Is UV Sterilizer Safe for Baby Bottles? What You Can Place Inside It

Balint Horvath, PhD

Writer, parent, and veteran of baby feeding battles.


Is a UV sterilizer safe for baby bottles? That’s a major question for parents who want to try this type of unit to remove germs and bacteria from baby items. In this post, I explain whether UV sterilization is safe and what type of bottles you can use with a UV unit. 

UV sterilizers are safe to work on most baby products but it will depend on what materials they’re made from. You must check the brand’s safety instructions to see what sterilization process is best for the type of bottle you’re using.

Key takeaways

  • UV sterilizers may degrade certain types of plastic baby bottles
  • Glass bottles are durable so they can be sterilized in a UV unit
  • You should only use a UV sterilizer that’s certified
  • UV sterilizers work by emitting UV light onto a surface
  • The process of sterilizing bottles with UV may be different depending on your unit 
  • Bottles from MAM, Comotomo, Pigeon, and Medela can’t be used in a UV sterilizer 
  • UV sterilizers are safe to use on Spectra bottles
  • You can use a UV sterilizer to remove microorganisms from toys pacifiers, nipples, and eating utensils

Is a UV Sterilizer safe for plastic bottles?

According to Baby Brezza’s website UV light can degrade some types of plastics used to make baby bottles. These plastics include polypropylene and low-density Polyethylene. The UV rays can break down the bonds within the plastic which causes discoloration and cracking. 

It’s important to check if the brand of bottle you’re using can be UV sterilized before you get this type of unit. 

Can glass bottles be UV sterilized?

You can use UV sterilizers to remove bacteria and germs from the surface of glass baby bottles. The advantage of glass bottles is that they’re extremely durable so there isn’t much that can destroy these bottles unless you drop them. They’re also stain-resistant and don’t leak chemicals into your baby’s milk. 

Are UV sterilizers safe for babies?

UV sterilization is safe to use around babies if it’s UL safety certified. It must meet regulatory safety measures. This is because exposure to UV light can cause skin irritation and even the risk of cancer

But, since UV sterilizers have a door that closes, the light won’t penetrate your or your baby’s skin. It will be safe for babies to drink out of bottles after they’ve been sterilized by the UV unit. 

How does a UV sterilizer work? 

UV sterilizers work by emitting a UV light onto a surface. The UV rays then eliminate diseases causing organisms and killing their DNA. The rays are effective at 200 nm to 300 nm and can kill bacteria, germs, fungi, and yeast. 

Additionally, the effectiveness of UV sterilization will depend on how far the light is from the object and how long the object is exposed to the light. 

For more details on how UV sterilization works, watch this YouTube video that shows you the entire process. 

How to use a UV sterilizer for bottles 

The process of sterilizing your baby bottles may be different depending on the brand of unit you’re using. Here is a basic guide on how to use a UV sterilizer for bottles: 

  1. First, thoroughly wash and rinse your baby bottles. 
  2. Open the door of your UV sterilizer. 
  3. Some UV sterilizers may have shelves on which you can place bottles. 
  4. Place your bottles and accessories inside the sterilizing unit. 
  5. Press the power button to turn on the light. 
  6. There may be various modes that you can choose like sterilize only or sterilize and dry. 
  7. While the bottles are sterilizing there will be a countdown on your display screen. 
  8. Wait for the timer to finish before opening the door to the sterilizer. 
  9. Take your items out of the unit and use them when needed. 

You can also use the sterilizer for other items like toys, eating utensils, and pacifiers. 

Can these popular baby bottles be UV sterilized?

Some baby brands don’t recommend using UV sterilizers on your bottles. In this section, I explain whether UV sterilizers are safe to use with popular brands like MAM and Avent. 

Can MAM bottles be UV sterilized?

MAM’s plastic bottles and nipples may not be suitable for UV sterilizers as the brand only has a steam sterilizer available. You can use the brand’s steamer to clean plastic bottles and accessories. However, MAM does have a glass bottle set that may be suitable for UV sterilizers. 

Can Avent bottles be UV sterilized?

Avent also doesn’t have UV sterilizers available so that may indicate that their plastic bottles aren’t safe to use in a UV unit. On the other hand, like MAM, Avent also has a glass bottle range that you may be able to use in a UV sterilizer because it won’t degrade when exposed to UV rays. Or you can choose bottles similar to Avent that may work in a UV unit. 

Can Medela bottles be UV sterilized?

Medela has only tested steam sterilization methods for their bottles and accessories. The company doesn’t recommend using any other method to sterilize their bottles. It’s best to stick to the manufacturer’s safety methods when sterilizing bottles to ensure they don’t break. 

Can Comotomo bottles be UV sterilized?

Comotomo states to never use UV sterilization on Comotomo bottles. Exposure to UV rays can cause the bottles to crack or degrade faster. However, the company says that you can use UV sterilization on nipples, teats, and teethers only. 

Can Pigeon bottles be UV sterilized?

Pigeon mentions on their website that using UV sterilizers may age the bottles prematurely. This is especially true if you sterilize the bottles regularly using this method. It’s recommended by Pigeon to place bottles at least 1 inch away from the walls of the sterilizer to prevent damage if you do decide to use a UV sterilizer. 

Can Spectra bottles be UV sterilized?

Spectra has its own UV sterilizer available so it’s safe to sterilize your baby bottles using UV. You can also use the unit to sterilize toys, accessories, and other eating utensils. The advantage of the Spectra unit is that you can fit up to 32 bottles inside.

Another advantage is that the Spectra UV unit uses lower temperatures so you can sterilize sensitive items like silicone nipples and they won’t get damaged.  

What else can you place in a UV sterilizer?

UV sterilizers are quite versatile so you can sterilize items such as:

  • Pacifiers
  • Nipples
  • Toys
  • Eating utensils
  • Plates
  • Teethers 
  • Breast pump parts 
  • Bottle parts 
  • Jewelry

Make sure you check whether the item you want to sterilize is safe to place inside the UV sterilizer. Avoid placing electronic devices in the unit. 


As you can see, UV sterilizers can be safe to use on bottles but it will depend on the product you’re using. Some manufacturers don’t recommend using UV on their plastic bottles because it can degrade the material faster. But glass bottles may be better suited for UV sterilizers. 

If you want to know more about sterilizers then take a look at similar articles I’ve written relating to this topic like bottle warmer vs sterilizer and if it’s OK to use a second hand sterilizer.

Photo of author


I’m Balint, founder of this site and a father (and dad) to a baby-turned toddler. I found the world of babies so fascinating that I started a blog dedicated only to that topic. By the way, I studied physics, engineering (PhD, MSc), and therefore I do a thorough research when I write about something. Since it’s a blog, of course I also write about my personal experiences.

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