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Which NUK pacifiers are best?

The Pacifier’s name was no accident! A pacifier stimulates the sucking reflex, which successfully soothes or pacifies a fussy baby. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, pacifiers provide a calming effect and can be used effectively for pain and anxiety prevention in children under 2. 

While countless parents swear by the pleasure a pacifier brings their little ones, there are still many considerations when choosing the best pacifier. Here is an in-depth review of NUK brand pacifiers, including NUK’s Glow-in-the-Dark Orthodontic Pacifiers, the top choice for breastfeeding children.      

What to know before you buy a NUK pacifier 

Material type 

NUK pacifiers are known for their BPA-free medical-grade silicone nipples. BPA is a type of plastic that is known to mimic the effects of estrogen and disrupt the body’s normal hormone function. Every NUK product is designed with materials that are scientifically proven to be safe and support healthy development. 

Nipple shape 

NUK models their pacifiers after the natural shape of a nipple in an effort to ease the child’s transition between breast and pacifier. NUK based their nipple shape on a market research study conducted in 2017, where 307 tested pacifier users confirmed the shape did not cause nipple confusion. For more information about nipple shape, check out the BestReviews guide to the best pacifiers.  


Since pacifiers need to be washed frequently, NUK designed their pacifier to be top-rack dishwasher-safe. However, whether you wash them in the dishwasher or with hot soapy water, it is recommended that you do so after each use. It is also recommended that pacifiers are replaced every two months as frequent disinfection and normal wear and tear break down materials over time. 

What to look for in a quality NUK pacifier 


There are a few NUK pacifier sizes you can choose from. Still, the recommended size of a NUK pacifier depends on the child’s age. Smaller pacifiers, or NUK newborn pacifiers, can be purchased for the recommended age of 0-6 months. Larger NUK pacifiers are recommended for children 6-18 months. It is not uncommon to size up or down depending on the child’s size rather than relying on age recommendations. 

Number of pieces 

NUK pacifiers are constructed with either a one-piece or three-piece design. Each design offers its own advantages and disadvantages. One-piece NUK pacifiers, like the Comfy Orthodontic Pacifier, are constructed out of a single piece of material. The one-piece design reduces the risk of materials breaking apart and becoming a choking hazard. On the other hand, NUK’s Space Orthodontic Pacifier is manufactured with a three-piece design. The nipple, shield and ring are all combined into one unit. There is an increased risk of choking as the pieces in a three-piece pacifier can break apart. 


NUK pacifiers feature a heart-shaped shield that fits snugly under the child’s nose for easy unobstructed breathing. Any NUK orthodontic pacifier is asymmetrical with a scooped bottom that promotes healthy oral development. The shield of a NUK pacifier is flatter than other brands to allow for more room for natural sucking motion. NUK pacifiers are also slimmer and narrower than other brands to reduce pressure on the jaw and teeth and help prevent teeth misalignment.

Storage cases 

All NUK pacifiers are sold with a reusable storage case designed for easy cleaning in the dishwasher or microwave.  

How much you can expect to spend on a NUK pacifier 

NUK pacifiers are most commonly sold in a 2-pack, 3-pack or 4-pack along with a reusable storage case. Expect to pay between $5-$15, depending on the package size and type of NUK pacifier. 

NUK pacifier FAQ

Can NUK pacifiers be used for teething?  

A. NUK’s Orthodontic Pacifier scoop-shaped nipple cavity allows for greater tongue movement and is one of the most popular choices for teething. NUK pacifiers can be placed in the freezer overnight for additional pain relief when a child is teething. Always check for puncture holes from teeth in silicone pacifiers and discard them immediately, as holes may lead to the pacifier becoming a choking hazard. 

Does NUK make pacifier clips? 

A. Though NUK no longer manufactures their own clips, a variety of pacifier clips can be purchased from other retailers that fit onto NUK brand pacifiers. 

What’s the best NUK pacifier to buy?

Top NUK pacifier

Glow-in-the-Dark Orthodontic Pacifiers

Glow-in-the-Dark Orthodontic Pacifiers

What you need to know: The orthodontic nipple shape allows for more room for natural sucking motion and is modeled after the mother’s breast to combat nipple confusion for breastfeeding babies. 

What you’ll love: The glow-in-the-dark design makes this pacifier easy to find in dark places. 

What you should consider: This pacifier is made up of three separate parts. In contrast to a pacifier made of one piece, the nipple can separate from the guard and fill with drool. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon, Bed Bath & Beyond and BuyBuyBaby

Top NUK pacifier for the money

Comfy Orthodontic Pacifiers

Comfy Orthodontic Pacifiers

What you need to know: The nipple shape helps promote healthy oral development, and the breast-like nipple shape is designed to fit a baby’s palate naturally. 

What you’ll love: The one-piece medical-grade silicone material has been fashioned into a heart-shaped shield that fits under the baby’s nose for comfortable breathing. 

What you should consider: This pacifier will need to be discarded and replaced as soon as the area where the nipple meets the base becomes worn or weakened to prevent a choking hazard.  

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon, Bed Bath & Beyond and BuyBuyBaby

Worth checking out

Space Orthodontic Pacifiers

Space Orthodontic Pacifiers

What you need to know: The extra-wide opening in the shield provides maximum airflow for babies with sensitive skin and toddlers with larger faces. 

What you’ll love: Designed for babies prone to acne and drool rash, this pacifier allows cheeks to stay dry and does not hold in moisture. 

What you should consider: If the nipple is punctured by teeth, liquid can become trapped and difficult to remove while sanitizing. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon, Bed Bath & Beyond and BuyBuyBaby

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Elizabeth Foley writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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