In an age where more and more bubs and toddlers are presenting with food allergies and immune, respiratory and behavioural disorders, it’s more important than ever to reduce the amount of artificial substances and toxins they are exposed to. By making educated choices about the products you use and consume in your home, you can protect your bub’s overall long-term health in a world full of synthetics and chemicals. Here are our top 3 parenting tips for protecting your baby from those harsh ingredients.
There is almost nothing worse than a red, weeping nappy rash causing your baby discomfort. As nappies will stay in close contact with your baby’s skin for 2-3 years, it’s crazy that in 2021 so many conventional nappy brands still use toxic ingredients that can harm the health and function of your baby’s skin, with the potential to cause long term health issues. Similarly, the synthetic chemical ingredients in conventional wipes strip away the natural barriers, leaving your bub’s skin dry and exposed and your baby more prone to flaky skin, eczema or dermatitis.
While it is cheaper for brands to use these synthetic and toxic chemicals in their products in order to provide the flexibility and shelf life afforded by them, the result is an uncomfortable, cranky baby with its health put at risk by brands prioritising the bottom line. For example, propylene glycol is used in wiper fluid and to de-ice airplanes, and yet it is often found in baby wipes, which is not safe. Look out for polyethylene glycol (PEG) and polypropylene glycol (PPG) on labels.
Look for nappies and wipes that are dermatologically tested, hypoallergenic and free of nasties like parabens, phthalates, sulfates, chlorine, alcohol, fragrances and dyes specifically. Cuddlies Biodegradable Bamboo Water Wipes and Nappies are also made from sustainable bamboo – with naturally thermoregulating characteristics, increased absorption capability and naturally hypoallergenic, antibacterial and antifungal properties – no nappy rash or nasties here!
Everybody knows that newborn babies smell amazing, this is as a result of their natural body oils protecting their skin. Bathing your little ones in soaps and lotions can strip away that protective barrier. Unfortunately, neurotoxins like parabens are found in a majority of soaps, shampoos and moisturisers, including those “designed” for babies. Stay away from anything with paraben listed as an ingredient, as well as benzoic acid and propyl ester, as these have all been linked to reproductive toxicity, hormone disruption and skin irritation.
Baby oil is also essentially made of mineral oil (a cheap byproduct of petroleum processing) mixed with fragrance, which is a nasty combination that acts as a plastic wrap on the skin, inhibiting its ability to release toxins. Instead, opt for natural and nourishing oils such as olive, coconut, or sweet almond to massage into your baby’s skin.
Consider Your Impact
It’s important to also consider what chemicals you are exposing yourself to, and therefore potentially passing on to your baby since you are in constant close contact with them. Toxic chemicals from everyday products like perfume, deodorant, harsh soaps and shampoos, even your moisturiser and makeup, can linger on your skin and your baby can even ingest them via breastfeeding, through touch or inhaling. Instead, look to also make the change to natural, safe alternatives – asthma, breathing difficulties and allergies are all common results of toxic chemical exposure to babies.The tips listed above are all to protect your baby from harsh ingredients, but they’re also better for the planet. By moving away from toxic, synthetic chemicals and towards sustainable, plant-based or natural ingredients, we are not only protecting our children, but protecting the planet at the same time. Win-win!