Ever wondered what's in a Doula's bag? Every Doula is different, I know many Doula’s that don’t take anything to a birth because in all honestly it’s that Doula as a person that’s really providing everything a client needs.
Practical, physical and emotional support is something you can’t buy.
Some Doula’s on the other hand like to have lots of goodies in their Doula bag ‘just in case’ those items might come in handy. I’m one of those Doulas, I like to have everything with me just in case I need it.
Most of the time I don’t use anything or much from my Doula bag, however there have been births where I have uses lots of tools from my Mary Poppins bag. I have a main birth bag and a separate bag for postnatal support (some things cross over).
Here's what's in my Doula bag
- Rechargeable fans. Hospitals can be hot stuffy places. These also come in handy during hot weather or if a mum feels overheated (hormones can cause this). I always carry two in case one runs out
- Galaxy projector. A projector light to create a magical starlit atmosphere or change the lighting in a room. Particularly handy in hospital where it feels medical. You want your birth space to feel calm and romantic to boost that oxyt0cin
- Soft fluffy flannels, new ones for every client. They are amazing to cool down a sweaty brow or apply warm to areas needing comfort such as the lower back
- Peanut ball. Blows up like a birth ball but peanut shaped. Great to use when leaning against a wall but fantastic if a client is on a bed for any reason, disability, epidural etc. Helps to keep the pelvic outlet open and eases discomfort
- Essential oils. I love Doterra as they are a reputable quality brand. They can be used on a hanky to hold & inhale as an anchor or is the room (I also carry lots of soft hankies). I also carry an organic coconut oil for massage or to mix with essential oils
- Homeopathy kit. I have an Ainstworth essentials kit which contains 42 remedies to help support my clients emotionally & physically
- Manuka honey sachets. Fantastic for a quick energy boost during labour & also post birth as a pick me up without giving a high followed by a low that artificial or white sugars cause
- Rebozo Scarf. A beautiful rebozo all the way from Mexico, ethically sourced. Using a rebozo can aid discomfort, remove pressure but more importantly support baby’s positioning, aiding comfortable & easier birthing
- Nightlight. Rechargeable night light that provides a little light in a dark space or changes colour. Red creates a sense of warmth & love
- After birth essentials. Body wash (scent free), face cream, lip balm. I often help my clients bathe or shower a few hours after birth, to get clean and comfortable before I leave
- Inco pads & sanitary towels. A client won’t always have their own & you never know when you might need them
- Cleaning essentials. Latex free gloves, cleaning spray (natural & organic). I sometimes have to clean a pool or package up a placenta for collection. Baby wipes, tissues etc
- Phone, charger & back up charger. A lot of my clients ask me to film or take photos of them in labour, during birth & immediately after
- My own bits & bobs. Change of clothes usually leggings & a t shirt for comfort, (you never know when you might get covered in amniotic fluid), toothbrush, hair clips, tea bags, socks, a poncho to keep warm if there is sitting around, phone charger, lip balm etc
- Snacks & drinks. It’s important I’m hydrated & have energy to support my clients. I always carry water and herbal tea bags. A strong coffee is great as a boost but I alternate a coffee with a herbal tea so I’m not buzzing on too much caffeine. My go to quick snacks are a banana, dried fruit, nuts & I LOVE dark chocolate goldenberries by Nature’s Heart (yum you have to try them)
- Some change. For car parks, or emergency snacks!
- Birkenstocks. I have the Gizeh Essentials Eva waterproof ones which are light weight, waterproof, can be sanitized & support my back. They come in handy if I'm working for long hours or doing lots of massage or rebozo
- Notebook & pen. To keep a record of anything my clients request be recorded or important information for them
What’s inside my postnatal Doula bag?....
- Homeopathy kit. To support new Mumma's with post birth recovery emotionally & physically. Supporting healing, hormonal shifts & helping with any breastfeeding issues
- Essential oils. To diffuse, for my clients to use if they want a relaxing bath or to give them a well deserved massage
- Organic coconut oil. A great non scented base for a massage for Mumma if she wants to blend some oils or used alone if she prefers non scented
- Cleaning essentials. Gloves, wipes etc incase I’m needed to help around the house
- Stretchy wrap sling. My trusty Calin Bleu stretchy wrap is wonderful when carrying a newborn. It helps baby transition from womb to world, feeling close & held
- Zensling sling/baby carrier. I love this buckle sling. It’s quick & easier to pop on plus feels soft not stiff like some carriers. I find this one better for older or bigger babies
- Herbs & spices. Most of my clients have everything we need but I like to carry my essentials such as mixed herbs to add to meat/fish dishes or turmeric & cinnamon to make warming postpartum drinks
- Bf tools. Demo breast to help show Mumma how to position & latch her baby on, hand express etc. I often also take a doll. Fact sheets on trouble shooting, resources etc.