The babycare market is HUGH and is continuing to grow, as people (mothers) become more health conscious. In North America, babycare is projected to be approximately 7.5 billion dollars annually. For the first time ever, consumers are becoming better educated and are seeing the need to buy products that are specifically made to meet the needs of young (newborn) skin.
The fact is that your baby’s skin in much different than adult skin… but to what extreme, that would require different care? At the moment the skin is formed, it exists in a very dark atmosphere – submerged in liquid. It is a major adjustment to be out in the real world, and as such, we need to care for it to ensure its health. Skin thickens as we age, and for babies, this means very thin, fine textured skin. Your baby’s skin has many challenges to protect itself from the environment to retaining moisture. Yes, these are issues we all face, however they are greatly increased with young skin.
It is extremely important that the pH of baby skincare be between 4 and 6, to ensure the acid mantel is supported. It is important to look for products that are not made with animal products or by-products, as it is impossible to avoid fragrance if this is the case. Fragrance can be irritating to any aged skin, and particularly to a baby. Make sure that the products are dermatologist and pediatrician “tested”, as opposed to simply “recommended”, ensuring they are hypoallergenic.
Key ingredients to look for include Shea Butter, which is a very moisturizing botanical extract containing Vitamin A and E; Oat Extract, which is a great skin protector, is very absorbent, hypoallergenic and helps sooth and soften dry, itchy, sensitive skin; and Aloe, which penetrates deep into the skin to deliver moisture to the tissues and prevents moisture loss caused by evaporation. Products high in anti-oxidants such as Vitamin A and E, palmitate and tocopherol acetate are great to protect against free radical damage.
And lastly, you want very mild surfactants (which are the cleansing agents), such as deco-glucoside, which rinses clean….very gently!! Avoid the surfactant called Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, which can clog pores and is proven to be cancer causing. The less suds, the better!