Your baby’s skin is very delicate, especially as a newborn. We’ve got some great tips for you to help you take care of it every day.
– Your baby doesn’t need to have a bath every day, especially if they have dry skin or a skin condition. A daily top and tail wash is fine, or if you do want to do a daily bath don’t use too many products. Bubble bath and body washes can be drying on your baby’s skin and make them more prone to conditions such as eczema. Use plain water or look for emollient products than encourage moisture.
– Whilst disposable nappies are very absorbent, your baby’s skin can still be irritated when they have done a wee. Change your baby at least every couple of hours, and always as soon as possible when they have done a poo. You can use a barrier cream to protect your baby’s skin in between changes. Look for something which stays on the skin even when it gets wet.
– If you can face it, aim for some time for your baby to not have a nappy on. This allows air to circulate and is great for babies who get nappy rash often. If you’re worried about accidents, head out to the garden or stick to areas with wooden floors.
– Many parents would be lost without their baby wipes, but some brands or varieties can contain ingredients that irritate your baby’s skin. In some cases even between siblings, one brand can be suitable for one child and not the other. Look for brands which are specially formulated for sensitive skin or contain few ingredients. Cotton wool and plain water is the gentlest option for your baby, but this can be less convenient for nappy changes.
– It can be very tempting to try and pick off any patches of cradle cap on your baby’s scalp but this can cause the hair to come out with it. Use a special shampoo or massage petroleum jelly or olive oil into the scalp. This should encourage the flakes to lift by themselves.
– Try to avoid any products which contain synthetic fragrances, as these can be irritating and can also aggravate asthma or hay fever.
– Babies under six months old should not be exposed to any direct sunlight at all, as this can be very damaging to their skin. Use plenty of shade and high factor suncream if you do go outside, especially between 11am and 3pm when the sun is hottest. Look for a sunscreen which has UVA and UVB protection and reapply frequently, even with a high SPF. Dress your baby in loose clothing and use a brimmed hat to protect and the face and neck. Do not cover your pram or pushchair with any material as this emphasises the heat inside. Use a parasol or separate shade instead.
Caring for your baby’s skin doesn’t have to be a difficult task. Choosing the right products and keeping an eye out for any soreness or irritation will help keep it soft and clean. Plus you wouldn’t want to replace the lovely newborn smell!