How To Choose Safer Baby Skincare Products
As a parent, you’ve probably lost count of the times you’ve asked yourself, “Is this safe for my baby?”, regardless if you’re shopping for clothing, food or skincare. In today’s world with so many items and brands to choose from, it can be challenging to figure out which ones are actually natural and safe for your little one. Together with our chemical engineering friends who run a clean baby skincare company, NOLEO, we want to help you navigate the products that go in between our buttery-soft baby clothes and your little one’s thin and sensitive skin.
Here are 5 tips and best practices every parent should keep in their mind when buying skincare for their baby:
1) Know what to avoid
Before you start to assess baby care products, the number one rule is to get to know the harmful ingredients you should look out for on their labels. Next, write down a list of the “no-no’s” and keep it in the notes on your phone or on a piece of paper in your wallet. This will make it easier for you to identify which products to steer clear of. Some of the main ingredients to avoid are:
Fragrances / perfumes
These harsh chemicals, some of which are umbrella terms for hundreds of undisclosed chemicals, can irritate your little one’s skin and potentially lead to more serious health complications.
For diaper changes, The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) advises parents not to use cornstarch or talc-based baby powders. Although talc-based baby powder has been used for years to keep the diaper area dry, we’re now aware of several harmful side effects associated with its use due to its asbestos contamination. Some major skincare companies have faced several lawsuits because of the link between their baby powder, cancer, and other side effects. While cornstarch is relatively safer than talc-based powders, babies’ lungs can still get irritated if the powder is inhaled.
2) Less is more
Being a minimalist when it comes to ingredients is the way to go! Short ingredient lists and minimal formulations typically make the best baby care product choices. Opt for products that contain as few ingredients as possible with names you can pronounce or recognize - just not the ones from your no-no list.. :)
If a company isn’t transparent about what they’re putting in their baby skincare products, consider it a major red flag and you should run away right away. Without knowing what you’re putting on your baby you have no chance of knowing how the products will affect them short and long term.
3) Use skin-microbiome friendly products
Many researchers agree that the skin microbiome, a complex and diverse environment of microorganisms on the skin’s surface, plays a key role in keeping our skin healthy — and the same goes for the little ones.
When babies are born and brought out of the sterile womb, their skin microbiota immediately begins to develop as they are exposed to their environment. Though the studies are still developing, researchers have already gathered some knowledge as to what affects the balance of our skin microbiome. Alcohol, antibacterial chemicals, and antibiotics may have the biggest impact on it. Even so, high amounts of ingredients and unnatural additives are also indicators that a baby care product may not be microbiome friendly.
Avoiding strong antibacterial products and using products that are certified skin-microbiome friendly is a good way to ensure the best long-term skin health for your little one.
4) Pay attention to certifications and distinctions
Many baby care products make empty claims that aren’t backed by research, or that are purely made up. Using words like “organic” and “all-natural” in marketing, even though their ingredients don’t match up to their claims, is a way too common practice in the industry. Some companies are also able to work their way around regulations and use ingredients that aren’t proven safe, while still making their products seem like they are a good and safe choice for your babe, so you have to watch out.
Luckily, several organizations provide certifications and distinctions to products that meet certain standards. For example, the National Eczema Association awards certain products with their Seal of Acceptance™ if they are free of known irritants to eczema-prone and sensitive skin. EWG is also a great non-profit website / app where you can look up many products and how their ingredients are rated for toxicity. Another organization, MyMicrobiome, tests personal care products for their impact on the skin’s microbiome. If a product effectively preserves the existing good bacteria on the skin, it receives the “Microbiome Friendly” certification.
5) Ditch baby wipes for organic cotton pads
We don’t have to tell you twice that organic cotton is the best choice for your baby, according to our long and extensive research, but did you realize that you can and also should consider using it instead of baby wipes? Many baby wipes contain harsh chemicals that can irritate sensitive skin and cause diaper rash. In fact, some hospitals have stopped using baby wipes after they noticed a link between diaper rash and the wipes. Even some sensitive versions have the potential to cause irritation and rashes. We recommend opting for a gentle diaper cleanser with a minimal formulation paired with cotton pads. Soft cotton is perfect for wiping away messes, while a minimal formulation won’t irritate the sensitive diaper area. Plus, organic cotton pads are better for the environment. Unlike baby wipes, which never break down in the environment, pure organic cotton pads are naturally biodegradable and compostable.
If you don’t want to search for a product that ticks every box yourself, our friends at NOLEO have done the hard work for you. Better yet, they created something more like “the TØY Newborn Jumpsuit of baby skincare”.
NOLEO 3-in-1 Diaper Rash Cream is formulated with only 5 simple ingredients: organic sunflower oil, organic olive oil, limewater, beeswax, and glyceryl stearate. It cleanses, moisturizes, treats, and prevents diaper rash, and it can be used on all part of your baby’s skin that are in need of gentle cleaning and moisturizing. Minimal yet effective, NOLEO 3-in-1 is a great option for parents seeking a natural alternative to traditional diaper care. Last but not least, NOLEO is setting the standard for microbiome safety, being the only diaper care product with microbiome friendly certification!
For a limited time only*, NOLEO is offering a free 3-oz bottle ($11 value) with a purchase of $15 or more.
Discount code: FREETHREETOEY