Noodle & Boo offers proven-safe and effective solutions for typical baby care needs and common skin conditions. On-going research, scientific expertise and historical data result in world-class products.
What is eczema atopic dermatitis?
Eczema is one of the most common skin problems for children. It is a condition of dry, extra-sensitive skin. Most infants will outgrow it by the time they are 2 to 3 years old. If eczema runs in the family, it is more likely to be a lifelong condition. Even so, it is often worse in the first years of life.
Eczema is a vicious cycle. Something irritates your child's skin, making it red and inflamed. It itches. He/she rubs it. The skin becomes more inflamed. The outer protective layer of the skin is lost. The affected area is extra-sensitive to irritants, and dries out easily. He/she continues to be exposed to whatever it was that triggered the episode in the first place.
What triggers eczema?
Here is a list of common triggers to watch for:
- Rubbing the skin
- Moisture, such as saliva or milk
- Common house dust
- Wool or other scratchy fabric
- Dog or cat dander
- Cigarette smoke
- Clothes washed in irritating detergent
- Body soap
What causes eczema in babies and children?
Occasionally, eczema is caused by an allergic reaction to foods in the baby's diet. In general, breast milk is tremendous for controlling eczema (in fact 6 months of nursing can possibly prevent eczema in some children). In some cases, if the nursing mom is consuming dairy products, nuts, eggs, seafood, or possibly other foods (which vary from individual to individual), the baby will be negatively affected. Foods children directly consume that can make eczema worse include cow’s milk, egg whites, citrus (such as tomatoes, strawberries, oranges, and lemons), chocolate and nuts. If you are using a cows' milk-based formula, you may want to try using a soy formula.
How to prevent and treat baby eczema?
The first step in treating eczema is to try to identify the precipitating event or trigger and avoid it if possible. You may not see an immediate improvement, but if you are going to successfully treat eczema, it is important to break the cycle.
- Avoid situations that will make your baby sweat—don't pile on blankets, etc.
- Cut cow's milk, eggs, citrus fruits and peanut products from baby’s diet one at a time to see if conditions improve.
- Try an alternative clothes detergent.
- Avoid dressing your child in wool or any other harsh material (cotton is excellent).
- Try non-steroid ointments that provide an occlusive barrier between baby’s skin and possible irritants.
How to treat baby eczema?
Daily bathing and moisturizing is key to treating baby (infantile) eczema (atopic dermatitis). Use a mild cleanser and warm water. After a bath of no more than 15 minutes, rinse completely, gently pat your baby dry and apply a fragrance-free cream or ointment, while the skin is still damp. Moisturize at least twice a day, perhaps at diaper changes. When trying a new moisturizer, test it on a small area of the child’s skin first to make sure it's well-tolerated.
Baby eczema signs and symptoms may also be eased by avoiding irritants — such as itchy fabric and harsh soaps — as well as extremes in temperature. To prevent your child from scratching the rash, it may help to keep baby's nails clipped short or to put on cotton mittens during sleep.
Have your baby examined if the condition persists or the rash is purple, crusty and weepy or has blisters. A child who has a fever and rash may also need evaluation. Talk with your doctor about using a medicated cream or ointment or trying bleach baths to ease symptoms. Use medications and bleach baths with the guidance of your pediatrician.
Noodle & Boo’s Ultimate Ointment (developed as an alternative to steroid-based products traditionally recommended for eczema)
Noodle & Boo’s Ultra-Safe Baby Laundry Detergent was developed especially for sensitive skin.
According to the Mayo Clinic, infant massage is a way for you to gently nurture and spend time with your baby. Here are a few highlights and recommendations they offer.
What are the benefits of infant massage?
Research suggests that infant massage can have various health benefits. For example, infant massage might:
- Encourage interaction between you and your baby
- Help your baby relax and sleep
- Positively affect infant hormones that control stress
- Reduce crying
- Although further research is needed, some studies also suggest that infant massage involving moderate pressure might promote growth for premature babies.
When should I massage my baby?
Massaging your baby too soon after a feeding might cause your baby to vomit — so wait at least 45 minutes after a feeding. Also pay close attention to your baby's mood. If your baby has a steady gaze and appears calm and content, he or she might enjoy a massage. If your baby turns his or her head away from you or becomes stiff in your arms, it might not be the best time for a massage.
Once you start massaging your baby, when and how often you massage your baby is up to you. You might give your newborn a daily massage. Your toddler might enjoy a massage at night as a soothing part of his or her bedtime routine.
How do I massage my baby?
Infant massage involves a little preparation and some basic techniques. To get started:
- Create a calm atmosphere. If possible, do the massage in a warm, quiet place — indoors or outdoors. Remove your jewelry. Sit comfortably on the floor or a bed or stand in front of the changing table and position your baby on a blanket or towel in front of you. Place your baby on his or her back so that you can maintain eye contact. As you undress your baby, tell him or her it's massage time.
- Control your touch. When you first start massaging your baby, use a gentle touch. Avoid tickling your baby, which might irritate him or her. As your baby grows, use a firmer touch.
- Slowly stroke and knead each part of your baby's body. You might start by placing your baby on his or her stomach and spending one minute each rubbing different areas, including your baby's head, neck, shoulders, upper back, waist, thighs, feet and hands. Next, place your baby on his or her back and spend one minute each extending and flexing your baby's arms and legs, and then both legs at the same time. Finally, with your baby either on his or her back or stomach, repeat the rubbing motions for another five minutes.
- Stay relaxed. Talk to your baby throughout the massage. You might sing or tell a story. Try repeating your baby's name and the word "relax" as you help him or her release tension.
- Watch how your baby responds. If your baby jiggles his or her arms and seems happy, he or she is likely enjoying the massage and you can continue. If your baby turns his or her head away from you or appears restless or unhappy, stop the massage and try again later.
Should I use lotion?
It's up to you. Some parents prefer to use lotion during infant massage to prevent friction between their hands and the baby's skin, while others find it too messy.
Is infant massage OK for babies who have health issues?
If your baby has any underlying health issues, talk to your baby's doctor before trying infant massage. The doctor can help you determine if massage is appropriate. You might also ask your baby's doctor if he or she can recommend an infant massage specialist or other qualified expert who can teach you techniques to address your baby's specific needs.
It might take a few tries before you and your baby get the hang of infant massage. Be patient. With a little practice, infant massage can be a healthy way for you and your baby to relax and bond.
Baby Skin Basics
A newborn's skin dries out almost immediately after birth, as baby transitions from the moist environment of the womb to his/her new environment in the outside world. Within the first 2-3 weeks of life, a newborn's skin will typically flake and shed, regardless of what a parent does.
Noodle & Boo products are developed for baby skin. Babies have different skin care needs than adults for several reasons.
- At birth, babies' skin is nearly perfectly pH neutral, whereas adult skin is more acidic.
- The epidermis or outer layer of baby's skin is 20-30% thinner and therefore less resilient than adult skin.
- Infant skin both absorbs and loses moisture more quickly than adult skin.
- Infant skin can be more susceptible to infection. Infant skin has not yet fully developed the defenses to protect itself from certain bacteria, and babies do not have fully effective immune systems to fight off infection. Learn why preservatives are especially important to safeguard water-based baby products. (link to preservatives in product standards)
- Babies have reduced sweating capability, compared to normal adults. This affects their ability to reduce body temperature through sweating. In addition to affecting body processes, this decreased ability to sweat may contribute to rashes.
Bath Time Tips
Bathing a slippery newborn can be a nerve-wracking experience. Your baby might not like it much, either. With a little practice, however, you'll both start to feel more comfortable at bath time. Start by learning baby bath basics.
How often does my newborn need a bath?
There's no need to give your newborn a bath every day. Three times a week might be enough until your baby becomes more mobile. Bathing your baby too much can dry out his or her skin. If you're quick and thorough with diaper changes and burp cloths, you're already cleaning the parts that need attention — the face, neck and diaper area.
Is it better to bathe my baby in the morning or at night?
That's up to you. Choose a time when you're not rushed or likely to be interrupted. Some parents opt for morning baths, when their babies are alert. Others prefer to make baby baths part of a calming bedtime ritual. If you bathe your baby after a feeding, consider waiting for your baby's tummy to settle a bit first.
Is a sponge bath enough?
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends sponge baths until the umbilical cord stump falls off — which might take a week or two. To give your baby a sponge bath, you'll need:
- A warm place with a flat surface. A bathroom or kitchen counter, changing table, or firm bed will work. Even a blanket or towel on the floor is okay. Pad hard surfaces with a blanket or towel.
- A soft blanket, towel or changing pad. Spread it out for your baby to lie on.
- A free hand. Always keep one hand on your baby. On a changing table, use the safety strap as well.
- A sink or shallow plastic basin to hold the water. Run warm water into the basin or sink. Check the water temperature with your hand to make sure it's not too hot.
- Essential supplies. Gather a washcloth, a towel — preferably with a built-in hood — mild baby wash, a clean diaper and a change of clothes.
- Undress your baby and wrap him or her in a towel. Lay your baby on his or her back in the prepared area. To keep your baby warm, only expose the parts of your baby's body you're washing. Wet the washcloth, wring out excess water and wipe your baby's face. Wipe each eyelid, from the inside to the outside corner.
- To clean your baby's body, use plain water or a mild, tearless wash. Pay special attention to creases under the arms, behind the ears, around the neck and in the diaper area. Also wash between your baby's fingers and toes.
What type of baby tub is best?
Once your baby is ready for a bath, you might use a plastic tub or the sink. Line the tub or sink with a clean towel. Gather the supplies you'd use for a sponge bath, a cup for rinsing water and baby wash, if needed, ahead of time. This will allow you to keep one hand on the baby at all times. Never leave your baby alone in the water.
How much water should I put in the tub?
A common recommendation is 2 inches (about 5 centimeters) of warm — not hot — water. To keep your baby warm, you can pour warm water over his or her body throughout the bath. Some research suggests that using slightly more water — enough to cover a baby's shoulders — can be calming and help reduce heat loss. With any amount of water, be sure to hold your baby securely during the bath.
What about water temperature?
Warm water is best. To prevent scalding, set the thermostat on your water heater to below 120 F (49 C). Always check the water temperature with your hand before bathing your baby. Aim for bath water around 100 F (38 C). Be sure the room is comfortably warm, too. A wet baby can be easily chilled.
What's the best way to hold my newborn in the tub?
A secure hold will help your baby feel comfortable — and stay safe — in the tub. Use your nondominant arm to support your baby's head and neck and the other to hold and guide your baby's body into the water, feet first. Continue supporting your baby's head and back as needed. You might reach behind your baby and hold on to his or her opposite arm throughout the bath.
What should I wash first?
Most parents start with the baby's face and move down to dirtier parts of the body. This keeps rinsed areas from getting soapy again.
Should I wash my newborn's hair?
If your newborn has hair and you think it needs washing, go ahead. With your free hand gently massage a drop of mild wash into your baby's scalp. Rinse with a cup of water or a damp washcloth, cupping one hand across your baby's forehead to keep suds out of his or her eyes.
Will lotion after a baby bath help prevent rashes?
Most newborns don't need lotion after a bath. If his/her skin is very dry, apply a small amount of baby moisturizer to the dry areas. The massage might make your baby feel good. If dryness continues, you might be bathing your baby too often.
PRODUCT RECOMMENDATIONS:Noodle & Boo’s Newborn 2-in-1 Hair & Body Wash
Bubble Bath Concerns
Bubble bath can be a skin irritant for some children, especially those with the sensitive skin or eczema (atopic dermatitis). The skin around the genital area is often most sensitive. If a child has frequent urination, vaginal burning or itching, vaginal discharge, labial adhesions, urinary tract infections, or yeast infections consider skipping a bubble bath to reduce possible irritation.
Increase your odds of successful bubble baths by rinsing well with clear water after bubble bath fun!
Bouncing Baby Bubbles or Calming Bubble Bath as great alternatives to mass market products. They do not contain sulfates or harsh detergents that can be irritating. Formulated with gentle and natural ingredients that hydrate the skin, they leave little ones extra soft and smelling refreshingly sweet; formulated for sensitive skin, clinically-tested and hypoallergenic.
What causes baby diaper rash?
Diaper rash is most frequently caused by skin irritation from wet or soiled diapers. Secondary infections in the diaper area are typically caused by bacterial or fungal (yeast) overgrowth on inflamed or tender skin.
Diaper rash can occur with both cloth and disposable diapers. It usually appears as a mild red rash around the genitals and in the folds of the skin of the thighs and buttocks.
How to prevent and treat baby diaper rash?
You can help prevent and treat diaper rash by checking your baby's diaper often and changing wet or soiled diapers right away. Keep diapers loose to allow air in and to keep wet and soiled diapers from rubbing against the skin.
If the baby has a rash, diapers should be left off as much as possible each day in order to allow the skin to be exposed to air. Good times to leave the diaper off may be during naps or after bowel movements.
Diaper rash usually responds to treatment within 48 to 72 hours, although it may not completely disappear for several days. It may not heal until an underlying problem is treated. Contact your child's healthcare provider if the diaper rash gets worse, returns after being treated, or has blisters or sores.
Sunburn is an inflammatory reaction to ultraviolet (UV) radiation damage to the skin’s outermost layers. At the heart of it all is melanin, a pigment that gives your skin its color and defends it against the sun’s rays. Melanin works by darkening your unprotected sun-exposed skin. The amount of melanin you produce is determined by genetics, which is why some people get sunburned while others tan. Both are signs of cellular damage to the skin. For people with less melanin, prolonged unprotected sun exposure can cause skin cells to become red, swollen and painful, also known as sunburn. Sunburns can range from mild to blistering.
After sunburn, your skin may start to peel. This is a sign that your body is trying to rid itself of damaged cells. Never try to peel the skin yourself; let it come off naturally. Learn more about treating a sunburn below.
What you need to know about sunburn.
Some people are more prone to sunburn: Skin type determines your susceptibility; people with fair skin run the greatest risk. But anyone can get burned.
Even without a burn, sun exposure raises skin cancer risk. Even if you are tan or your skin type is dark and your skin does not redden, the sun can cause cellular damage that can lead to cancer.
The UV index is a factor: The sun varies in intensity by season, time of day and geographic location. A high UV index means that unprotected skin will burn faster or more severely. Be careful, especially when the sun is strongest. But even when the index is low, the risk remains. Protect yourself every day of the year.
You can burn on an overcast day: Be careful even when the sun isn’t shining. Up to 80 percent of UV rays can penetrate clouds.
Light pink is still bad: No matter how mild, every burn is a sign of injury to your skin that can result in premature aging and skin cancer.
Repeated sunburns raise your risk. For fair-skinned people, especially those with genetic predisposition, sunburn plays a clear role in developing melanoma. Research shows that the UV rays that damage skin can also alter a tumor-suppressing gene, giving injured cells less chance to repair before progressing to cancer.
People who work or play sports outdoors have a greater risk of frequent sunburns that can result in skin cancer.
Even one blistering sunburn in childhood or adolescence more than doubles your chances of developing melanoma later in life.
Skin damage builds up over time starting with your very first sunburn. The more you burn, the greater your risk of skin cancer. Subsequent UV damage can occur even when there is no obvious burn.
Five or more sunburns more than doubles your risk of developing potentially deadly melanoma
It’s easy to reduce your risk of skin cancer by practicing sun safety.
Young skin heals faster than older skin, but it is also less able to protect itself from injury, including injury from the sun.
Babies under 6 months of age should never be exposed to the sun. Babies older than 6 months should be protected from the sun, and wear UV-blocking sunglasses to protect their eyes.
If your child becomes sunburned, follow these guidelines:
- Bathe in clear, tepid water to cool the skin.
- For a baby less than 1 year old, sunburn should be treated as an emergency. Call your doctor immediately.
- For a child 1 year or older, call your doctor if there is severe pain, blistering, lethargy or fever over 101°F (38.3°C).
- Sunburn can cause dehydration. Give your child water or juice to replace body fluids. Contact the doctor if the child is not urinating regularly; this is an emergency.
- Apply light moisturizing lotion to soothe the skin, but don’t rub it in.
- Dabbing on plain calamine lotion may help, but don’t use one with an added antihistamine.
- Do not apply alcohol, which can overcool the skin.
- Do not use any medicated cream such as hydrocortisone or benzocaine unless instructed by your pediatrician.
- Keep your child out of the sun entirely until the sunburn heals.
Practice sun protection and make sure that no matter where you child goes, sun safety is taken into account.
Sunscreen (Coming Soon)
While the information published here is meant to be accurate, it is not intended to substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult your physician or local medical facility for information specific to your individual needs. We urge that you check with your physician before undertaking any course of action and recommend that you always follow the advice and recommendations of your health practitioner.
The information on this website has been compiled from published sources and is provided only as a guide. Although every effort has been taken to ensure that information published on this site is correct and up to date, Noodle & Boo cannot guarantee the accuracy of all information presented, and accepts no liability in respect of any omission or error.
AskMayoExpert. Atopic dermatitis. Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2018.
AskMayoExpert. Sunburn. Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2018.
Eczema and bathing. National Eczema Association. https://nationaleczema.org/eczema/treatment/bathing. Accessed Jan. 2, 2019.
Gibson LE (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Jan. 15, 2019.
How can I protect my children from the sun? Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/cancer/skin/basic_info/children.htm. Accessed March 18, 2019.
Jana LA, et al. Baby bath basics. In: Heading Home With Your Newborn: From Birth to Reality. 3rd ed. Elk Grove Village, Ill.: American Academy of Pediatrics; 2015.
Kermott CA, et al., eds. Conditions A-Z. In: Mayo Clinic Book of Home Remedies: What to Do for Most Common Health Problems. 2nd ed. New York, N.Y.: Time Inc. Books; 2017.
Litin SC (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Jan. 18, 2019.
Litin SC, et al., eds. Infant and toddler years. In: Family Health Book. 5th ed. Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2018.
Litin SC, et al., eds. Skin, hair and nails. In: Family Health Book. 5th ed. Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2018.
National Cancer Institute. 2007. General Information about Skin Cancer. www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/pdq/treatment/skin/patient
Ness MJ, et al. Neonatal skin care: A concise review. International Journal of Dermatology. 2013;52:14.
Rashes and skin conditions. American Academy of Pediatrics. http://www.healthychildren.org/English/ages-stages/baby/bathing-skin-care/Pages/Rashes-and-Skin-Conditions.aspx. Accessed March 30, 2015.
Shelov SP, et al. Basic infant care. In: Caring for Your Baby and Young Child: Birth to Age 5. 5th ed. New York, N.Y.: Bantam Books; 2014.
Sunscreen FAQs. American Academy of Dermatology. https://www.aad.org/media/stats/prevention-and-care/sunscreen-faqs. Accessed March 18, 2019.
Sunscreen: How to help protect your skin from the sun. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. http://www.fda.gov/drugs/resourcesforyou/consumers/buyingusingmedicinesafely/understandingover-the-countermedicines/ucm239463.htm. Accessed March 18, 2019.