You learn a lot as a new mom: Your body isn’t yours again until the baby turn about seven months (if you breastfeed, you’ll get some semblance of it back when you wrap that up); then you’ll get to sleep after the baby turns one; and teething lasts for way too long (and it is truly, inexplicably grueling). But some of my
favorite things I’ve learned actually have to do with products, ones I wouldn’t have otherwise used unless I had babies.
So, because I’m all about generosity, I’m letting you in on my favorites because you might want to add a few of them to your cart for yourself as well — they’re
that good. And, to add a doctor’s perspective, I also asked my close friend, board-certified dermatologist Shereene Idriss, M.D. (whom you might know via her Instagram hashtag #PillowtalkDerm), to weigh in with her favorites, too. She has kids of her own and has always shared the importance of knowing what’s actually in your baby’s products and yours. Fun fact: She was the second person I told that I was pregnant when I found out — she assured me I was going to be OK and has been a source of moral and emotional support through both my pregnancies. She’s also wildly talented and incredibly smart — not to mention my go-to person for injectables and lasers. (More on that later.)
Final note: It’s not a coincidence that several of these products are sunscreens. I am fanatical about sun protection for my babies and for myself. But not all sunscreens are a pleasure to use, so when I found a few that work well for everyone in the family, I buy them in bulk.
Erbaviva sent me a bundle of baby products when my daughter Delfina was born and I found myself using some of them too — mainly their baby SPF 30 on my face, check, neck, and hands. It’s made with chamomile and lavender essential oils, so it has a light scent that dissipates and doesn’t irritate my skin. I really like that it rubs in without any white cast and dries down to a matte finish, yet feels hydrating, thanks to olive, jojoba, and sunflower seed oils.
We traveled to the Bahamas when Delfina was three months old (a decision I wouldn’t make again with a baby that young — it was just too, too hot and I was hormonal and uncomfortable), so I asked my pediatrician if I could apply this to her face and any other exposed parts. I was advised that as long as an SPF is mineral-based (as in, it contains zinc oxide and titanium dioxide — or both) it’s safe for babies, but definitely refer to your pediatrician on what’s best for
your baby. Mamas, if you’re anything like me, you’ll love this SPF in the summer on your own skin because of its mattifying powers!
After Delfina turned one in the winter, I switched to Badger SPF for her face, chest, and hands because of its thicker formula. I have to be honest, it’s a
little tough to squeeze out, but I love the buttery texture of this sunscreen. It’s made with sunflower and jojoba seed oils and beeswax, making it perfect for the winter months. Because it’s oil-based, the formula won’t dry up on your child’s skin, causing those red, rash-like patches on their cheeks (or yours, if you like being outside or doing winter sports). Plus, it offers up 22.5 percent of clear, uncoated zinc oxide, which rubs in with zero residue. And it’s reef-friendly!
If you don’t have kids yet, allow me to explain how applying SPF to them will become your daily exercise routine — it takes that much sweaty effort. So, to make life easier, I use this SPF spray on Delfina’s body (and I’ll do the same for my son Sandro next summer). This one sprays out in a fine mist, covering large surface areas of skin, and rubs in easily without a trace. It feels wet when it goes on, making it easier to blend in, then dries quickly without feeling chalky at all. When I first used this product, my mind was b-l-o-w-n. Cut to the stockpile of bottles I now hoard and use on everyone at our pool.
Did you know that bubble baths — the very thing that can lure a toddler into a tub and make your life a little easier for a moment — can be the very cause of yeast infections and UTIs
in toddlers and in you? Vaginas naturally have more of an acidic pH level (3.8-4.5), while most soaps are on the alkaline end of the spectrum (8 or 9), so it makes sense that if you’re basking in a bath filled with bubbles that are throwing your pH levels off, you just might find yourself (or your little one) with an uncomfortable yeast infection or UTI. But, if you make sure the bubble bath you’re using is pH-balanced, you’ll be able to read your book, candles lit and wine in hand, in pH-balanced peace. This Hello Bello one does just that for me and Delfina loves it too! Major plus: It uses gentle cleansing ingredients as well as aloe and oat amino acids to keep your skin feeling calm and soothed, not tight and itchy, once you towel off.
Moms are forever wiping things down — it’s inevitable. Spit-up off the floor, food that’s all over the highchair or car seat, the cart at the grocery store (so that when — not if — your kid puts their mouth on any part of the handle or actual cart, you’re not worried that they’re going to get sick). These alcohol wipes have been my saving grace, especially during the last 19 months. Personally, I’m constantly wiping down my phone, keys, steering wheel, and my family’s hands when we’re out to dinner. I wiped the entire plane seat down when I traveled recently with my husband. There’s no end to the ways these can be used! Just please, please, please do not use them directly on your kid’s face, body skin, or bum because that will sting.
Speaking of wipes: these are literally the largest baby wipes you’ll ever find. Safe for you and your baby, head to toe. I have a pack stacked and ready to go at all times in my bathroom, and use them for any and everything. They’re the perfect wipe to remove any dirt from the day when I’m too lazy to wash my face with cleanser, and really only one or two wipes are needed to wipe your baby’s bum — they’re 8 x 7.5 inches big! Not to mention, the brand claims that they compost faster than any other wipe.
Babies are constantly spitting up and their noses run like faucets. On the flipside, their moms’ fingers are probably dry as hell. (Mine are anyway.) That’s where this balm comes in. The sunflower seed and coconut oil-based formula uses shea butter and beeswax to create an occlusive layer that protects and heals your — and your baby’s — skin barrier. I even put those little
finger protectant covers — the ones that chefs wear if they cut their fingers — over my fingers at night so the balm doesn’t wipe off on my sheets.
I’m not going to lie, this kid- and adult-friendly sensitive cream is the only product that heals Delfina’s and Sandro’s dry patches. It’s pretty amazing, and the ingredient list backs up its magical powers. It soothes and moisturizes with pure organic calendula extract, canola oil (rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids) and evening primrose oil (which
has healing properties). It’s also free of allergens, fragrances, and irritants and has a super rich texture that still absorbs easily. My husband is even obsessed, so, yeah, this cream is a full family affair over here.
This kid- and adult-friendly sensitive cream is the only product that heals Delfina’s and Sandro’s dry patches. It’s pretty amazing, and the ingredient list backs up its magical powers. It soothes and moisturizes with pure organic calendula extract, canola oil (rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids), and evening primrose oil (which
has healing properties). It’s also free of allergens, fragrances, and irritants and has a super rich texture that still absorbs easily. My husband is even obsessed, so, yeah, this cream is a full family affair over here. Dr. Idriss’s Top 3 Picks:
“As a mom of two and a dermatologist, I am so cautious with the products I use for myself and my kids. After testing out a variety of different products, I discovered the Aveeno Eczema Therapy Itch Relief Balm when using it on my babies. They had the smoothest skin as infants, and I believe the Aveeno balm helped. You can use it as an adult as well, especially in the winter as the air gets drier. It helps retain moisture and does not break the bank.”
“I really love the Mustella Bodywash. I use it on my kids to wash their hair and bodies — it’s a great two in one. I also use this on my body when I’m in a pinch.” (Ed note: This smells like heaven for babies and grown ups.)
“The Triple Paste Diaper Rash Cream has saved my skin irritations multiple times, as well as my babies’ backsides. Don’t underestimate the value of having this in your home. When you have a burn, cut, or any irritation, it’s a great product to help minimize inflammation and calm your skin down.”
Resting Mom Face is a column from Romper contributor and beauty expert Carly Cardellino. We only include products that have been independently selected by Romper's editorial team. However, we may receive a portion of sales if you purchase a product through a link in this article.