How to Make Homemade Postpartum Pads for Soothing and Healing

One of my favorite things after Olivia was born (well, besides baby herself) was the homemade postpartum pads that I made and froze.

Olivia came out with only a couple of gentle pushes, so I didn’t tear, but I was still a little sore. I mean it’s expected when pushing a big head out of a small opening. The combination of the herbs and coolness of these pads really, really felt great.

These homemade postpartum pads combine the following for an awesome soothing and healing effect for sore postpartum perineum and bum:

Witch Hazel
Witch hazel is used to decrease swelling and pain as well as stop the bleeding and heal any minor cuts or tears.

Aloe Vera Gel
Aloe vera is well known for it’s antiseptic , germicide, anti-inflammatory, moisturizing, and regenerative properties, making it a great addition to postpartum healing.

Comfrey Herb 
Comfrey is a wonderful herb which promotes healing while disinfecting and relieving pain.

Lavender Essential Oil
Lavender is soothing and smells wonderful.

Homemade Postpartum Pads

What You'll Need

Instructions

1. Boil 4 cups water to make comfrey tea.
2. Pour water over comfrey in large bowl, cover and let steep 8 hours.
3. Strain comfrey and reserve the tea.
4. Mix the tea, witch hazel, aloe vera gel, and lavender in a medium bowl.
5. Unwrap each pad, but leave it in it's wrapper.
6. Pour 2-4 tablespoons over each pad, concentrating on where your sore perineum will be.
7. Fold pad up and re-wrap.
8. Wrap in aluminum foil and place in a gallon zip bag in the freezer.

Tip: Before placing the frozen pad on, unwrap and let thaw for 5 minutes.

I can not tell you how wonderful these pads were. So much more soothing than the dry, scratchy and non cold pads provided by the hospital.

I made around 20 of them, and took 7-10 to the hospital in a freezer tote bag. And that is all that I used. Since I didn’t tear, I was feeling great by the time I came home after 24 hours and didn’t need to use them anymore.

Just try them for yourself, or make some for a mom-to-be.

Let me know what you think!

65comments
Maryann - April 15, 2013

These look great!

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Meghan @JaMonkey - April 16, 2013

Thanks for sharing. I’m all about homemade.

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Jennifer - April 16, 2013

how cool and cost effective!

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Liz @ A Nut in a Nutshell - April 17, 2013

I remember how sore it was so I can imagine the soothing nature of these. Great idea!

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Krystyn @ Really, Are You Serious? - April 17, 2013

What a great idea. I’m sending this to my sister. Those ones they give you from the hospital are a mess!

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Carrie - April 17, 2013

What a fabulous idea!! I SO wish I’d had something like this to help with my third-degree tears and stitches after having my first.

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Sheilacakes - April 18, 2013

Thanks for sharing. I had a c-section but I bet these really help.

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Jennifer H - April 19, 2013

What a great idea.

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Shell Feis - April 21, 2013

I had a C-Section with my son, but I’m hoping to have a VBAC next time around so I pinned these!

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Elizabeth A. - April 21, 2013

I could have used that two years ago! Nick really ripped me up. My doctor called it traumatic :-(. It took me months to heal.

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April Golightly - April 21, 2013

Thanks. I might do this. 🙂

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    Jennifer - April 21, 2013

    April, as the mother of four, I’m saying YES!!!! MAKE THEM!!!!!

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Rachel - April 21, 2013

I had a 4th degree tear after my first. I could have used these then.

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Jennifer - April 21, 2013

Those saved me after having my giant boys! I’m going to make those and share with my pregnant gal friends!

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Kait - April 21, 2013

I used these things for weeks after my son — cold, homemade ones sound amazing! Will have to remember this for the future!

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Anne - April 21, 2013

great idea, I like homemade remedies

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Sheri - April 21, 2013

I remember those days all too well. Great idea!

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Jennifer @TheRebelChick - April 22, 2013

What a great idea, new moms really, really need to take care of themselves!

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Maryann - April 22, 2013

what a great idea.

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Liz @ A Nut in a Nutshell - April 24, 2013

Thinking back to how I felt post-birth, these sound so soothing already!

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HilLesha @To the Motherhood - April 28, 2013

Sounds soothing! I think the after birth pains were more of a concern than my sore lady bits last year, though. Oy vey!

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    Jennifer Dickison - April 29, 2013

    Oh, I hate the after birth pains!

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Amanda - May 10, 2013

I have just started making those. Sound’s great and really helpful. I am just wondering since the pads will be soaked and frozen when needed, how long would they last as obviously there will be post birth discharge etc. Sorry for TMI.

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    Jennifer Dickison - May 20, 2013

    They will last in the freezer for a few months. If you mean how long each pad will hold, mine held pretty well. I don’t think I changed it any more often than a regular pad (except to get a fresh cool one).

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Lauren - August 31, 2013

Lavender is also analgesic, so that the real benefit from using the oil-the soothing is just extra. 😉

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Tenns @ New Mama Diaries - September 19, 2013

What an excellent idea! I’m due in a few weeks and have heard of these, but have yet to make them. I’ll definitely be making me some, because I hear tey aid wonderful in recovery.

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Alex - November 7, 2013

How long do you think they would last in the freezer? The ingredients were sort of pricey and I hate to waste them if I end up having a c-section or not using them all.

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    Jennifer Dickison - November 20, 2013

    I think they will last in the freezer as long as the individual ingredients would each last in the freezer.

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Maikou - November 20, 2013

Just wondering….were there issues of the ice/liquid melting and causing a mess down there?

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    Jennifer Dickison - November 22, 2013

    Honestly, I don’t remember any issues. But, not to be gross, it’s already a ‘mess’ down there afterward anyway. All I know is it was nice and soothing! Thanks for asking!

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Sarah - December 1, 2013

Most recipes I have seen say steep the Comfrey for a hour or two. Is there a specific reason you should allow it 8hours? Just curious thanks!

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    Jennifer Dickison - December 3, 2013

    Honestly, a friend told me that the longer it steeps, the more potent it would be.

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Courtney - December 23, 2013

I’m sorry to sound totally stupid.. (It’s been 5 years ago with my first and now I’m expecting #2) but do you put this directly on you? Is it able to absorb since it’s already has liquid in it? I feel so dumb but I cannot remember what they did when I had my 1st… THanks 🙂

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    Jennifer Dickison - December 23, 2013

    Yes. You wear it just like a regular pad. It still absorbs quite nicely. I too was afraid they wouldn’t absorb since they are already ‘wet’, but I don’t believe I leaked anymore than you normally will after having a baby. (Even the hospital pads don’t stop me from a little leaking out the sides).

    Congratulations on baby#2!

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Char - December 23, 2013

Hi,
Where do you buy the ingredients to make this? Are they pretty inexpensive? I live in a really TINY rural town, and have trouble finding everything. I only have a Walmart, a CVS, and two grocery stores. Please point me in the right direction. Thanks!

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    Jennifer Dickison - December 26, 2013

    I think I got most of the ingredients online at different places.

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      Candice - November 14, 2014

      Do you think I could substatute and use liquid comfrey?

      Reply
        Jennifer Dickison - November 15, 2014

        You know, I don’t really know. You would think it would have the same benefits as the leaf.

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Brenda A - January 21, 2014

Does it matter what kind of witch hazel I purchase? I’ve been looking at some, and a lot of them have extra ingredients… I’m having a hard time finding “plain” witch hazel (other than from Mtn Herbs site, since I’m in HI and their shipping is ridiculous 🙁
Thanks!

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    Jennifer Dickison - February 4, 2014

    I believe I just got witch hazel from Walmart. I don’t think it matters.

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    Carissa - March 19, 2014

    I’ve read that you should not buy the one with alcohol in it.

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      Jennifer Dickison - March 24, 2014

      Buy what with alcohol in it?

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        Courtney - April 30, 2014

        I believe the original poster means Witch Hazel with alcohol. Since Witch Hazel is used as an astringent, a lot of the products in stores contain alcohol. Do you think it would be better to get some without the alcohol, or did the alcohol not bother the sensitive skin down there?

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          Jennifer Dickison - May 1, 2014

          I bought mine from wal-mart so if it had alcohol in it, I didn’t notice it. 😉

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Marisol - February 25, 2014

Sounds great!! Where can I find “comfrey”??

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    Jennifer Dickison - February 25, 2014

    I found the comfrey at a local herbal store. You may be able to find it on mountain rose herbs website.

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      Sarah - February 22, 2015

      Comfrey is dangerous for pregnant and nursing women and it may cause cancer. I was trying to order it when I discovered its dangerous both externally and internally.

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Ali - March 3, 2014

Did you talk with your OB before using these? I went to my local herbal store to purchase the comfrey today and the employees strongly urged me to further research comfrey, especially since I plan to breastfeed. The effects of comfrey can be dangerous to mom and baby based on the research I read. Just wondering if you heard anything, or have an alternative to comfrey?

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    Jennifer Dickison - March 4, 2014

    I did not talk to my ob.

    I have been researching it since I read your comment and see a lot of things that definitely say DO NOT INGEST comfrey while pregnant or breastfeeding. Most of what I have read says it is safe to use topically (as with the pads). But, I would definitely make sure each person researches for themselves and then can make your own decision as to how you feel about it.

    I did come across a few articles that say calendula is a great substitute if you’d rather use that.

    Thank you so much for bringing this up so others can make an informed decision.

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Nicole - March 6, 2014

do you think these would help to put over the incision spot from a Csection? It is always so tender the first few weeks & Im wondering if the cooling & healing effects might be helpful

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    Jennifer Dickison - March 11, 2014

    *I* would think they would be soothing and healing on a c-section incision. But I have never had one so I don’t know how the pain and depth of healing and all that compared to a tear from delivery.

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Carissa - March 19, 2014

Where can I find comfrey leaves?

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    Jennifer Dickison - March 24, 2014

    I found comfrey leaves at my local herb shop. You can also find them online, just do a quick search. Thanks for visiting!

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Ashley - April 25, 2014

Just made them! Super simple and I feel much more prepared and at ease now! What a great idea 🙂

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    Jennifer Dickison - May 1, 2014

    Awesome! I hope you love them, and congrats on the soon to be new little one!

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Abril - May 16, 2014

How soon did you make these before having your baby? I want to make these and have them ready when I deliver. I’m due in 4 weeks!! 🙂 but I dk if I should wait till closer to my due date and how long they can stay in the freezer for. Thanks!

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    Jennifer Dickison - May 22, 2014

    I made them early. You could make them now.

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Nicole - June 16, 2014

Just made these and looking fwd to the relief they’ll bring. Just one question: I had extra solution, which was great, as I was planning to make more anyway to use as a peri spray. But I’m wondering if you know the shelf life of the solution. I’m due in approx two weeks. Should I keep the spray bottle in the fridge? How long do you think it will be good for?

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    Jennifer Dickison - June 16, 2014

    That is a wonderful idea! I would think it would hold in the fridge for 2 weeks or so.

    Let me know how it does as a spray! I didn’t even think of that.

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Michele - July 10, 2014

Are the comfrey leaves fresh or dried? I would like to make these for my daughter in law who is due in 3 weeks. We don’t have a local herb store so not sure where to look. Thanks!

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    Jennifer Dickison - July 12, 2014

    I bought the comfrey leaves dried from a local store. You could probably get them online.

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Elisabeth - September 30, 2014

This sounds like a great idea! I have been looking for ways to ease the postpartum recovery “down there” since everyone has been telling me how uncomfortable it can be. I am 22 and expecting to deliver my first baby in February, and have already been told by my specialist that he will probably be “a good size.”

One question, you mentioned that you took these to the hospital in a freezer bag, did you just keep them in there the whole time? And they stayed frozen? I would think they might thaw after a few hours. Thanks for this idea and your time! 🙂

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    Jennifer Dickison - October 14, 2014

    I did keep them with me at the hospital in a bag that keeps things cold. After a few hours, one of the nurses was kind enough to put them in a freezer for me. But up until that point they stayed pretty frozen.

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Sarah - March 2, 2015

How long do you think these would last in the freezer? I’m due at the end of the month, but I want to get everything ready.

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    Jennifer Dickison - March 2, 2015

    They should be perfectly fine. I made mine a month or so early.

    Reply
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