, you can use your breast milk to make your lips kissable once again. “Breast milk is obviously perfectly suited as the ideal nutrition for infants,” says Collins. “Aside from using it for its nutritional value, some mothers have found other creative uses for it, too.” Truly, there’s so much more that you can do with your breast milk than feed your baby (although that’s totally important, too). If you’re curious to see what other creations you can come up with, read on.
1. Teething Ring
When your baby is teething, you can use a store-bought teething ring or even a washcloth that’s been soaked in water and frozen. Or, you can express your own breast milk, pop it into a popsicle mold, voila, instant teething ring. “A great thing to do for teething is to freeze it into popsicles for the baby,” says Collins. “As they teethe on them, they are getting nutrition and relief from the pain with the application of the cold to the gums."
2. Ice Cream
Sure, you might have tried the 31 flavors at your local ice cream shop, but you probably haven’t tried breast milk ice cream — yet. Just take your breast milk and blend it with ice for an icy sweet treat. If you want to add some extra flavor, you might want to puree a banana or apple to get in some added nutrition. Sigh For Love has a breast milk ice cream recipe that includes sugar, vanilla and almond extract.
3. Breast Milk Soap
Now you can slather yourself up with your own home made breast milk soap. You can use coconut oil, lavender oil, glycerin soap, among other ingredients found in this DIY breast milk soap YouTube video. It can be even better than a store bought brand, particularly if your baby’s skin is sensitive.
4. Breast Milk Bath
If you have a stocked supply of breast milk that you don’t want to go to waste, why not put it into baby’s bath? You can add the breast milk to the water and then use lotion to help your little one’s skin absorb all that extra goodness.
5. Breast Milk Jewelry
6. Baby Lotion
Using breast milk for your baby’s face is another home remedy. But it can get sticky, and it doesn’t always have the staying power like lotion does. Learn how to make your own DIY baby lotion that uses your breast milk and a few other ingredients, like grapeseed oil, beeswax, and Vitamin E oil in this YouTube video.
If you’ve run out of slices of American, you can always make your own breast milk cheese. It’s actually not complicated to create; chef Daniel Angerer shared his recipe for the cheese making, which only has four additional ingredients. You’ll have a grilled cheese going in no time.
Chapped lips have met their match with Chapstick made from breast milk. A Sonoma Garden offers tips on how to create your own using breast milk, beeswax, coconut oil, cocoa butter, olive oil, and Vitamin E.
So the next time you've pumped a lot of breast milk and are wondering what to do with it all, you can come up with a craft that will put all that liquid gold to good use.
Michelle Collins, Ph.D., a Women, Children and Family Nursing professor at Rush University College of Nursing