You might have seen numerous ads on TV where various beauty experts claim that the product they are promoting will give your skin the softness and youthfulness like those of a baby’s skin. At that point, you may have wished you could have exactly that kind of skin. A baby’s skin is supposed to be the softest, most beautiful, and the most delicate skin of all, so it makes sense that it calls for the best care as well. However, what is the best care for baby skin? If you thought that just keeping your loved ones smeared in the lotions, creams, and other baby skin care products will give him the right care, then you are grossly mistaken. These products can actually do the baby more harm than good. Surprised? I thought so.
When you learn about the negative aspects of so-called “Baby Skin Care” products and compare them with the goodness of Organic Baby Skin Care techniques, you will understand why Organic Baby Skin Care is the best skin care approach for your baby. Now, let’s take a dive into the pool of facts.
The Dark Side of the Moon: Are you ready to confront some bitter disheartening facts? Want to know what is actually packed in those attractive packs of so-called baby skin care products? You will be scared! They contain nothing but artificially flavoured and artificially coloured petroleum gel, mineral gel, mineral oil, and mild detergents (in case of baby soaps and shampoos), as well as antiseptic, antibiotic, or disinfectant agents like boric acid, which are pure chemicals.
Those who have been in a chemistry lab know very well that prolonged contact with these chemicals, even with adult skin, may harm the skin, let alone the impact they can have on baby skin. They can neither make your baby look fairer, nor can they effectively defend the skin against infections.
On the contrary, they can block the pores in the skin, choke it, form an unwanted greasy layer on the skin to attract a lot of dust and microbes, get absorbed deep inside the skin and may cause irritations, and may also dry up the skin. Worse, they are commonly ingested by the baby while licking their skin. In such cases, they may cause stomachaches and vomiting. These chemicals are harsh enough on a baby’s skin to seriously damage it.
Table of Contents
Baby Skin Care Product Ingredients
Here is a small list of some commonly used substances in baby skin care products and the adverse impacts they have on the skin.
Mineral Oil/Petroleum Gel – Corrosive, leaves the skin dry, chokes skin pores and interferes with sebum production. May cause itches and irritations.
Chemical Colours/Flavours – May cause itches and irritations. Harmful for the eyes, skin, and internal organs if accidentally ingested.
Detergents/Soaps – Present in baby soaps and shampoos, these are some of the most harmful substances, no matter how mild they may be. They are very harsh and very corrosive and can cause severe damage to the skin, eyes, and hair; they may also dry up the skin and can even cause blindness.
Antibiotic/Disinfectant/Antiseptic – You know very well that the substances that can kill microbes or terminate any biotic growth are nothing but poison.
Metal Oxalates/Metal Salts – Compounds of zinc, sulphur, lead, and mercury! You can guess what harm they can cause to your precious infant.
Tap Water – Often contains hard bleach and/or chlorine, both of which are highly corrosive.
The Ray of Hope: Where there is darkness, there is always light. So, as consciousness is growing among the masses regarding traditional baby skin care products, Organic Baby Skin Care is making its way to the forefront. However, before we proceed any further, we must understand that Organic Baby Skin Care (or simply skin care) is not just about using Organic Baby Skin Care products. Rather, it is about taking care of the skin the organic way and following an organic way of life. Skin creams, lotions, or other cosmetics, whether they are organic or not, do not form an essential part of that. You can take organic care of your baby’s skin even without them. Here are some substances that can help you out.
Organic Water: Okay! It may sound like I am joking and there actually isn’t anything called organic water. I should rather say “Pure Water”. Natural fresh water without any traces of toxic chemicals like pesticides, fertilizers, fungicides, bleach, or chlorine is ideal for use on your baby’s skin. Water is one of the most commonly used substances on a baby (frequently used for bathing, cleaning, washing, drinking etc.) and so it forms a rather important part of your Organic Baby Skin Care. I know it is very difficult to find this kind of water these days, since most people are dependent on chlorinated or bleached tap water which is already polluted from the indiscriminate use of chemical pesticides and fertilizers. The use of packaged Mineral Water is out of question, which leaves boiled water. Boiled and filtered water is ideal for babies. Since the carbonates, oxides, sulphates, chlorides and other chemicals are found least in boiled water (they evaporate during boiling), it can safely be used on a baby’s delicate skin.
Home Recipes for Organic Baby Skin Care: These things have been in use in India and a few neighbouring countries for centuries. Things such as paste of lentils, turmeric, sandal, coconut water and oil, milk and milk cream, juice of Aloe Vera, essential oils and other oils and herbal extracts give excellent skin care and beauty treatment and are still very important in these countries. However, one thing has changed! Previously, these things were all organic and had no traces of toxic chemicals in them, but now, you can hardly call them organic. Therefore, if you are using these things, please make sure that they have been raised organically and no artificial chemical fertilizers or pesticides have been used in them. If you cannot make them yourself (Nobody has time these days!), you can get them ready-made. Those with an “Organic” tag on them will cost a few bucks more. You can also use boiled and smashed organic potatoes, apples, cucumber, egg whites, and curd made of organic milk for making organic baby skin care packs or recipes at home, because these things are readily available.
Ready Made Organic Baby Skin Care Products
They should be considered only when you have no other choice left. The ready-made Organic Baby Skin Care products include organic lotions, organic skin creams, organic sunscreen creams, organic massaging oils, organic soaps, and organic shampoos. Here, you should act logically. There are some products which, despite having an organic tag on it, cannot be organic. Soaps and shampoos are some of them. If they have bubbles or suds in them, then they must contain some sort of alkaline compounds of sodium and/or calcium and detergents. They are simply mild in the case of baby products. If you study them carefully, you will seldom find a certificate of “Organic” from a recognized certifier on these soaps and shampoos, which only leaves the other products. Unlike regular cosmetics, Organic Baby Skin Care cosmetics contain organic natural ingredients such as organic beeswax, organic shea butter, organic coconut oil, organic sunflower oil, organic essential oils, organic herbal extracts (as discussed above), organic milk cream, and organic honey. You may trust these products if they are accompanied by a certificate of authenticity from a recognized certifying agency.
Organic Baby Lotion
To put it plainly, Organic Baby Lotion is baby lotion that uses only the organic natural substances in it. It is made from organic raw ingredients through an organic process and is packaged and preserved organically. No chemicals or synthetic substances should be used in it in any stage of its manufacturing.
Ingredients: Its ingredients can be classified in the following groups:
Base: The substance that makes the main bulk or volume of the lotion. Predominantly, the base consists of organic natural edible oils such as coconut oil, olive oil, sweet almond oil, sunflower oil, groundnut (peanut) oil, soy lecithin, organic shea butter, and other similar oils. Some lotions also use beeswax mixed with these oils.
Medicinal Additives: These are those which add to the medicinal properties of the lotion. These can be organic essential oils or extracts of organic medicinal herbs. For example, organic turmeric, extract of Aloe Vera, sandal, calendula, jojoba, wheat germ oil, and saffron are some of the most common medicinal additives.
Other Additives: These additives are mixed in the lotion to give it the desired flavour and colour. In case of Organic Baby Lotion, these can be essence and colours derived from organically grown flowers, herbs, and plants. Rose water and saffron are some of the most well-known additives.
Market: Baby lotions had always been in great demand and always will be. Rather, I should say that the demand will rise day-by-day, due to the increasing global temperature, decreasing humidity, and depleting ozone layer which calls for protection of the skin against the sun’s dangerous rays. It is almost certain that Organic Baby Lotions will do better than the ordinary baby lotions, because every parent wants the lotion that protects their baby’s skin from sun, infections, and harmful chemicals.
Availability: These days, Organic Baby Lotions are available in almost every reasonably modern market or shop. These are readily available in India and the Indian Subcontinent too, so you don’t need to worry about that. Still, you can order some on the Internet as well, if you want a particular brand or one with your desired ingredients.
Price: It should be obvious that Organic Baby Lotions are slightly costlier than the regular “non-organic” ones, but the prices may vary depending upon the place of manufacture, brand name, the ingredients used in it, and the certificates of authenticity.
Your Responsibility: Since your baby is the person in question, it becomes your duty to be very cautious while choosing the right Organic Baby Lotion. Please read the ingredients listed on the pack carefully and thoroughly and before you buy any, consult your baby’s doctor regarding what ingredients will or will not suit your baby’s skin. Happy parenting!
Organic Baby Cream
The scientific definition of Organic Baby Cream is baby cream that has been manufactured using all organic natural ingredients through an organic manufacturing process, without using any synthetic or chemical ingredients. Since no chemicals are used in these creams, these creams are not harsh on your baby’s skin and do not cause irritation. All the ingredients used in them are natural, organic and healthy for your baby.
Let me give you some names here. The ingredients discussed below cause no irritation and have no known adverse side effects. They are as good as any other edible product.
Organic Beeswax: The natural wax obtained from the bee hives is one of the major ingredients of Organic Baby Creams and most of these creams use this beeswax as their base in place of petroleum gel. This wax is collected from the bee hives after extracting the honey from them, cleaned, filtered repeatedly, and refined to obtain clean wax. This wax is totally safe, has no adverse side effects and is even edible (Yes! It can be eaten and purified bee wax is sold in packs as edible wax and is used by people to keep away constipation. Did you know that man has been eating this wax for thousands of years and it still forms a part of the diet in many tribes?). Although most of the beeswax is naturally organic, the beeswax obtained from the bee farms needs certifications that no artificial pesticides or sprays were used on the bee hives, in order to accurately be called organic.
Organic Coconut Butter: This is another one of the major ingredients of Organic Baby Creams and is used as a base. Organic Coconut Butter is nothing but naturally condensed organic coconut oil, meaning coconut oil that has been extracted from organically grown coconuts through an organic method and contains no chemicals. This is far better in terms of nutrients and food value than beeswax and is rich in antioxidants and vitamin E. However, it has a single drawback to be used as base in creams and that is that it melts at room temperature and becomes a liquid.
Organic Shea Butter: Organic Shea Butter or Organic Shea Nut Butter is the butter or natural fat extracted from Shea Nuts (nuts of the shea plant) grown organically and processed organically. This has excellent emollient properties and is very good and nutritive and forms an excellent base for organic creams.
Organic Olive Oil: This is another widely used ingredient of organic creams and lotions and its benefits are well known. With no known adverse side effects, olive oil is very popular as an edible as well as a massaging oil. It is rich in vitamins and other nutrients. This oil also thickens at lower temperatures (not as hard as coconut oil) and melts at higher temperatures as well.
Organic Sunflower Oil: This oil is used as an emulsifier or carrier oil. It is more commonly used in lotions than in creams.
Organic Sweet Almond Oil: This oil is very nourishing and very healthy for baby skin and adults. This is very gentle and has very good antioxidant properties.
Organic Ground Nut Oil: This is not particularly common, but it is sometimes used in creams.
Organic Essential Oils: These essential oils form the second major ingredient in any Organic Baby Cream after the base. They give the creams their medicinal values and health benefits, as well as their fragrance and colour. These organic essential oils are obtained from organically grown flowers and other parts of plants through organic processing such as steam distillation. Some very popular and commonly used organic essential oils in organic baby creams are essential oils of calendula, chamomile, lavender, and rose. Like many others, these essential oils are rich in properties like antioxidant, disinfectant, emollient, and cicatrisant abilities, and they help protect your baby’s skin from rashes, infections, cracks, and spots.
Organic Aloe Vera Extract: The juice or extract of Aloe Vera is a world famous emollient and widely used in skin treatment lotions and creams. It is known to retain the moisture content in the skin and tone it as well. Naturally, it found a place in Organic Baby Creams.
Organic Herbal Extracts: Apart from the ingredients discussed above, many other organic natural edible oils, essential oils, and other herbal extracts with different medicinal values and nutritive properties are used in Organic Baby Creams as per the requirements and purpose for the skin. Different creams contain different combinations of these ingredients in different proportions, but not necessarily all of them at the same time.
Differences from Normal Baby Creams
If you had blind faith on some brands in the market and had been buying those regularly available petroleum gel-based and self-proclaimed “Ideal for your baby” creams, then it is high time you stopped. You probably didn’t know how dangerous these creams were for your child. Under the label of “Gentle on your baby’s skin”, these companies are actually selling poisonous and carcinogenic material for your beloved and delicate baby. If you take a look at some of these ingredients below, you would probably never buy them again. Just have a look.
Petroleum Gel: This byproduct of petroleum refining is damaging for health if ingested (babies are in the habit of licking their hands and even toes) and can damage the skin in the long run. It blocks the spores on the skin and dust particles stick to it, further increasing the chances of developing an infection.
Carbomer (of various grades): This potential allergen and irritant is widely used as a thickener (sometimes as an emulsifier) and stabilizer in creams and lotions. This can cause severe irritation in the skin and eyes.
Benzene: This commonly used disinfectant and germ-killer is a potent poison and is one of the most poisonous pollutants found in the air. This can severely damage the bone marrow and can cause cancer.
Synthetic Alcohol: Can be toxic and even carcinogenic. Used in many creams and lotions.
Glycols (of various types): They are also infamous as carcinogenic and mutagenic.
Para Amino Benzoic Acid: Used mostly in skin creams and sun screen lotions, this can cause severe irritations, photo sensitivity, skin disorders, and toxicity.
Phosphoric Acid: Widely used in creams. It can cause irritations.
Polysorbate-n (20-85): This is also used as an emulsifier in baby creams and lotions, but it can cause skin sensitizing and irritations.
Polyquaternium: Very dangerous compound that can even be lethal in certain cases. This results in all the adverse side effects ranging from causing irritations to being carcinogenic or fatally allergenic, and highly toxic.
Triethanolamine: This is a severe irritant to the skin and eyes and is used in baby lotions and creams. It can cause dermatitis and can be carcinogenic as well.
You might be scared to know that our body absorbs more than half of what we rub on our skin or head, which simply means that almost half of these harmful chemicals are getting into your baby’s body each time you apply them. Moreover, since these compounds are synthetic and not made for the body, the body cannot make use of them. This means that our metabolism cannot break them down and they start accumulating in our body, mostly in the kidneys. In the long run, these chemicals can cause dreaded diseases like cancer, kidney failure, tumours, ulcers, and loss of vision.
What should you do? You have now read the difference between Organic Baby Creams and the ordinary baby creams, so you can decide very easily what to do. Don’t waste any time! Switch over to the Organic Baby Creams immediately. If you are buying them from stores, ensure that they are 100% organic and do not mistake them with those creams which have petroleum gel as their base, yet still claim to contain organic herbal extracts. They cannot be called organic. Remember, being organic and almost edible, these creams have a shorter shelf life than their non-organic counterparts.
Availability: After the rise in awareness regarding the use of organic products and consequently an increase in demand, the top players in cosmetic manufacturing have entered the markets with an extensive range of organic products. Therefore, I think Organic Baby Creams should be easily available in any reasonably good store. They are more widely available in big cities where there is more awareness and more customers. Many good companies are presence on the Internet as well, so you can order your organic baby creams from them. They also display the ingredients, certificates, and where to use the products, since different creams are made for different purposes.
Prospects: Since Organic Baby Cream is so essential and in high demand, people are becoming more and more aware day by day, so the market is rising rapidly as a consequence. Soon, you will have more choices at competitive rates to pick from (buying them is a bit costly now). Basically, just have a little patience.
Finishing Touch: If you are reading this article and are residing in a place where these Organic Baby Creams are not available for some reason, they you can prepare some on your own. You will need some organic raw materials, obviously. You can at least start with some organic coconut oil and mixing some organic essential oils in it. Then you can use some fresh milk cream, almond oil, honey, or all of them mixed together. They are far better than those tempting baby creams sold in colourful bottles.
Organic Baby Skin Care Products – Organic Certification Agencies
Be sure to carefully check the ingredients, read the certifications, and check the expiation date of the baby products. There are many agencies that certify these creams as organic and they function in specific areas. Therefore, match the name of the certifying agency with the place of manufacture of these creams. Don’t be baffled by the seal of a certifying agency in the USA when the product is manufactured in India. Here is a list to help keep things straight!
Australia: NASAA Organic Standard
Canada: Canada Gazette, Government of Canada
European Union: EU-Eco-regulation
United Kingdom: Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA)
India: Indian National Programme for Organic Production (NPOP)
Japan: Export Certificates for Japan JAS Standards.
United States: National Organic Program (NOP) Standards
Global Organic Textile Standards (GOTS)
European Organic Regulations (EU 2092/91)
Quebec Organic Reference Standard (CAAQ)
Bio Suisse Standards
IOFAM Basic Standards
What Not to Buy?
I have said this before and I am saying it again. Please try to avoid the coloured products, especially the unnaturally bright or dark ones. Some natural ingredients used in these products may have their own colours, but natural substances or their extracts seldom have very bright colours and even if they do so, the colour does not last for long because it starts degenerating. Therefore, there is a very good chance that artificial colours have been used in brightly coloured products. White or colourless products are the best ones to pick. Also, be sure to check the type of package these products are packed in. Organic products should ideally be packed in organic or organically decomposable packs. Do not encourage those products that do not follow this, because even if the contents are organic, their packs will ultimately pollute the environment, which contradicts the fundamental motive of using organic products.
Reach out Your Hand
If you talked about Organic Baby Skin Care even two decades ago, you would have probably gotten some strange reactions. If you searched for these organic products in your city’s best cosmetic shop even five years ago, it might have made the shopkeeper sweat. However, the situation is completely different now. You know what organic products mean and so do most people around you. Therefore, it is no longer difficult to get them in most places. You may just need to search a bit in the shops, but that is worth the healthy benefits of these products. You should also tell your friends about the importance and advantages of Organic Baby Skin Care products. This way, you will not only help the babies, but will also help contribute towards a less polluted and cleaner environment, because these products (and even if you are not using any ready-made product at all, just following some rules of Organic Baby Skin Care) do not use any chemicals at all.
Oh! One more thing, Organic Baby Creams can be used by adults too. You can get the same results as babies and maintain that impeccably smooth skin!
So, for the welfare of coming generations, let’s provide them with wonderfully healthy and environmentally friendly Organic Baby Skin Care products. Good Luck!