The skin of a newborn baby is a very delicate, unformed integumentary structure. After birth, the child begins to come into contact with different environmental conditions. It is necessary to provide careful care for his skin to prevent or help cope with diaper rash, dryness and irritation.

Table of contents:

  • Peculiarities of the skin structure of newborns
  • Baby skin care rules
  • Washing a baby
  • Proper body care
  • Baby skin care products
  • Common skin problems in children

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Like all organs and systems of a baby’s body, the skin of a newborn is still immature and especially susceptible to any irritants .

Features of baby’s skin:

  • Loose structure of the top layer. The cells of the outer layer of skin are loose and peel off easily. The lower layer (basal membrane) is poorly developed and consists of fiber with a small number of dense fibers. Therefore, the skin is easily injured and is less resistant to infections.
  • Good blood supply to the baby’s skin allows it to “breathe”, but contributes to the rapid penetration of infection into the bloodstream.
  • The baby’s sebaceous glands, under the influence of hormones from mother’s milk, produce excess sebum in the first days. Then secretion returns to normal and resumes again during puberty.
  • Underdeveloped sweat glands of the skin, which easily leads to overheating of the newborn.
  • The baby’s skin accumulates fluid, which penetrates through thin, unformed layers and is retained in the epidermis. Some substances (for example, urea) also penetrate well through skin barriers, easily causing irritation and allergies .

The immaturity of a newborn’s skin, its high sensitivity and permeability require special care – gentle and thorough.

  • Avoid prolonged contact of the baby’s skin with urine and feces: this leads to irritation and diaper rash ;
  • clothing should be soft, preferably made from natural materials and without seams ;
  • avoid direct sunlight: due to the immature heat exchange process, the baby may overheat,
  • do not use daily care products that can cause dry skin or the development of dermatitis in a child; If possible, children’s cosmetics should not contain preservatives ;
  • take air baths: allow the baby’s skin to “breathe”, do not put on a diaper immediately after hygiene procedures ;
  • Breastfeeding also helps maintain healthy skin and develop the baby’s overall immunity .

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The child should be washed as needed. Pay attention to every part of the baby’s face. Morning care includes the following procedures:

  • wiping the eyelids, eyebrows, and inner corners of the eyes with a cotton swab (take a separate swab for each eye);
  • treating the baby’s skin in the ear area, since formula or breast milk may come into contact with it during feeding: use a clean, damp swab to gently wipe the ears and the area behind them.

The spout should be cleaned as needed. Soak a sterile cotton swab in saline and, carefully, so as not to damage the mucous membrane, remove dry crusts with gentle rotational movements. All movements should be slow and careful: the baby’s skin is very delicate and can be easily injured.


While swimming, you can do without special products. It is important to remember that alkaline soap or too hard water can cause dermatitis.

Bathe your baby before bed at night, after evening feeding – this stimulates the child to form the correct daily routine.

Prepare the water for swimming (the optimal temperature is 37-38 degrees, use a special thermometer to measure). Slowly lower the baby into the bathtub, supporting the back, head and buttocks. Wash the face and head area first, then gradually work your way down to the rest of the body. At the end of bathing, you need to rinse your child with clean water. After bathing, any remaining moisture should be gently blotted with a soft, warm towel: remember that the baby’s skin is very delicate, so it should not be rubbed. Now the child can be dressed in previously prepared clean clothes. The whole procedure takes 15-20 minutes, depending on the baby’s behavior.


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There are special requirements for baby care products:

  • baby lotion for gentle skin cleansing should not contain artificial fragrances and alcohol;
  • baby cream and oil have softening and protective properties, increase elasticity and firmness, they can be used in skin care after dermatitis;
  • baby soap should not contain alkaline components;
  • You should not use baby shampoo for bathing children under one year more than 1-2 times a week .

If your newborn has dry skin, you can use special products for bathing. Before using a cream, lotion or other product, make sure that your child is not allergic to it.


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A newborn baby’s skin is easily irritated. The most common problems are:

Diaper dermatitis (diaper rash). Most often it develops in places where diapers are swaddled or worn. It is redness and swelling of the skin in the area of ​​the buttocks, perineum, external genitalia, and natural folds. An unfavorable consequence may be the addition of an infection, which leads to the development of pustular diseases. The child becomes whiny, capricious, eats and sleeps poorly.

One of the reasons for the development of dermatitis is the transfer of a baby from natural feeding to mixed or artificial feeding. This leads to changes in the properties of feces and an increase in the content of allergenic enzymes in it. Keeping a baby in wet diapers for a long time causes the components of baby feces to cause skin irritation.

What care does a newborn’s skin require with diaper dermatitis? Try to ensure that your child spends as little time as possible in a soiled diaper. Wash your baby under running water more often, carefully patting the skin with a towel, and give air baths. In some cases, consultation with a pediatrician or dermatologist is necessary to prescribe effective treatments, especially in case of complications. To restore skin after dermatitis, you must carefully follow the doctor’s recommendations and maintain a hygienic regime. To speed up the process of restoration of the baby’s skin with diaper dermatitis (diaper rash), you can use special products, for example in the form of ointments, that relieve inflammation on the skin, promote its regeneration and create a protective breathable barrier from external irritants under the diaper. It is recommended to use such products regularly, with every diaper change.

Dry skin can be observed in a baby due to the incorrect selection of baby care products, as well as under the influence of environmental conditions – excessive exposure to the sun, exposure to wind. But excessive dryness can also be an alarming signal: it indicates dehydration, insufficient fluid intake, and in some cases, poor nutrition or the development of diseases of the endocrine system. A pediatrician will help solve this problem .

If your baby’s dry skin is caused solely by external factors, pay attention to proper care. Change your bathing product (or stop using it and monitor your skin condition). Together with your pediatrician, select a high-quality moisturizer, oil or ointment specifically for caring for your infant’s skin.