TikTok mom goes viral for sharing the truth behind ‘strawberry’ breast milk

mom showing different colors of breast milk - strawberry breast milk

If you’ve ever breastfed a baby, then you’re probably aware of the fact that your nipples can look like miniature crime scenes in those early weeks of breastfeeding. It’s one of those motherhood phenomenons that no one can truly prepare you for—you just have to experience it yourself.

Well, new mom Jo Johnson Overby received that cold, hard lesson when she produced a pink-hued supply of milk during a pump session. And, contrary to what some may believe, the pink color isn’t because it’s strawberry-flavored—it’s because it’s bloody.

“Nobody told me that whenever I had a baby, that if I chose to breastfeed, my milk would come in an array of colors,” she says in the now wildly-viral TikTok video.

“Exhibit A,” she says, holding up a bag of normal-colored milk from one breast. “The color you’d expect, right?”

She then holds up the “strawberry milk” in comparison.

“Exhibit B. And why is it pink? It’s blood. Baby can drink it though. So, it’s up to you whether you do it or not.”

People in the comments section, much like a breastfeeding parent when they see pink milk being pumped out for the first time, were bewildered.

“Listen TikTok is educating me more than anyone so woman to woman thank you for this content,” one commenter wrote.

“Raising little vampires one bottle at a time,” said another (SO TRUE).

“Bless you moms that are giving the rest of us ladies a heads up before we become moms, I would’ve had a heart attack.”

While it can be unsettling to see that pink hue, bloody/pink breastmilk is indeed safe to feed your baby, health experts say. A small amount of blood in your breast milk is not harmful, and it will not affect your baby or your milk. More significant amounts could change the taste of your milk, however, which some babies may notice. So if they can eat through it, they’re good.

That doesn’t mean the sight of bloody boob milk isn’t startling as heck, though. We love it when moms share the not-so-glamorous parts of new motherhood in a way that is both super relatable and empowering to other women.

A version of this story was originally published on Nov. 15, 2023. It has been updated.