In-depth reviews guided by a Pediatrician

Boon Orb Review

Do not recommend
The Orb has a futuristic  compact design. Turned on  it emits a mellow blue light from the on/off button. Here shown in full heating glory with a Munchkin Latch plastic bottle.
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Price:   $33 List | $24 at Amazon
Pros:  Compact, easy to clean
Cons:  Difficult to use, tendency to overheat after shut-off, incompatible with glass bottles
Manufacturer:   Boon
By Ruth Traxler, Ben Traxler, & Juliet Spurrier, MD  ⋅  Jun 27, 2016
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31
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#7 of 7
  • Health/Safety - 40% 2
  • Ease of Use - 30% 3
  • Warming Efficiency - 25% 4
  • Ease of Cleaning - 5% 8

The Skinny

The Boon Orb is, indeed, a compact, warmer which we found had a tendency to overheat milk in our testing. We also found that the time spent setting up the warmer for every single use took away from overall warming efficiency. While inexpensive, we recommend budget-minded parents set your sights instead on the Best Value award winning Chicco NaturalFit, or the Editors' Choice Kiinde Kozi.


Compare to Similar Products

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Boon Orb utilizes steam heat to warm milk quickly. It has an auto shut-off function with a small light on its simple control button. Though compatible with standard narrow bottles, it only fits select wide bottles like the Playtex Nurser and Munchkin Latch. A big issue with this warmer as well is that it can not be used with glass bottles; the steam gets so hot so quick that the rapid change in temperature may break glass.

Performance Comparison


The Orb has a futuristic  compact design. Turned on  it emits a mellow blue light from the on/off button. Here shown in full heating glory with a Munchkin Latch plastic bottle.
The Orb has a futuristic, compact design. Turned on, it emits a mellow blue light from the on/off button. Here shown in full heating glory with a Munchkin Latch plastic bottle.

Health and Safety


With narrow bottles like this Dr. Brown's Standard  it is necessary to use the accessory adaptor ring to hold steam in. Though even with a good fit  in our experience  some steam still escapes.
With narrow bottles like this Dr. Brown's Standard, it is necessary to use the accessory adaptor ring to hold steam in. Though even with a good fit, in our experience, some steam still escapes.
The Orb received the lowest score in health and safety with a 2 of 10. It warms via steam heat and does so in a quick and hot fashion. By the time of auto shut-off, milk is typically too darn warm. In our testing, following recommendations, auto shut-off occurred at 3:40 with a temperature of 107F/41.7C. This was done with 4 ounces of refrigerated milk in a plastic bottle. However, there is no beep to signal auto shut-off and if the bottle is left inside the warmer for just under 3 minutes, it reached 126F/52.2C, too darn hot. Without an end of signal beep, you either need to stand right by the warmer or set a timer to remind you to retrieve the bottle. With narrow bottles like Dr. Brown's Standard (plastic), an adapter ring should be placed to keep steam from escaping out of the warming chamber.

Ease of Use


The Boon scored a 3 of 10 in ease of use, the lowest scoring warmer in this metric. While the initial setup of the warmer is simple and the instructions are fairly clear, actually putting it to use tells another story. The warmer requires you to refill a small graduated tube for each use, according to the chart provided in the instructions. Unfortunately, the chart can be difficult to understand and the tube is difficult to use. For example, the chart may require you to fill to the '4' line twice, which is NOT the same as filling it to the '8' line. And because the fill lines on the tube are so close to each other, it may take several minutes at the sink to get it filled to just the right level. It's no fun to have to prep the warmer for every use, and even less fun to have spend as much time on the prep as you do waiting for the bottle to warm!
The Boon Orb comes with an adapter ring for use with standard narrow bottles (left)  warming basket (center)  and graduated measuring tube (right) that slides right into the back of the device for easy storage. The other pieces need to find a home when not in use.
You must fill the warming chamber with the integrated measuring tube for each use (sometimes twice!).  This was a surprisingly complicated task.

Furthermore, glass bottles can not be used in the Orb which is very limiting. And, popular bottles like Best Value Tommee Tippee Feeding and Top Pick Comotomo are too wide to fit inside the warming chamber.

Warming Efficiency


Boon Orb Warming Guide
Boon Orb Warming Guide
The Boon received one of the lowest scores in warming efficiency alongside the Born Free Tru-Temp with a 4 of 10. At recommended settings, it took 3:40 to warm a plastic bottle to 107F. Unfortunately, this is just a tad too warm for our liking and if left inside for a few minutes, temperatures will reach too hot. Boon recommends a wait time of about 10 minutes between uses to allow the heating element to cool down, which is fairly common (though inconvenient) for bottle warmers that use steam heat technology.

Ease of Cleaning


A removable basket allows direct access to the hot plate and a shallow and wide warming chamber makes cleaning it easy. Demineralization with 2 ounces of white vinegar is recommended once a month.
A removable basket allows direct access to the hot plate and a shallow and wide warming chamber makes cleaning it easy. Demineralization with 2 ounces of white vinegar is recommended once a month.
This was the only metric where the Orb really stood out from the competition in our testing, scoring the same as the Chicco NaturalFit Best Value with an 8 of 10. On a day-to-day basis it just needs to be wiped clean with a sponge. This is easy to do as the plastic basket comes right out to expose the hot plate which is set inside a wide and shallow warming chamber. Mineral deposits need to be removed once a month by soaking the warmer chamber with for 2 hours with 2 ounces of straight white vinegar. The accessory parts are cleaned separately by hand or in the dishwasher on the top-rack.

Best Applications


Modern and compact, this warmer's strength is in presentation and ease of cleaning. Otherwise, it is aptly named in function. This Orb reminds us of a meteor cascading into Earth's atmosphere, a little too fast and hot for our comfort.

Value


The Orb underperforms at its price point; for a much better value at a similar cost, we recommend purchasing Best Value Chicco NaturalFit.

Conclusion


We recommend parents consider one of the better performing competitors rather than buying the Boon Orb.


Ruth Traxler, Ben Traxler, & Juliet Spurrier, MD