When choosing infant skin care it is important to make sure that the product is age appropriate and as natural as it can be.
Here we explain why babies need their own skin care and help you to find the best organic products for your child.
6 reasons why babies need their own skin care products
1. To support the skin barrier
All infants are born with an undeveloped skin barrier and during infanthood they form a barrier that helps to lock hydration into the body whilst filtering out harmful toxins, pollutants and germs.
Without an effective skin barrier, these can enter the bloodstream where they have potential to pose a threat to health.
If your baby has dry, sore, eczema-prone skin, this can be a sign that their skin barrier needs extra support during their development.
You can provide this by using baby creams enriched with nourishing ingredients known to contain a high level of essential fatty acids and by avoiding skin drying ingredients such as SLS and ethyl alcohol.
Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs) moisturise the skin from the inside and help stop it from drying out. Good sources of EFAs, including Omega-3 and Omega-6, can be found in Hemp Seed and Rosehip oil.
EFA SKIN CARE TO SUPPORT INFANT SKIN BARRIERS
2. To establish a pH-balance
Healthy skin has a slightly acidic pH but some baby skin care ingredients can disturb the skin’s pH-balance and leave infant skin feeling dry.
SLS is one such ingredient. Commonly added to baby shampoos and baby bath washes to make them foam, it can disturb the skin’s delicate acid mantle.
Tap water is also naturally alkaline so, even if you are just cleaning your baby with water and cotton wool, their skin pH will be more alkaline after bathing.
To help you cleanse your baby’s skin without stripping the skin of protective oils, both of our SLS-free organic baby washes are pH-balanced and made with naturally foaming ingredients.
INFANT SKIN CARE TO BALANCE PH-LEVELS
3. To keep baby's skin soft and hydrated
Infant skin is much more vulnerable to dryness and there are many factors that contribute to this:
1) Babies’ skin is much thinner than adult skin and therefore is more vulnerable to water loss
2) Babies’ skin has not established its Natural Moisturising Factor and is less effective at binding moisture to the skin
3) Babies’ skin contains fewer corneocytes – a cell in the epidermis that retains water and prevents the skin from dryingi
To keep skin soft, opt for infant skin care made from natural ingredients with humectant properties, such as the Glycerin used to make our Organic Babies Softening Baby Lotion.
Humectants, like Glycerin, bind to moisture found in sweat and the atmosphere and form a seal in the outer layer of the skin. This protective layer traps hydration into the skin and helps to filter out environmental aggressors, bacteria and allergens.
4. To protect infants from skin care toxins
Research has shown that, depending on the nature and properties of the chemical, as much as 60% of some toxins applied to the skin may be absorbed into the bloodstream.
While this can have untold consequences for adult health, it is infants who are most at risk from skin care toxins.
As well as infant skin being more vulnerable to penetration by toxins commonly used in skin care, those toxins that do permeate the skin barrier are likely to be more concentrated and therefore have a greater impact.
Synthetic ingredients with potential to permeate the skin barrier include UV filters, parabens, petrochemicals, PEGs, DEA, TEA, irritating emulsifiers, synthetic colours and artificial perfume.
Some of these ingredients are also penetration enhancers and can pull other toxins through the barrier. For this reason, we do not use any of these ingredients in our Organic Babies products.
5. To protect against prickly heat
It is also important that infants have age-appropriate sun care. Adult sun creams are often too thick for thin infant skin and, because children find it hard to regulate their body temperature, they may need to use a sun cream that won’t clog pores and increase their risk of developing prickly heat.
Designed for sensitive skin, Organic Children SPF30 Scent Free Sun Cream delivers effective, water-repellent UVA and UVB protection without the use of chemical or pore-clogging ingredients.
It can be used on babies from six months. Before this age, infants should not be exposed to direct sunlight.
6. To protect against eczema
Some commonly used skin care ingredients can exacerbate eczema-prone skin.
To avoid an infant eczema flare-up it is important to keep the skin well hydrated and to avoid ingredients known to trigger childhood eczema, such as SLS and synthetic fragrances.
Instead, opt for natural baby skin care that are packed with skin-calming plants like Chamomile and Calendula.
Eczema-friendly infant skin care