by Lyn Lomasi, Write W.A.V.E. Media Staff
Some mistakenly think that healthy skin comes naturally for a baby. In a sense, it does. But, to keep infant skin healthy, proper skin care techniques should be applied. I am a mother experienced in infant skin care for several children, as well as keeping my own skin healthy. I feel my experience could be useful to many parents interested in baby skin care. Over the years, I have gained knowledge through trial and error, the advice of doctors, and also through research.
Getting Started With Healthy Infant Skin Care
Before starting to care for your baby’s skin, do a product inventory. Read labels of cleansing products, lotions and moisturizers, and laundering products. Check for unnecessary chemicals and fragrance. Products that promote healthy infant skin should include mainly water, moisturizers, disinfectants (for cleansing products), and vitamins and minerals. Beyond that, there shouldn't be many other ingredients. While fragrance is included in many baby care products, it often is not good for promoting healthy skin care. Some babies are sensitive to fragrances, dyes, and other chemicals. Even those who are not should be limited to their exposure. I personally do not use any commercial baby products and opt for making my own, due to difficulty finding any that do not contain harmful chemicals.
Cleansing Your Baby’s Skin For Optimal Health
The first step to maintaining healthy skin for an infant is properly cleansing the skin. A baby should not necessarily be using the same cleansers as an adult. Some of those can be harsh on a baby's skin, causing it to dry out or get irritated. Dry or irritated skin is not healthy skin. A good baby cleansing product should contain a cleanser or disinfectant, possibly a moisturizer, water, and vitamins or minerals. Other ingredients should be minimal or non-existent. Soft cloths made of 100% cotton are best for applying cleansers to infant skin. Plain, fragrance free glycerin soap with only oatmeal and almond oil (not to be confused with almond extract or scented essential oils) is a good choice. It’s actually quite easy to make your own.
Moisturizers For Infant Skin Health
Moisturizing is another important step to healthy skin care in infants. Many babies naturally have soft skin, but to maintain that soft, healthy skin, frequent moisturizing is necessary. Using just any moisturizer is not necessarily better than none. The harsh ingredients in some of them can be detrimental to healthy skin care for a baby and can actually deplete moisture. If you can’t make your own products, check labels to be sure the ingredients consist of a proper moisturizer, preferably some vitamins and minerals, as well as purified water. I personally recommend simple coconut or almond oil infused with pure (unfragranced) vitamin E oil.
Bedding and Clothing Play an Important Role in Infant Skin Care
Often overlooked are the garments babies wear, as well as their bedding. Anything that comes in contact with a baby's skin should be considered in maintaining healthy skin care habits. Be cautious of the fabrics used to make the bedding and clothing. Also, pay attention to the laundering products used. Avoid products that contain chemicals, fragrances, and dyes. Natural laundry detergent is best for maintaining healthy skin care in an infant.
To avoid wrinkling in the clothing, try hanging the clothing neatly on the clothesline in the sun. The sunshine method also can help to freshen the clothing, taking away the need for a fabric refresher. Another freshening method is to add a small amount of baking soda (maybe a teaspoon) to the washer with a cup of vinegar. This can serve as a cleanser, disinfectant, de-wrinkler, and fabric softener all at once.
Things to Remember:
*I originally published a version of this via Yahoo Contributor Network
by Lyn Lomasi, Write W.A.V.E. Media Staff
Are you a frugal mom or dad? Even if you answered no, I can show how to be frugal with at least one thing. Kids go through clothing just as fast as they go through water. But by being smart, as well as creative, you can make kids clothing last longer. I regularly practice what I preach on this because clothes are expensive. Who wants to buy new ones before the existing ones have been used more than a couple times? From laundering habits to crafts, there are several methods my kids and I use to get full use of their clothes.
Use fabric and accessories to extend the life of clothes they grow out of. Kids grow so fast, sometimes so much so that it seems they barely get any wearing time from their clothes. What I like to do with my kids is have a fun craft session where we add fabric and other accessories to clothing to increase the size. For instance, if jeans still fit the waist but are a little short in the legs, add some length with fabric, lace, and other embellishments. If the waist has gotten a bit too small, open up each side seam and add some fun fabric to let the waist out a little. Add matching fabric in other areas (such as the knees) that might be worn out.
Use gentle laundry products. Frequent cleaning with products that are too harsh on clothing can reduce its lifespan. Try using gentler, non-abrasive cleansers that are free of chemicals, perfumes, and dyes. This can help increase the number of wears your child gets out of the clothing. It's also better for the environment and the health of your child. Look for products made from natural ingredients. But also check to make sure those ingredients are not too harsh on your child's clothing or to the skin.
Wash on gentle cycle or by hand. Kids are already rough on their clothes as it is. Ease up on the wear and tear by hand washing their clothing or washing it on gentle cycle. Washing clothing by hand can be much gentler than other methods if done right. Try not to scrub too hard as this will certainly not help the clothes last longer. Lukewarm water is best when it comes to being gentle with clothing. Extreme temperatures can cause colors to fade. Also, if you are washing by hand, lukewarm will be gentler on your skin.
Line dry the clothing. Rather than exposing clothing to the intense heat in a dryer, try line-drying the clothing instead. If you must use the dryer, use a low heat or air dry setting. Over time, exposure to high heat can cause fading in your child's clothing. Line drying can help make the clothing last longer. But be careful of how you do that as well. If you leave the clothing in high temperatures outside or right in the direct sunlight too long, fading also may occur.
Cut it up to make new clothing. Another thing the kids and I like to do, especially my oldest daughter, is to cut things up for making new outfits. Skirt too short? Chop a piece off of another in the same condition and sew the two together for a funky look. Have a dress that's grown too short? Chop it up to make a shirt from the top half. A bottom seam will be easy to sew. Use the leftovers to add to a skirt or chop it up to make patches, headbands, and more. The kids and I always have fun doing this. It helps us extend the life of their clothing and also gives us a great family activity. Be careful when deciding who can use scissors and other sewing materials that may pose a danger.
Lyn Lomasi is founder and owner of the Brand Shamans network. She is your brand healing, soul healing, marketing & content superhero to the rescue! Running a network of websites, tackling deadlines single-handedly, and coaching fellow writers, brands, & entrepreneurs to be thought leaders is her top priority.
While rescuing civilians from boring content and brands, this awesomely crazy family conquers the world, managing Intent-sive Nature while going on Upstream Parenting adventures & lessons, sometimes in an RV. They strive to cuddle with lions and giraffes. Until then, they settle for rescue dogs and cats.
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