Fighting Eczema? Check out these great tips!
Sensitive skin runs in my family. When I was a little girl, my skin cracked and burned
painfully every time the cold, New England winters would make their way back around
again. I lived on Chap Stick, petroleum jelly, and lotions of any and every kind. Now, both
my babies suffer from some type of sensitive skin, having unfortunately inherited my skin
and not their Daddyís. As the years have passed since I became a mother, Iíve become
more and more careful about the kinds of things to which I expose my kids. Iíve traded
most paper products for cloth, most processed foods for whole and/or organic, and most
health and beauty care products for all≠natural alternatives. So, Iíve had to search for all≠
natural alternatives to soothing dry skin as well.
Bear seems to struggle with eczema and sensitive skin more than his sister did. Born in
the summer, these issues didnít manifest themselves until autumn rolled around and the
temperatures began to fluctuate. One day the weather would be warm and balmy and his
skin would be clear and moist. The next day the temperature would drop and heíd break
out into rashes and spots of eczema. Heís had a sensitive bottom since day one so I at
least had a couple of natural skin care products on hand when the eczema began to rear
itís ugly head for the first time. Thanks to multiple products and remedies and a
moisturizing routine that happens at almost every diaper change, weíve been able to keep
Baby Bearís skin nice and clear without resorting to petroleum products or steroid
The following is a list of all the things that weíve used successfully on his baby skin, most
of which are totally safe for cloth diapers.
Coconut oil is our go≠to moisturizer. Our local discount store carries them at a good price
so we stock up and use it both in our food and for our skin care. We have a little tub of the
wonderful stuff right by Bearís changing table and he gets it on his bum at every diaper
change and rubbed all over his skin at least once a day. If heís really struggling with dry
skin and eczema, though, Iíll rub him down 4≠6 times a day.
Olive oil is more difficult to apply as a moisturizer, though it can be done. I put it in our
wipe solution so that the wipes moisturize as they clean.
Un≠petroleum jelly not only moisturizes, but it leaves a layer of protection against dry air
and/or soiled diapers. When heís combating a diaper rash (which in his case is usually a
reaction to his poop), we like to use this to protect against future irritation.
Though I prefer the coconut oil, occasionally we switch between it and organic baby
I read that breast milk could fight eczema and fungal infections and I thought I might as
well try it since I always have it on hand. Bearís first bits of eczema actually looked like
ringworm so I was eager to use something that combated both. At first, I felt weird
squirting my milk onto my babyís problem areas, but when I saw how it was really helping,
I marveled at how God really has provided a mom with everything she needs to care for
and cure her babyís ailments. Breast milk is one of the most effective things for causing
the spots caused by eczema to disappear. You can really see the results even in just the
hour or two between diaper changes.
I really like California Babyís calendula cream (not the diaper rash cream) to combat
diaper rash. Apparently the actual diaper balm has something in it that may cause build
up on cloth diapers, but the cream does not and we use it all the time. A little goes a long
way and where un≠petroleum jelly protects against future rashes, the calendula cream
heals the ones that already exist. I like to mix this with coconut oil or unpetroleum jelly to
use on the diaper area since it then both protects and heals. When we discovered Bearís
eczema, we started putting calendula cream on the trouble areas and found that it was
almost as effective as breast milk, and easier to apply.
Lanolin is absolutely not safe for cloth diapers. It is the byproduct of sheepís wool that
causes wool covers to be somewhat waterproof. However, it is the best way to protect
skin from further eczema breakouts. Itís super protective and seems to seal moisture in.
Iíve used it as chapstick ever since Bunny was born and when I use it on my own hands,
it lasts through a couple of hand washesóitís that strong. If Bear has a particularly bad
spotólike wind≠chapped cheeksóIíll lather this stuff on thick before bed and the problem
area is as good as new by morning.
Cloth Diaper Rash creams
The only official cloth diaper rash cream Iíve ever used was the Grovia Magic stick, and I
loved it. Many rash creams of its kind contain things like calendula oil and coconut oil and
thus can be used for regular moisturizing as well.
When told about Bearís eczema, most everyone suggested something like Vasoline
or Eucerine as the only remedy that worked for them. Most people probably didnít see
the need to look for an all≠natural or organic option to protect their babyís skin. It was
nice that I had a friend who gave me a couple of her all≠natural suggestions (including
some of those listed above). I was able to use those confidently as a starting point for
fighting the eczema without exposing my son to chemicals that have unknown side
Leela R Date 1/7/2014
My son has perennial eczema on the inside of his thigh (like where the diaper sits unfortunately) that has been really hard to treat since it is constantly being rubbed by the diapers. The best I can do is to apply cream at every diaper change, usually Aveeno or Earth Mamma Angle Baby diaper rash cream. At night I apply prescription strength hydrocortizone, then Aveeno, then Grandma Els. I've tried coconut oil and it doesn't do much since it rubs off so quickly. I should try the CA Baby calendula cream though as that sounds promising. Thanks!
Melissa McCarty Date 1/7/2014
My daughter has eczema on her legs. It gets bad when she eats tomatoes. So weird. We use coconut oil.
Mary S. Date 1/8/2014
Coconut oil is so awesome. My son doesn't have eczema, but I know a lot of moms whose little ones' do have it.
Kim H Date 1/8/2014
When we get dry patches during the winter from the dry air I use a rotation of coconut oil & CJ's Butter Plus. If someone gets a really bad spot I use a hydrocortizon cream to heal it up quick!
Heather Williams Date 1/10/2014
I never thought to use breast milk! I will keep that one in mind for next time!!! Thanks!
krystal layher Date 1/10/2014
we love coconut oil and burts bees lotion
Erica B Date 1/10/2014
After trying aquaphor on my son's dr recommendation, we discovered an allergy to at least one of the ingredients. I read that CeraVe would be a good choice so we started that and his eczema healed up within 2 days. I never thought to try breastmilk or coconut oil though! I'm a little leery of coconut since my husband is allergic to it.
Amber Clark Date 1/12/2014
We use lots of CJ's on our LO's eczema!
Samantha Lanham Date 1/13/2014
with I would have known this when my little man was a newborn, he had horrible eczema and I hated the lotion we had for it. "Don't get in eyes, nose, or mouth" What??? But I need to put it on his FACE, of course he's gonna rub it in his eyes and mouth! At least I know better for the next one! Thanks!
Marian Date 1/13/2014
My youngest daughter has very sensitive skin and since going green and healthier I have started to whip coconut oil and vitamin E oil together and use that on her. It leaves her skin soft and moisturized.
Erin Rothfus Date 1/15/2014
I heard that there may be a coconut oil shortage this year due to Typhoon Haiyan's devastating effects. I hope that's not the case!
Amber G Date 1/17/2014
We have been fighting eczema for the past 2 years, coconut oil has kept it under control for a while now. After trying everything the doc gave us and suggested with no success, it came apparent we need to look for something else. We were already using CO with our diaper changes and thought it couldn't hurt to use it as a lotion on LO.... SURPRISE it worked wonders.
Charity B Date 1/18/2014
I love coconut oil for rashes in general. I will have to bookmark this post.
Rachel N Date 1/20/2014
I actually have found (and read) that coconut oil doesn't do much to moisturize, it does help lock moisture in but doesn't add much. It doesn't work for my kiddos at all, we have very cold very dry winters. I put coconut oil right in their bathwater and that seems to work better than applying it afterwards. I use very thick organic butter lotions on them and they do work. I also have used lanolin and I like that. I keep a little stick of lotion with me so that I can reapply often.
Kristal Dull Date 1/20/2014
My daughter doesn't have eczema, but she does have extremely sensitive skin. Any time a rash pops up, either coconut oil or a little breastmilk does the trick!