Non-Toxic Toiletries for Your Baby: The Good, The Bad & The Ugly
Some call me obsessive, but I enjoyed researching about non-toxic toiletries for my baby when I was pregnant. While it may not be a concern for every parent, and some people have told me that "my child is completely fine on Johnson & Johnson's" (or is he...?), I choose to exercise what I know and use the best products I can afford for him. Note that your child may not be suffering from skin irritation right now, but over time, the use of these products can impede growth, encourage hormonal imbalance and a host of different problems!
After writing about beauty for years, and suffering from eczema for most of my adult life, here's one thing I know: keep things as simple as you can. In terms of baby's skincare, there's no reason to buy different cleaning products for your baby's hair and body. From my experience, there tends to be more ingredients in baby shampoos than there are in baby body washes, so I tend to use a baby wash from his head to his tippy toes.
Four rules on picking the good from all the duds:
- Your best bet is buying a product that says 100 percent natural ingredients — better still if it's organic.
- Avoid anything with fragrance. Sometimes called parfum. Babies naturally smell good, you don't need fake shit to make them smell good. Essential oils are generally a safe ingredient.
- Anything ending in paraben, which includes benzylparaben, butylparaben, ethylparaben, isobutylparaben, isopropylparaben, methylparaben, and/or propylparaben.
- TRY to avoid Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) because it can be irritating on the skin. Luckily most baby products don't have SLS. Be warned though, sodium laureth sulfate which is whole different thing all together IS often found in natural baby wash is definitely ALWAYS to be avoided as it is often contaminated with carcinogenic 1-4, dioxane.
Shit to Avoid
Before I tell you what I use, I have to tell you what I don't use and what you should probably avoid for your tots too.
- Don't even touch anything from Johnson & Johnson’s. Most of their baby washes and soaps have fragrance, parabens, and artificial colouring and pisses the hell out of me.
- Mustela is expensive as hell but they makes several formulations of baby wash and bubble bath, full of fragrances and PEG chemicals.
- Aquaphor’s Gentle Wash & Shampoo adds chamomile in their formula and hopes you won’t notice the PEG chemicals. BUT I DID SUCKAS.
- For some reason, Gaia Natural Baby Bath & Body Wash gets away with calling this a natural baby wash when it contains sodium hydroxymethylglycinate which releases formaldehyde.
- Aveeno Baby Calming Comfort Bath is chock full of synthetic fragrance and immunotoxic cocamidopropyl betaine, plus a range of PEG chemicals.
What I Use
BODY WASH/ SHAMPOO: Babo Botanicals Lavender 3 in 1 Shampoo, Bubble Bath & Wash
Babo Botanicals, available on iHerb, has a line of clean ingredients is tears-free, allergy-tested and the whole shebang. I know it looks expensive for a baby product but I've used it since my baby was born and he's almost seven months and I'm still not through with the bottle.
BODY LOTION: Earth Mama Angel Baby Baby Lotion
Shea butter, olive oil, aloe, and calendula, plus vanilla and sweet orange oil makes this lotion smell so yummy you'd want to eat your baby. But try not to.
DIAPER BALM: Earth Mama Angel Baby
I wish I could say Earth Mama is sponsoring this post but they're not. I've repurchased this multiple times - a tub lasts us about 2.5-3 months if I use it (1 month if his dad uses it *eye roll*) - and I've given it to friends. It's non-toxic and it helps poop NOT STICK ON THE BUTT. YAS.