One of the first routines that you learn as a new parent is how to bathe your baby. Dr. Amy and the Baby Pibu team want to share their practical tips on this bath time routine. These bath time tips on how to bathe your baby are provided in collaboration with Moms On Call™, respected parenting consultants. You will also learn what the safest bath wash is to use for your baby’s delicate skin. Remember, baby’s skin is not the same as adult skin. Baby skin is more sensitive and more prone to irritation than adult skin.
How to Bathe a Baby Tip #1: Nighttime Routine
Make your bath time routine a nighttime one. A nighttime routine can help prepare you and your baby for bedtime. By doing the bath at night, your baby will learn to associate bath time with bedtime. This comes in handy when you start traveling with your baby and crossing time zones. The nightly bath time routine can serve as a reset point to remind your baby that bath time equals bedtime.
How to Bathe a Baby Tip #2: Bath Conditions
There are so many products out there that help you determine what the bath water temperature should be. Our tip is for you to check the water temperature out yourself! We advise using warm water and keeping the bath to less than five minutes for babies ages newborn to six months old and less than ten minutes for babies older than 6 months old. Water actually dries out the skin so keeping water exposure time to a minimum is important.
How to Bathe a Baby Tip #3: Babies aren’t that dirty…
Minimize the amount of soap that is used all over your baby’s skin since soap can further strip your baby of normal skin oils. Areas that need soap include the hair, hands, feet, armpits, neckfolds, and groin. Two-in-one hair and body cleansers like Baby Pibu’s Bathtime Wash make bath time easier. Using a bottle also makes the bath time easier when you are doing it by yourself and need to perform it one-handed. When looking for a wash, look for the Seal of Acceptance by the National Eczema Association (NEA) as well. The NEA recognizes products that have been clinically tested to be hypoallergenic and irritant-free.
How to Bathe a Baby Tip #4: A soft bristle brush and a baby washcloth
Cradle cap is a common skin condition that occurs on a baby’s scalp as well as the eyebrows, nose, and around the ears. It is caused by overgrowth of yeast-like Malassezia furfur. Buildup of excess oils allows for the overgrowth. To prevent cradle cap, lather up a soft bristle brush with Baby Pibu’s Bathtime Wash and gently massage the baby’s scalp in a circular motion. With a warm, wet washcloth, gently wipe around the eyebrows, nose and behind the ears. Using the soft bristle brush and washcloth helps to remove the buildup of excess oil and ultimately helps to prevent cradle cap formation.
How to Bathe a Baby Tip #5: Here’s how you do it…
How to Bathe a Baby Tip #6: Hydrate and protect.
After the bath, it’s best to apply a moisturizer to lock in moisture and hydrate your baby’s skin. We advise using either a cream or an ointment since lotions are made up mostly of water and don’t seal in the moisture. We recommend Baby Pibu’s Baby Butter for everyday use or Hydrating Ointment for the drier times. For the bottom, applying Hydrating Ointment or a diaper rash cream such as Baby Pibu’s Bottom Balm will help prevent unwanted diaper rash from forming overnight.
How to Bathe a Baby Tip #7: Never leave your baby alone in the tub by themselves.
You may face the time when the phone rings during bath time, and you will consider going to get it since it will only be a few seconds. But, don’t ever leave your baby or toddler in the bath by themselves even for a single second. Drowning accidents can happen in the bath tub even with a couple inches of water.
Dr. Amy and the Baby Pibu team hope that the 7 tips on how to bathe your baby can help keep your nightly bath time routine both simple, effective and soothing.
Here is our final tip on how to pick the safest bath wash for your baby.
What to look for in the product and on the label:
- Choose products that are clinically tested to be hypoallergenic and irritant-free. These are must-have features of a safe bath wash for baby.
- Fragrance-free. There are more than 2500 fragrance ingredients and more than 100 are known allergens. Repeated exposure of your baby’s skin to fragrance can increase the risk of your baby developing a contact allergy to fragrance. Remember, fragrance is there for us adult’s pleasure and not our baby’s pleasure. A fragrance-free bath wash is a safe bath wash for baby.
- Choose products that are free of Parabens, phthalates, sulfates, formaldehyde-releasers, sodium lauryl sulfate, and fragrance. This is a short list of what the safest bath washes for baby should be free of.
- All natural is not necessarily better. There is a current misconception and myth that natural products are good and products with synthetic ingredients are bad. What needs to be appreciated is that there are both good and bad natural ingredients and there are both good and bad synthetic ingredients. Think about poison ivy. It is natural but a leading cause in contact dermatitis. Furthermore, natural plant ingredients and oils can even cause damage to the skin’s collagen by irritating the skin and clogging up pores to worsen acne-prone skin.
- Choose products with the Seal of Acceptance by the National Eczema Association. The National Eczema Association (NEA) is an informational and patient advocacy association composed of patients, patient advocates, doctors and dermatologists specializing in eczema. The NEA has a Seal of Acceptance (SOA) on skin care products that have gone through the rigors of meeting its criteria. In general, products carrying the SOA by the NEA are for individuals with eczema or sensitive skin and thus any skin type.
When choosing the safest bath wash to use for your baby, consider using a 2-in-1 wash that can be used for both baby’s body and hair. Having a 2-in-1 product simplifies that bath time routine. A calming bath wash that is good for all skin types, including sensitive skin, is recommended. Look for products that are fragrance-free and “tear-free”. If you want a scent, choose a soap and shampoo with a light lavender scent. Lavender can be calming and its essential oil is one that has a lower incidence of causing a contact allergy. Some of the best baby cleansers acting as a soap and shampoo include Baby Pibu’s Bathtime Wash, which carries the Seal of Acceptance by the NEA.