13 Essential Postpartum Recovery Items

Sharing is caring!

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will receive a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

13 Essential Postpartum Recovery Items

Coming home with a baby is like waking up in an alternate reality. You are in the same place, but everything has changed.  You will adjust and learn to love this life, but it’s going to take some figuring out, and to add to all the new you have the physical scars to show for growing and giving birth to a tiny human.  Taking care of you is important but it can take a backseat to take care of your new tiny human. Therefore, it’s important to make sure you are prepared with the best postpartum items when you come home from the hospital.  This postpartum preparation list contains the 13 absolute must-have postpartum care items to have ready before you go into labor.

The following list covers what postpartum recovery items to have on hand at home before you head to the hospital.

Other Posts You May Like

Essential Postpartum Items


These are wonderful, and you can easily make these ahead of time and store in the freezer. They consist of lavender, witch hazel and aloe vera applied to a maxi pad.  To make them, follow these steps:

Unwrap a few maxi pads so that you can see the top of the pad, but don’t detach the pad from the wrapper

Spread aloe vera along the length of the entire pad.  Be generous with the amount of aloe applied.

Pour witch hazel down the middle of the pad.  About a teaspoon is a good amount.

Add a few drops of lavender oil.

Once everything has been applied to the pad, fold the pad back up.  Place all pads into a freezer bag and freeze.

As needed, pull pads out of the freezer one at a time.  Allow the pad to thaw for a minute or two before using.

Related Content

Instant Activate Perineum Ice Packs

In the hospital they will give you diaper ice packs, but these are wonderful to have a few of at home for convenience.  If you have a bunch of padcicles premade though you may not need them. These ones are what I used.


You will have stuff leaking for weeks after you give birth.  Just make your life easier and have a package of Depends on hand.  They are surprisingly comfortable and discrete even under yoga pants.


The hospital will give you one to take home but having one in each bathroom at home can be helpful.

Sitz Bath

This is nice for soaking, but you need to be able to devote 10-15 minutes to do this.  I did it preemptively a couple of times, but it wasn’t something that I thought made a huge difference.  A sitz bath is inexpensive and maybe not a bad idea to have on hand.  However, the hospital gave me one to take home.

Epsom Salts

If you are going to get a sitz bath, you want to get something to put in it.

Donut or Travel Pillow

People talk about the need for a donut to sit on for the first week or two.  However, I found one of those travel pillows that wrap around your neck worked just as well.  I actually only used it for sitting on these really hard wooden chairs we have.  I didn’t need it anywhere else.

Nursing Pads

I recommend the washable kind, but whatever type you decide to go with you will want to have on hand when your milk comes in. These ones worked great for me*.

Large Underwear

A good item to have on hand as you transition away from the Depends.  Sadly, your thongs will need to be put away for a while.

Nighttime Maxi Pads

To put in your large underwear.

Tucks with Witch Hazel

The hospital may give you some of these, but it isn’t a bad idea to have an extra pack.  They work well in place of toilet paper for a while.

Dermoplast Spray (blue lid, not red)

This numbing spray is great.  Just make sure to get the blue lid one.  The one with the red lid has an antibacterial agent and it really stings.

Nipple Cream

If you are going to nurse, you will want to have this on hand.

Nipple Gel Pads (buy or make your own):

These are helpful when you first start nursing.  You can buy gel pads to keep in the fridge or freezer which are basically little ice packs.  However, you can also use small baggies and the aloe left over from the padcicles to make your own.  Just put a generous amount of aloe into a small ziplock bag (I used the square snack-sized ones from Walmart) and refrigerate or freeze.

What top postpartum items did you rely on for self-care after giving birth?  Let me know in the comments.

To hear more about my postpartum journey and tips for recovery, check out this post. For more about C-section recovery, make sure to read this post.

Like what you read? Subscribe to email updates to receive updates straight to your inbox!

13 Essential Postpartum Recovery Items

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will receive a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

3 thoughts on “13 Essential Postpartum Recovery Items

  • January 22, 2019 at 12:33 am

    Such a good description, “like waking up to an alternate reality” so true!!

    • January 22, 2019 at 9:14 pm

      Thanks! There’s no other way to describe the massive changes that happen in an instant despite you still appearing the same.


Share Your Thoughts!