Here’s a hospital bag essential you can whip up yourself, and you’ll be thanking your lucky stars you did. And so will your lady bits.

Mum Elisa Castellanos has shared her after-birth secret weapon – homemade Padsicles, or postpartum pads. Normal maternity pads, with a few special additions to make them into superpowered vagina soothers.

“These were a lifesaver when I had Stella,” Elisa explained. “I’m making some now for a friend and also wanted to share the recipe with all of you. Super fast and easy to make, in five minutes I made 20!”‘

How to make soothing postpartum pads

DIY postpartum pad-sicle pad

What you need:

• Witch Hazel
• Aloe Vera Gel
• Sanitary napkins (pads)
• Lavender essential oil (optional)

Elisa says she used medicated, pain relieving aloe vera gel, as it helped numb the area after stitches.

What to do:

STEP 1: Open the pad and keep the paper. For each pad add:

• 2 tbsp of witch hazel
• 1 tbsp of aloe vera gel
• drops of lavender oil

STEP 2: Mix it all together and spread onto the pad generously. Then fold the pad in half, before rewrapping.

STEP 3: Store pads in a freezer-proof ziplock bag and pop them in the freezer

How to make frozen condom soothing pads

Postpartum frozen vagina popsicle

Here’s another really simple after-birth soother that will make good use of any condoms you haven’t needed over the past nine months!

Midwife Edwina Sharrock from Birth Beat tells Mum’s Grapevine these are amazing on your perineum after a vaginal birth. They’ll help reduce swelling and provide pain relief.

What you need:

• Condoms
• Maternity pads with wings
• Water
• Alcohol (optional)*

What to do:

STEP 1: Partially fill a few condoms with water, and freeze.

*You can mix a little alcohol with the water before putting it into the condom. This will make the water more of a ‘slushie’ consistency, rather than ice.

STEP 2: Take one condom when frozen, slit open a maternity pad (with wings are best) and place frozen condom inside.

STEP 3: Put the pad in underwear as you normally would.

If you’re researching all things postpartum, take a look at our article on placenta consumption.