As a result, it’s more sensitive and more susceptible to irritants. Your little one’s skin is also more prone to dryness. Compared to adults, babies have a bigger skin surface area in proportion to their weight, so lose moisture more easily. Also, the glands that produce natural oils to moisturise her skin from within won’t start working until your baby reaches puberty. This natural tendency towards dryness has seen a plethora of products on the market that claim to help your baby’s skin stay as soft as the proverbial bottom.
So what is safe and suitable to use? In the following pages, Nina Goad of the British Skin Foundation offers some guidelines on keeping your baby’s skin soft and supple from day one.
‘Before your baby is a month old, common sense suggests you should use as few products as possible,’ says Nina. ‘Cotton wool and water are great for nappy changes, and fresh air circulating around the area should help prevent nappy rash. If this isn’t possible, a gentle nappy barrier cream can be safely used. Unless your baby already has very dry skin, she shouldn’t need a moisturiser at this age.’