Pregnancy and birth are times of extreme fluctuation and transformation within the mind and body. The physical demands of growing another life are both wondrous and challenging. It’s so important to prioritise self-care, find stability, and get enough rest.
As a woman and her body transition through the sacred stages of pregnancy to motherhood, herbal medicines offer a gentle way to nourish, vitalize, and support. With the daily fluctuations of hormones, energy levels, and emotions; teas, supplements, tinctures, and botanical oils can provide a much-needed sense of ritual and stability in a new mother's ever-changing world.
Whether it's preparing the womb for childbirth, supporting healthy lactation, reducing pregnancy nausea, stabilising fluctuating emotions, easing aches and pains, or healing the womb, you can rely on herbs to help support your body through each chapter of the journey.
Some of the questions we'll explore include:
- What herbs are recommended for new mothers?
- Which herbs are useful during pregnancy?
- Can herbal tea help with nursing?
- Is herbal medicine safe for pregnant women and after giving birth?
- Which natural products offer support after giving birth?
- What ingredients should I look out for in a baby massage oil?
- Can herbal oils help with scars and stretch marks?
Are Herbs Safe During Pregnancy and for New Mothers?
Many herbs are safe and effective during pregnancy, to support new mothers – and even for newborns (for topical application or through the mother’s breast milk if she is breastfeeding). We've included some of those below and rest assured that any of the pregnancy products we recommend here are made with safety as their first priority. It's very important to be advised by a qualified professional as you navigate the field, so you're in the right place!
It's essential to consult a medical herbalist or other healthcare practitioner before taking herbs during pregnancy and breastfeeding to make sure you are choosing the best possible medicine for yourself and your baby. For understandable ethical reasons, there is relatively limited research available on the potential effects of certain herbs (and conventional medication) on pregnant women – since clinical studies generally exclude pregnant women from their scope out of precaution.
Herbs for Pregnancy, New Mothers & Baby
If you’re wondering where to start with integrating herbs into your pregnancy and postpartum plan, there are plenty of tried and tested options. Some of our herbalists' favourites include Chamomile, St. John's wort, Calendula, Oat Straw, Rose, Lavender, Yarrow, Lady’s Mantle, Nettle, and Marshmallow leaf.
Roman Chamomile to ease stress and sleeping troubles
Native to Morocco, Roman Chamomile is a must-have herb throughout your journey into motherhood. Thanks to its relaxing properties, roman chamomile can support relief from insomnia, stress, and anxiety. During pregnancy, it’s best to turn to this friendly herb for comfort and calm topically, in the form of oils and bathing herbs - especially if you are struggling with body aches, strains, inflammation, skin complaints, or need some muscular tension relief.
Roman Chamomile has been found to have significant antibacterial and wound healing capabilities, can soothe aches and pains, and promote skin repair. For new mothers, it may be helpful to reduce stretch marks and scarring, as well as for healing the perineum when used in sitz baths.
Calendula to promote healing, soothe pain and relieve nappy rash
Calendula has a long history of use in eastern medical systems, due to its gentle but powerful healing capabilities. Calendula is commonly used for treating wounds, rashes, inflammation, and infections on account of its ability to promote new tissue growth and cell repair.
With pain-reducing powers and anti-fungal and anti-septic properties, calendula is especially supportive for newborns in relieving diaper rash and soothing skin concerns, such as eczema. Calendula is best used topically in oils and baths throughout pregnancy, and postpartum for healing childbirth wounds. It can also be drunk in teas postpartum for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects.
Oat Straw to relieve muscle aches and provide blood-building nutrients
Oat straw is a supportive and nourishing herb derived from Avena Sativa or green oats. Its traditional uses vary from nurturing the skin and achy muscles, to strengthening the bones, hair, teeth, and nails, as well as soothing the nervous system to relieve stress, insomnia, and fatigue.
Physiologically, expecting and new mums’ bodies are constantly experiencing so much change. Oat straw can provide a grounding feeling of balance and harmony throughout these changes, both in body and mind. For new mums, oat straw can support restful, restorative sleep. It’s also rich in blood-building nutrients such as iron, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, and vitamins A, C, and B that support both mum and baby’s overall wellness when drank in pregnancy and nursing teas. New mums can also soak in oat straw body and foot baths to soothe tired, inflamed, dry skin and relieve muscle aches.
Raspberry leaf to tone the pelvic muscles
You will of course be familiar with raspberry the fruit. But did you know that the leaves of the same plant are used medicinally? Raspberry leaf has been traditionally used in the last trimester of pregnancy to help prepare women for childbirth, as it helps to tone the uterine and pelvic muscles. Taken after birth, raspberry leaf also stimulates the flow of breast milk and speeds healing. Raspberry leaf acts as a more general female reproductive tonic as well: it helps relieve painful periods and balance a heavy menstrual flow. It is also a very helpful herb to support digestion: it protects our gut lining from irritation and inflammation. If you ever try to chew on a fresh raspberry leaf, you will notice their mild bitterness and astringency (they may leave the inside of your mouth feeling very dry) — which is a sign of the presence of tannins, which participate in its uterine and gut lining protective actions.
Yarrow for comforting sitz baths
Yarrow is famously used around the world to support mothers through childbirth and postpartum on account of its highly effective healing capabilities. Yarrow improves pelvic circulation - meaning it supports the body to bring fresh blood, oxygen, and nutrients into the area to increase the healing of wounds and swelling, soothe cramps and spasms, reduce inflammation and ease tension. Yarrow is a styptic herb, meaning it stops bleeding. Yarrow is best used by new mums in comforting and healing sitz baths.
Suggested Products for a Natural and Healthy Pregnancy
We know that as new mothers, time can feel like a depleting resource. Having some quick-to-access, pre-blended, trusted natural products on hand can help you fit a healing tea, a nourishing soak, or a mini massage into your day.
We’ve teamed up with mother earth to create a range of teas, tinctures, and oils that you can rely on to add a little magic to your days, all with the peace of mind that our special blends will also contribute to healing, bonding, and all-round health for you and your newborn.
Herbal Oils for New Mums
Our Stretch Mark and Scar Oil is a powerful blend of roman chamomile, rosemary and sweet orange, jojoba, rosehip, St. John's wort, gotu kola, calendula, borage, and evening primrose oils with added vitamin E.
It’s been developed to promote skin elasticity and collagen production while supporting the skin's natural healing process. This team of herbs works together to reduce the formation of stretch marks and speed up the healing of existing marks and scars. With antiseptic, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory properties, this oil will also aid in protection from infections, environmental pollution and UV rays.
This oil has been formulated Sweet almond, calendula, chickweed, and borage oil, with added vitamin E to supports baby's growth and thermoregulation. Our Baby Massage Oil nourishes and protects the skin, soothes and cools any irritation and brings much-needed comfort to your baby care routine. It can be massaged into baby’s skin daily to create a loving ritual that enhances the bonding between parent and child.
This therapeutic blend has been specially curated with mum-to-be in mind. Jojoba, calendula, and rose oil come together with rose geranium, roman chamomile, and lavender essential oil with added vitamin E to create a soothing, relaxing experience that nourishes and protects your skin. These oils form an alliance to promote skin elasticity, prevent stretch marks, aid healthy circulation and softly protect and cleanse the skin. An aromatherapy experience, this oil’s fragrant properties ease stress and anxiety, nurture a deep night's sleep, and uplift mum’s mood. Warm in the hands for a gentle self-massage, or add to bath water for a rejuvenating soak.
Our Herbal Pregnancy Teas
Delicious, nutritious, and wonderfully nourishing; sipping on this tea will bring you comfort and calm throughout the latter two trimesters of your pregnancy. Our herbalists have combined nettle leaf, raspberry leaf, lemon balm, rose, spearmint, oat straw, marshmallow leaf, and ginger to provide a range of vitamins and minerals such as vitamins A and C, iron, calcium, silica, magnesium, and potassium to keep mum and baby healthy.
This tea blend has a range of superpowers that can help to ease the rigours of child-bearing and birth with uterus strengthening and nervous system soothing properties. It has gut lining protection powers, stimulates liver and kidney function, and relieves fluid retention. This blend can ease aches and pains in muscles and joints, as well as alleviate nausea, bloating, wind and gastritis. These herbs’ abilities don’t stop there; you can rely on our pregnancy tea for a good night's rest, to promote circulation and elicit a calm, balanced mood.
This comforting, supportive herbal tea has been lovingly blended to support new mums postpartum. Our new mother’s tea provides deep nourishment and healing qualities thanks to raspberry leaf, chamomile, calendula, nettle leaf, peppermint, lady’s mantle, and rose. The wide array of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants in this tea gently strengthens and soothes the uterine and pelvic muscles to restore the elasticity of the womb and optimises internal and external healing of wounds following childbirth.
This tea further supports recovery by way of its anti-inflammatory and nervous system regulation properties, meaning both physical and mental irritation, anxiety and insomnia will be gently eased. Our new mother’s tea can also help to balance hormone levels, fight against infections, heal internal wounds, as well as supports digestion and toxin elimination.
Our nursing tea offers a range of herbs blended together to support the health and vitality of mum and baby by providing a range of nutrients, such as vitamins A and C, iron, calcium, silica, magnesium, and potassium. This herbal blend not only supports mum and baby's health but can also fuel breast milk production and healthy lactation. Our nursing tea nurtures a healthy state of calm and bonding for both mum and baby by soothing mum's nervous system into a state of relaxation and ease, which is then passed on to her baby via co-regulation. This tea provides Anti-inflammatory and antispasmodic qualities; easing cramps, spasms, and tension and stimulating lactation for the production of deeply nourishing breast milk.
Soothing Bath Blends For New Mums
Rest, relax and recover by soaking in this soothing combination of dried herbs, essential oils, and Himalayan salts. Our pregnancy bath salts will ease stress and tension, soothe aches and pains, nourish the skin and promote all-around relaxation and nourishment.
These bath salts support the skin’s natural barrier and support gentle exfoliation. The anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antibacterial herbal properties support the body in dealing with infections, wounds, rashes, aches, and tension. With just the right amount of essential oils, soaking in this blend will relieve stress, anxiety and insomnia, all whilst bringing a radiant glow to the skin.
Our new mother’s bath herbs are a natural but effective way to soothe pain and irritation and support the healing process after childbirth. For use in herbal sitz baths, lavender, raspberry leaf, calendula, yarrow, plantain, rose, chamomile, and lady’s mantle team together to heal the perineum, strengthen and re-tone the womb and relieve inflammation. This botanical blend also helps regulate the nervous system; easing tension, stress, and anxiety.
New mums can rely on these bath salts to aid in cleansing, soothing, and healing the body after birth. These bath salts comprise Himalayan pink salt, Epsom salts, calendula, yarrow, lady’s mantle, chamomile, bearberry, and rose, as well as lavender, rose geranium, and roman chamomile essential oils. Full of body nurturing trace minerals, soaking in these salts can support the skin's natural barrier, hydrate and detoxify, loosen stiff joints and ease pain, swelling and inflammation. These salts will promote skin cell repair and wound healing, fight infections, support healthy circulation, stanch excessive bleeding, relieve cramps, calm sore nipples, as well as help to clear up anxiety, insomnia, and stress. A new mother's best friend? We think so!
The Zen Maitri team has spent countless hours developing a range of pregnancy products. We’re incredibly proud of them, and we hope they’ll help you on your journey into motherhood. Take a look through our pregnancy collection here.