What To Do With Expired or Undrinkable Breast Milk

How To Use Expired Or Undrinkable Breast Milk

Before you throw out your undrinkable breast milk

That milk probably still has a multitude of soothing and healing properties. And is it actually unsafe for consumption? Often, mothers are instructed to pump and dump unnecessarily. Some of the most common instances are:

    • After having anesthesia
    • After having an MRI with contrast- more info HERE
    • When taking certain medications- more info HERE
    • When concerned about a food allergy/intolerance- contact us!
    • After consuming alcohol (click HERE) or caffeine (click HERE)

What constitutes undrinkable breast milk?

1) stored milk that has been frozen too long

2) milk with high lipase or oxidization that causes baby to refuse it (read more about high lipase HERE)

3) fresh milk that has passed the safe window for consumption

Here are a few ways you can use breast milk that your baby can’t/won’t drink:

1) Milk baths. Breast milk baths can help with dry skin, cradle cap, rashes, eczema, the itch of bug bites, or just for general skin conditioning.

2) Breast milk lotion. It’s easy to make, wonderfully soothing, and can help baby’s eczema, diaper rash, baby acne, sensitive skin, even cuts and scrapes.

3) Syringes. Fill 1 ml syringes to save for first aid.

4) Dilution. If baby is refusing it due to high lipase (which is not actually harmful, it just tastes and smells off), try diluting it with fresh milk to lessen the undesirable taste.

5) Breast milk soap. If you’re feeling extra motivated, make breast milk soap. Keep reading- recipes below!

Milk Baths

Probably the most common way to use up undrinkable breast milk!

Milk baths are super soothing and can help clear up:

  • Cradle cap
  • Eczema
  • Diaper rash
  • As well as moisturizing dry or irritated skin.

How to make your milk bath:

  • fill baby’s bath as usual
  • add enough breast milk to make the water cloudy
  • let baby soak at least 5 minutes (or longer) and sponge milky water over their whole body
  • pat dry and seal in the benefits with a gentle moisturizing lotion or amplify the benefits further with breast milk lotion!
Want to add some extra skincare benefits?
 
Try adding in some oats!! Blend oats into a powder and add into the bath for extra soothing benefits. This is a great trick for eczema!
Breast Milk Lotion Recipe
Ingredients:
  • 3 oz grapeseed or coconut oil (see note)
  • 1 tbsp beeswax
  • Few drops of Vitamin E oil
  • 3 oz fresh breast milk, at room temperature
  • a couple of drops of an essential oil (for scent- optional)
Method:

Heat the oil and beeswax together slowly until the beeswax has just melted (stovetop or ~3 minutes in microwave on LOW setting).

Add the Vitamin E oil.

Slowly pour in the breast milk while whisking the oil mixture rapidly to emulsify. The mixture should thicken a bit.

Leave to cool before transferring to storage container. The lotion will continue to thicken as it cools. Store in a dark place at room temperature. Beeswax reacts to light, and will discolor over time with exposure.

Do not freeze; Lotion can be used for up to 3 months.

Note: Using coconut oil may be slightly more beneficial, but it also comes out harder, since coconut oil is solid at room temperature. Grapeseed oil produces a more traditional lotion texture and feel.

Note: Please use only your own breast milk, as other women’s milk may pass on bacteria that your baby may not have been exposed to yet, like strep or staph

**Reminder: if your baby has eczema related to dairy allergy, do not use lotion from breast milk that contains dairy!**

Breast Milk Syringes For First Aid

Fill 1 cc syringes with breast milk, and freeze in a date-labeled ziploc bag. Keep in mind the longer the milk has been frozen, the less potent the anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial benefits will be.

Pull a syringe out for spot treating the following:

  • ear infections
  • pink eye
  • insect bites
  • minor burns
  • superficial cuts/abrasions
  • diaper rash

…or any other minor irritation!

Breast Milk Soap

Breast milk is naturally high in fat and sugars, make it great for a luscious, creamy soap! Aside from the great texture, it has numerous skin benefits, similar to breast milk lotion or baths. 

It is ideal for:

  • Diaper Rash
  • Eczema
  • Dry Skin

…And more!

If using a cold processed method, be aware the soap may take 4-6 weeks to cure.

However, there are super quick and easy soap recipes like the one displayed on our TikTok. Take a look to see how you can make breast milk soap start to finish in about an hour!

To store this soap, keep bars that are not in use in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Soap does not need to be refrigerated between uses! If you notice a change in color or smell to your soap, it is time to discard it. Typical lifespan of this soap is 6 months.

***The information provided on our website is intended solely for general educational and informational purposes only. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician for any questions you may have regarding your or your child’s medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have received in this information.***