Expectant mother with toddler sat above her pregnant belly

At NappyLuxe, we are passionate about supporting parents in all aspects of preparing to welcome a new baby into the world, well beyond the realms of cloth nappies.

That's why we have written this handy guide to explain what a doula is, and have included a doula directory to help you find one.

If you've ever wondered: what is a doula - this guide has the answers you've been searching for.

Whether you're new to the concept of doulas or simply looking for the perfect doula to join you on your parenting adventure, our directory provides the information and resources you need.

Doula meaning - what is a doula?

A doula is someone who supports a person in childbirth, including the lead up during pregnancy, and postnatally after baby has arrived.

They provide new parents with compassion, empowerment, confidence, nourishment, education, and more.

Whilst a doula isn't providing you with medical services, most doula's have had children themselves and undergone training in childbirth.

Doulas usually work with birthing parents wanting to have a natural birth, but they can work with those wanting any type of birth including a cesarean section.

What does a doula do in pregnancy?

During pregnancy, a doula works closely with the expectant parent, any other support people, and health professionals in some instances, to understand the person's wishes for their birth.

The doula then helps the mother or birthing parent to produce a birth plan.

During pregnancy, a doula also provides information and guidance about what to expect during labour and the birth.

A doula can also help parents practice ahead of the birth using breathing techniques, trying labour positions, and ensuring they are comfortable

What is a birth doula?

During the birth, a doula helps advocate for the mother/birthing parent, to ensure their wishes are respected.

As part of their service, doulas are usually pre-arranged to be available at short notice in order to be present for the birth.

They can help ensure the parents have everything they need and are comfortable during the labour process.

They can provide the birthing parent with strategies for staying calm, motivated, and relaxed.

A doula can also keep the mother/birthing parent and support team updated on how the labour is progressing.

A doula may provide advice on your essential baby hospital bag checklist to ensure you feel prepared ahead of the birth.

Ultimately, a doula can provide a line of communication between healthcare professionals and the expectant parents, who often are new to the childbirth process.

What is a postpartum doula?

Following the birth of the baby, a doula plays a crucial role in providing postpartum care for the new mother / birthing parent.

They offer practical and emotional support to help them navigate this transformative time.

A postpartum doula understands the unique needs of the new parent, having just given birth, and provides assistance with a wide range of tasks.

They can help with breastfeeding, offering guidance and support to ensure a successful nursing journey.

A postpartum doula ensures that the mother / birthing parent is well taken care of during their recovery.

They can help with light household chores, meal preparation, and running errands, allowing the parent to focus on rest and self-care.

They may also provide emotional support, acting as a listening ear and offering reassurance as the parent adjusts to a new role.

A postpartum doula can also assist with caring for the new baby, such as preparing and changing the baby's reusable nappies, or providing settling advice to keep baby happy.

A doula who understands cloth nappies may provide advice on how to use cloth nappies with your newborn, and tips for how to change the nappies.

Ultimately, a postpartum doula is mainly dedicated to the well-being of the mother / birthing parent, ensuring they feel supported, empowered, and confident in their new journey of parenting.

Understanding the difference: doulas vs midwives

A doula is a trained professional who provides emotional, informational, and physical support to parents during pregnancy, labour, and postpartum.

Doulas offer non-medical assistance, such as reassurance, advocacy, and guidance, but are not providing medical services or performing clinical tasks.

In comparison, a midwife is a healthcare provider who is trained in the medical aspects of pregnancy, childbirth, and postpartum care.

Midwives offer comprehensive prenatal care, attend births, and provide medical interventions when necessary.

Midwives can perform some medical procedures, prescribe medications, and offer a range of healthcare services tailored to the person's needs.

While doulas focus on emotional support and non-medical care, midwives provide medical expertise.

Doulas and midwives often work together to provide holistic care, with midwives handling the medical aspect and doulas providing additional support.

Hiring a doula - find a doula near me 

In order to assist expectant parents in hiring a doula that's local, we've compiled the below list by state.

Please note that we have not independently evaluated or endorsed the services of the doulas listed in this directory. This list is provided solely as a resource and does not constitute a recommendation from us. If you are considering engaging their services, it is your sole responsibility to decide whether a doula is right for you, and to thoroughly assess and ensure that they align with your specific requirements and preferences.


The Nesting Doula

New Beginnings Birth

New South Wales

Anna-Maria Doula

Essential Me Doula


The Bayside Doula

Empowering Mama Doula Services

The Hold Doula

South Australia

Elemental Beginnings


Krista Mccimmon


Your Birth Bestie

The Queer Doula

Western Australia

Bonnie The Doula

Doula Matters

If you are a Doula and would like to be listed in our directory, please get in touch with us.

Meet the Author

Natalie Lassen

Black and white photo of Natalie with her daughter cuddling

Natalie, Founder of NappyLuxe, is an eco-conscious mother and entrepreneur who discovered the benefits of cloth nappies for her family and the environment. With a mission to create the ultimate cloth nappy, she spent years researching and testing various designs before launching NappyLuxe - a range of high-quality, easy-to-use, and ultra-absorbent cloth nappies. Natalie is passionate about sharing her experience and expertise, helping parents make informed decisions and embark on their own sustainable parenting journey.


July 06, 2023 — Natalie Lassen