The Ultimate Postpartum Survival Kit (A Complete Guide For New Moms)

I created this list so you can make your own DIY Postpartum Survival Kit before your new baby comes.

Take it from me–someone who was completely unprepared!

It wasn’t until I was lying in the hospital bed after giving birth to my first child that I realized that I had everything I needed for my baby for when we got home, but I hadn’t even thought of my own needs and what postpartum recovery essentials I would need to take care of myself!

Pro Tip: Thank goodness for Amazon Prime. I ordered everything that I needed right from my hospital bed and it showed up in two days on my doorstep before I got home!

If you are doing research on what to pack in your hospital bag and what postpartum recovery must-haves you should buy, this list will give you everything you need to make your own DIY postpartum survival kit for the early days when you get home.

This list of items is intended for moms who had uncomplicated vaginal deliveries…

Since you can’t plan for an uncomplicated vaginal delivery, a lot of these products will also have a use for any first-time moms.

Pro Tip: Get a bathroom caddy (or just use a basket) to make your own postpartum bathroom station. That way you can easily take your kit around your house if you have more than one bathroom, or take it with you in the car if you are going out.

How To Make Your Own Postpartum Survival Kit underwear, water bottle, DIY pads.
The Ultimate Postpartum Survival Kit

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New Mom Postpartum Survival Kit

The Frida Mom Postpartum Recovery and Essentials Kit

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This kit has so many useful products all packaged into one. If you are just starting your kit, this is a great place to start.

Note: many of the items in this kit are listed below, so make sure you check off your list of what comes in this kit.

Kit includes:

  • The travel caddie
  • Disposable underwear
  • The instant ice maxi pads
  • Perineal witch hazel cooling pad liners
  • Perineal healing form

Stool softener

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There is a good chance that you will be offered a stool softener at the hospital after you deliver.

Taking a stool softener will just help make the first bowl movement more comfortable after delivery.

You can even continue to take a stool softener postpartum for a few days after you get home.

Note: Make sure you clear any medication–even over-the-counter medication like a stool softener–with your doctor before using.

Peri Bottle

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A peri bottle is just a water bottle with a special nozzle to squirt water in your vaginal area to clean yourself when you use the restroom. You don’t want to use toilet paper and wipe right away because you could irritate any tearing or possibly pull out your stitches–no thank you.

You most likely will get a peri bottle from the hospital. Don’t forget to pack it when you are coming home!

Nipple Cream

This will be your best friend because there are lots of use for nipple cream on your postpartum body.

Of course, you can use the nipple cream as intended to relieve dry, cracked, chapped, or sore nipples from breastfeeding.

You can also use nipple cream as an intense moisturizer for your entire body: your cuticles, dry skin patches, dry and cracked lips (lanolin makes an AWESOME lip balm btw).

You can opt for the traditional Lanolin (which is what I used) or a natural product.

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If you are looking for natural postpartum essentials, Boob Ease makes a great natural nipple cream and they have many other products as well. Shop Boob Ease here.

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Sitz Bath

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My hospital gave me a sitz bath to take home. I’m not sure if this is common or not, but if you are offered one, definitely take it.

A sitz bath fits on your toilet seat and is a soothing water fountain for your lady bits.

Remember that you cannot take a bath after delivery, so the sitz bath is a great option to get warm water relief to reduce pain and inflammation.

Although I only used warm water in my sitz bath, you can buy sitz bath salts with essential oils like lavender oil for more soothing and relief. I would definitely run it past your OB first, especially if you had any tearing or stitches.

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Adult Diapers

I’m about to go on a bit of a rant here… Feel free to move on to the next item 😉

I loved my disposable underwear and mesh underwear from the hospital, but they get to be really expensive. Not to mention you also have to buy maxi pads to go along with them.

I just did not want to wear an adult diaper… Looking back, I’m not sure why.

They are super absorbent, disposable, and have maxi pads built-in–taking one more step from your postpartum bathroom routine off your plate.

Anyway, I stuck to the disposable underwear in the FridaMom Kit… But I eventually ran out of all of them and switched back to my regular underwear before I should have and ruined several good pairs in the process.

Fast forward a few months to my first postpartum period, and I ended up buying adult diapers anyway to deal with very heavy bleeding.

So, again, take it from my mistakes! Just buy a pack of adult diapers to have in your DIY postpartum survival kit. If you don’t use them immediately postpartum, you will probably be thankful to have them for your first period after birth.

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Disposable postpartum underwear

If you decide not to use adult diapers (hey, I was right there with ya), you can get disposable postpartum underwear like this:

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My hospital sent me home with a couple of pairs of mesh underwear, so it doesn’t hurt to ask them for some either.

Maxi Pad

You are likely going to have a heavy flow of blood in your first days postpartum.

I would buy super-mega-ultra absorbent pads. You will most likely experience extra blood than your regular period.

Make sure to buy unscented pads. Even if you traditionally buy scented pads, the fragrance might be too overwhelming to your senses immediately postpartum. Some people even find the scented pads irritating and that is the last thing you want!

Pro-Tip: Overnight pads are a lot longer and cover more surface area than regular pads.

Ice Packs

If your hospital has disposable icepack pads, take home as many as you can! They are a life-saver.

If you get the Frida Mom Postpartum Recovery Kit it does include a few ice packs.

You can also take a DIY padsicle approach and make your own.

There are also reusable postpartum icepacks that you can buy like these:

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Pain Reliever

Make sure you check with your doctors at the hospital for the pain reliever and dosage you should be using.

Toilet Paper

You are probably not going to use toilet paper in the near future (the peri bottle is the way to go).

But, once you are ready to start using it, now is not the time to have 1-ply in the bathroom. Spend the slight additional cost and get yourself some ultra-soft TP.

Trail Mix (Or Other Snacks)

Most of the postpartum essentials for new moms are bathroom-related, but there are a few exceptions.

Get yourself some trail mix, granola bars, or other snacks to help with the sleep deprivation that comes with a new baby.

I kept a little stash next to my rocking chair for when I was nursing or when my husband was giving my son a bottle. A little sugar, carbs, and protein go a long way in helping you stay awake.

Water Bottle

Make sure you are staying hydrated after giving birth.

There are so many other things going on, it is hard to remember.

Bring a reusable water bottle in your hospital bag, and remember to keep using it when you get home.

If you are a high-tech momma, consider getting a smart water bottle for your postpartum survival kit!

The Hidrate Spark 3 Smart Water Bottle has sensors to track how much water you have been drinking, and it glows when you are behind on your daily water intake!

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Dermoplast spray

This was another item that my hospital provided, so make sure to ask if they have any available.

Dermoplast is a spray that provides pain and itching relief, especially if you had tearing or stitches.

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I didn’t find the Dermoplast spray particularly effective in my early postpartum days, but I have many friends who swear by it as a must-have in a new mom care package.

Dermoplast can also be used for bug bites, sunburns, and more, so it won’t go to waste if you buy it and don’t need it after delivery.

Nursing Bra

You will want to pack nursing bras… everywhere.

Have a few in your hospital bag, a few in your postpartum care kit, a few in your breastfeeding kit, and make sure to take one wherever you go because you never know when you will spring a leak.

Even if you are not breastfeeding, nursing bras are great during the postpartum phase because they are typically wireless and have some stretch (while still being supportive) to accommodate fluctuating breast sizes as your milk supply adjusts.

These nursing bras are great because they are comfortable enough to sleep in:

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Postpartum Padsicles: DIY Recipes And Where To Buy In-Store
How To Fix Diastasis Recti
What To Wear Postpartum: Clothes For Your New Body After Birth
Postpartum Girdle Benefits And Finding The Best Belly Wrap

Witch Hazel Pads

Tucks (Yes they are technically for hemorrhoids, but they are a great postpartum product too!)

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What are Tucks? I read all about Tucks on Baby Center and I had no idea what they were. My nurse at the hospital introduced me to a generic version of these and they helped with the healing of stitches that I had after delivery.

Tucks are medicated (witch hazel) pads that are used to relieve pain associated with hemorrhoids. I actually didn’t have hemorrhoids, but my labor and delivery nurse suggested that I use them as a liner on top of my ice pads to keep everything moist and prevent irritation from friction.

These pads really provided relief during the first few days postpartum while my stitches were healing.

If you had hemorrhoids during your pregnancy or develop them postpartum (usually as a result of pushing during labor), witch hazel pads are perfect for relieving the burning and itching.

You could also find an over-the-counter hemorrhoid cream like this one from Frida Mom, but make sure to check with your doctor that is safe to use while you are healing.

Postpartum Clothing

Make sure that you have comfortable postpartum clothing at home and for your hospital bag. The first few weeks postpartum don’t require a fancy wardrobe. A few pairs of supportive leggings, some nursing bras, and supportive tank tops are all that you need.

Click here for a complete list of postpartum clothing.


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While the Haakaa is technically a breast pump, it really does so much more.

A friend gave this to me at my baby shower, and I wasn’t too sure what to do with it, but a few days after delivery I was so happy to have it on hand.

Even if you are not planning on breastfeeding, the Haakaa is a must-have.

If you are planning on breastfeeding, the Haakaa allows you to collect your letdown from the opposite breast that your baby is nursing on… preventing you from leaking all over the place, or losing precious milk in your nursing bra or pad.

A Mild Body Wash

Pro tip: buy a wash that both mom and baby can use to cut down on cost.

I like Aveeno Baby Wash and Shampoo

gentle and moisturizing soap is a must-have for new moms and babies.

When you come home from the hospital you will be spending so much time skin-to-skin with your baby. My son had super-sensitive skin and was irritated by my body wash that had a heavy fragrance.

Not to mention, if you are breastfeeding, think about the taste that a heavily fragranced body wash or lotion would leave behind.

A Natural Deodorant

I Like Native Products

I chose a natural deodorant because I was breastfeeding and didn’t want my son to be exposed to harsh chemicals and fragrances.

I know some moms choose to go deodorant-free, but that was not an option for me. In my first few weeks postpartum I was stinky. Haha!

This Vanilla-Coconut scent was mild enough not to irritate me or my baby, but did the trick in covering up that

Postpartum Belly Wrap

A postpartum belly wrap or postpartum girdle can help you get back to your pre-pregnancy shape by returning your organs to their original shape and size from gentle compression. There are many other benefits of wearing a postpartum girdle, like helping to heal your diastasis recti. Read all of the postpartum girdle benefits.

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Baby Shower Gift Idea: Postpartum Survival Kit

You could also do a postpartum care package as a baby shower present for first-time moms. Post-delivery recovery baskets or a gift box are perfect gifts for new moms.

You can make your own using my list, or you can find pre-made postpartum survival kits filled with all kinds of great things on Etsy.

Here is a mother and baby care package on Etsy:

Caring For Delicate Skin Is a Good Idea For Mom And Baby

Here is an example of a custom new mom box:

Custom Mom Box Makes A Perfect New Mom Gift
Postpartum Padsicles: DIY Recipes And Where To Buy In-Store
How To Fix Diastasis Recti
What To Wear Postpartum: Clothes For Your New Body After Birth
Postpartum Girdle Benefits And Finding The Best Belly Wrap
Mom holding her baby while laying in bed watching tv on her phone under a blanket.  She looks tired.  Frida mom, Haaka, Tucks, and more.  Recovery for new mamas.
Mom holding newborn on her chest with a blanket in the hospital  Ready to take home baby?  How about mom?  Postpartum products you might not have thought about.
Top of baby's head coming out of a blanket on mom's chest.  5 must-have postpartum essentials.
Pregnant woman sitting and packing a bag.  There is a window with a bike behind her.  5 Recovery products to pack for mom.

About Jacqui DiNardo

Hi, I'm Jacqui, the founder, and editor of Mommy Maker Teacher, a website dedicated to helping moms at every stage of motherhood: trying to conceive, pregnancy, postpartum, breastfeeding, and parenting. As a mom of two energetic toddler boys, motherhood can be challenging and rewarding. My content aims to help you balance your roles as a parent, creator, and educator to your children. I have a degree in education and am a state-certified French and Spanish K-12 teacher with over 12 years of experience as a teacher and curriculum developer for students ages 18 months to 18 years. I have taken Childhood Psychology, Adolescent Psychology, and Language Acquisition courses. My readers have given me positive feedback for my well-researched, honest, helpful advice and product recommendations. If you want to stay up to date on my latest content, you can follow me on Pinterest. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to me directly at

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