When to use what: which products does your baby really need?

31 October 2023

Eerste babybadje - Digital shelf badolie

Baby care, it comes in all shapes and sizes. When you’re new to parenthood it’s hard to figure out what you really need. No worries, your baby doesn’t need as much as it might seem! Especially not in those first weeks. We’ve made list for you, so you can see for yourself which products are essential and which you can leave at the store.

A baby’s skin is pure, and you want to keep it that way. Which products do you really need? What’s unnecessary? Do you use bath foam or shampoo for a newborn? And how often do you use a body lotion? A baby’s development is quick and their skin care needs can change pretty fast in the first year. That’s why we explain what products you need and when.

0-24 hours - nothing at all!

You baby is born with a protective layer: vernix caseosa. This layer is being developed from the twentieth week of pregnancy and is full of protein and nutrients. This way your baby’s skin is nourished and protected against infection. The first 24 hours after birth you want to leave the vernix on. In the hospital, babies are also not being washed in these first 24 hours because of it. In short: you don’t need anything during the first 24 hours of your baby’s life! But.. it might be smart to pack some mild products in your hospital bag anyway, just in case you need to stay a little longer.

0-4 weeks - the newborn phase

Your baby won’t need that much during the first fe weeks either. Baby’s don’t sweat and they also don’t really get dirty. Often they don’t have any hair, so shampoo is unnecessary. How often do you need to bathe a newborn baby? A bath every 2 or 3 days is more than enough during this phase. So what products do you use during the first weeks?

Bath oil for the first baby baths

Water can cause dry skin, not what you want for the sensitive baby skin. What you can do to prevent dry skin? Add a few drops of a mild bath oil to the water of the bath. The oild makes the hard water softer and nourishes the skin during bath time. Naïf bath oil is mild for the skin and made of ingredients with natural origins. The oil resolves in the water and leaves a light foam, no slippery baby!

Prefer the shower? Use a wash gel!

No bathtub or just more of a shower person? Completely fine! One drop of wash gel on a wash cloth is enough. You might want to avoid SLES. This foaming agent can cause dryness, especially with the sensitive skin of baby’s and kids. Naïf’s mild wash gel does not contain SLES! And did you know we also have a hydrating wash cream, a little more oily which makes it even softer for the dry and sensitive skin.

Zinc cream for diaper rash

Not dangerous, but very painful: diaper rash. Avoid at all cost! That’s why we advise to use a zinc cream as a way of prevention. Zinc oxide helps with keeping the skin dry, which is exactly what you need. Apart from this it’s also important to change the diaper of your little one often and to let their bum air dry before putting a new diaper on. We asked dermatologist Elodie Mendels for more tips and tricks to prevent or heal diaper rash.

Jar or tube? We prefer a tube, it’s a little more hygienic during diaper changes.

Wipe for the future: unlimited baby wipes

That bum needs to be cleaned. Did you know you use up to 14,000 wipes per child? Nice to use baby wipes that are good for the skin and have less negative impact on the planet. You could also choose to use washable wipes, but in case you rather not, we have a great solution for you. Naïf plastic free baby wipes are made of wood fibre and contain 0% alcohol and perfume, two completely unnecessary ingredients and not great for the sensitive skin! Our wipes come in two different kinds: water and lotion. Not sure which one you might need? These are the differences.

Not necessary, but nice to have: baby oil

Does your baby have a dry skin? You might want to consider using baby oil after bath time. Again: mild products with good ingredients are a must. Baby oil can also be used for a bonding moment with your little one, by giving them a nice baby massage. It’s all up to you and there is no right or wrong.

0-1 - baby care

After a little while you get to know your baby and their needs, also when it comes to their skin. That’s why it becomes easier to decide what products your little one needs. You might want to add some of the following products to your routine:

Haircare and styling

Some kids are born with a head full of hair, for others it takes a while. When your baby has no hair, you can just use the bath water (with added bath oil) to gently rinse the scalp. When the hair gets thicker and wilder, you might want to switch to shampoo though. Make sure you use a shampoo that’s made for babies, since they are milder for the skin and hair than an adult shampoo. Once the hair is long enough and starts to tangle you can also start using a hair lotion.

Creams, balms and body lotion

You can use them from birth, but only after a few weeks you will know what your baby’s skin really needs. A body lotion is always okay, but a nurturing cream, like our baby cream, is only necessary for dry skin or dry spots. The difference? A lotion contains more water, a cream more oil.

We also have a special baby balm. This one is made specifically for the really dry spots, for example chapped or red cheeks or lips. 0% perfume is added to this balm, which makes it suitable for damaged skin.

Sun protection

Keep baby’s, especially the first year, out of the sun as much as possible. Now, we understand that this might be easier said than done. That’s why it’s smart to use sunscreen to protect your little one's skin. Choose a mineral sunscreen with SPF50: immediate high protection without waiting and it does not penetrate the skin which reduces the chance on an allergic reaction or irritation. For baby’s we advise to use a cream, instead of a spray. A cream is a little more oily and easier to apply to the exact spot on such a tiny body.

Also read: do I need to use sunscreen on my newborn?

Bath and shower fun

The first months you might want to avoid bath foam, all those bubbles can be quite overwhelming for a little baby. But after a couple months you might want to add some fun to your bath or shower routine, and what’s more fun than loooots of bubbles? Note: because bathing might take a little longer with all that fun, it’s even more important to use mild ingredients with 0% SLES. Naïf bath and shower foam is made with a coconut derived foam. Worry free splashing it is.

Alright, that’s a lot of information. It comes down to this: Naïf products are made for the sensitive baby skin, but you definitely don’t need everything for a nice care routine. A baby without hair doesn’t need shampoo or hair lotion and a bath full of bubbles might be a bit too much for a newborn. We have an assortment with all the essentials you might need, but when you need them that’s up to you. With our baby starter bundle you’ve got everything you need. The bundle contains bodylotion, shampoo, wash gel, baby cream, zinc cream, bath oil and plastic free water wipes. So you’re ready to go in the first months.

Curious about others’ favourites? These are our bestsellers:

1. Shampoo 

2. Wash gel 

3. Bath foam

4. Baby cream 

5. Body lotion 

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