The benefits of lavender, calendula and chamomile on a baby's skin
Long before baby products were a multi-million dollar business, parents soothed, cleaned, softened and healed their precious babies’ skin. And they didn’t use toxic chemicals to do it, such as we find too often in products on the shelves today, e.g., propylene glycol, parabens, triclosan. Who even knows what they are?
Essential oils are the liquids extracted from flowers, seeds, leaves, stems, bark, and roots of plants. They are the oldest form of medicine and cosmetics and remain as effective today. For the hyper-sensitive skin of babies, lavender, chamomile, and calendula are among the most gentle.
Lavender is native to northern Africa and the Mediterranean and is valued for its beautiful flower, sweet scent and the extensive healing properties of its essential oil. Ancient Persians, Greeks, and Romans added the flowers to their bathwater to ease their bodies and minds. In fact, "lavender" is derived from the Latin "lavare" (“to wash”). Today, we add lavender to baby’s bath. A drop or two of the Baby Calming Wash infused with lavender essential oil added to the bath water softens baby’s skin and ensures that baby (and, therefore, the parents) will sleep soundly.
For diaper rash, add one drop of lavender to one pint of warm water. Dampen a cotton ball with the mixture and wipe baby’s bottom to relieve the redness and irritation. That technique will also heal insect bites and skin inflammations. Following this bath, massage a small amount of Baby Diaper Cream to help with healing.
Of course, you want the softest fabrics possible against baby’s skin, but there are no fabric softeners especially made for babies. Make your own quite easily. Organic 100% wool dryer balls dampened with a few drops of lavender oil softens fabrics and shortens drying times, and the lavender scent lingers on.
Calendula was named by the ancient Romans because it bloomed on the first day of every month; the Latin "calendae" means "little calendar." For hundreds of years, throughout Europe, the gentle calendula with its bright yellow flowers has been the “go-to” essential oil for treating diaper rash, eczema, cradle cap and superficial cuts and scrapes on baby’s skin.
Using the Baby Bath Oil that is infused with calendula flowers after baby’s bath promoting a soothing and moisturizing effect along with a mild and pleasant scent. Massage before bedtime.
Calendula also treats cradle cap. Massage a small amount of the oil into baby’s scalp to loosen the scabs so that they fall off naturally, while the underlying skin has begun to heal. It also alleviates the irritation, so that baby is less apt to pick at or scratch the scabs.
Chamomile by Conor Dupre-Neary
Ancient hieroglyphs depict Egyptian noblewomen using crushed chamomile petals on their faces. The plant is native to western Europe and northern Africa, but the white daisy-like flowers with leaves that smell like apples can be seen growing in fields and along country roads.
Chamomile is full of astringents that make it an effective treatment for cradle cap.
Liberally after baby’s bath, apply Baby Calming Balm to keep the skin moist and prevent secondary infections.
What are your tips for a well-rested baby? Leave them in the comments below!
Use essential oils only on babies older than three months.
Before using any product, including essential oils, perform a patch test on the arm or leg.
*Main photo via Poppy Talk