10 Safe Skin & Hair Products for Kids
“Clean beauty” is all the rage these days, but what does “clean” even mean and how important is it really? In short, clean beauty products are made with ingredients that are safe for your skin and eliminate known toxins and skin irritants. Clean ingredients can be natural, like botanicals, or synthetic, like Vitamins A or C. And it’s very important to use clean skincare to mitigate allergic reactions or major skin irritations, and to maintain good health overall. This is especially true when talking about the products our children use.
I recently sat through a clinical with a scientist who studies ingredients specifically to test their various levels of toxicity to the skin. I learned a lot about the myths of toxicity, how skin irritations are different from allergic reactions, and what can cause each, but my biggest takeaway was that many of the products I thought were “safe” or “clean” were not. It was clear that as careful as I am about making sure the kids’ products are clean and my household products are green, I had more work to do.
There is so much false advertising and misleading marketing out there, making toxic products seem okay and making safe products seem poisonous. Like with most anything related to the kids, it’s our job as mothers to do our own research, so immediately after that meeting, I raced home, grabbed a laundry basket and walked around my house collecting every single product that comes in contact with my kids’ skin. I spent the evening reading all of the labels and madly researching ingredients and products using sites like Cosmetic Ingredient Review and the Environmental Working Group to determine what to keep, what to toss, and what to purchase to replace all I’d thrown away, which was basically everything.
I shouldn’t be the only one to benefit from this tedious self-inflicted homework assignment, so I’m happy to share this list of products for the kiddos that I now feel good about them using because I know they are clean and/or safe:
While it’s hard for toothpaste to be categorized as clean, this toothpaste checked off a lot of boxes for me. It’s free of sls/sulfates, artificial sweeteners, dyes, artificial flavors, microbeads, triclosan, parabens and gluten. Plus, they NEVER test on animals. There may be cleaner options on the market (like Tom’s of Maine or Jason), but I’ve been using this with my 2-year old and she loves it. And since she still basically eats her toothpaste, it’s important that the sweeteners included – erythritol and xylitol – be as natural as possible.
Evereden has zero tolerance for toxins, harmful or even questionable ingredients. Founder Kimberly Ho assembled a team of pediatric dermatologists from Stanford and Harvard to formulate products that are naturally-sourced and scientifically-backed, void of toxins and harmful ingredients. The result was Evereden. The brand leaves out the 1,400 ingredients prohibited in the EU, and even skips commonly-used natural allergens like lavender and tea tree oil. Everything is made in the USA or Australia to control quality. Why Australia? Because they have stricter safety regulations than we do here in the US.
Everyone Baby Lotion is hypoallergenic and made with ingredients like olive oil, mango seed butter, and calendula extracts. Mildly scented with pure Lavender essential oil, this lotion is perfect for moisturizing delicate skin for babies of all ages. Most importantly, it’s free of parabens, phthalates, sulfates, gluten, dyes, and synthetics.
All of the organic ingredients in this 2-in-1 shampoo and wash can be found in your pantry or an apothecary. All Babo Products are made with a combination of pure plant actives, naturally derived, certified organic and all-natural ingredients. Babo believes that people with sensitive skin deserve hypo-allergenic products that are high-performing, so all products are free of gluten, dairy, soy, peanuts, almonds, walnuts, SLS, sulfates, parabens, phthalates, synthetic fragrances, dyes, formaldehyde, MEA, DEA, TEA, and most common allergens. That said, I bought it in bulk!
I was a crazy lady when it came to sunscreens this summer, really torn about what to use and how often to apply because I kept reading horror stories about sunscreen. Thing is, a sunburn is much worse than sunscreen exposure, and there are safer alternatives. I loved ThinkSport and ThinkBaby because the mineral-based formulas are free of biologically harmful chemicals like avobenzone, oxybenzone and UV chemical absorbers. The non-nano zinc oxide formulation is non-oily and easy to lather on their little bodies, and it has the highest SPF, water resistance and broad spectrum coverage as proposed by the 2012 FDA Guideline, so I didn’t have to constantly reapply. Bonus: A very pleasant fragrance. I even used it on myself.
If you have a child in diapers, chances are they’ve had diaper rash at least once in their lives. I started using this balm four years ago for my first child and continued with my second, and only once had a terrible diaper rash incident (because I forgot to apply). It creates a barrier on the skin so that the moisture doesn’t irritate their bottoms. This calendula balm is 100% organic and extraordinarily soothing, helping ensure that a hard-core diaper rash cream (likely formulated with not-so-good ingredients) never touches their bottoms.
Gotu Kola is known to promote wound healing and prevent scarring, so I use this product on minor cuts and scrapes, and on my son’s face when he has an eczema flare up. While I’m at it, I slather some of this pink potion on my scars and stretch marks as well, cause, why not?
Water Wipes Water Wipes are made with 99.9% water and a tiny drop of grapefruit seed extract, which is a natural skin conditioner. They were designed to be gentle on babies' sensitive skin. I have only ever used these wipes on my kids and have never had an irritated bum.
If you need a diaper rash cream with a bit more "gun powder" but still gentle on their bottoms, this one is a must-have. Formulated with non-nano zinc oxide, this diaper cream treats and helps prevent redness and irritation with safer ingredients.
A go to for my kids, cause bubble baths are the only way I get them clean! Made with skin friendly, plant-based bubbling ingredients that create tons of bubbles and are gentle on sensitive skin and eczema. I used this product for both of my kids' first baths and never turned back. It's ultra-gentle and free of added fragrance, common allergens, and irritants.
Remember, while this list works for my kids, your family may have different wants and needs. Do your research and read labels*. And remember why you’re going through the trouble: Our skin is our largest organ, so while our houses and kids and sometimes even our language may not be clean, our kids’ personal care/beauty products absolutely should be.
DISCLAIMER: I am not a scientist. I am not a “clean beauty” expert. I am simply a mother who did a lot of research and tested a lot of products, so these product descriptions come from personal experiences, which, as we know, is different for everyone. I am not making claims or endorsing any products for gain. I suggest you do your own research and purchase products based on your needs. Also, patch test skincare products before using them. I, nor JustBobbi, are responsible for any reactions that come from using products mentioned in this article.
Follow @mamawifeworklife for her complete list of safer personal care and cleaning products.