Bottle Nipple Shapes and Sizes: Why It Matters

The choices available in baby bottle nipples seem to be endless. They come in a wide variety of materials, shapes and sizes. Many parents wonder which one is the best for their baby. There are a few things to look for in a nipple, but overall your baby will show you which one she prefers. 



Silicone vs. Rubber

Most bottle nipples are made of either latex rubber or silicone. If you have the choice, always choose silicone nipples. They are much easier to sterilize because the material is not damaged by heat, and they last longer. Also, some babies are allergic to latex and this will cause irritation. 

Whichever nipple you choose, make sure you sterilize and replace them according to the manufacturer’s recommendations. Generally, silicone bottle nipples should be replaced every three months. 



There are a number of shapes of bottle nipples and the best one for your baby depends mostly on your baby’s preference. Here are the most popular shapes of nipples that are widely available:

  • Standard or traditional nipples 
  • These nipples are generally the type that come with standard bottles. They are often made of latex and have a long, rounded tip.

  • Flat-topped nipples
  • Flat-topped nipples, also called nubbin nipples, have shorter and flatter tips than the other styles. Some babies can have some difficulties grasping these shorter nipples. 

  • Orthodontic-type nipples
  • This type of nipple is meant to mimic a mother’s nipple and is designed to be better for your baby’s mouth. Your baby is meant to suck on the wider, flat part of this nipple.  

  • Tricut-type nipples
  • Tricut nipples are another style that is meant to closely mimic a mother’s nipple. These are longer than the standard nipples and allow milk to enter your baby’s mouth further back than the other types of nipples, which should make it easier for your baby to swallow. 



    The size of a bottle nipple is based on your baby’s development. Stage one nipples have the slowest flow and are made especially for newborns. Stage two has medium flow (for about 3 months and older) and stage 3 is fast flow (typically for age 6 months and older). Some babies will be quite happy staying with a stage 2 nipple while others may want to eventually progress to stage 3. You will be able to tell if your baby is ready to move on to the next stage if she is having to suck harder than normal. 


    Start with the Best

    With so many different types of bottles and nipples to choose from, start with the best. Baby Blendy’s award winning anti-colic bottle systems feature an innovative silicone nipple that simulates a mother’s nipple. It is designed to be easy for your baby to latch onto and work well for babies who are both nursed and bottle-fed. 


    Baby Blendy nipples come in four types: slow flow, medium flow, fast flow and even a sippy spout. They work with most brands of bottles, but they are designed to perfectly complement Baby Blendy’s anti-colic bottle systems. 


    Click here to learn more.