I’m well known for my hatred of chemical laden popular infant skincare (see THIS previous post of mine on Johnson’s Baby for a summary) and for this reason I’m often asked if I can recommend natural toiletries for little ones. Knowledge of the dangers and downsides of popular artificial baby and toddler toiletries is rising steadily and many parents are choosing to purchase gentler, more natural products for their little ones, particularly those suffering with eczema and sensitive/dry skin (see THIS post for my thoughts on paediatric eczema).
With this in mind I’ve written this post with a few suggestions of my favourite products. I’m pretty sure I haven’t tried everything on the market and I’m sure there are some gems I haven’t discovered yet. I also know that not every product suits every parent and child – with their individual likes, budgets and skin types, but what I have done is try to suggest only products that I would and do use on my own children and ones that are reasonably priced (which is a big task in the overpriced natural toiletries market!). Not a paraben, SLS or artifical fragrance in sight!
Drum roll please……………
1. Best Baby Body Wash
Hands down this has to be Weleda Baby Calendula bodywash
. This product is a multi-award winner and regularly tops the ‘most loved’ lists of parent voted products. I love Weleda’s whole ethos and attitude which really reasonates with me as a mother, baby ‘expert’ (yes – I said it!) and trained homeopath. I love their cheery packaging, I love everything and anything calendula – my garden is full of these beautiful cheery wonderplants and next year I *will* make my own calendula tincture. This product is gently scented, lathers well, cleans beautifully and is only £6.95. What’s not to love? (I do confess to using this myself in the shower too!).
2. Best Extra Moisturising Cream for Baby Eczema
Creatures Baby Balm Butter
is a long standing favourite of mine. First of all I love the decadent feel of the heavy glass jar it’s packaged in and the super cute elephant illustration. It contains a mix of my favourite ingredients; coconut, lavender, calendula and shea butter to boot with a bit of Rooibos thrown in for good measure. This is a true wonder cream and only £5.99!
3. Best Baby and Toddler Shampoo
A new found favourite of mine is Miamoo Fresh Locks Shampoo
, I love the modern packaging (I’m a sucker for anything turquoise!) and the soft fresh smell reminiscent of a spa (which I think is the Aloe Vera) in contrast to the distinctive baby’ish smell so many baby shampoos have. I also love that it doubles as a body wash too…and it’s a bargainous £4!
4. Best Nappy Cream
It has to be another Weleda Baby product – the Weleda Calendula Nappy Change Cream
. This cream is a cult classic and for good reason! I can honestly say I think after four children I’ve tried pretty much every nappy rash product there is – from the high street popular Sudocrem, Vaseline and Metanium, to the natural brands, tea tree oil and even wrung out chamomile tea bags and nothing – nothing – matches this beauty. At £6.95 it might seem a lot in comparison to a giant sized tub of Sudocrem, but a little goes a long way and you won’t need to replace it very often.
5. Best Baby Massage Oil
This one isn’t strictly true, in my opinion the best oil for baby massage is coldpressed organic sunflower oil (I like the Clearspring
brand), but I suppose what I’m referring to here is the best commercial and fragrances baby massage oil. Stick to unfragranced vegetable oil, like sunflower, if your little one is under 4 months old, but once they’re a little older I love Earth Mama Angel Baby Angel Baby Oil
. I could seriously smell this all day, it is - DIVINE – and I mean seriously gorgeous. It’s also a pretty nice texture and consistency (so many baby massage oils I find to be either too runny, too sticky or too grainy). The downside is it’s the priciest at £10.95 but as a special treat for baby and you if you can afford it I’d recommend it!
6. Best Baby Moisturiser
I have to give this one to the humble coconut oil. 100% pure virgin coconut oil is a highly saturated fat expressed from the kernels of the coconut. Coconut oil has long been famed for its gentle moisturising properties. It is an incredibly light, easily absorbed oil that is very similar to skin’s natural moisturiser – sebum. Coconut oil has been used for thousands of years as a skin conditioner and no wonder why! It is truly a miracle oil and even better it smells delicious. This one
comes in a handy solid form for £5.99.
7. Best Colic Product
A special award for Weleda Baby’s Tummy Oil
. A mix of nourishing almond oil, soothing chamomile oil and warming cardamom this is fantastic for gentle tummy massage with colicky babies, soothing any digestive discomfort and calming their tears. At £7.95 it’s a small price to pay for peaceful evenings!
8. Best Multi-Purpose
This has to go to Miamoo Spritz and Wipe
. This multi-purpose gem can be used for anything from baby bottom cleaning to hair detangler for curly (and tangle prone) toddler hair. I also like to use it as a refreshing facial spritz first in the morning to wake me up enough to tackle the chaos that is the school run (the gentle orange scent is very refreshing). Love it! At only £4 I think it’s a bargain too.
9. Best Budget Buy
This has to go to Waitrose Bottom Butter
. This product is an unsung hero, it’s just brilliant. I use it for everything from scraped knees to chapped gardeners hands and the annoying little bumps you get on your elbows. At £2.89 it is amazing value.
10. Best Toddler Bubble Bath
11. Best Baby Decongestant
I’m sure you’ve all tried Baby Vicks or Olbas Oil with some level of success, my favourite decongestant without fail is Badger Aromatic Chest Rub
, not just for little ones but for adults too. Pop some on a hanky tied to the cot bars, melt a drop in a bowl of water above a radiator or for older babies and toddlers use it as a relaxing rub on the chest (some say feet too, though I’m not a great believer in that urban myth!). At £3.99 it’s great value and the little tin is super cute too.
12. Best Baby Wipes
Most baby wipes are as bad for your baby’s bottom as they are for the environment. I love Earth Friendly Baby and Kids Wipes
for their eco (biodegrable/flushable) status as well as their gentle hypoallergenic aloe vera formulation. At £2.99 per pack they’re a little more expensive than popular wipes by nappy companies but your baby’s bottom will thank you for it! Of course you could also go down the cloth wipes route which is even better for the environment (and cheaper too!).
and not forgetting mum…………..
13. Best postnatal treat
After the births of my babies I have always treated myself to a first postnatal bath in Neals Yard Lavender Bath Salts
. This is like a hug in the bath for sore new mummy bits, and soothing to the frazzled mind. You have to smell it to believe it, in every case midwives have asked me what I was using because it smelt so divine. I love Neal’s Yard packaging too, it feels more than a little decadent and it is a bit at £15.50 per tub, but I promise you it’s worth it!
14. Best Pregnancy Product
I don’t know about you but my skin is terrible during pregnancy, I end up with a weird mix of teenage acne and sandpapery dry legs and arms and ooooohhh the itching! My top tip here is Earth Mama Body Butter
. I’m a sucker for anything with shea oil in and this has it by the bucket load along with the gorgeous signature scent of the rest of the range, it’s a product that makes you feel special and at £8.29 as a pregnancy treat it’s not so badly priced.
15. Best Stretchmark Product
Last but not least if you’re worried about stretchmarks, either developing during pregnancy or for lessening their appearance after the birth (though I love to think of them as tiger stripes!) I love Weleda Stretch Mark Massage Oil
, with its sweet scent and soothing feel. At £15.95 a little goes a very long way!
by Sarah Ockwell-Smith
Author of BabyCalm and ToddlerCalm
I have received no financial incentives from any of the companies mentioned on this page. These are genuinely my personal recommendations based on my experience as a mother of four.