Postpartum Recovery

Padsicles: The Homemade Remedy for Postpartum Discomfort

A padsicle is a homemade, frozen sanitary napkin that can relieve postpartum pain and promote healing. Learn how to make your own and use them effectively.
Dr. Marcy Crouch
Posted on
June 9, 2023
Minute Read

What’s a padsicle anyway?

This may be a term you’ve never heard of, especially since this product can’t be found in stores, but the legendary padsicle might just become your best friend when dealing with postpartum pain.

A padsicle (short for pad + popsicle) is an easy at-home DIY project — It’s basically just a sanitary napkin that you add a few magic ingredients to and then chill in the freezer for a couple of hours. Once it’s ready, you place it inside your underwear to relieve pain and encourage healing after childbirth.

Let me tell you, from personal experience, these things are a lifesaver. They not only ease pain, but also reduce swelling, bruising, and discomfort from hemorrhoids, vaginal stitches, and other birthing trauma.


Here are some key benefits they offer:

  1. Reducing Swelling: The cold temperature of the padsicles helps constrict blood vessels and reduce swelling in the perineal area, providing instant relief from discomfort.
  2. Alleviating Pain: Padsicles are infused with ingredients known for their soothing properties, such as aloe vera and witch hazel. These natural remedies can help alleviate pain and promote healing of any tears or bruising.
  3. Relieving Itching: Postpartum itching can be a common and uncomfortable side effect. Padsicles containing soothing ingredients can provide relief from itching and promote overall comfort.
  4. Promoting Healing: Padsicles can create a favorable environment for healing by providing gentle moisture to the perineal area, which is essential for the recovery process.

How to make a padsicle

Your postpartum recovery deserves utmost care and attention, and one simple yet effective way to support your healing process is by making padsicles. Here’s an ingredients list and step-by-step directions on how to make your own supply.

Ingredients List:

To make your own padsicles, gather the following ingredients:

  • Maxi Pads: Choose organic or chemical-free pads for optimal comfort and to reduce the risk of irritation.
  • Aloe Vera Gel: Known for its cooling and soothing properties, aloe vera gel helps relieve pain and inflammation.
  • Witch Hazel: A natural astringent with anti-inflammatory properties, witch hazel aids in reducing swelling and promoting healing.
  • Lavender Essential Oil: Lavender oil possesses calming and antiseptic properties, making it an excellent addition to padsicles for postpartum relief.
  • Organic Coconut Oil: Coconut oil offers moisturizing benefits and helps prevent dryness and irritation in the perineal area.
  • Plastic wrap: For storing your padsicles

Step-by-Step Directions:

Step 1: Open the maxi pads and lay them out on a clean surface.

Step 2: Using a spoon or your finger, carefully apply a thin layer of aloe vera gel onto the absorbent side of each pad.

Step 3: Next, sprinkle a few drops of witch hazel across the aloe vera gel-coated side of the pad. Ensure even distribution.

Step 4: Optional: Add a drop or two of lavender essential oil to each pad for its calming properties.

Step 5: Gently melt a small amount of organic coconut oil. Use a clean brush or your finger to apply a thin layer of coconut oil over the witch hazel and aloe vera gel.

Step 6: Carefully fold the pads back together and individually wrap them in plastic wrap.

Step 7: Place the wrapped pads in a resealable bag or airtight container and store them in the freezer until needed.

Step 8: When ready to use, take a padsicle from the freezer and allow it to thaw for a few minutes before placing it in your underwear.

Tips for using padsicles effectively

Once you're ready to use the padsicle, here's some guidance on how to wear it and additional helpful tips:


Remove the padsicle from the freezer and allow it to thaw for a few minutes before applying it. This will help prevent discomfort from the cold temperature. However, make sure it remains chilled enough to provide the desired soothing effect.


Remove the plastic wrap from the padsicle and place it directly onto your clean underwear with the absorbent side against your perineal area. Ensure proper alignment and coverage for maximum comfort and effectiveness.


You can wear a padsicle for approximately 15 to 30 minutes at a time. However, it's essential to listen to your body and adjust the duration according to your comfort level. Some individuals may prefer longer or shorter intervals based on their specific needs.


After each use, remove the padsicle from your underwear and dispose of it. It's crucial to maintain hygiene and avoid any potential bacterial growth. Consider changing padsicles every 2 to 4 hours, or as needed, to ensure cleanliness and maximum effectiveness.

Heavy Bleeding

If you're experiencing heavy postpartum bleeding, you may want to consider using a pad with higher absorbency in conjunction with the padsicle. FridaMom offers a range of postpartum pads specifically designed for heavy bleeding, such as the Frida Mom Maternity Pads. These pads provide maximum protection and comfort during the initial days of postpartum recovery.

Additional Tips

Always wash your hands before handling padsicles to maintain cleanliness.

It's advisable to have multiple padsicles prepared in advance to ensure a constant supply during your postpartum recovery period.

Consider using a peri bottle filled with warm water to cleanse the perineal area before applying a new padsicle. This can provide additional relief and hygiene.

If you have any concerns about your postpartum recovery or if you experience excessive pain or bleeding, consult your healthcare provider for guidance and support.

The best time to build your supply of padsicles

There’s no rule that says you have to make your padsicles before your due date, but if you have the time you won’t regret preparing early! After giving birth when you’re sore and tired, a DIY padsicle project will probably be the last thing on your mind. The best time to build a supply is sometime during the last month of your pregnancy.

A lot of women make a bunch of padsicles towards the end of their pregnancy — while they still have energy and can move around comfortably — and then keep them in the freezer until they need one.

With all the other preparations and nesting going on as your delivery date comes closer, you may not have the time (or energy). If that’s the case, no worries! They’re easy to make and just have to chill in the freezer for a few hours before they’re ready to go.

Remember, every individual's postpartum recovery experience may vary, so it's essential to personalize your care according to your comfort and needs. Padsicles can be a wonderful addition to your postpartum healing routine, offering soothing relief and support during this transformative time.

For more tips and tricks for postpartum recovery, check out our article 10 Postpartum Essentials I Didn’t Know I Needed.

Dr. Marcy Crouch

Known as The Down There Doc on Instagram and TikTok, Dr. Marcy Crouch is a board-certified women’s health physical therapist working to elevate pregnancy and postpartum care for women everywhere.