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How to Clean Cradle Cap

by Cheryl Donahue • April 18th, 2016

Caring for newborn hair and skin, including learning how to clean cradle cap, can be daunting. We are here to help!

Your baby is born with several layers of skin, which were necessary when she was living in amniotic fluid for so many months. You may have noticed peeling skin on her tiny body already. This is normal as baby doesn’t require all those layers anymore. Do not feel as though you need to lather baby with moisturizing lotions. In fact, lotion may be irritating to newborn skin.

When the skin peels on baby’s scalp it may not look very pleasing! The baby isn’t bothered by this but moms and dads can be!

There are a few tactics on how to clean cradle cap. Some caregivers will gently rub an oil, such as Jojoba oil, olive oil, or even coconut oil into the scalp. If, however, you don’t want to deal with an oily baby, you can simply massage a soft-bristled baby brush on the scalp in circular motions when washing baby’s hair. This will help to remove some of the peeling layers without creating an oily head.

Always check with your pediatrician before using anything on baby, including “natural products,” such as oils. Remember: this too shall pass!

For more information on bathing and caring for newborns, check out our Newborn Care classes and our new mom’s groups.

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