Baby Skin Care: The Complete Parent's Guide
Up until age 2, your child’s skin is delicate and immature. It has few defenses against harsh elements, it’s easily irritated, and it’s sometimes prone to red blotches. That’s why baby skin care is so important.
In this article, the baby skin care experts at Mustela will tell you everything you need to know about your little one’s soft skin. First, we’ll cover the most common baby skin care conditions. Then we’ll explain how to choose the right baby skin care products and reveal eight simple tips for taking extra special care of your little one’s skin.
Common Baby Skin Care Conditions
Infants are known for having soft, sensitive skin. Sometimes, this leads to skin problems. Here are some of the most common baby skin care conditions.
We all get dry skin from time to time. The same is true for babies! This is especially common among newborns, who may have dry, peeling skin while they adjust to life outside the womb. Normally, newborn peeling skin goes way in a week or two.
Dry skin, on the other hand, can affect children of any age. It may be caused by harsh skin care products, dry or cold weather, or a number of other factors.
Seborrheic dermatitis, better known as cradle cap, is an extremely common newborn baby skin care condition. While it can look alarming, cradle cap is neither painful nor contagious. To put it very simply, cradle cap is just dandruff for babies.
Yet another common baby skin care condition is heat rash. Infants tend to have a good amount of baby fat, which can lead to folds and creases in their skin. Combined with tight-fitting diapers and clothing, this excess skin can become hot and irritated, leading to heat rash.
Diaper rash is similar to heat rash but occurs exclusively around your baby’s waistline and thighs. Heat may be a contributing factor to diaper rash, but the moisture and bacteria that diapers lock in also play a huge role.
Most of the time, we think of acne as a skin problem for teenagers in the midst of puberty. However, baby acne is a common baby skin care condition, too.
Baby acne is perfectly normal. It doesn’t cause any discomfort and is easily treated.
Atopic dermatitis, also known as eczema, is characterized by patches of dry, irritated, reddish-colored skin that doesn't seem to have any obvious causes. In reality, eczema is an allergy-related issue.
While experts aren’t sure why, research has shown that baby eczema is on the rise. Unfortunately, eczema is one baby skin care condition that does cause discomfort. On the bright side, treating baby eczema is possible.
Choosing The Best Baby Skin Care Products
When it comes to baby skin care, it’s essential to always choose skin care products that are specially formulated for a baby’s skin. Your little one’s skin care products should be hypoallergenic and tested under the supervision of dermatologists and pediatricians.
Here are some helpful tips for choosing all of the most important baby skin care products.
Use cleansers (rather than hash soaps) like Mustela’s Gentle Cleansing Gel or Nourishing Cleansing Gel With Cold Cream. Make sure to rinse cleansers off thoroughly to prevent irritation and dryness on your little one’s skin.
Creams And Lotions
While they might not always come to mind, baby wipes play a huge role in your little one’s skin care. Choosing the right baby wipes is essential to keeping your baby’s sensitive skin healthy.
The sun’s UV rays can severely harm your little one’s delicate skin and lead to baby sunburn. Whenever you take your child outside, be sure to apply a mineral sunscreen, rather than a chemical sunscreen. Mustela's SPF 50 Mineral Sunscreen Lotion is a safe and effective option for daily sun protection.
8 Simple Baby Skin Care Tips
1) Be Mindful When Bathing Your Baby
Bathtime is a great opportunity for bonding with your little one, but bathing too frequently (more than once per day), using the wrong bath products, or having the bath water too hot can all irritate your baby’s skin.
To bathe your little one while keeping up with best baby skin care practices, make sure the bath water is around 98 degrees Fahrenheit and follow these 10 tips for baby baths.
2) Use No-Rinse Cleansers
If you choose not to give your baby a bath every day, you can keep their skin clean on the off days with a micellar water like Mustela’s No-Rinse Cleansing Water. This will remove dirt from your baby’s pores while avoiding any irritation.
3) Change Your Baby’s Diapers Whenever Needed
It may seem like your little one’s diaper is constantly dirty, but it’s important to change it as soon as becomes soiled. Leaving your little one is a dirty diaper can lead to infections or a baby rash. While it can be laborious, it’s crucial to keep your little one in a clean diaper.
It’s also worth pointing out here that it’s OK to let your little one spend some time in their birthday suit after removing a dirty diaper and wiping their bottom. This will allow their skin to breathe and any excess moisture to evaporate.
4) Keep Your Baby’s Skin Moisturized
Just as with any adult skin care routine, moisturizing is an essential step in baby skin care. At least once per day, carefully moisturize your baby’s entire body and face using a mild moisturizing cream or body lotion on normal skin, or cold cream treatment on dry skin.
5) Give Your Baby A Gentle Massage
While moisturizing your little one’s skin, take the opportunity to briefly massage your baby if they enjoy it. Gently massage your baby’s entire body with your moisturizing product until it has fully penetrated their skin, or use a massage oil specially designed for babies.
Not only is massage very effective for relaxing your baby as preparation for sleep, but it’s also a wonderful opportunity to bond with your little one.
6) Don’t Forget The Easy-To-Miss Places
Your baby’s body has many little nooks and crannies, so make sure to cleanse and moisturize all of those hard-to-reach places.
Remember to check the area behind your baby’s ears on a regular basis. This spot is often overlooked, but it’s prone to rashes and dryness. For your baby’s lips and exposed sensitive areas, use a moisturizing stick.
7) Protect Your Baby’s Skin From The Elements
Since your little one’s skin is so sensitive, it’s important to keep them covered up to protect against the elements. When you go out with your baby during the autumn or winter months, cover sensitive areas completely (head, nose, throat, ears, hands, etc.) with a hat, scarf, mittens, and so on.
You’ll protect your child against not only colds but also the drying effects of chilly air.
8) Dress Your Baby In Layers
Because your little one can easily become too hot or a little chilly, it’s best to always dress them in layers.
When your baby seems squirmy and feels warm, just peel off a layer. If they seem uncomfortable and their body feels cold, simply add an additional layer to warm them up. This is an effective way to keep them content and is important for baby skin care.
It’s no secret that babies have sensitive, delicate skin. With the right baby skin care products, like Mustela’s, and the eight tips we’ve listed here, you’ll be caring for your baby’s skin like a pro.