Hooter Hiders.

Sarah - posted on 09/11/2010 ( 98 moms have responded )

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http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2...

ou don't have to look far for reminders that some people find breastfeeding problematic. A US Walmart store once refused to develop a photo of a three-month-old on the teat, and the deputy editor of Mother & Baby magazine in the UK recently wrote that, for her, the whole idea was a little creepy; she didn't want to put her "fun bags" in a "bawling baby's mouth".

Cue the rise of the "breastfeeding cover-up". The small ads in pregnancy magazines are suddenly full of these strange postnatal accessories, designed to shield onlookers from a supposedly offensive, unsolicited flash of lactating boob. Many of them are all-enveloping "nursing shawls" that make it look as if you are trying to smuggle a suitcase. The UK's Baby BuBu Breastfeeding Covers, for instance, are enormous body aprons, while the Bebe Au Lait Hooter Hiders Nursing Cover is a giant tent with a rigid neckline, allowing you to look down at your baby while wearing the maternal equivalent of clown trousers.

The growing popularity of these cover-ups is causing heated debate among those who think they are a brilliant idea, and those who see them as a giant step backwards. Julia Roberts, Gwen Stefani and Gwyneth Paltrow have all voiced support for Hooter Hiders; earlier this year it was suggested on the US TV show The View that a woman who had faced disapproval while breastfeeding in public could have saved herself the trouble by wearing a cover-up. In the British maternity press they are promoted unquestioningly in lists of the "best breastfeeding accessories".

Others are not so positive. Earlier this year, a Facebook group launched with the title: "If breastfeeding offends you, why don't you put a blanket over YOUR head?" It has more than 260,000 members. And Ina May Gaskin, the midwife and breastfeeding expert, says that "nipple-phobia" is a US problem that is now being exported worldwide.

Your Thoughts?? To be honest, I'm inclined to think that wearing one of these things is going to draw more attention to yourself!

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Erin - posted on 09/13/2010

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I think language like 'whip it out' and 'slinging your boob out' is part of this whole problem. It makes BFing sound as cheap and tacky as a 40-something wannabe wearing a boob-flashing top intended for someone half her age. Breastfeeding should not be compared to gratuitous displays of flesh (which society in general tends to tolerate better).

I agree with Anika in that I think these covers send the wrong message. Yes, they are a nice tool for a new mum who is still self conscious. But their very existance gives the impression that breastfeeding is something to be ashamed or embarrassed about.

Amie - posted on 09/14/2010

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Lustful images? Young boys?

What?

I'm sure teen boys have more then enough images and fantasies to use. Any BF'ing mom they may see will be very, very low on the image list when they're sitting there beating off. Cummon now.

I covered up but this was not why. LOL Good grief.

Stifler's - posted on 09/14/2010

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I'm sure god would condone breastfeeding. Who sits there " exposing" their breast. Usually.. the BABY is covering the nipple. If you accidentally expose yourself big deal, you're probably trying to put your bra back on and juggle the baby. There are worse crimes than that.

[deleted account]

There is a difference (usually) between uncovered and exposed. I would never be exposed, but have almost always been 'uncovered'. It is completely modest and appropriate to nurse 'uncovered' and unexposed. Heck, I've nursed my son while carrying on a conversation w/ my pastor on numerous occasions... IN church. ;)

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[deleted account]

My aunt bought me one of those cover things and I never used it. It sits, still in the packaging, with all the other baby things I'm saving "in case I have another one". I never had a reason to use it because in the several months following the birth of my son, I rarely went anywhere long enough to have to feed him. If I did have to feed him in public, I really don't think I'd have a problem with it at all because I guess I'm just not that modest lol I mean, I would do my best to cover myself or do it in a lower traffic spot but I'm not going to NOT feed my baby in public just because it offends someone else who has every right to look away. Now, when I was breastfeeding, my family and friends would come over and it was no big deal for me to just do it right there in front of them. No one was uncomfortable or grossed out. These people are my friends and family and have seen much more than the whisper of a nipple on me before lol I mean, most of my girlfriends have seen me naked or close to it trying on clothes in a dressing room so nudity is never an issue for us. If any of my husband's guy friends ever came to the house, I would leave the room to feed because for men, I think they feel more uncomfortable with it than women do and I wouldn't want anyone to feel uncomfortable in my home.

Becky - posted on 09/20/2010

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Honestly, with my first, when he was a newborn, the hooter hider was a sanity saver. I don't know why it was, maybe because he was teeny tiny, but we had a terrible time getting latched at the beginning. Sometimes it would take up to 45 minutes to get him latched on properly so he could eat! There was no way I could do that discreetly in public. I tried just using a receiving blanket, but because I needed both hands to get him latched and needed to be able to see, in order for that to work, I had to put it over my own head too! And that just sucked! and messed up my hair! So, it was either that, or leave the room to nurse him, which also sucked. Well, after I had to nurse him sitting on the edge of a toilet that didn't even have a lid in a Boston Pizza restaurant, I was done! I think I bought the hooter hider the next day. They are way easier to use than a blanket, because of the rigid neckline, and because they're loose, I found them cooler than using a blanket too.
Now that I'm on my second and I'm comfortable breastfeeding and we're both old pros at it, I rarely use it anymore. I do still carry it with me though for situations where I can't be discreet because of what I'm wearing or where I'm around people - like my father in law - who I know would be uncomfortable with it.
I have no problem with women choosing to nurse uncovered. Heck, in Africa, they just pull the whole thing out the top of their shirt and the baby hangs off it! And that's what I'm used to seeing! But I also have no problem with a woman covering up if that's what she is more comfortable with. And for women who are more comfortable covering up, I do think that covers like the hooter hider (I haven't tried anything else) make it easier and more convenient to do so than the old using a blanket did!
What does bother me is women who are uncomfortable nursing in public even with a cover and feel they have to nurse in a bathroom. Been there, and it's gross! No more for me, thanks!

Laressa - posted on 09/20/2010

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Some of my friends were able to relax and milk let down better with more privacy. One would probably not have even nursed in the same room as her sister without a cover.



I never used one.And nursed in public a fair bit. It might have made it easier the first few times but hey I had enough baby paraphanilia to lug around without that. Besides my daughter didn't even like to be covered with a blanket why buy an item I think will be little used?



I figure if you're discreet. Mostly it'll be other parents catching on whats going on. Anyway thats what worked for us.

[deleted account]

I never suggested you throw anyone out. Just that if anyone I were to invite over to my house would be uncomfortable w/ me nursing my son then they are welcome to leave. It's a moot point for me now though since I nursed my son for 2 years anywhere and everywhere and no one ever had a problem w/ it. I still feed him in my home, homes of my friends, and church at 2.5 still w/out a cover, still w/out any problems from anyone.

Dana - posted on 09/17/2010

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Honestly, I think it's ridiculous debate. Who ever wants to use one, use it. If you don't want to use one, don't. It really isn't hurting any movement what so ever. It's a personal choice. If there was someone who I felt was a pervert in the room you're damn straight I'm covering up. I'm not letting my feeding session with my son turn into some twisted kick for some A-hole.

[deleted account]

Teresa- If I invite a friend into my home and they are obviously uncomfortable with my bare breast I would not show them the door. My step father, for example, would have been very uncomfortable in that situation, should I throw him out?

[deleted account]

I am a self conscious person, thats me! I'm in no way over weight at 120 pounds, I'm actually smaller then I was before I got pregnant a year ago. And the 20 year old thing was a JOKE! But it would be great if my boobs were a little perkier, nursing 4 babies does some damage :(



My point is, if my husband has his buddies over watching the game I'm gonna cover up, but if my best friend stop by I'm not gonna scramble for something to cover up with. Some of you make it sound like people are saying "how dare you breast feed in public" and thats not the case. Everyone agrees that breast feeding is a wonderful experience for you and your child and they get hungry no matter where you are.

I've seen many women breast feed in public without a cover up but they didn't let it all hang out either. I never had a Hooter Hider, I used a receiving blanket and just lifted the edge a little so I could still see my baby and they were always comfortable and happy. I wasn't all wrapped up but nobody could see my breast unless were right in front of me and at that point if they are uncomfortable they can step back, or I can.

Dana - posted on 09/17/2010

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The crazy thing about that Loureen, is I bet those same people would be more accepting of that since it's a nude beach and expected, than of a mother breastfeeding with out using a cover up.

Charlie - posted on 09/16/2010

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LMAO , i suggest those with boob issues never visit Australia or Australia's most famous beach Bondi to be exact because tens of thousands of women lie on the beach daily in nothing but bikini bottoms along side men other women in bikini tops , teens and children and no one cares or thinks twice about it .

Chani - posted on 09/16/2010

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I breastfeed in public, occassionally you get a miss-informed rude person come along but my childs happiness, healthyness and well being is much more important to me then some small minded strangers opinion. Good on all you mums bearing the breast out there!

Charlie - posted on 09/16/2010

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Um yeah if you are a guest in MY house you can stay and continue to chat like a mature adult or leave the way you came in .

I have never had an issue with any of my friends or family male and female in my home while i was BF everyone continues on chatting as if nothing is going on because to my friends and family it is NORMAL for me or anyone else in our group to pull a boob out and feed our children in fact ive only had compliments in public ive even had strangers stop and have a friendly chat while i was feeding in public , they way it should be !

Charlie - posted on 09/16/2010

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Im inclined to slap the inventor of these idiotic "hooter hiders " with my big milky boobs .

Erin - posted on 09/16/2010

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I can understand women being self conscious of their body, especially after having a baby. If that's the case, by all means cover up. I would consider that to be no different than a new mother being self conscious of her stretch marked belly, or widened hips. But that personal insecurity is very different than saying breastfeeding should not be done in public for fear of offended someone else, or inciting lustful thoughts.

[deleted account]

@Liz I don't think your body issues should have any bearing on if other women should cover up whilst breastfeeding in public. I

[deleted account]

If any of my guests (assuming I would ever have any) would ever be offended by me nursing my son... they know where the door is and they are welcome to use it. ;)

[deleted account]

I think women should cover up in public and when they have company at there house IF there guests seem offended. It's one thing for my husband or my children to see me breast feed my child. Sure the baby covers your nipple, in my case the whole boob, but I still think its rude. You don't have to cover your whole body, use a small cloth or at least let your shirt fall into place.
I'm not saying if you accidentally flash a little its the end of the world, who cares, it happens. I'm talking about women who get little tiny tanktops and do let ALL hang out anywhere they go. I am a modest women and a little self conscious after having 4 kids. So it really sucks when there 20 with there body and boobs still intact.

Amanda - posted on 09/15/2010

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I think if you don't like it - don't look.

We were out in Chicago, and I needed to feed my daughter. I did cover up, and even when I was covered up I still got wierded out looks from basically everyone. So, I don't think it matters whether you cover up or not.....Just let 'em hang out!

Jodi - posted on 09/15/2010

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"adolescent boys get hard ons over the girl on the flyer wearing the latest booty shorts and top that shows her belly button"



Um, adolescent boys will get a hard on over any female that breathes (or probably doesn't for that matter). My son's school has a dress code which includes modesty for all visitors....he attends a boys school and the reason behind this is EXACTLY that. Yes, even other boys mothers are a target. I am sure you've all seen American Pie? Well, yeah, anyone's mum is a target. Modesty or not, to be honest.

?? - posted on 09/14/2010

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EWWWWWWWW BEWWWWWWWWWBEEZ





or perhaps





MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM BEWWWWWWBZ







Seriously though, there are some men out there that get insta-hard-on's over a pregnant belly, should pregnant women just stay home for 9 months just to avoid those random and rare occasions where those men will start drooling and dry humping their pockets?



Get reaaaaaaaaaaal... adolescent boys get hard ons over the girl on the flyer wearing the latest booty shorts and top that shows her belly button... they're gonna have a perma-boner until their balls drop regardless of whether that momma is feeding her child or not.

Kate CP - posted on 09/14/2010

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Cyndel, I promise you, an adolescent boy has no problem seeing lustful images EVERYWHERE. Your (or my) boob really wouldn't make a big impact in his life.

[deleted account]

But Cyndel, that's how you make it 'normal', 'acceptable' and 'inoffensive'. How else would that happen? By talking about it?

Cyndel - posted on 09/14/2010

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Personally this is my thought..
Yes breast feeding is natural and a beautiful thing. However, I do believe a woman should cover up in public. Why? It doesn't matter how natural, unsexual, or beautiful it is, nearly any adolecent boy or man will think of it as a sexual image in their minds, taking perverted pleasure in it. So I won't nurse in public uncovered. Also my husband has no interest in seeing a woman pop out a boob and nurse in the middle of Walmart he thinks it is a private thing, especially in America where the breast is a sexual object so far, in a generation or two, it will probably be normal and acceptable and unoffinsive, but in this day and age we should be more careful. Especially in adding to the lust images in young boys minds. We are our brothers keepers.

Kelley - posted on 09/14/2010

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I have one because I knew it would make breastfeeding around my dad easier (for him mostly). I don't use it that often but there are times when my daughter is distracted by any and everything and giving her nothing to look at by putting that usually helps. Guess I'm saying for some people it makes them feel more comfortable, and it can have other benefits, though it should be a choice not something you Have to have.

Dana - posted on 09/14/2010

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Haha, even if someone pulled their whole naked boob out to breast feed, I would never think it's rude or annoying. How is that rude? A little strange perhaps but, rude and annoying?

C. - posted on 09/14/2010

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Carol, I'm not talking about if you flash your boob by mistake for 3 seconds, or even 10 seconds. I'm talking about people who are trying to make a statement by pulling their boobs out for 15, 20 30+ minutes at a time when there are clearly others around- and it's noticeable, as in the boob itself is QUITE visible to the public. I just find it to be rude and annoying, really. You don't have to flash everyone while you BF. It can be done discreetly, whether or not you use a blanket or other form of 'cover up'. But with that said, I don't mind if you use a cover up, either.

Johnny - posted on 09/13/2010

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Oh, and I find this whole "breast-a-phobia" some people seem to have unbelievably immature. Seriously, what is the big deal? Are you afraid the nipples are going to poke your eyes out?

Johnny - posted on 09/13/2010

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When I breastfeed, I take into consideration my baby's comfort and mine. Everyone else can look away if it is necessary. I do not like flashing my boob, not my style, but once or twice it happened by mistake. If someone can't handle seeing a boob for 3 seconds, they should move somewhere else, since most women here breastfeed in public without covers. I must say though, despite seeing women breastfeeding on an almost daily basis at kid's activities, playgrounds, etc. I've yet to see any boob.

Sara - posted on 09/13/2010

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For me, a previous breastfeeding mother, using one of these would be more for my own modesty. I don't want everyone and their brother seeing my naked breasts.

C. - posted on 09/13/2010

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YOU may not have seen it. I have, as well as many others. And it's not a level of discomfort, necessarily. I just think ANY person should take into consideration ALL the people that are around them, regardless of the situation at hand. It's just common courtesy.

Erin - posted on 09/13/2010

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Seriously?!?! I can honestly say I have never seen a BFing mother expose her breasts unnecessarily, just for 'shock value', and where I live people don't cover up. If a person is staring while a mumma wrangles her screaming baby and gets them latched on, then they may well see some boob for about 3 seconds. Otherwise, all you see is baby's head.



Honestly, I will never understand this level of discomfort with breastfeeding. It's retarded.

C. - posted on 09/13/2010

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No, some do not need to wear a cover. But the ones that want to make a statement by plopping their boob out of their shirt just for shock value, should wear a cover. People will still look, as that's what they want anyway, but they won't be exposed- therefore people will less likely be offended. It's a win-win.

[deleted account]

You're right, Christina. You didn't specifically say that every woman should wear a cover. I apologize for assuming that by your terminology, etc... in your post that you meant that every woman should wear a cover while breastfeeding.

[deleted account]

@Jennifer, I think we're on the same page. Those hooter hiders are big aprons around your neck. I agree with you that special breastfeeding clothes do make it a lot easier and more discreet. Though in saying that I never bought any, as I'm just a jeans and tshirt type girl and those tops were all a bit fancy for me! LOL. All I did was wore a singlet under my tshirt, so I pulled one side of my t shirt up and pulled my singlet down so I only had minimal boob out. When my daughter was latched I just bunched my tshirt around so it covered the remaining flesh on show. You would have had to be staring quite intently to see any thing. I also wonder how practical those hooter hiders would actually be. My daughter sometimes wasn't even patient enough for me to get my breast out let alone if I was stuffing about trying to find my (hypothetical) hooter hider in my bag, then get it out and then put it on and THEN get about the business of getting my boob out. She would have screamed the place down by then. Really I think it's just some businesses, praying on mother's fears and self consciousness to get more money out of us.

C. - posted on 09/13/2010

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Not sure how it could be offensive when I never said EVERY BFing woman does that.. But Ok.

[deleted account]

Um... your welcome? I'm not bent out of shape in the least. Just found your choice of wording a tad offensive. No biggie.

Rosie - posted on 09/13/2010

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i think they are great for someone like myself who who had MAJOR hangups about BF in public. i was terrified to do it. if i had stuck with breastfeeding it would've been nice, and made me feel more at ease until i got the hang of it.
as for my stance on women covering themselves while breastfeeding in public. i don't think they need to, but there are those women whose nipples make a show for a bit, and i'm not comfortable with that, no matter what they are doing. i do wish that they would cover up while attaching the child.

Kate CP - posted on 09/13/2010

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These tent things are actually REALLY uncomfortable to nurse in when you're trying to nurse in the dead of summer. Hotter than hell is what they are. :/

Jenni - posted on 09/13/2010

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You know, i just realized that i was assuming this was some "new" product that was like a breast cover (only covering the breast) not one of those huge aprons you buy at walmart. Yeah... those have got to go. I like the idea of nursing wear... shirts that have flaps where your nipples are. They take the fumbling out of BFing in public for new BFers (and some older ones) and I believe they encourage confidence. They also make it easier to expose your nipple without fumbling with your shirt. I think they work almost in the same way a nursing bra works.

Anika, yeah i can see where you're disagreeing with me now. And maybe you still do but I do agree that that drapping a tent over oneself is not the answer. I think those hinder BF as well. I couldn't imagine myself trying to keep my babies latched on under one of those things, sounds like more trouble than they're worth.

As far as worrying about offending others or being discreet out of respect for others (it's a different matter if you are being discreet for yourself), you can't please everyone. For example, one time when i lived in complex i was tanning in the communal lawn in my bikini (nothing racey just a regular old bikini). There was a middle eastern family who had just moved into the lower complex. The mother and her kids came outside onto their porch while I was tanning. I had my eyes closed soaking up the rays when all of a sudden i felt a sprinkle of water. I looked up and one of her kids was spraying the hose in my direction. They were all, including the mother, giggling. I got the impression the mother was encouraging her kids because she felt uncomfortable with me in my bathing suit. I understand it's a difference in culture but it wasn't going to stop me tanning because she felt "uncomfortable". I was doing what is considered completely acceptable in my culture. Everyone has different levels of comfort and modesty so it's impossible to please everyone what matters is your level of comfortability not everyone else's.

C. - posted on 09/12/2010

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Teresa, don't get all bent out of shape. I NEVER said ALL women who breastfeed EXPOSE THEMSELVES. Thank you.

[deleted account]

I breastfed in public for 2 years w/out a cover and my boob was never exposed. Unless you were staring REALLY close and really inappropriately during the 2 seconds of latch on or latch off.... you never even would've seen any nipple exposure.

'Whip it out'... 'slinging your boob out'.... maybe some women, but most certainly NOT all women who choose to feed w/out a cover. ;)

[deleted account]

I think it's inconsiderate to judge a mother doing what she's meant to do with her breasts. I was discreet whilst feeding in public but not just for other people but for myself. I think you'll find those women who do expose themselves feeding probably expose themselves in other ways as well and I don't think us discreet feeders should be penalised because of a select few.

Kate CP - posted on 09/12/2010

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I don't know about you, Christina, but my boob doesn't exactly "sling" around too easily. I admit, they ain't as perky as they used to be...but they're not tennis balls in tube socks.

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