A Guide to Natural Baby Lotions

Finding and Making Non-Toxic, Organic Baby Oil

True, baby skin is super soft, but that doesn’t mean babies won’t need a little help staying moisturized during the first years of life, but think twice before using drugstore baby lotions and oils. Many are riddled with harsh chemicals that your baby's skin will absorb so read on and we'll help you find and make natural and organic baby lotions and oils. 


Common chemicals found in baby lotion and oil

Many conventionally-available baby creams, lotions, and oils are filled with questionable ingredients, like:

  • DMDM Hydantoin: This is a preservative used in may baby care products, yet it is a known human immune system toxicant and a suspected skin irritant.[1]
  • Ceteareth: Used in a variety of formulations for sunscreens as solubilizing agents and the like, these chemicals are suspected of many human health concerns, including neurotoxicity, organ damage, and skin irritation.[2]
  • Mineral oil: This is a petroleum product that comes with hazards associated with that industry. It is also considered an occlusive oil which clogs pores and doesn’t fully moisturize, which means you’ll be applying it more often. It is a common moisturizer in baby and adult personal care products.
  • Phthalates: Most chemical scents are fixed to the product by phthalates which have been linked to additional serious human health problems, such as liver and kidney failure.[3][4] Phthalates are also used in numerous personal care products as preservatives.
  • Polyethylene glycols (PEGs): Utilized in many products as solvents and humectants, this chemical is of particular concern because it acts on the skin by opening up the pores to facilities more rapid absorption of environmental toxins like DDT.[5]
  • Synthetic fragrances: As with any personal care product for you and baby, it’s best to avoid synthetic fragrances. Many of these man-made fragrances are considered persistent organic pollutants (POPs) because they stay in the environment a long time, causing air and water pollution and harming wildlife.[6] And when used indoors, they pollute your indoor air (because most are considered volatile organic compounds (VOCs)), contributing to common respiratory problems like asthma.


Natural baby skincare products

Good news! There are dozens of creative and fun natural baby oils and organic baby lotions now on the market, allowing you to choose the product that will suit your baby’s skin. We’ve gathered a few of the best for your perusal:

When looking for store-bought baby skincare products, keep earth’s critters in mind by seeking out products labeled with the Certified Vegan or Leaping Bunny logos to assure that your chosen products don’t come at the pain of other creatures.


Homemade baby oils

You may also choose to make your own skincare products for your baby’s delicate skin by using natural products such as safflower oil, wheat germ, vitamin E, or olive oil. Try out some of these recipes to see what interesting and effective homemade baby oils you can develop for your little one:



1 DMDM Hydantoin. (n.d.). Retrieved April 13, 2010, from Environmental Working Group Skin Deep Cosmetic Database: http://www.cosmeticsdatabase.com/ingredient.php?ingred06=702196

2 CETEARETH-20. (n.d.). Retrieved April 12, 2010, from Environmental Working Group's Skin Deep Cosmetic Safety Database: http://www.cosmeticsdatabase.com/ingredient/701225/CETEARETH-20/

3 What the nose knows: Think twice before buying a loved one perfume, cologne. (2003, February 12). Retrieved April 12, 2010, from MSNBC: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/3076635/

4 Preventing the use of six phthalates in soft vinyl children's toys and child-care articles. (2009, June). Retrieved April 12, 2010, from Health Canada: http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/ahc-asc/media/nr-cp/_2009/2009_96bk1-eng.php

5 Polygethylene glycol. (n.d.). Retrieved April 12, 2010, from Environmental Working Group's Skin Deep Cosmetic Safety Database: http://www.cosmeticsdatabase.com/ingredient/704983/POLYETHYLENE_GLYCOL/

6 Environment - Air, Water, Wilfelife, and Other. (n.d.). Retrieved April 12, 2010, from The Fragranced Products Information Network: http://www.fpinva.org/text/ENVIRONMENT.html

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