“ Brand: Boots / Type: Sterilisers - Tablets „
I use a cold water system for the occasional sterilising of my sons bottles and feeding equipment; he's over two years old now but the after effects of babyhood gastric reflux combined with the tendency to have a febrile convulsion when he's poorly means I try everything to prevent him catching the colds and bugs which seem to fly between the rest of us so quickly and regularly. Tummy bugs are the biggie for me as this is when the gastric reflux (not to mention projectile vomiting) comes into play, in turn often leading to a raging temperature and a fight to keep the convulsions at bay.
When using a cold water steriliser you need to buy either sterilising tablets or fluid. Milton is probably the most well known, but most supermarkets and pharmacies will sell their own branded version at a slightly lower cost - which is how I came to be using these tablets from Boots, after sending my penny pinching fella out with an obviously-too-vague 'sterilising tablets' on his shopping list. For the bargain price of £1.45 you get 64 sterilising tablets, which sounds excellent until you look at your steriliser and realise the capacity requires you to use two tablets for each sterilising cycle - making them practically the same price as the excellent Milton tablets! Bah!
So, it's one tablet per four pints of water and if your steriliser holds more than four pints you need to throw another one in. Most household cold water sterilisers hold more than four pints, I'd suggest you'd only get away with a single tablet if you were using one of the smaller travel-size sterilisers. The tablets dissolve quickly, certainly within the one minute mark and probably faster than that - the water isn't sterile until the tablets have disappeared so it's important not to add your baby items to the steriliser too early. Once they've dissolved the water will remain sterile for twenty four hours, with items taking thirty minutes to be sterilised - this is a pretty long time really considering the majority of sterilising solutions take just twenty minutes, and if any of you start muttering about what difference ten minutes makes I'll assume you've never had a screaming baby in your arms who has no concept of the idea of waiting for their liquid lunch!
The smell from these Boots sterilising tablets is very bleach-like, far stronger and more 'industrial' (for want of a better word) than Milton. It's quite sickly actually with the kind of aroma that will linger on your hands for ages unless you give them a good soapy wash after handing the sterilised bottles, teats and miscellaneous feeding 'bits'. Irritatingly everything needs to be rinsed using cooled boiled water before use as the sterilising water is obviously too bleachy, this requires a level of organisation that is frankly beyond me and was the main thing which led me back to my beloved no-rinse-required Milton (which also takes half the time to sterilise David's bottles, using just one tablet).
They do work though, or at least David didn't end up catching the most recent tummy bug which caught the rest of the family by surprise so I assume they work! A complaint I have is that when David was using a dummy these tablets would often discolour the teats, a problem I didn't encounter with Milton, and I was relieved it didn't cause the same reaction with the bottle teats as those are much costlier to replace.
Boots sterilising tablets were something I tried when they had run out of my normal Milton brand. I use cold water sterilising tablets to sterilise some teething rings and a few other small items that won't go into the microwave sterilising bags that I now use. I also used them 4 years ago to sterilise nipple shields and breast pumping equipment with my first son before I realised that sterilising bags existed.
The tablets come in a small cardboard box that contains 64 tablets compared to a packet of 28 tablets in a Milton pack. They are priced at £1.45 for the box compared to an average price of £2.45 for the Milton brand. The tablets are in small strips that are nice and easy to rip open so you can take a tablet out. The tablets are in foil lined strips and this seems to keep them in a good condition as I have rarely had one that has become so hugely broken that it is hard to put into the water.
You need one tablet for 2.3 litres/ 4pints of water now whilst this was great for my small travel cold water steriliser it does mean for my large Tommee Tippee one I need to use 2 tablets. This then reduces the savings I make by using this compared with Milton where I just need one tablet for the same process. The tablets take 30 minutes to work by dispersing the chemicals and to then sterilise items. Whilst this is only a short amount of time and I generally time it for an evening when I have less need to get items out it is twice the length of time that the Milton tablets take. This occasionally would be awkward with my first son as the nipple shields would not be ready when I needed them to be.
The tablets I find seem to dissolve fairly quickly well within a minute and there never seems to be any residue at the bottom of the steriliser giving me confidence that the tablets are dispersing well and all items in the steriliser with have been sterilised.
I have noticed if you just keep some items in the steriliser and don't wash them because they haven't been use e.g. a least favourite teething ring or toy after a about 4 or 5 days there is a build up on them and I would suggest that you don't do this and wash the items each day as well as sterilising them to stop chemical build up I haven't noticed this build up with the Milton tablets. I have noticed and checked and there doesn't appear to be any chemical taste to the items after normal daily use which I think is great and reduces I am sure the risk of my son rejecting an item due to a chemical taste.
Overall these are a great item and do what you need them to do they do take longer to be ready for use compared to Milton tablets but even using two tablets at a time they are still around £1 a box cheaper for the same usage and are hence better value for money.
When I wanted to review Boots Sterilising Tablets here, I was surprised to see they were not listed as they are a cheap to buy product that is very easy to use. After a quick product suggestion, I am happy to say they are now listed here, so I can share my thoughts about them.
For the very reasonable price of just £1.39 per pack you get a nice lot of tablets. The box has a full 64 tablets within it. This works out at just a teeny bit more than 2p per tablet, which is really good. The cardboard pack the tablets come in is very simple and easy to spot, its just like the piccy displayed here and should be found amongst the baby care items in your local store.
Each tablet is packed as part of foil covered blister packs within the main pack. This is handy as you don't want to have to open all the tablets at once, just because you have opened one. So the fact that they come foil packed and you only need to remove one tablet as and when needed is good.
You only need one of the Boots Sterilising Tablets for each mix you do and you just add the tablet to approximately 4 pints of water then allow the tablet to dissolve in the water. Once dissolved you can add the items you need to sterilise. Its as simple as that really, no mess, no fuss, just nice freshly sterilised bottles, feeding spoons etc.
When using the Boots Sterilising Tablets you must never add hot water to the sterilser unit, as these work with cold water and so don't need any hot or boiled water at all. They are very handy to use when away from home as you can take them with you in hand luggage etc.
They don't take up much room and you would only need to take the number of tablets needed for the amount of days you are away plus a few spares. We found that thats what we mostly used these for. At home we favoured steam sterilisers mostly, (although we have also used cold water systems too) as they do work more quickly than the traditional cold water systems.
We also used these Boots Sterilising Tablets with the mini soother sterilising box we had from Boots when away from the home. We used a medium sized clear plastic sandwich box which was then filled with water and a portion of the tablet for putting our main feeding items into.
We could then put in a couple of small bottles and the mini soother box plus 2 soothers/ teethers inside that. This was very handy and easy to do, as the sandwich box lid could be placed over the top and the whole thing could be left over night to do its job.
You can leave items in the water and Boots Sterilising Tablets mix for a minimum of 30 minutes, but the water and contents can stay put for up to 24 hours before you need to wash the whole thing out and start again.
Once you are ready to use your freshly sterilised items, you do need to rinse them off with some freshly boiled and cooled water. Once thats done you can use them safe in the knowledge that they have been properly cleaned.
As the Boots Sterilising Tablets are so cheap to buy and quick and simple to use when away on your holidays or at home, they get a 4 star rating. The only thing thats a bit of a turn off, is the slightly bleachy smell that you get with the water mixture. This isn't too over powering, but does mean everything needs a through rinse in cooled boiled water prior to use.