What baby toiletries do I need?
Well, that really depends on how old your little cherub is! Newborns really don’t need very much at all, while older babies and young children are usually always covered in food, vomit, snot & poop. Often all at once. So, yeah, baby toiletries are a good idea in that case. A really good idea.
But don’t rush out to buy one of everything just yet! Take a look at our list of baby ‘must haves’; we’ve also included a few links to our favourite products, so take a peek at those too!
The ‘Must Haves’ Baby Toiletries
Eat.Sleep.Poop.Repeat. Again and again…and again! Here’s a list of essential toiletries every baby human will need!
Unless you’re opting to practice Elimination Communication, then your baby’s bum is going to need a nappy! Most modern nappies use breathable plastic layers to decrease wetness – but not all. So, check before you buy. Better yet, go check out our reusable cloth nappies. Nice breathable fibres next to baby’s skin, no plastic sent to landfill and less money spent on your weekly grocery shop!
The recommendation is to stick to plain water and cotton wool in those first few days and weeks. A baby’s skin can take up to 4 weeks (longer in prematurity) to develop sufficient barrier function to tolerate and respond well to cleansing products. After this time though you’ll probably want to switch to wipes. Anyone involved in childcare will know that wipes are used for much more than just bums. Spit up. Sticky Hands. Rogue marks on clothes. Wipes are life in the world of parents. Unfortunately, most wipes contain preservatives like thiazones and alcohols which are known to irritate skin, as well as being reported to be carcinogenic. Always opt for the most natural ingredients in your wipes. Biodegradable too if possible. Better yet, get reusable cloth wipes. The extra grip on their surface lifts poop much more easily than disposable wipes and results in a much quicker and cleaner nappy change too!
Products we love: Jackson Reece Baby Wipes
Little Lambs Bamboo Reusable Wipes
High humidity in the nappy area will decrease the skins barrier function. Add in some pee and poop, often so acidic and green it looks radioactive (thanks teeth), & it’s a recipe for inflammation and angry sores. A good bum cream is really important. For one thing, inflamed or broken skin isn’t a very good barrier, so whatever you use needs to be totally non-toxic (since there’s a chance it may be absorbed). Secondly, nappies and their contents are a recipe for infection, which inflamed skin has a harder time keeping at bay. So, you’ll want a cream that acts quickly to heal the skin and give that oh so soft baby bum that we hear so much about.
Zinc based creams work great at drying out and healing soggy inflamed skin. Zinc itself is important in wound healing but also works well as a protective barrier between the skin and nappy environment. BUT beware! Zinc will destroy your cloth nappies. It’ll clog up those fibres making them useless at absorbing. Opt for a cream or balm which contains an oil or butter that melts in a 60 degree wash instead. Beeswax, Shea butter, Olive Oil, Coconut oil and so on – all good. Or if you’re dealing with a really bad case of nappy rash and need some heavy-duty creams, you could consider using an eco-disposable nappy while the skin heals, or even a disposable liner or insert in your cloth nappies.
Products we love: Lyonsleaf Zinc & Calendula balm
Burts Bees Multipurpose Ointment (Cloth friendly).
Newborns and small babies don’t really need much in the way of cleaning. In fact, cleansing the skin too often can do more harm than good. Read more on that here: ‘When should you first bathe a newborn?’ Older babies and children can get pretty gross though, so please do clean them as needed! Your choice of cleanser is important since these are formulated to dissolve or ‘emulsify’ dirt and grime. Unfortunately, these cleansers can also emulsify the lipids within the outer layer of skin, stripping them, along with moisture, from the skin. This results in irritation, inflammation, reduced barrier function and dry skin. So, remember our #1 Rule: Keep it Natural! Avoid harsh chemicals and fragrances. Simple, gentle and non-toxic products clean just as well, while also nourishing your little one’s skin.
Products we love: Trevarno Baby Cleanser
Burts Bees Buttermilk Baby soap
We do love a good essential oil, but no, that’s not what we mean. (Incidentally, we suggest keeping the essential oils for older children!) We’re talking the massage, moisturising, cradle cap busting, sticky poop removing type of oil. And the beauty of this all-rounder is that it can be one of the cheapest in your baby cleaning arsenal. It doesn’t have to be fancy. You just need it to be safe, non-toxic and effective! A plain, food grade oil like olive oil can work wonders. It can help remove flaking newborn skin, be used to treat cradle cap, help remove stubborn poop from bums and even for some baby massage. Although I’ll concede, a baby covered in olive oil may not be quite as nice smelling like some of the other oils on offer! It’s also important to note that early exposure to some plant or nut oils may contribute to the development of allergies. Definitely avoid oils made from anything there is a family history of allergy to. As with all products, introduce them slowly and keep exposure to a minimum until allergy is ruled out!
Products we love: Balm Balm fragrance free body oil
- Take care of those toothy pegs!
Oral hygiene should really begin before that first tooth even erupts! A baby’s mouth can become colonised by whatever bacteria that makes its way in there. It’s a good idea not to share cutlery or cups with babies and children so as to avoid transferring any cariogenic (decay causing) bacteria to them. This includes blowing on hot food or kissing them on the mouth. I know, who doesn’t want to shower their babies in kisses! But little toes and chubby cheeks are just as kissable! Using dental wipes on gums and silicone brushes, combined with a natural, safe and edible toothpaste (formulated especially for babies and children) as soon as that first tooth erupts will give your child the best chance of developing and maintaining good oral hygiene.
Products we love: Jack ‘N’ Jills Dental wipes
Jack ‘N’ Jills Toothpaste
Next Article : When to wash newborn hair for first time with baby toiletries