Ask new mothers over a certain age and they will look at you like you have three heads attached! But this is a beautiful sentimental approach to enhancing the bond between baby and mother as a keepsake that can be passed down to future generations.
What is it we are talking about… Breast Milk Rings.
That is right, a ring with breast milk in it that has a resin based formula added to make it last forever in a plastic like state. Do you love it? Or do you hate it?
Either way the trend is here to stay, even if there is never a mainstream push to have it done for every new nursing mother.
What is it?
Simply put: Save breast milk. Get ring setting. Get mixture. Place into ring.
Now, it is not that easy but you get the picture. Now, here is some more detail:
You need to first decide what path you are going to take. Like those choose your path kids books that I almost put out of memory until I had kids of my own.
Can I make my own or should I pay someone to make a ring for me?
Yes you can make your own ! But each person’s skill level is different. I can patch my own drywall, but it sure does not look like what the pro did to fix our baby’s nursery. If budget is your game then give it a go. If you are willing to spend then there are some quality options out there.
How are breastmilk rings made?
Here is the short and sweet version:
Got Milk? Well, duh… this is obvious. Get some freshly pumped breast milk. 5 – 7 oz. should suffice.
Mix with preservation powder or cornstarch…get it to a thick paste… let dry for 2 days on cookie paper (parchment).
After that, dry grind the mixture into a fine powder… some use an old school mortar but I just do a normal spoon.
Easy on the pressure though, you can bend spoons when angry!
Fill the mold with your mixture. Let setup 3 days.
Be careful and knock out the mixture from the mold. File or sand any edges to a smooth finish. Let dry for a few weeks to ensure the bead is completely dry.
Use the appropriate resin to coat the inside of the ring then the entire bead. Make sure it is all covered. Let it cure.
Care: just treat it like any other quality piece of jewelry. Remove it when doing dirty jobs and some mothers prefer not to shower or bathe with the ring either. I would not go sunbathing either with it on, but yellowing is hit or miss depending on what each DIYer did.
How much do rings from breast milk cost?
If you just purchase a ring online at a custom place like Etsy or other niche provider of jewelry, then it could be as little as $50 and upwards of $5000. It really does depend on what you want and how you want to finish the ring. Professional breast milk ring kits can be found from a few different very reputable places.
If you go with the DIY breastmilk ring kit method you can still spend between $50 – $100 depending on what you do, or even more if you want a high end diamond set.
Complete custom jobs with diamonds around the milk insert can be very expensive. But there are also much more simple designs such as a breast milk ring with birthstone that can be made for the new mommy.
Here are some high end types of settings:
14K White gold breast milk jewelry
Now, if you want the higher end rings and do not want to worry about doing it yourself, there are professional jewel designers that specialize in breast milk rings. The below can be had in either a 14kt gold or platinum breast milk ring. Just beautiful! The pros use a proprietary method of preserving and setting the breast milk that appears to be better than the DIY method that I have attempted multiple times. It all depends on what your budget is and your goals.
Nothing gets more classy than a 14k gold breast milk ring, but some do prefer a pure sterling silver look as well. While I have my bias, do what is right for you and pick the best ring setting for your special keepsake.
Here is another winner that is a little cheaper in price but yet has the same pop as the others. It is a sterling silver and diamond setting that will make an amazing keepsake.
What other types of breastmilk jewelry exists now?
Necklace – Even though of making a necklace from your own milk? Me neither, but hey that is why people are more creative than I am. Many different styles exist for the low key ones you can hide or a large piece that you want to show off to the world.
Earrings – Yes, breast milk earrings are becoming more and more common, just like the rings. Similar techniques can be used with the goal of getting the mixture into even a smaller area. Patience is key. Depending if you are a long haired person or not could determine if you are willing to try on your own as normally people will not be getting too close to your ears to inspect your DIY skills!
So you can see there are multiple types of breast milk jewelry out there.
If you start with the ring, there is a good chance you will continue and get more items. Seems to be the milk rings are kind of like tattoos, where you cannot get just one!
How long does breast milk jewelry last?
Yes, the breast milk is safe and the rings if of high quality will not discolor your skin like some of those junky mall rings for $5 back in the 1990’s. Remember those? Me too, as I got a few too many bad birthday gifts.
They should not discolor over time either. Breast milk jewellery is here to stay and with the popularity increasing every year I expect the market share of these types of products to find retail stores like CVS, Walgreens and Wal-Mart near you one day for the affordable products and higher end niche stores that will offer custom breastmilk products for any budget.
For the high end rings mentioned earlier, Indigo Willow is first in class and you will not be disappointed with their rings.