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woman in green pajamas breastfeeding baby on a bed.

Ultimate postpartum essentials for your home birth


Pin for Essential postpartum items for your home birth.

This list of postpartum essentials for your home birth will help you think through everything you might need for a smooth recovery!

Along with a list of essential items, I’m going to include some “nice-to-have” items. 

Good postpartum care is so important for our health, even years down the road. Please don’t ignore your needs during this time!

*Disclaimer: I’ve never recovered from a C-section, or a complicated delivery. This list is coming from a mom whose birthed 4 babies naturally with low-risk pregnancies.
pregnant woman wearing a cozy cardigan.
I also like to keep things as minimal as possible. Only the truly helpful items make the list.

Please talk to your health care provider about what you hope for your postpartum season.

 Check out my post on home birth essentials where we discuss everything from mindset, team members, and nitty gritty supplies. 

If you are planning your first home birth, I pray you get to have this amazing experience in the comfort of your home.

Our birth experiences have the potential to be one of the sweetest memories we get to cherish, or one of the most traumatic experiences we could have.

Be sure to surround yourself with people you trust and will honor your birth plan. We want to set ourselves up for success as much as possible.

Immediate postpartum essentials

baby hand holding adult finger, baby in background.

The moment after you’ve birthed a baby is such a beautifully earth-shattering moment, in the best way.

Emotions are soaring, your whole body is cheering, and you finally see the face of the little person you’ve been madly in love with for months.

Breathe… you did it!

When it’s time to get cleaned up and finally rest with your new bundle of preciousness, you’ll want to have everything ready for your recovery. This isn’t the time to be figuring out which perineal spray you want to use! Let’s have all the things ready to go. 

Let’s talk in order of use directly after birth.

The moment our last baby was born, before the placenta was delivered, I took an oral remedy of arnica montana 30c.

Arnica Montana held outside.

I expected it to help with the bleeding and recovery (which it did beautifully), but I was absolutely amazed by how much it helped with the after-birth cramps! I kept taking it as needed for pain relief over the next few postpartum weeks, and my cramps were the most tolerable they’ve ever been.

Those after-birth pains can be really intense. 

Arnica is very affordable and makes a huge difference. I just bought mine on Amazon.

You may want to also consider some over the counter pain medication as well, but honestly the arnica helped so much I never needed anything else.

Postpartum nursing pajamas

Then after you and baby have had your exams and you’re ready to get cleaned up, you’ll want some fresh nursing pajamas.

This, admittedly, is NOT a must-have. This is a “really-nice-to-have”. 

Listen. The first few days postpartum can feel a little rough.

postpartum belly.

Your tummy feels like a giant deflated balloon, your breasts are engorged and leaking, you’re wearing a diaper (more on that later), and you might just feel like a hot mess.

Now that I’ve gone through the experience a few times, I know I can tell myself it gets better.

Everything eventually does go back where it was! …mostly.

But there’s something very sweet and special about having a nice new pair of nursing pajamas for yourself after the birth. It doesn’t have to be grand or crazy expensive, just something that’s nice and comfortable. 

Along with your cozy pajamas, you’ll be ready for your diaper!

You don’t need a lot of adult diapers (or disposable underwear), but for the first day or so it’s a good idea to use them with a padsicle in the inside. 

Mom in green pajamas breastfeeding baby on a bed.

I’ll share the padsicle recipe my midwife gave me.

All-natural padsicle recipe

Add to a pad: strong brewed comfrey tea (cooled) along with some witch hazel and a few drops of lavender essential oil. Roll the pad back up and place them in the freezer until needed.

I’ve been grateful for ice packs (down there) after birth with all of my births, but this was my first time making padsicles.

I was absolutely impressed. They worked amazingly! Plus, all clean ingredients to help promote proper healing.

-Some standard aloe vera gel has dye in it. Just something to be aware of if you try to avoid dyes.

The very last thing we need at this time is any irritation going on down there. 

As weird as it is to see a big bag of “padsicles” in the freezer before you go into labor, you will be glad for them. Sometimes we just have to giggle about these things!

Postpartum essential items

Next up, I’d recommend having a peri bottle. You really only need it for a few days after birth, so the simple version works just fine!

Earth Mama makes a nice perineal spray that uses good organic products in it. That might be something to consider.

Perineal balm is another option, but applying anything too aggressively could cause more pain.

Please be careful!

Mama holding newborn.

A more gentle option for pain relief is taking a sitz bath.

Keep some good sitz bath supplies on hand so you can have a quiet moment in the bath tub during your postpartum season.

Even just sitting in a little bath of warm, clean water can help relieve pain. It doesn’t have to be complicated with any additives or special bowls.

You can just use a bath tub and take a moment to rest.

You deserve it Mama. 

Even a natural, vaginal delivery can get a little crazy. You might end up with a few hemorrhoids. If so, I’m terribly sorry!

They’re so uncomfortable.

Have some witch hazel, or tucks to ease the discomfort in the days/weeks after delivery.

You’ll also want to use some stool softener of some kind. Now is not the time to be doing any more pushing in that area!

Seriously, we want to be very delicate with ourselves for a little while.

A few natural alternatives to using stool softeners are: drinking pear juice or prune juice, taking magnesium supplements, and drinking senna tea.

Staying hydrated and eating plenty of fibrous foods will help keep things moving along as well.

Postpartum meal prep

Now is when you’ll be glad you made some freezer meals! How much or little meal prep you do will look different for everyone.

This is a personal preference, but you’ll want to at least have a few things on hand. 

Apparently, giving birth burns a million calories because there’s never a time when you’ll be more hungry. 

Yummy healthy snacks are the best thing to have to quickly grab, otherwise you’ll be tempted to just eat whatever you can get your hands on, and you don’t want your nutrition to suffer. 

I purchased a big freezing tray for freezing soup portions, and we actually loved having those!

We now keep cubes of bone broth soup in the freezer at all times because we love the nutritious option.

silicone freezer tray in the freezer.

Beef barley is a family favorite!

We found a “1 cup silicone freezing tray with lid” on Amazon. 

Postpartum nourishment

As your milk supply is coming in, (if you choose to breast-feed) you’ll want to make sure you’re giving your body lots of rich nutrient-dense foods!

This is not the time to be skimping on nourishment.

Have the snacks. Have the meals.

Just be aware that some spices and acidity can affect your milk and make baby fussy. Commercial dairy is also known to cause gas in newborns.

Just keep an eye on your baby and see if they’re particularly cranky after you eat a certain dish. 

Postpartum breast care

If you choose to breast-feed, you’ll want to have a nursing bra and some breast pads.

Yes, because your boobs will leak.

breastfeeding baby.

For the first few months, your breasts will start leaking every time you hear a baby crying (even someone else’s baby!)

Your breasts will leak when you think about your baby.

Your breasts will leak when you’re sleeping.

Your breasts will leak for no reason.

Those breast pads will be a huge saver on laundry. Make sure you change them frequently so you don’t have any issues with bacteria building up.

I’ve really like the reusable bamboo ones. 

As you’re establishing breastfeeding, you might get sore nipples.

When choosing a nipple ointment, you’ll want something with all food grade ingredients because Baby will be ingesting it in tiny quantities.

I really liked “nipple crack” by Tiny Human Supply Company. It was about $12 on amazon.

It worked so well I didn’t use very much, so the rest has been used for chapped lips, cracked hands, and scabs. (We try to waste nothing!)

A breast pump might come in handy if you’re planning to breast-feed.  

In the event of any medical interventions, it’s great to be able to make some bottles for baby and keep your milk supply up until everyone is home together again.

frozen breast milk bags.

Breast milk storage bags will also come in handy. Some medical insurances will cover the cost of a new breast pump! Be sure to check into it.

So for a quick review, you’ve got some nursing pajamas along with a nursing bra. You have some disposable adult diapers, padsicles, tucks, peri bottle, and breast care items.

The only last big item is sanitary pads.

Usually one large pack is just enough to get you through until you can switch to a more comfortable panty-liner.

Absolutely nothing inserted in the vagina at this time (even if you feel fine). There are a lot of open wounds from our uterus to our perineum.

Give yourself lots of time to recover properly.

Again, please talk to your healthcare provider.

Postpartum treats for Mama

Now that we’ve talked about all of the necessary supplies for a great postpartum recovery, let’s talk a bit more about some “nice-to-have” items.

These are what I would consider some “treat” items, but sometimes new moms deserve a little treat!

A special book or magazine to enjoy during your laying-in period is a wonderful thing to look forward to.

If you need a nice recommendation on something that’s comforting, lovely, and encouraging to read, then check out Sally Clarkson’s “Seasons of a Mother’s heart”.

This might not be a great time for anything anxiety inducing. This is a delicate season, and we have enough going on with our hormones wreaking havoc on our emotions.

Try to lean into what gives you life and encouragement.

A stack of encouraging books.

A few other nice ideas could be a new baking magazine, or home decor book. Maybe you’d like “Seasons on the farm” by Shaye Elliott (lots of lovely pictures for encouragement and cozy moments).

This might sound like it’s a silly superfluous notion, but please consider what could be a little bit of a treat for yourself.

It might make a big difference in your mental health postpartum. 

Some moms really like getting a special facial mask to do during the early days. It’s a really sweet idea, and if you have the time for it, can be a lovely moment for yourself.

You’ll know what is going to be right for you! 

Next, you could consider some postpartum leggings and nursing tank-tops. 

Funny story… After the birth of my first baby, I was under the impression my body would go back to normal (immediately).  

I packed myself some pre-pregnancy clothes to wear home after our hospital birth. Needless to say, that didn’t go well.

Beautiful postpartum mom and baby.

I now understand how important it is to have a few postpartum clothes to help you feel put together and comfortable in the season after having a new baby.

Give yourself lots of grace, because birthing a newborn baby is a huge honor! Embrace that aspect and let your body heal in its time.

Mama, you’re beautiful.

How can Christian women feel sexy and beautiful?

A belly bind.

I’m only going to mention a belly bind, but I don’t have a huge conviction either way on these.

Woman using a belly bind.

I’ve used them for recovery after my third baby was born, and I really don’t know if it really made a big difference.

With my most recent birth I decided to forego using a belly bind, because I learned how they can increase your risk for prolapse. 

Please do your own research and decide for yourself what you would feel comfortable with!

Homemakers taking dominion in the home. 

Final encouragement

Mom kissing baby.

I pray you get to have the best home birth experience you could ever imagine.

Whether you’re using a birthing center, or birthing in the comfort of your own home, I hope I’ve given you plenty to think about for your postpartum recovery kit! 

If you’re adding a baby to the family and have older children, please check out my post on “How to help older children adjust to having a baby“.

This is such an exciting time and I pray everything goes well for you!

God bless you Mama.

Hi, I’m Stephanie! I’m a Christian wife, mom of 4, homeschooler, and a technically trained chef. I love creating a simple, beautiful life with our sweet family.

I’m so glad you’re here!

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