How to take care of the baby's skin



The skin is the first organ that comes into contact with the outside world, so it is important that we give it the necessary care to keep it strong and resistant against any external threat, in addition to when it suffers an injury, it is usually painful thanks to the numerous nerve endings with which we have. Although for us adults it can be annoying to have a skin lesion and we are at risk of becoming infected, a baby's skin is even more delicate and requires different care, that is why we are going to explain what are some of the differences between the skin of a baby and an adult and that thanks to these differences, there are differences in the way of their care.

In the care of the skin are important aspects the integrity of the skin, hygiene, temperature control and the proper use of antiseptics and emollients.

Differences between adult and baby skin

As discussed above, there are differences between the skin of an adult and a baby, knowing them will help us understand and have better skin care of the latter to avoid annoying episodes that can range from a simple burning or pain, to an infection that can put your health at risk

Some of these differences of the skin of baby against that of an adult are: the skin of the baby is thinner, has less hair, the stratum corneum is not fully developed, there is a decrease in the cohesion between the dermis and the epidermis, the epidermal cell junctions are weaker, produces a smaller amount of sweat and secretion of the sebaceous glands, and the pH of your skin is neutral.

These differences condition a decrease in the conservation of body water and the barrier function, and may present alterations, as it may be deficient at the moment avoiding the absorption of topical products or the defense against microorganisms. An interesting fact, is the fact that after birth and until puberty, the sebaceous activity is in the resting phase, so that the skin of the child tends to dryness.

Another effect of these differences is the predisposition of the newborn to present traumatic bullous lesions, which is why the weakness in the dermioepidermal junction was mentioned.

Caring for the baby's skin during bathing

Once we explain what are the differences in the skin of the baby and why they are so important, we will give some recommendations that will help us to take care of the protective barrier of these:

Bathing: it is customary to make a bath by parts in some countries, however, it has been found in different studies, that a bath by parts causes greater heat loss and produces a less pleasant sensation for the baby.

Water or soap: in England the recommendation is the bath without soap, since the newborn has a more delicate skin. However, the acid pH characteristic of the acid mantle of the skin is transiently altered with the bath, either with or without soap, since the pH of the water is alkaline and the skin in contact with the water changes its pH during a variable time. That is why it is recommended to be very cautious and not abuse the bathroom.

Type of soap: any soap can be irritating according to the time and frequency of use, soft soaps should always have pH less than 7, so are recommended soaps for infants.

Frequency of the bath: it has been found in different studies that the bath in newborn babies can be 1 time every 3rd day, justifying a higher frequency from 2-3 months.

Hydration of the baby

It is important that the skin of our baby stays moist, because thanks to the processes it goes through, it tends to dry up. That is why it is recommended that when using a skin product we take into account the following characteristics:
  • Easy to apply and remove
  • Chemically stable
  • Homogeneous
  • Bacteriostatic
  • Cosmetically acceptable
  • Pharmacologically inert
  • Non-toxic, no irritant, no allergen
The application of these products should be after the bath, apply at least once a day, must have sun protection and must be stable and safe products.

Care of the diaper area

The alterations of the diaper area are due to the conjunction of two factors: the skin of the newborn, with its anatomical particularities, and the particularities of the skin that integrates the diaper area.

The occlusion of the skin by the diaper generates overhydration and maceration of the stratum corneum, increasing in this way the susceptibility to friction and favoring the growth of microorganisms on its surface. The enzymes of the bacteria in the faeces increase, on the one hand, the permeability of the skin to the biliary salts that are irritating and, on the other hand, release ammonia from the urine, increasing the pH of the skin, factors that favor irritation of this difficult and vulnerable area.

Among the factors that aggravate the skin integrity of the diaper area, include poor skin care, microorganisms, diarrhea and the use of broad spectrum antibiotics.

For this, in order to take good care of this area it is recommended:
  • Decrease skin moisture
  • Minimize skin contact with urine and stool
  • Eradicate the presence of pathogenic microorganisms
Recommending, based on different scientific studies, the use of mild soap to remove all impurities and maintain an optimum pH offering a better resistance to microorganisms and / or injuries that may affect this area.

Did you know...


The skin comes from the same embryonic tissue as the brain and remain closely linked throughout life. Therefore, being the first barrier against the outside world and having so many nerve endings that are linked to the brain, we must take care of it and help it reach its optimum maturity.
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