Pros: Silicone, Flat Shield, Symetrical, My content daughter
Cons: Not the same shape as the Avent Bottle Nipple.
When I brought my newborn home from the hospital they sent us home with a MAM pacifier that they had attempted to use (with my permission) in the nursery. My daughter wanted to nurse around the clock and even when she wasn't hungry she still had a very strong urge to suck. The MAM pacifier interested her mildly but she wasn't really fond of it. Still, she would be fussy even though she wasn't hungry or wet and so I knew we needed to find her a pacifier that she enjoyed.
My initial instinct was to go out and buy her the same kind of binky that my son (now 4 years old) loved as a baby, and that was the Gerber Nuk. So, off to the grocery store I went to pick her up a Nuk (in pink of course). When I got home I rinsed it off and popped it into her mouth, she sucked on it for oh about 5 seconds..spit it out and that was the end of the Nuk. Back to the store I went and bought out the pacifier aisle (ok not quite). But, I came home with 3 different pacifiers including the Playtex Safe 'n Sure, the Gerber New Traditions Gentle-Flex and this Avent Nightime Bear Glow in the Dark pacifier. The models that I selected were the ones that claimed to be breastfeeding friendly, as even though I am not sure that I totally buy into the idea of nipple confusion I certainly want to avoid it. Once home my daughter promptly rejected the Playtex Safe 'n Sure pacifier which was just too huge for her little face and the entire pacifier was just too hard. She did suck briefly on the Gerber Gentle-Flex one but seemed to have a hard time keeping it in her mouth and every time it popped out she was mad as all heck. The Avent Nightime Bear Glow in the Dark Pacifier, however was just right - baby was happy and quiet. Hooray!
Go figure, since the Avent was the most expensive one out of the lot (I think it was around $5). I've since found them more reasonably priced and in 2 packs for $5.99 which is a price I'm ok with.
So.. about this Avent Nightime Bear Glow in the Dark Pacifier
We are using this pacifier in the 0-3 months size, though it does come in larger sizes for older infants and toddlers. At the larger stages both the nipple and the plate are bigger. The 0-3 month size has a smaller nipple which is appropriate for newborns and its made of silicone. The nipple is flat and symetrical - meaning there's not a right or wrong way to have it in your child's mouth. This was always one thing I didn't like about the Nuk nipple which had a definite up and down side to it, even though its supposedly orthodontically approved. Avent claims that their symmetrical nipple is not only suitable for breastfeeding babies, and that it supports the development of your babies teeth and gums in a healthy manner. I think its important to mention, however, that the nipple shape is completely different than that of the Avent bottle nipple. When I later introduced one bottle a day (of pumped breastmilk) I chose the Avent bottle thinking that since she liked the Avent pacifier so much the nipple would be similar. However they are completely different (aside from being both silicone). Luckily, my daughter took to the Avent bottle nipple right away.. but that's a different review!
On this pacifier, the plastic shield is shaped like a peanut in a shell and its flat. At first I wasn't sure it would be very comfortable as I was used to a curved plate like the Nuk pacifier has. Actually, as it turns out, I like the flat plate better since my daughter doesn't get an outlined impression of her pacifier around her mouth the way my little guy did with his trusty Nuk. Like the Nuk, the Avent pacifier is has two little holes in the plate which serve as vents for air circulation so that moisture/saliva don't build up between the pacifier and your child's skin.
The Avent Nightime Bear Glow in the Dark Pacifiers that we have are mostly an off white color for the plate and then the "button" on the front of the pacifier is colored with a picture of a sleeping bear on it. The ones I got in a 2 pack are green and blue buttons and one bear is sleeping on a moon and the other bear is snuggled up with a blanket. One that I purchased on its own actually has a lavender button and a sleeping puppy - not a bear, though the pacifier is identical other than that. Other colors are available.
Now about this "nightime glow in the dark" schtick. I personally could care less about whether the pacifier could glow in the dark or not. I've not had good luck with most glow in the dark items as they require lots of "charging up" ahead of time by placing it under the light. Avent suggests this pacifier gets held under light also before nightime use and then the U-shaped pacifier ring handle which is hinged from either side of the center pacifier button will glow in the dark should you need to locate it in the night. My daughter doesn't usually sleep at night with pacifier in her mouth so this doesn't have a lot of use for us. I can say, though, that a few times when the room was quite dark and she did have her pacifier attached via her pacifier strap/keeper that I did see the handle glowing. So, it does work and glow and I had not intentionally "charged it" up with light. If you want a glow in the dark pacifier then hey - here ya go. Personally the feature just isn't a dealmaker or breaker for me.
Cleaning this pacifier is pretty easy and it doesn't have a lot of unnecessary nooks and crannies to trap lint, etc. I also like that Avent provides a clear plastic cap that you can put over the nipple for storage and/or in the diaper bag, your purse, etc.
I really have no complaints about the Avent Nightime Bear Glow in the Dark Pacifier, which my daughter loves. She is much more "into" her pacifier than my son ever was so it could prove interesting down the road. For now, however, I am just very thankful to have found a pacifier that she will suck on happily and quietly. Since she initially "chose" this one as her one and only I've gone back and tried the other brands with her a few times and she still rejects them - and screams, until this one is in her mouth.