As baby’s skin is several times more sensitive than an adult’s, it is more prone to rashes and skin diseases. Hence, it is important to find products that are just as mild. While there are thousands of baby skin care brands and products to choose from, one must be careful in first understanding what has gone into the making of the product.
Even one chemical present in the product can have adverse effects on baby’s skin. Keep an eye out for these potentially harmful chemicals and ingredients in your baby’s skin care products.
1. Proplyene Glycol
A diaper rash is one of the most common rashes that affect babies. Besides changing your child’s wet diapers at regular intervals and letting his skin breathe, using a soothing baby wipe can help you go a long way in treating the rashes. However, before you purchase a pack of wet wipes, make sure you quickly scan its ingredients. Don’t opt for it if it contains Proplyene Glycol. It opens up pores and lets other chemicals seep into the skin. It is easily absorbed by the skin and could also cause cancer.
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2. Mineral Oil
Massaging baby every day can be extremely beneficial as it improves circulation, helps him gain weight, and also sleep better. Most baby oils are made up of fragrance and mineral oil, which can damage baby’s skin. Mineral oil stunts the skin’s ability to release toxins. Choose mineral oil free oils for your baby. Oils like Olive Oil which contain Vitamin E or oils which have Ashvagandha work wonders for baby’s skin.
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Parabens are widely used as preservatives in cosmetic products and food. However, it is harmful to the skin as it may cause skin allergies and irritation. It can also cause hormonal disruption and has been known to have adverse effects on reproduction. Parabens most commonly used in products are methylparaben, propylparaben and ethylparaben. Avoid using baby skin care products that contain parabens. Instead, choose products that are made with Chickpea, Khus Khus and Hibiscus.
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While it is understandable that you want to protect your baby from harmful bacteria, it may also be counter-effective. By overprotecting babies, we hinder their ability to build natural immunity and pave way for more allergies. Any product that boasts of being ‘antibacterial’ probably contains triclosan, and it should be kept away from babies as it can harm the endocrine and is also terrible for the environment. As an alternative, you can use products made of Olive and Almond Oil.
The name itself is an indication that any product with alcohol in it is definitely not going to be ideal for your baby. Alcohol is generally used in adult skin care products to make them dry quickly so it feels light on the skin. Some baby products contain alcohol and one has to be extra careful while purchasing a product for baby. Alcohol is generally listed as ‘ethanol’ or ‘ethyl alcohol’ in the ingredients column. So, the next time you buy a product, you know exactly what to look out for.
Although most countries approve of formaldehyde as a non-toxic and harmless ingredient to add to skin care products, it is not wise to use products with formaldehyde for little children. It is a preservative that is added in water-based products to stop them from forming mold. It has been linked to skin allergies, respiratory problems, headaches, and itchy eyes. It may not be listed as an ingredient in the packet, but you can look out for other words like imadazolidinyl urea, diozolidnyl urea, and DMDM hydamtoin.
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7. Sodium Lauryl Sulphate (SLS)
Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) is mainly used in shower products such as soaps, shampoos, and bubble baths. It is cheap and also an effective cleansing and foaming agent. Its purpose is to make bubbles and leave your oily skin feeling clean. Although SLS is rarely added in baby products, one ought to be very careful. It can irritate baby’s delicate skin and cause red and swollen eyes, which could potentially lead to blindness. If rinsed away immediately, it won’t cause harm to baby.