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December 18, 2017

Sensitive Skincare for Mothers and Babies

Sensitive Skincare for Mothers and Babies

Image via Dean Wissing

Babies have very gentle skin so need gentle and natural skincare products

Why do you think it is so important to use skin care products that contain all-natural ingredients?

Your skin is the body’s largest and most versatile organ. It helps protect your body from dehydration and injury. A study by the Herb Research Foundation showed that skin absorbs nearly 60 percent of the chemicals in skin care products directly into the bloodstream. Skin care products should feed, protect and repair your skin. Good quality skin care will contain different amounts of vitamins, minerals and essential fatty acids that are vital for good health and healthy skin.

What harmful ingredients can be found in common skin care products and how can these affect our health?

There is an old saying: 'Don’t put anything on your skin that you can’t eat'.

Sadly, there are quite a lot of ingredients used in skin care that do not benefit the skin or the body and can actually cause harm.

  • Mineral oil and other petrochemicals have none of the nutritive qualities of botanical/plant oils. They tend to lock moisture against the skins surface causing blocked pores.
  • DEA (Diethanolamine), MEA (Monoethanolamine) and TEA (Triethanolamine) derive from ammonia and are used in foaming products such as baby bath and shampoo. They can irritate the skin and eyes and are also potentially toxic.

How can I determine which skin care products are suitable for my baby or young infant?

Simple, organic and natural ingredients are always the best idea for young delicate skin. A newborn baby needs time to let their skin develop its own protective barrier. Try not to use harsh, heavily scented soap and washing products.

Are there any obvious signs that would indicate my child has sensitive skin?

All babies have delicate skin, but if the skin becomes red, sore or inflamed then it may be reacting to an environmental factor, for example, a change in the season, heavily scented soaps and powders, and some alcohol-based baby bottom wipes can cause issues.

My baby often has trouble drifting off to sleep in the evening. What ingredients should I be mindful of that have a soothing effect?

Lavender and chamomile essential oils are both soothing and relaxing and may be used on babies over three months old when properly diluted in a base oil, in a carefully formulated baby product or room diffuser. 

My young child suffers from eczema, how can I help to alleviate their discomfort?

Sadly, eczema is on the rise in today’s world. Approximately 10 percent of all children now suffer with some type of eczema. 

Help alleviate the itching, and therefore reduce infection by dressing your child in only natural fibres (like cotton) to allow their skin to breathe. Try not to allow them to overheat as the hot skin becomes dry and itchy. Regularly applying an oil-based skin care product that has anti-inflammatory and soothing properties to the affected areas will help the skin protect itself and heal.

How can pregnant mothers tackle stretch marks effectively? 

Massaging your skin as your bump begins to grow will allow the skin to flex. Using a blend of botanical oils like calendula (well known for its skin healing properties), baobab (which helps cellular regeneration), rosehip seed oil (helps prevent scarring) and essential oils like palmarosa (stimulates skin regeneration and helps hydrate dry skin) and lavender will benefit your growing bump.

How can I determine which essential oils are appropriate for my specific skin type?

Essential oils are powerful concentrated natural essences extracted from fruit and plants. Each oil has its own unique healing properties and fragrance. When choosing an essential oil, it is important to consider the specific properties of the oil, and choose an oil that offers the greatest benefits on all levels for what you require. If you are pregnant, there are certain oils that can not be used or need diluting so please seek advice, or only use products that have been carefully formulated for use in pregnancy.

If you know you own skin type—i.e. normal/oily—then you can research which essential oils have the best impact. 

Lavender and geranium are both good for all skin types.

Lavender is extremely useful in a variety of skin conditions. It is the most versatile and well used of all the essential oils and its lack of toxicity makes it a valuable first aid remedy in your cupboard.

Geranium has a regulating effect on the secretion of sebum, making it suitable for dry or oily skin types and is anti-inflammatory.

'The reason I set up my business is because my son Dominic had severe eczema and I wanted to only use natural products on his skin—so I made them, said Jen Feltham, Founder of Mia & Dom Organic Botanicals. Mia & Dom specialises in skin care for pregnancy, babies and sensitive skin. Their product range combines skin-loving botanical oils, butters and essential oils to provide natural skin care that your can trust. The Mia & Dom ethos is, and always will be, to use the very best ingredients and provide their customers with beautiful, organic, safe and natural skin care for all the family.