Postpartum

vaginal birth box
Fourth Phase

Here's What To Put In The Perfect Postpartum Care Package

Give them a bundle of joy.

New parents are often showered with thoughtful gifts... for their baby. And while infants do need a ton of stuff (and baby clothes are just so dang cute), don’t forget about the parents, especially the one who just did the grueling work of bringing the baby into the world. These postpartum care packages will show your friend, your sister, or any loved one that you see them during the baffling postpartum period and beyond.

Many new moms are surprised at how little medical attention is given to them after giving birth. And while you can’t take the role of their doctor, you can give them a gift to help make their recovery a little more comfortable. Whether it’s comfy undies that come with an ice pack, a gift card for food, or even something as unglamorous but important as perineum spray, these care package ideas for new parents will show that you care.

When asked what the best gift she got after giving birth was, one of my friends said she couldn’t remember most of what she got, but she did remember that someone brought sweatpants just for her. “It felt so good that someone thought of my own comfort, not just the baby,” she told me. Read on for postpartum gifts will let a new mom know you’re there for her.

We only include products that have been independently selected by Romper's editorial team. However, we may receive a portion of sales if you purchase a product through a link in this article.

Anya Gift Set

Anya is a new line of products created by two women (and backed by actress Freida Pinto, who is the brand’s Chief Impact Officer) designed to support mothers during the joyful, exhausting, and intense fourth trimester. Whether they’re experiencing exhaustion or anxiety, or more physical side effects like hair loss and cracked nipples, Anya has a product that will help. From nutrient-rich, herbal, and breastfeeding-safe tonics (like a caffeine-free energy booster), to teas, and topical products like a nipple balm or scalp serum, there’s something here to make the postpartum period just a little easier.

The Postpartum Essentials Set includes two tonics, nipple balm, body butter, and scalp serum.

A Nursing Sweatshirt

There’s no such thing as too many comfy clothes in the postpartum period, especially when they have easy nursing access. If your friend or sister is planning to nurse or breastfeed, include a sweatshirt they may not buy themselves in a sweet care package of postpartum essentials. This one is made of cozy French terry with a horizontal side slit and a hood, and it makes nursing on-the-go on chillier days as comfortable and easy as it can be.

If you have a little more room in your budget, you could opt for a comfy cotton nursing pullover from Ingrid & Isabel, and for something truly splurge-worthy, maternity and postpartum brand Hatch has a versatile “Early Days” nursing sweatshirt which can be worn closed or open like a swingy cardigan.

A Gift Certificate For Food

When in doubt, the gift of food that takes zero effort or thought to prepare is always going to be well-received. Whether you drop off soup, a homemade quiche or lasagna, or have their favorite takeout delivered at dinner time, it will be much appreciated by both parents. Maybe you even start a meal train for the family, especially if they’re going back and forth between home and the NICU or have no build-in support like a grandparent or a nanny.

If you’re not sure what they like, a gift certificate to a food delivery service like Postmates or GrubHub is also a great idea.

A Set Of Postpartum Recovery Essentials

If you’re close with the new mom, it’s a good idea to give her some postpartum recovery items she may not have on hand (especially if she’s a first-time mom). This trio of essentials from Lansinoh includes an herbal perineal spray to help soothe burning and soreness associated with a vaginal birth, a spray bottle for cleaning or soothing with hot water, plus versatile hot and cold pads that are flexible and deliver natural and much-needed pain relief from perineal discomfort, hemorrhoids, and uterine cramping (which surprises many people and happens as the uterus shrinks back down).

One reviewer said, “I would buy this in a heartbeat if I was having another and would absolutely gift this to a family member or friend who’s expecting.”

A Box Of Easy-To-Make Food

New parents need a ton of calories, especially if they’re nursing, but cooking can feel so daunting. This thoughtful new parent care package includes a 64 oz soup (you can choose from chicken noodle, corn and potato chowder, tomato basil, or garden vegetable) plus a half dozen rolls, and a half dozen cookies. There’s also a ladle, and note card you can personalize at checkout.

Best of all, the soup just needs to be heated, so it’s ready in just a few minutes, and makes a comforting and warming middle of the night snack when they find themselves ravenous while feeding (and if they’re wary of soup near the baby, a cookie or roll is always quick, tasty energy).

A Birth Recovery Set

Many postpartum care boxes are designed for those who’ve had a vaginal birth, so it’s nice to see one made for people who’ve had cesareans (also known as belly births). This is an especially necessary gift if your friend has an unplanned C-section and may not have prepared for that sort of recovery. In the set, you’ll find a belly band, which supports the organs in the mid-section, and soft and stretchy high-rise undies that won’t dig into the scar. There are also three pairs of mesh undies (a godsend if they didn’t get enough from the hospital), maxi pads, and stool softeners. Another helpful aspect of this set if the two guidebooks: one for the birther and the other for their partner; they explain recovery tips and how to be supportive.

A Vaginal Birth Box

This Vaginal Birth Box was created in 2020 by Nana Eyeson-Akiwowo and Marcia A. Cole. The Afterbirth Box is stocked with products that will help ease the transition into the postpartum period. All the products are hand-created, tested by new moms, organic, phthalate-free, non-toxic and sustainably sourced. Included in the Vaginal Birth Box (there’s also a curated set for belly births) is a belly wrap, a shea body butter and a nipple balm, a journal, a hot and cold compress made with flaxseed and lavender, a lactation tea, postpartum undies, and so much more.

Best of all, for each box purchased, a “a similar afterbirth care box to new mamas in the U.S. experiencing homelessness and new moms in Sub-Saharan Africa,” per the brand’s website.

Postpartum Undies & Bras

Comfy and stretchy bras and undies are absolutely essential in the postpartum period. This set from Nyssa takes the comfort up a notch because both the underwear and the bra have pockets to insert a heat/ice pack. Made with recycled polyester and spandex, the underwear has a foldover band that can be worn high-waisted or folded down, plus a wider crotch to accommodate a pad or ice pack.

The two packs can either be frozen or put in the microwave. One reviewer said, “This set was amazing! I truly couldn't have imagined not having the underwear in particular. Their compression level was comforting, but not painful, and the heat/cool pack pocket was essential!”

Lounge Pants With A Little Style

Lounge pants that are comfy enough for endless feedings on the couch and chic enough to run errands in are a must in the fourth trimester. These joggers from Dayo are made in Italy from a stretchy and soft blend of elastane and viscose. They have pockets, a high-rise stretch waist with a wide band, plus a cute tie at the ankles. You’ll kind of get two pants in one here because the cuffs can be adjusted into a flowy gaucho style. These are also available in a creamy beige and classic black.

These make a great addition to a postpartum care package that’s centered on luxe comfort essentials, like robes, cozy socks, heating pads, and maybe even a fancy candle.

Kura Skin Set

There’s a good chance that some of the skincare products she used pre-pregnancy aren’t going to cut it in the pregnancy and postpartum period. Those who are pregnant and nursing are advised to avoid retinol (vitamin A), salicylic acid, chemical sunscreens, and more. Kura Skin takes the guesswork out of selecting pregnancy and breastfeeding-safe skincare products, because new parents barely have time to shower let alone read through dense skincare labels.

Kura Skin doesn’t carry any products with flagged ingredients including benzoyl peroxide, hydroquinone, parabens, phthalates, synthetic fragrances, and chemical sunscreens, plus when pregnant or nursing, Kura eliminates products with salicylic acid and retinoids. With the gifting option, the new mom will able to take a short quiz and have products selected for her specific skincare needs.