If you’re looking for the best gifts for first time moms, then you really need to know what new moms need after birth.
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When you know what new moms need after birth that aren’t for the baby, you can then give unique gifts for mom that they would really appreciate.
I think everybody can agree that looking for the best gifts for first-time moms can be a nightmare.
We want to make sure that our gift will be useful, appreciated, not too expensive but not too cheap and convey the amount of love and affection we have for the recipient.
Sheldon Cooper’s gift-giving dilemma always makes me smile: “The essence of the custom is that I now have to go out and purchase for you a gift of commensurate value and representing the same perceived level of friendship as that represented by the gift you’ve given me. It’s no wonder suicide rates skyrocket this time of year.”
I remember when I first found out that my sister was pregnant.
It was the first pregnancy in the family, so everyone was so excited. She lives somewhere in the wilds of Australia (haha, kidding! She lives in a city lol) while I was somewhere in the wilds of Scotland (not kidding).
I had to think of something to give her that could be posted because Oz has very strict custom rules. It also had to be light enough so that postage costs wouldn’t be astronomical.
Working with those two limitations, I then had to start thinking about what she would want. I was single at the time and had no clue what new moms wanted or needed.
So I ended up giving stuff for the baby and nothing for her.
And wasn’t that what everybody did, anyway?
Fast forward two years and I found myself married and pregnant. Things progressed very quickly after we found out that we were expecting and before we knew it, we were parents.
After a five-day hospital stay, we were on our own. And a few days after that, my husband went back to work. This was when I realized that I should really have bought some things that would’ve made my life a lot easier in those early, manic days.
So, this is a list of things I had to buy post-pregnancy that I didn’t think I needed, combined with presents that family and friends were generous enough to give me.
If you’re looking for presents to give that aren’t for the baby, here is a curated list of very thoughtful things you can give a new mom that she’ll definitely appreciate.
Cleaning or housekeeping help
This probably topped my wishlist when we got home. After an emergency c-section, I was tapped. I needed to focus on healing and settling into a routine. Especially since caring full time for a high-needs baby was exhausting, even without the sleep regressions. I mostly followed my mom’s advice and slept when the baby slept.
As a result, the house was a tip and I was so ashamed every time someone came to visit.
We lived in a small island at the time and all cleaners were employed by businesses so we couldn’t get anyone, even after we put ads out.
A few times, family and friends would come over and take my washing in or out, (deep) clean the kitchen and hoover. I was so grateful that I’d blubber all over Kevin as soon as he got home.
So, if you really want to go above and beyond – this would be a good bet.
Something to remember: You’ll need to be sensitive when offering this present because the last thing you want is for your new mom to feel inadequate.
You might message them to schedule a visit before showing up to make sure it’s alright and then tell them that you’d like to do their washing, ironing, hoovering etc for them so they can spend more time with baby without worrying about chores.
No matter what you do, don’t fake this! If you can’t be sincere, then please get something else.
Give your present with plenty of reassurance. Example: “Oh please, I had (or looked after) a baby. I know how much work it involves. You just put your feet up and relax. I got this.”.
Now, when I was the grateful recipient of this incredibly generous gift, I didn’t get any material thing – nothing but the feeling of being loved by the people around me (which is, of course, the absolute best!).
IF you want to actually hand something over to the recipient, especially when you’re at a baby shower,
This one, in particular, is a lovely item with really fast delivery. 🙂
Side Note: If you want to help clean the new mom clean house but really absolutely hate it, then read this post to get you past that dread: I Hate Housework! [How To Enjoy Chores When You Dread It].
Help with cooking was a close second.
Mind you, I love cooking from scratch. I’m no expert chef but something about making my own food makes me happy. I feel all Martha Stewart-like.
Of course, that changed when the baby came along. As I mentioned, he was high needs and so I had to put him in a carrier most of the time as we absolutely flat-out refused to do CIO (Cry It Out). Cooking with a baby in front of me was an obvious risk and one I did not take.
Also, I somehow would lose track of time and wouldn’t manage to get food ready until after Kevin got home. Some days, things got too hectic, and I had to choose between eating and sleeping. Sleeping always won.
You can’t go wrong with giving your new mom some help with cooking. Just remember to be kind when you give it. No snide remarks on their time management skills or cooking skills, please!
Cooking a huge casserole of something your new mom likes and that would freeze well or could easily be reheated is going to be well-received. Just make sure to ask about food preferences and allergens.
Meal delivery subscription
Not much of a cook?
Why not get them a subscription for meal delivery? Not takeaway per se, but proper home-cooked meals, like this one. I haven’t tried it myself, though I’ve heard good reviews and I plan to use them next time.
Recipe box subscription
You could also order the first-time mom a recipe box. It’s got all the required ingredients for main meals so they won’t need to go out for food or, more importantly, think about what next to cook.
Restaurant or grocery gift card and delivery
Gifting the new mom with a restaurant or grocery gift card means they can choose where to go and what to get.
Snack box subscription
A new mom tends to forget about herself in that manic period after baby is born. Often, she doesn’t even get enough to eat. If she’s breastfeeding, this is especially important. To help, why not get her a subscription to the snack box of her choice?
Postpartum Recovery Kit
The birthing experience, for many women, is hard. Recovery can be even harder, especially since most attention is given to baby after birth. A postpartum recovery kit is always a wonderful gift for a new mom. And I create mine using Earth Mama products.
Earth Mama, for those of you who don’t know, offer safe herbal products for baby care, and to treat the discomforts of pregnancy, postpartum and breastfeeding effectively. Based on my personal experience and those of thousands of moms, they are excellent at what they do. I bought and have given several of their items and I can’t recommend them enough.
My absolute favorites are:
padsand perineal spray and balm recovery kit – I give these to mom friends who have vaginal births. They’re always a hit.
- Nipple butter – Great for breastfeeding moms, especially when
babyis cluster feeding
- Belly oil or belly butter – Perfect for before and after birth. I read an article somewhere that you’re supposed to start oiling your belly before the first stretch marks appear and then keep going well after the birth – up until your belly h
asshrunk. I’m not sure if that’s backed scientifically as I read another article saying that stretch marks are genetic. Be that as it may, this oil kept my skin nicely hydrated and I barely have any stretch marks so I highly recommend.
- Booby Tubes – Again, a thoughtful gift for breastfeeding moms to help ease symptoms of breast engorgement and mastitis. You might want to wait until you’re sure that mom is breastfeeding.
- Third Trimester Tea – I’m not sure how effective this is when it comes to supporting lactation but I love, love, love the taste of this tea, with or without honey, and I’m not even much of a herbal tea drinker.
- Skin & Scar Balm – For your c-section moms out there. This really helped my scar heal quickly and nicely. It’s not raised at all and was very quick to fade.
- Mama-to-Be Pregnancy Gift – A wonderful gift set full of new mom essentials.
Therabox or a DIY self-care basket
I love the Therabox, a self-care subscription box curated by therapists (hence, the name). It contains one research-inspired therapeutic activity to wire the brain for more joy and seven full size treats to pamper the mind, body and soul. It’s absolutely perfect for first-time new moms, especially if they’re experiencing mental health issues such as the baby blues or postpartum depression and anxiety.
If you’re not a fan of the selection or if you’d like to create your own self-care basket, then you could personalize what you include. For example:
- Customized subliminal messaging: Perfect if you know she’s partial to particular affirmations!
- Favorite crystals: We all find certain crystals pretty, whether we’re into spirituality or not.
- New mom tea blends: From postpartum recovery to relaxing blends, you can’t go wrong with this gift.
- Aromatherapy eye pillow: Sleeping is so hard during the postpartum period. This could help!
- Cozy slippers: Keep her nice and warm with these heated slippers, especially if she has to walk on non-carpeted flooring.
- Diary or bullet journal: Journaling (such as writing journal, art journals, or gratitude journals) is proven to be incredibly beneficial to our mental health.
New mom care package
Maybe you don’t know enough about your friend to be able to create a personalized DIY self-care basket, and you’re not sure you’d like to get a Therabox subscription. What other options do you have?
You could get a beautiful box or basket and put together a thoughtful new mom care package including things she may not even know she needs, like:
- A leak-proof vacuum-insulated coffee mug
- Personalized items, like this leak-proof vacuum-insulated tea infuser
- Wireless headphones
- Gourmet coffee or new mom tea blends
- Lip balm
- Hand sanitizer
- Wireless power bank
- Comfortable pants with POCKETS!
- E-reader if you want to go all out (although this is pretty pricey!)
Leak-proof vacuum-insulated coffee mug or tea infuser
I wasn’t a tea drinker but I do drink a lot of coffee.
I love it!
And because I live in a generally cold country, I made a lot of the stuff…which, in those first few months, mostly went down the drain. I’m convinced that my son could smell it because he always woke up or needed a nappy change or got hungry just as I sat down in front of a steaming cup of coffee.
Oh, the cups of coffee that went cold while I was looking after baby….*sigh* I finally gave in and bought a travel cup.
It was perfect – the best cup of coffee I had since I gave birth.
It’s leak and spill-proof, which is perfect when the only time you can get a hot cup of anything is when the baby is asleep on top of you.
So, mom-to-be can drink hot coffee, tea or cocoa while snuggled beside baby without being afraid that she might spill some all over the wee angel.
Trust me, it can happen.
I was once so hungry that I scarfed down a pepperoni pizza while breastfeeding. I looked down after I polished the slice to see one huge pepperoni on top of my baby’s head. It still cracks me up every time I remember it.
Also, this keeps hot beverages hot for a long time, so be warned if you’re in a rush to drink coffee. You don’t want to burn yourself in the face.
Finally, go for the stainless ones as they’re easier to clean – just pop them in the dishwasher and that’s that.
I actually think that all parents need this after birth – most important for those times when they’re stuck under a sleeping child who would wake up with the slightest movement.
I know my child was like that, so I couldn’t even watch Netflix because I was afraid that I’d wake him up.
Wireless headphones are also better, in my opinion, because IF you fall asleep then you do away with the strangulation risk that would be present with long cords.
Luckily, you don’t need expensive brands and, in fact, sometimes the cheap ones work better. We use Anker Soundbuds, which you can get for cheap.
Gourmet coffee or tea blends
If you’re going to give a coffee cup or a tea infuser, may as well include the coffee and the new mom tea that’ll go in them. Choose the one that they love or pair an old favorite with something new. They’ll sure appreciate it!
Could it be the breastfeeding? Or the pregnancy hormones going back to normal? Or is it just the weather?
Whatever the reason, the fact is that many new moms get severe chapped lips. This Earth Mama lip balm collection is a godsend.
Every time someone visits a new mom, they inevitably want to hold the baby. New moms are often very protective of their newborn, so that hand sanitizer will be put to good use – and is a great way to allay mom’s fears.
Wireless power bank
Imagine your phone dying just as Blacklist’s Reddington was about to reveal who Liz’ mother was! And worse, you have your two-week old asleep on the bed beside you. If you leave the bed, baby will wake up and scream the house down.
It’s in cases like these that a new mom really needs a wireless power bank to save the day!
Comfortable pants with POCKETS!
Could it be? Someone finally listened to reason and gave postpartum women some much-needed POCKETS?
Yep, seems like it. These are the best pants you could gift a new mom. They’re really comfortable. They look good. And they come with pockets! What’s not to like?
I’m a book lover. I love the feel of it in my hands and the scent of it in my nose. It took a long time for me to be converted to e-books.
Actually, it was motherhood that finally converted me to ebooks.
Reading a physical book meant I had to use two hands, something which has now become a sort of luxury. I needed to start doing things with just one – whichever happened to be free at the time, and it wasn’t usually my dominant right.
So e-books it was.
I started with a Kobo H20 Aura against the recommendation of a personal friend (who was a Kindle fan).
I thought it would be great because it was waterproof so I could take it in the bath and just lounge about there. I didn’t really get to do that because I didn’t always have time for a long, luxurious bath anymore.
The books were more expensive at the Kobo Store and the device took a long time loading. Then 2 years after I bought it, it just stopped working.
Instead of getting it repaired (which would’ve been the second time), my husband surprised me with a Kindle and boy, I was very impressed.
The speed is a lot faster than the Kobo and I especially loved the fact that I could borrow some books off Amazon for free via Kindle Unlimited.
Yes, I know I pay it monthly but if you read two full-length novels a day
Oh, and I’m updating this post because I just found out that Kindle Oasis is also waterproof!? Wishes do come true (and I now have a new present for myself to commemorate starting this beautiful blog)! 🙂
✅ The BEST Gift for First-Time Moms That’s Not for the Baby: Absolute Winner
You probably think that there are a variety of moms so how are we supposed to know what they want or don’t want?
Obviously, if you know that this particular mom absolutely loves books and is dying to get her hands on an e-reader as she doesn’t yet have one, then, by all means, go get her the Kindle.
BUT not everybody likes to read. Not everybody likes to drink a hot beverage either. But you know what every new mom needs?
It’s the message that they deserve self-care. They need it. That even when they become mothers, they are their own person who deserves to be looked after.
That’s why our overall winner – the ultimate best gift for new moms that aren’t for baby! – is a postpartum recover kit containing a selection of Earth Mama goodies.
Get New Mom A Gift For Herself Now (Not the Baby!)
These are the best gifts you can give to new moms because they show you’ve thought about their welfare and they’ll really appreciate that.
Remember, moms are their own people and they’ll probably need just as much love and attention as the baby.
Moms, what thoughtful things or gestures from your family and friends really made your heart sing?
Pop them in the comments section and let’s help each other remember the things we can be grateful for. 🙂
Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in April 2019 and has been completely revamped and updated for relevance and comprehensiveness.