As I get ready for Baby’s arrival, I’ve started to wonder why kind of moisturizer, if any, he will need?
Baby’s Dry, Flaky Skin
I know lots of friends who’ve had little babies with dry, flaky skin. They’ve tried all kinds of things to address it, including:
a) Nothing (waiting it out, often to no avail)
b) Lotions and creams from the drug store. Sometimes, these worked.
c) All-natural moisturizers — I think these worked more often than the products from the drug store.
Babies Have Sensitive Skin!
It’s no secret that babies have super sensitive skin. They’re brand new to this world and they’re not accustomed to all the chemicals (both synthetic and naturally occurring ones) that can be found in everyday products, like soaps, shampoos, and moisturizers. If you read my post on essential oils, you’ll see that it seems better to avoid using any kind of essential oil on a newborn for the first three months, at least.
Ingredients to Avoid
Off the top of my head, I know that, if faced with this issue, I would do everything I could to avoid any synthetic ingredients or unnecessary chemicals in my baby’s skin care. This would include things like Vaseline, anything highly scented, and any moisturizers that had the unnecessary chemicals that I myself avoid. It’s also important to avoid essential oils for the first few months.
Would I use the lotion or cream that I make for myself?
Well…maybe. I take a lot of pride in my homemade lotions and creams. They are made with the best ingredients that I can find. However, I think that I would go one step further and use a homemade balm instead. I would use one that is based on beeswax and moisturizing butters, like shea butter or mango butter.
Why a Balm and not a Lotion or Cream?
The most important difference between my lotions and creams and the balm that I’m proposing is that there is no water in the balm. When water is involved, there’s a need for a preservative. Why introduce a preservative when there’s no real need? Balms are also really easy to make in small batches. The last thing I like about homemade balms is that you can control the consistency. I like it best when the balm is solid in the jar, but softens and warms as soon as you touch it. This makes it easy to spread on the skin.
Another great option would be a plain coconut oil. Coconut oil is great for the skin and works well on its own.
How Do I Deal With Skin Irritation?
For mild skin irritation, in babies and adults, zinc oxide is a great additive to help soothe and heal skin. Zinc oxide is an easy additive for homemade products.
Of course, if the skin irritation is anything more than mild and doesn’t go away with a bit of zinc oxide cream, then I’m sure a visit to the doctor may be in order, just to be sure.
This all sounds a bit idealistic…
Yes, I admit, this all sounds a bit idealistic. After all, what new mom has time to make homemade skin care products, learn how to be a mom, and deal with all the hubbub that comes with a new baby?
I’m sure there are some out there who do it all and make it look easy. I doubt that I will fall into that category.
Instead, I’ll be busy over the next few weeks experimenting with different balm recipes to find one that I think it neutral enough to use on a newborn’s skin. Stay tuned for pictures and updates!
November 6, 2012 at 5:38 pm
Love this post! I made my Daughter a balm before she was born which contained organic castor, sunflower & camellia oils – worked a treat! When she was about four months I added a small % of lavender & chamomile e/o’s. I later took out the lavender as I felt it detracted from her baby smell though 🙂 About the Mum thing – we’re always learning, I would challenge anyone to say they’re the perfect parent! I made my ‘potions’ when she was sleeping & usually whilst wearing my PJ’s! 😉 Good luck & look forward to seeing what you come up with! 🙂
November 7, 2012 at 7:29 am
Thanks so much! I’m so looking forward to making some great baby products and I’m glad to hear that I’m not the first who will have to experiment as I go! Thanks for the lovely message!
November 7, 2012 at 9:04 am
You’re most welcome! I’d definitely advise to do as much as possible before the wee one arrives, but after the first couple of months it get’s much easier once they’re in some sort of routine 🙂 I also made a body butter for stretchmarks which contained cocoa butter, argan, rosehip & wheatgerm oil in it, plus neroli e/o. Tangerine is meant to be quite good for stretchmarks too, if you like the smell 🙂 x
November 7, 2012 at 10:31 am
Thanks for the tips on stretch marks. I’ve just started using coconut oil and want to try that for a few days to see if it works better than the oil I’ve been using. I love all of the oils you mentioned, as well as the citrus scents, so that might be my next experiment if the coconut oil doesn’t pan out!
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January 3, 2013 at 6:37 pm
I like your passion, I like to tinker with natural products myself, your post was inspiring. thank you.
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