Choosing a Safer Baby Moisturizer
Baby skin is extremely sensitive and susceptible to irritation. Before you slather on any creams or lotions, read our article to find out what ingredients to avoid and why as well as the best non-toxic baby personal care picks.
Have you ever stared in awe at the smoothness and softness of a baby’s skin?
That’s because baby skin is actually quite different to that of adults. While on one hand it means a buttery soft bottom, it also means that it’s far more sensitive and susceptible to irritation.
To allow babies to grow and develop, their skin starts out thinner so it can expand rapidly. As a result, their thinner skin means that anything you put on your baby is absorbed into their bloodstream relatively quickly.
This is why it’s so important to be conscious of the types of products that you use.
In this article, we’ll go over:
- Ingredients to avoid in baby moisturizers, lotions & oils
- What to look for when choosing baby personal care products
- How to soothe a baby’s irritated skin
- The best non-toxic baby personal care products
Scroll down to learn more.
Ingredients to avoid when choosing baby moisturizer
When shopping for any type of product that goes on your baby’s skin, make sure that you read the ingredients list. While something may smell like rainbows and sunshine, some not so nice chemicals may be lurking.
Below is a list of ingredients you should avoid in all personal care products:
- Parabens: Parabens are a group of chemicals used primarily as a preservative in skincare products. Any product that contains water as an ingredient typically needs a preservative to extend shelf life and prevent the growth of mold and bacteria. The issue here is that these parabens have shown to have estrogen mimicking properties. On labels any ingredient ending with “-paraben” is part of this group of chemicals so it’s best to be avoided.
- Fragrance/Parfum: Phthalates are never listed on any packaging. They are disguised as “fragrance” or “parfum” on a product label. Phthalates are used to bind scents to a product and typically if there are no naturally occurring scents in a product such as lavender oil or shea butter, product makers need phthalates to make that baby powder scent stick. Phthalates also have estrogenic properties which, according to many independent studies, disrupt hormone balances in the body.
- PEGs (Polyethylene Glycol): Avoid products with synthetic ethoxylated ingredients including those with strange names like myreth, oleth, laureth, ceteareth and other “eth”, PEG, polyethylene, polyethylene glycol, polyoxyethylene, or oxynol. These can be contaminated in the processing with 1,4 dioxane which is classified as a potential human carcinogen. It’s best to stay away from body care products in general that are loaded with petroleum-based ingredients.
- Propylene Glycol: Propylene glycol is a thickening/filling agent derived from glycerin and is in everything from store-bought hair dyes to many of your natural deodorants. Propylene glycol has been determined as “generally safe for use” by the FDA for both food and cosmetic use, but something that is also used to de-ice airplanes is probably best left off your baby’s skin.
What to look for when choosing baby personal care products
If you do need something to combat dryness, there are many natural options available on the market. Depending on the child, you may have to be extra cautious even with natural ingredients, especially if your baby has eczema or allergies to nuts or other ingredients.
Here are a few things to consider when shopping for a baby moisturizer:
- Look for products that don’t list “water” on the ingredients list. These products are less likely to need preservatives, chemical stabilizers or fillers.
- Butters and oils are very moisturizing so seek out ingredients like shea butter or coconut oil to help relieve itchy skin.
- The less ingredients the better! If there is a massive list of ingredients, it’s probably best to stay away unless you really understand what each one is. A great body butter or lotion doesn’t need too much to make it safe and effective.
- Seek out unscented products to avoid problems with allergies or eczema. If you prefer something mildly scented opt for naturally scented products that utilize essential oils instead of chemical components. But again, if a child is extremely sensitive, avoid products scented with pure essential oils as well as they can be quite potent. The best thing to do is to trial a little moisturizer on a small patch of skin.
How to soothe a baby’s irritated skin
Infants typically don’t need lotion or body creams because their skin is so soft and supple. However, things like milk rash, cold weather and allergens can cause irritation. Here are a few ways to keep their skin moisturized in the cold months or after bath time:
- Bath Oils: Add 1 – 2 drops of a baby-safe oil (for babies over 3 months old) such as chamomile to their bath water. No lotion necessary after they are toweled off.
- Skip a bath: Babies don’t get that dirty! Unless they’ve had a major blow out, you can sometimes get away with just using a warm wash cloth to give them a head-to-toe clean. Allowing their skin to regulate itself is a great way to keep them from getting dry or itchy.
- Coconut Oil: Have a rough patch or itchy spot? Just a dab of organic coconut oil may be all you need to spot treat.
The best non-toxic & hypoallergenic baby personal care products
At The Tot, we never use or recommend anything that hasn’t passed The Tot Safety Test.
This means we’ve reviewed third-party testing, examined ingredients lists and asked in length about a product’s composition.
Below are all Tot Tested and approved baby personal care products!
Butter / Cream / Oil
- Want more non-toxic personal care products for you and your kiddos? Visit The Tot Family Wellness & Beauty Shop!
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