Caring For Your New Baby: A Guide to Avoiding Harmful Skincare Ingredients While Breastfeeding
Are you a new parent concerned about the effects of some skincare ingredients while breastfeeding? Our comprehensive guide is here to help you navigate the confusing world of parent and baby skincare.
As a parent, you want nothing but the best for your little one, but deciphering what is safe for your baby can be overwhelming. With numerous skincare products on the market, it's essential to know which ingredients to avoid and why.
In this article, we will shed light on some skincare ingredients that you may wish to avoid whilst breastfeeding and provide you with a handy checklist of safe skincare ingredients that you can confidently use without compromising your baby's well-being.
Understanding the Importance of Skincare Ingredient Safety
When it comes to your baby's skincare, understanding the ingredients in your skincare products is crucial for providing the best care for your little one.
Skincare products can contain a wide range of ingredients, some of which may have harmful effects on your baby's health. The skin is the body's largest organ, and it absorbs what we apply to it. So we recommend keeping the products that you use on your skin while breastfeeding simple.
Skincare Ingredients to Avoid While Breastfeeding
When it comes to skincare ingredients to avoid while breastfeeding (and beyond!), there are several that you should be aware of. These ingredients have been linked to various health concerns so you may want to avoid them.
1. Parabens: These commonly used preservatives can disrupt hormonal balance and have been found in breast milk. Avoid products containing methylparaben, propylparaben, and butylparaben.
2. Phthalates: Found in many fragrances and plastics, phthalates have been linked to developmental and reproductive issues. Look out for ingredients such as diethyl phthalate (DEP) and dibutyl phthalate (DBP).
3. Synthetic fragrances: Artificial fragrances often contain numerous undisclosed chemicals, including phthalates. Opt for fragrance-free products or those scented with natural essential oils.
4. Oxybenzone: A chemical sunscreen ingredient, oxybenzone can be absorbed through the skin and has been detected in breast milk. Choose mineral-based sunscreens instead.
By avoiding products that contain these harmful ingredients, you can minimise the potential risks to your baby's health while breastfeeding. None of the products we stock at Blomma Beauty contain these ingredients so you can shop with confidence.
How Skincare Ingredients Can Transfer to Breast Milk
You may wonder how skincare ingredients can transfer to breast milk and ultimately affect your baby. The skin has the ability to absorb substances, allowing chemicals from skincare products to enter the bloodstream.
When you apply skincare products containing harmful ingredients, such as parabens or phthalates, some of these chemicals can be absorbed into your bloodstream. Once in your bloodstream, they can potentially be passed on to your breast milk.
It's important to note that the transfer of skincare ingredients to breast milk varies depending on the specific ingredient, its molecular weight, and the amount applied to the skin. While more research is needed to fully understand the extent of transfer and its impact on babies, it's best to err on the side of caution and avoid potentially harmful ingredients.
Tips for Choosing Safe Skincare Products While Breastfeeding
Choosing safe skincare products while breastfeeding doesn't have to be a daunting task. With a few key tips in mind, you can confidently select products that are safe for both you and your baby.
1. Read ingredient labels: Always check the ingredient labels of skincare products before purchasing. Look for products that are free from harmful ingredients such as parabens, phthalates, synthetic fragrances, and oxybenzone. If you're unsure, ask the brand or company and they should be able to clarify any ingredients that you're unsure of and provide reassurance - you can send us a message, give us a call or pop into our shop for help and guidance.
2. Opt for natural and organic products: Natural and organic skincare products are often formulated without potentially harmful chemicals. Look for certifications such as Soil Association COSMOS Organic or Ecocert to ensure the product meets stringent standards.
3. Research reputable brands: Look for skincare brands that prioritise ingredient safety and transparency. Research their ingredient sourcing, manufacturing processes, and product testing practices to ensure they align with your standards. If you're shopping from a store that stocks multiple brands, try to understand their selection criteria so you can be assured that their selection is going to be kind to you and your baby's skin. You can read more about our selection criteria for our brands here
4. Seek fragrance-free options: Fragrances can contain undisclosed chemicals that may be harmful. Choose fragrance-free products or those scented with natural essential oils.
5. Consider minimal ingredient products: Simplify your skincare routine by opting for products with minimal ingredients. This reduces the likelihood of exposure to potential irritants or harmful substances. We'd also recommend avoiding direct application of essential oils to the breast and nipple whilst breastfeeding.
By following these tips, you can confidently choose safe skincare products that prioritise your baby's health while breastfeeding.
Natural and Organic Skincare Options for Breastfeeding Mothers
If you prefer to use natural and organic skincare products while breastfeeding, you're in luck. There are plenty of options available that are free from harmful chemicals and gentle on both you and your baby's skin.
1. Coconut oil: This versatile oil is a popular choice for moisturising and soothing dry skin. Make sure to choose virgin, unrefined coconut oil for the best results.
2. Shea butter: Known for its moisturising properties, shea butter is a natural choice for nourishing dry skin. Look for unrefined, raw shea butter for maximum benefits.
3. Calendula: Calendula is known for its soothing and healing properties. Infusing it into a carrier oil, such as jojoba or almond oil, creates a gentle and nourishing skincare option.
4. Aloe vera: Aloe vera is well-known for its soothing and cooling properties. Look for 100% pure aloe vera products without added fragrances or synthetic preservatives.
5. Chamomile: Brewing a strong cup of chamomile tea and using it as a compress or gently massaging in a chamomile based balm can help soothe irritated skin.
These natural options provide a safe and effective way to care for your skin while breastfeeding, without exposing your baby to harmful chemicals.
Recommended Skincare Brands for Breastfeeding
Here are some of our most popular natural skincare brands that are suitable for use whilst breastfeeding.
1. Nom Nom Skincare: Nom Nom offers a range of certified organic skincare products specifically formulated for parents and babies. Their products are free from harmful ingredients and are highly regarded for their safety and effectiveness.
2. Silvan Skincare: The Honest Company offers a wide range of skincare products that are free from potentially harmful chemicals. They prioritise ingredient transparency and have a comprehensive list of ingredients they avoid.
3. Odylique: Odylique is known for its natural and eco-friendly skincare products. They offer a variety of hypoallergenic options suitable for breastfeeding mothers, including cleansers, moisturisers, and baby care products.
4. Coraline Skincare: Coraline is inspired by Kevin and Liz's daughter Coraline and is sensitive skin friendly range is suitable for all the family. Their range includes handmade soaps, oils, and balms that are gentle, essential oil free and safe for both parents and babies.
When choosing skincare brands, always read the ingredient lists and do your research to ensure they meet your standards for ingredient safety.
Common Skincare Concerns During Breastfeeding and How to Address Them Safely
During breastfeeding, you may experience specific skincare concerns that require special attention. Here are some common concerns and how to address them safely:
2. Stretch marks: While stretch marks are a natural part of pregnancy, you can help minimise their appearance by using moisturisers that contain ingredients like cocoa butter or shea butter.
3. Acne: Hormonal changes during breastfeeding can sometimes lead to acne breakouts. Avoid harsh acne treatments and opt for gentle, naturally antibacterial options like lemon or tea tree.
4. Hyperpigmentation: If you notice dark spots or patches on your skin, be cautious when using products that contain hydroquinone or retinoids. Instead, opt for natural ingredients like vitamin C, bakuchiol or liquorice root extract.
5. Sensitive skin: Some women may experience increased skin sensitivity during breastfeeding. Choose skincare products that are fragrance-free, hypoallergenic, and formulated specifically for sensitive skin.
Always consult with a healthcare professional or dermatologist if you have any specific concerns about your skin during breastfeeding. They can provide personalised advice and recommendations based on your individual needs.