Many pediatricians and dermatologists recommend that parents’ bathe their baby every other day, preferably with just plain water to allow the natural oils and good bacteria to thrive on the baby’s skin which in turn will help strengthen their skin’s immune system. This is especially true for children suffering from eczema who have extremely sensitive skin. When choosing the best baby soaps and shampoos for eczema, know that many products contain harmful ingredients and harsh chemicals, so it is important to research and read the ingredients on products before use. The goal is to find the best baby soap for eczema that will help preserve the moisture on your baby’s skin and allow the good bacteria (yes, there is good bacteria) to protect your baby’s skin from airborne foreign contaminants that can cause an eczema flareup.
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5 Tips for Selecting the Best Soap, Washes, and Shampoos for a Baby with Eczema
- Gentle Baby Soaps: Look for baby soaps and washes that are made especially for sensitive skin and eczema. These should be non-toxic, gentle and free of potentially harmful chemicals. A bar of harsh soap can irritate a baby’s skin and can even cause rashes beyond eczema. Liquid cleansers tend to be much less damaging to the skin than bar soaps. Studies show that emollient-rich cleansers dry out the skin the least and add moisture.
- Use Fragrance-Free: Scent is added to baby soaps for purely cosmetic reasons and offer nothing beneficial to the baby and are not worth the risk.
- Avoid Buying Extra Lather Soaps: Extra lather soaps lather more because of additional chemicals (Surfactants) and can strip away needed oils that help protect and moisturize the baby’s skin.
- Hypoallergenic Soaps: If your baby has hypersensitive skin, suffers from dry skin or eczema, then you must look for hypoallergenic baby soaps, washes and baby shampoos.
- Analyze the Ingredients: You need to read the ingredient label to ensure that the baby soap is hypoallergenic and non-toxic. Soap manufacturers are master marketers and you need to be careful and check ingredients of the soap on the internet with organizations like the EWG (Environmental Working Group) to see if they are capable of causing any allergic reactions. Steer clear of soaps that contain alcohol, glycol, propylene and other chemicals like Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, parabens (commonly used as a preservative) and Balsam of Peru, also known as Myroxylon, sticky sap that smells like vanilla and cinnamon. Soaps made using natural ingredients are best for baby’s sensitive skin. Look for ingredients like almond, milk, cocoa butter, honey, and olive oil.
What are the Best Products Parents Should Use on a Child with Eczema's Skin?
According to Dr. Renee Howard, MD, FAAD, board-certified dermatologist associate clinical professor of dermatology, University of California, San Francisco recommends using unscented lotions, soaps and shampoos, diaper creams and sunscreens with zinc, and non-lathering cleansers. “Scented skincare products are for the parents’ benefit, not the baby’s, and aren’t worth the risk,” according to Dr. Howard.
The Best Baby Soaps for Eczema:
- Weleda® Calendula Soap: Weleda Calendula Soap contains only the organic ingredients and essential oils like calendula, chamomile flower extracts, and root extracts to keep your baby’s skin soft and healthy.
- Badger® Chamomile & Calendula Baby Soap: The gentle soap contains coconut and Shea butter that will moisturize and soothe delicate skin. The certified organic plant oils like calendula, chamomile oil fragrance that is non-irritating and will help calm and relax your baby. Badger never adds any foaming agent, synthetic or harsh ingredient or any artificial fragrance.
- Dr. Bronner’s® Baby Mild Bar Soap: The natural ingredients contain no fragrance but will still help calm your baby and is less drying than other soaps in the market making it ideal for kids with eczema and allergies. It comes wrapped in 10% hemp-flax, and 90% consumer recycled paper from the Living Tree Paper Co.
- Burt’s Bees® Baby Bee Buttermilk Soap: This soap uses only 100% natural ingredients like oat flour to soothe the irritated eczema skin and rich buttermilk will soften it. Coconut oils, sunflower oils, and soy proteins work to nourish your baby’s skin and prevent it from getting dry. There are no sulfates, SLS, petrochemicals, phthalates, or parabens
- Mustela® Stelatopia Milky Bath Oil: This natural treatment soap is primarily formulated for eczema skincare by reducing skin flare-ups and to provide much-needed eczema relief for babies. The sunflower oil hydrates and replenishes lipids on the skin and reduces dryness and itching. This eczema therapy soap is approved by the National Eczema Association.
- Johnson’s® Baby Bedtime Bath: The iconic baby soap and shampoo brand make a lavender-scented soap that contains Natural Calm essences that are designed to soothe and relax the baby into a great night of sleep. It contains ¼-baby lotion, which cleanses and moisturizes the skin gently. It contains no coloring agent or harmful chemicals, making it safe for babies with any skin type including severe eczema and the blend of scents will soothe and calm your baby.
The Best Baby Washes for Eczema:
- Dove® Delicate Cream Oil Body Wash: Dove is known as a gentle brand of cleansers and the delicate cream oil body wash with sunflower oil and soybean oil as the emollient and rubbing and rinsing is an effective way to remove old, dead skin cells.
- Aveeno® Baby Wash and Shampoo: Aveeno’s key ingredient in the body wash/shampoo is the natural oat extract which is paraben-free.
- California Baby® Gluten-Free Therapeutic Relief Eczema Shampoo and Body Wash: This eczema soap’s ingredients are derived from organic fruits and vegetables like colloidal oatmeal, aloe vera, and calendula flower extract to soothe chronically itchy skin and is a gluten-free eczema shampoo and body wash.
- Earth Mama Angel® Baby Calming Lavender Body Wash and Shampoo: This vegetable oil-based cleanser is infused with calming scents of organic lavender and vanilla pure essential oils, there are no synthetic fragrances, phthalates, parabens, and sulfates.
The Best Baby Shampoos for Eczema:
- Burt’s Bees® Baby Shampoo & Wash: A gentle, tear-free baby shampoo that can also be used as a baby body wash that comes in three different scent options: original, lavender and fragrance-free. ,
- The Honest Co.® Baby Shampoo + Body Wash: This product has a sweet orange vanilla scent that smells like a creamsicle without being overwhelming. It is also free of additives like sulfates and parabens and won’t irritate baby’s eyes. A conditioner in the same scent is also available for older kids with long hair that’s prone to tangle.
- Mustela® Foam Shampoo for Newborns: If your baby has Seborrheic dermatitis on the scalp, which is also commonly known as “cradle cap” you will want to try this super-gentle foaming shampoo that is specifically formulated to clean baby’s hair while also preventing the condition. It contains beta-hydroxy acid (BHA) and salicylic acid to exfoliate the patches, and Climbazole, an antifungal agent, works to prevent recurring bouts. Mustela Foam Shampoo is also hypoallergenic and specially formulated to minimize the risk of allergic reactions.
- California Baby® Tea Tree & Lavender Shampoo & Body Wash: Part of the greater family of products this shampoo is excellent for dry scalp, dandruff and Seborrheic eczema is allergy-tested and free of triggers like gluten, soy, oats, dairy, and nuts.
- Dr. Bronners® 18-in-1 Hemp Pure Castile Liquid Soap Baby Unscented: Dr. Bronner’s Baby Unscented Pure-Castile Liquid Soap is an organic all-in-one soap with 18 different uses. This might sound crazy but it can be used for cleaning dishes, laundering clothes and to wash your baby’s hair. Because it has double the olive oil than its original formulation, it’s perfect for keeping baby’s sensitive skin and scalp moisturized and protected with the organic, certified fair trade and biodegradable ingredients. The only issue is it is not tear-free, so you’ll need to protect your little one’s eyes before rinsing.
- CLn® Gentle Shampoo: This shampoo cleanses normal to dry scalp, providing moisture-rich ingredients to replenish lost nutrients. CLn helps relieve itching and flaking due to dryness, dermatitis, or eczema. Parents of those with eczema will appreciate that this shampoo is hypoallergenic, paraben-free, fragrance-free, non-irritating, and non-drying. NEA Seal of Acceptance.
- Exederm®: There are several Exederm products worth trying, including shampoo, conditioner, and baby shampoo. Each has been formulated to avoid harsh chemicals and unnecessary additives that may irritate and cause a rash on sensitive skin or even trigger an eczema flare-up. NEA Seal of Acceptance.
- MD Moms®: This all-over-clean hair and body wash feature a blend of gentle ingredients that won’t interfere with the skin’s natural moisture barrier. MD Moms products are paraben-free, preservative-free, sulfate-free, and hypoallergenic. The product contains no phthalates, lanolin, mineral oil, petroleum, waxes, gluten, or wheat. NEA Seal of Acceptance.
To learn about the best ways to treat eczema and out more about the best baby soaps and best baby shampoos go to our eczema treatment page.
THE EXPERTS ON INFANT ECZEMA
After you have bathed your child, pat them dry with a warm soft towel. Apply and topical medications and moisturizers and suggested by a health care professional. Dermatologists recommend covering their skin with a layer of soft fabric sleepwear that’s going to soothe them into a restful night of sleep. The best eczema pajamas that provide itch relief are therapeutic Soothems. Made from an FDA registered class 1 medical device skin smart fabric TEWLTect, which is dermatologist recommended to reduce itching, preserve skin moisture, and control bacterial growth while providing a positive, soothing effect. Soothems® helps keep the skin cool, moist and itch-free and protects the freshly apply topical lotions from rubbing off. From eczema suits and eczema sleeves to eczema bottoms and eczema sleepwear, our garments will lead to less itch and more smiles.
Dermatologists recommend covering a child’s cradle cap after using a medicated shampoo designed specially to treat Seborrheic dermatitis, and applying any topical medication or moisturizer is very helpful in treating the condition. An excellent product to help relieve the itch and rash from Seborrheic dermatitis is the Soothems® Eczema Rash & Itch Relief Sleep Cap for Baby and toddler.
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