I’m learning as I go. I had no idea exactly what I was getting myself into. I’m hoping to help others looking to try it or figure it out.
One of the first things I’ve needed to learn is proper skin care. We’ve had nine kids total, and out of those nine, eight have had skin afflictions of one kind or another. Most of the time it comes from poor diet, unaddressed allergies or lack of proper hygiene.
I use a hypoallergenic laundry soap. You don’t have to buy a big fancy brand, pretty much any free and clear will do. Now almost all the brands make a free and clear version of their soap and some are quite reasonably priced, so go with whatever works for you.
1. I always bathe the kids the first night. Of course, our kids are younger so I don’t usually have to worry about modesty or trauma associated with bathing. If you have older kids, you may want to take those issues into consideration. **Note: once you’ve got them good and clean you only need to bathe them two or three days at most. Especially for kids that are prone to dryer skin, too much bathing can exacerbate the problem. If they’re not too sweaty, we rinse them off with plain water, or wipe ’em down in the stinky places.
2. If the kids have eczema or dry skin rash you can use Dove moisturizer soap. If the kids are just generally dry and flaky, you can use a good, natural moisturizer baby soap.
3. If the child has exzema, welts, or severe dry skin we use Eucerine Calming Cream. For really cracked or rashy skin I use Aquaphor (sometimes you can get a sample bottle of this when you by Eucerine). For extremely itchy rash, I use hydrocortisone up to three times a day for a few days. Obviously if the rash doesn’t go away or worsens, we see the doctor.
4. Finally for basic maintenance, every time the child is bathed I use a good lotion like Eucerine. Daily (or when I remember) we use a natural, gentle baby moisturizer like Aveeno or Method Squeaky Green. I have used baby oil gel in a pinch, or to shine a kid up for visitation. Even for black kids, don’t use petroleum jelly, even if the parents tell you to. It will clog their pores and the darkest, dryest skin (I’ve had two very, very dark babies with very dry skin) will look prettier and healthier with a healing/natural moisturizer.
I am not being compensated by any of the brands mentioned in this post, though I would happily accept should it be offered.