When it comes to buying the best baby sterilisers, the options really can seem endless — do you go for a steam steriliser, a microwave one or electric one? And even then, which brand should you buy? To make things easier, we've found the best sterilisers on the market to help you make the best decision.
Breast milk is the perfect first food for your baby, as it's easy to digest and full of all the nutrients they need. But it also contains bacteria that can upset your baby's tummy if traces are left on feeding equipment and given time to multiply. That's why we sterilise our babies' bottles, as this is the best way to kill bacteria. It's important to know how to sterilise baby bottles and equipment correctly, as it'll make it impossible for germs to survive and be passed on to your baby. You can't sterilise baby bottles without some kind of baby steriliser, as it's the best way to kill bacteria, so it's important to find one that works for you and your routine.
The NHS say babies don't start producing germ-fighting antibodies until they're six months old, but by the time baby reaches their first birthday, their body will be able to kill off bacteria all by themselves. Therefore, it is important to sterilise your baby's feeding equipment until they are at least 12 months old. That means sterilising breast pumps, bottles and teats.
Black Friday deals on sterilisers
Black Friday is currently everywhere right now which means there's a whole host of Black Friday baby dealson sterilisers to take advantage of! So if you want to grab a bargain, here are the retailers that have the best deals right now or keep scrolling to continue reading our buyer's guide.
Save £29.99: Tommee Tippee Advanced Steam Electric Steriliser
There are so many types of sterilisers to consider including steam and UV, Black Friday is a good opportunity to grab a bargain or try something new. Maybe you are looking for something more compact, or faster. There will be lots of Black Friday deals to choose from.
• Best overall baby sterilisers: Milton Sterilising Tablets
• Best premium baby sterilisers: NURTURE Advanced Pro UV Steriliser & Dryer
• Best baby sterilisers for quick sterilisation: Nuby UK UV Steriliser
• Best UV baby sterilisers: Tommee Tippee Ultra UV 3-in-1 Steriliser Dryer and Storage
Take a look at our full list of the best baby sterilisers for your little ones bottles and teats, plus breast pumps. We have carefully considered features, prices, and design for all of our choices in this list, as well as used recommendations from our mum testers in the Mother and Baby awards.
The best sterilisers for 2023
Best overall baby sterilisers
- Can be transported easily
- Value for money
- There is a smell to the product
Best baby bottle steriliser and dryer
Sure to be an essential for any new arrival, the Baby Brezza Steriliser and Dryer Advanced offers
- Dryer cycle takes only 30 minutes
- Can be used to store products and keep them sterile
- Large capacity
- Replacement filters must be purchased separately
Best UV baby sterilisers
All parents want to protect their little ones, that's why Tommee Tippee Ultra UV 3-in-1
- Stores products
- Has an auto re-sterilising programme
- Dries products
- No steam or chemicals
- Hard to remove shelves
Best premium baby sterilisers
Silver Winner for Best Steriliser / Sterilising Product for M&B Awards 2023
- Sterilises in seven minutes
- Can be used for sterilising multiple objects
- Doesn't hold more than four bottles
Best dual-use baby sterilisers
Silver Winner for Best Steriliser / Sterilising Product for M&B Awards 2023
- Comes with bottles
- Easy to use
- Great start-up kit
- Doesn't fit all microwaves
Best effective baby sterilisers
With the option to sterilise and dry up to six bottles in 40 minutes, this Tomme Tippee Advanced
- Three function
- Works with most brand bottles
- Stays sterile for up to 24 hours
- May need descaling
Best baby sterilisers for quick sterilisation
Bronze Winner for Best Steriliser / Sterilising Product for M&B Awards 2023
- Great for travelling
- On-the-go steriliser
- UV light
- Comes with a Nuby steriliser and bottle
- Doesn't fold
Best portable baby sterilisers
This powerful little Munchkin UV steriliser eliminates 99.99 per cent of bacteria, viruses and
- Easy to use
- Easy to assemble
- Only takes two minutes to sterilise
- Difficult to clean
Best baby sterilisers starter set
This clever all-in-one product really does make life easier – saving space in your kitchen and
- Easy to use
- Easy to clean
- Holds multiple items
- Hard to open when carrying baby
Best baby sterilisers with timer
Sterilising in just six minutes, this Boots Baby Electric Steriliser has a helpful little tray to
- Remains sterile for three hours
- Holds six bottles
- Some customers experienced faults
Best practical baby sterilisers
An Amazon bestseller, this Milton cold-water steriliser kills all harmful bacteria in 15 minutes.
- Easy to use
Best travel baby sterilisers
These Medela Quick Clean Micro-Steam Sterilisation bags work like microwave steam cleaners for all
- Pack of five
- Works in minutes
- Can be used 20 times
- Some struggled with the zip-lock feature
Best convenient baby sterilisers
Feed. Sterilise. Repeat. These Munchkin Steriliser Bags are a convenient, easy way to sterilise
- Great for on the go
- Ideal for holidays
- Careful use of zip required
Best baby sterilisers set
This Dr Brown's Natural Flow Options+ Newborn Gift Set bundle contains a range of soothers,
- Comes with anti-colic bottles, cleaning brushes, a bottle brush and more
- Fantastic start-up kit
- Lack of many online reviews
Best on-the-go baby sterilisers
These MAM Easy Start self-sterilising bottles can be placed in the microwave for three minutes.
- Multiple colour and design choices
- Multiple parts
Best baby sterilisers anti colic bottle
Not sure what sized bottled to get? This 10-piece MAM Easy Start Self Sterilising Anti Colic
- Good for travelling
- Easy to store
- Multiple design options
- Cheaper than buying a steriliser and bottles separately
- Bottle comes with lots of parts
Best baby sterilisers that's easy to use
Compact and easy to use, this Philips AVENT Microwave steam steriliser holds four AVENT bottles
- Four bottles can be stored at once
- Products sterilised in two minutes
- Doesn't fit in all microwaves
Best compact baby sterilisers
A good buy if your little one is constantly dropping their dummy, this watertight Milton Portable
- Great for on the go
- Perfect for dummies
- Not suitable for bottles
Choosing the right steriliser for you
Space: How much room do you have for a steriliser? Can you stretch to a larger one that will sterilise several bottles at once? Or do you need a more compact product?
Time: How long will it take to sterilise each item? Will that then fit into your routine and schedule easily? Do certain features take longer than others?
Accessibility: Is everyone that needs to use it able to use it? Will it work for a family with multiple children?
Ease of use: Do you find all the features useful? Are you able to fit it into your daily routine with baby easily?
Convenience: Does it make the task of sterilising easier and more efficient? Does it take up minimal time?
Easy to clean: Will cleaning it be quick and simple to do? Will it need regular descaling?
Sterilisation method: What kind of sterilisation method will work for your bottles, pumps, and teats? Will it give you the peace of mind you need when it comes to cleanliness.
Where: Do you want something you can use while travelling? Or will you be using it at home with mains electricity?
Portability: Will you be able to take it with you if you're going anywhere with your little one?
When: Do you plan to ditch the steriliser once your baby is 12 months? Or would you like to use it again?
Additional accessories: What else comes with the steriliser that might make it easier to use and worth the money?
What are the different types of sterilisers?
There are six different types of bottle sterilisers.
Electric steam sterilisers: These clean your baby's bottles, dummies and breast pump by using steam to kill germs. This is plugged into the mains which turns into steam and sterilises the items inside.
Steam sterilisers are now being developed with fast cycles, which is always a winner, and they're a great option if you don't have a microwave in your kitchen.
The only downfall is you will need to clean or descale the elements every few weeks, which can be time-consuming. Electric steam sterilisers can also be quite bulky, so if you're pushed for space in your kitchen, this might not be the best option for you.
Microwave steam steriliser: These also use steam to sterilise your baby's bottles/your breast pump, yet unlike electric sterilisers, they do not need to be plugged in and work in the microwave. Once you've added water, the bottles and the cover, you can simply pop these sterilisers in the microwave.
These take up a lot less space than electric sterilisers and do not need to be left out all the time. They do the job quickly and are much easier to clean. But you'll need to make sure the steriliser will fit in your microwave, as some of them can be quite bulky.
Cold water steriliser: A cold-water steriliser uses a sterilising tablet or liquid and cold water to sterilise bottles or feeding equipment submerged in it. It's a silent sterilising option if you're up in the middle of the night, and a huge plus of using a cold-water option is that your equipment will stay sterilised as long as they are submerged in water.
When using steam sterilisers, once the lid has been opened, the bottles are no longer sterile. However, unlike steam sterilisers, when using cold water methods, you'll need to wait up to 15 minutes.
Travel sterilisers: These are usually microwave steam sterilisers but on a smaller scale which is perfect if you're on the move. Whether it's that first family holiday or just a weekend with the grandparents, these usually only fit one or two bottles.
They can usually be used both in the microwave and with cold water tablets (which is a good backup when staying in hotels). However, you won't be able to fit too much in, so you might find you're constantly using it depending on how young your baby is.
Self-sterilising bottles: These work in a similar way to microwave steam sterilisers. Simply fill the base of the bottle with cool water and pop it in the microwave. They're super easy to use and a great option for when you are on the go. The only downfall is you are only sterilising one bottle at a time.
UV bottle sterilisers: These gadgets are new on the market and innovative. They use special LED lights to emit UV, killing off bacteria safely and quickly. They're easy to use, with no mess or water required, but are the most expensive option of all bottle sterilisers.
Do I need a steriliser?
Whether you are planning to breastfeed or bottle feed your baby, a steriliser is always handy to have. If you are not using baby bottles, you might still need a steriliser for dummies or teething toys for your baby.
You can also sterilise some breast pumps with a steriliser which can be incredibly useful.
Is it necessary to sterilise baby bottles?
It is important that you sterilise anything that goes into your baby's mouth, to ensure that they remain safe. Sterilised bottles and teats especially will help protect them from infections that could make them unwell. This should be a part of your routine with your child for at least the first year.
How do I clean bottles before I sterilise them?
It's important to clean bottles, teats and other feeding equipment in hot, soapy water and rinse all your equipment before sterilising.
You can use a clean bottle brush to clean bottles(only use this brush for cleaning bottles). A small teat brush to clean the inside of teats. You can also turn teats inside out and then wash them in hot soapy water. Don't use salt to clean teats, as this can be dangerous for your baby.
Your baby's feeding equipment can also be put through the dishwasher to clean. Be aware that the dishwasher will clean but not sterilise. Ensure bottles, lids, and teats are facing downwards.
What is the difference between sanitising and sterilising?
Sterilising - This will remove the microorganisms that cause infections, preventing issues like diarrhoea and vomiting.
Sanitising - This will kill bacteria, removing them from surfaces that your baby may be touching like the table.
Do I need to sterilise bottles after every wash?
Before your little one hits the 6 months milestone, it is best to sterilise their bottles after every use and wash. After 6 months, their immune system will be stronger, so you can sterilise them once a day (still washing after every use). If they're poorly, we'd recommend going back to sterilising more frequently.
How do you store bottles after sterilising?
To keep everything sterile, we would recommend keeping the bottles and their teats/lids in the steriliser until you need to use them. If that's not possible, make sure the teats/lids and bottles are stored away somewhere clean, with teats/lids put on the bottles as soon as they're removed from the steriliser.
How long do bottles stay sterile for once out of steriliser?
As you can see by our list above, different sterilisers promise to keep your bottles etc sterilised for different amounts of time. On average, they're likely to stay sterile between 3-24 hours, so it's best to double-check when buying your choice of steriliser.
Sophie Knight is a journalist and mum of two, and previously edited motherandbaby.com before moving on to write about family cars for Parkers.co.uk - now Sophie is Commercial Content Editor for Mother & Baby, Closer, Heat, Empire, Yours, Garden News, and WhatsTheBest.co.uk