Delicate baby skin needs special care, but eczema prone baby skin needs even more special attention as it is more sensitive and may become “rashy” if it gets too dry or irritated. If your baby has eczema prone skin, Dr. Amy and the Baby Pibu team want to share a few tips and terms on how to choose the best skin care products to use on your eczema-prone baby skin.
Atopic dermatitis is the official term for eczema, and eczema is included in the atopic triad of asthma, eczema and hay fever. Eczema affects 10-20% of the US population. Eczema is a common skin condition that may have to be chronically managed over a lifetime, and it may range from mild to severe over that lifetime. Eczema may be chronic, but its flares can be prevented.
The distribution of eczema in a baby includes the facial cheeks and/or the extensor (outer) sides of the arms or legs. Not all facial rashes on a baby is eczema. Learn more about other facial rashes to distinguish: https://www.babypibu.com/what-to-do-when-your-baby-develops-a-facial-rash/. The distribution of eczema changes as your child gets older. Eczema moves from the face and outer parts of the arms and legs to the antecubital and popliteal areas at toddler years.
Once you and/or your doctor have determined that your baby has eczema-prone baby skin, here are a few terms to look for in choosing the best skin care products for your eczema-prone baby skin:
- These can be truthful terms used to suggest the product as being irritant-free and good for sensitive and eczema-prone skin. Products carrying this term typically go through clinical testing in which the product is repeatedly tested on consenting adults to determine if the product causes irritation. Baby Pibu™ products have been clinically tested and specifically found to be irritant-free.
- This is another truthful term that means the product has been clinically tested and less likely to cause an allergic reaction. Specifically, patch testing of the product is done to consenting adults. Patch testing is performed by exposing a person’s skin to the product over an extended period of time and then seeing if the product will cause an allergic reaction. It is a good thing for a product to be hypoallergenic. Baby Pibu™ products are proud to be hypoallergenic.
- Since babies have more delicate and irritant-prone skin, fragrance-free products are good to use on all baby skin types and especially for eczema-prone baby skin. Fragrances are made up of chemicals, and a single fragrance may be composed of more than 100 chemicals to make up that scent. Fragrance allergies are one of the top causes of contact allergies. Fragrances benefit the parents rather than the babies. Repeated exposure to a fragrance can increase the risk of fragrance allergy so it is best to avoid fragrances on babies’ skin. We are happy to report that Baby Pibu™ products are fragrance-free. The light lavender scent in our Bathtime Wash and Baby Butter is from using a touch of lavender essential oil.
- Be cautious of this term. This is probably the most abused term in the skin care industry and so can be both truthful and fictional in its marketing. The “natural” term is not regulated by any governmental agency and there is no regulation of its use. To separate out the fact and fiction of natural, know that a chemical derivative of a plant is natural since it is plant-based, and it may be better and safer that a 100% natural ingredient. 100% natural ingredients may actually be more caustic and irritating to the skin and that is why their derivatives are used. So be cautious of products claiming to be 100% natural- it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s better or safer. Baby Pibu™ products are proud to be natural as they contain safe, naturally-derived ingredients.
- This is a term certified or regulated by the USDA. In general, a product is organic if it is made up of at least 70% organic ingredients. Truth- know that a product is accountable to this definition and this is what you can expect from the product.
- The normal pH of our skin is acidic with a pH of 4.5 to 5, so a product is pH balanced if it has a similar acidic pH. pH balanced products tend to be less irritating because they avoid stripping us of our natural skin oils, and these products are the best for eczema-prone baby skin.
- Preservatives are ingredients added to prevent growth of bacteria, mold and fungus in the product. It is true that preservatives are necessary ingredients to ensure the safety of the product and to ensure you’re not rubbing bacteria-infested product on your baby’s skin. However, look for paraben-free and phthalate-free preservatives. We are happy to report that Baby Pibu™ products use both paraben-free and phthalate-free preservatives.
There is a plethora of skin care products to choose from! We hope understanding our tips on learning the terminology used on skin care products can help you choose the best skin care products for eczema-prone baby skin.