When I was a new mum, one of the (many) things that surprised me about my newborn was her dry, flakey skin. My daughter’s skin was peeling at an alarming rate and I didn’t know what to do. I mentioned it to my health visitor and she recommended coconut oil and so my love for this gorgeous product began. 

Why do newborns’ skin peel? 

Babies are born covered in a thick fluid called vernix. It protects your baby’s skin while in the womb and mums are now encouraged to leave it to soak in rather than wash it off. 

The amount of vernix a baby has varies and very much depends on whether they were born prematurely, on time or if they went over their due date. They will have more if born prematurely and less if they were born after 40 weeks. 

Once the vernix is gone, your baby will begin to shed their outer layer of skin within 1 to 3 weeks. This is a totally natural process but one that’s pretty alarming to new mums and it is always brought up at every single newborn shoot I do. 

Coconut Oil for Babies and Mamas

How can coconut oil help

Coconut oil is a natural moisturiser. It also has antibacterial, antiviral and anti fungal properties. It really is a gift from Mother Nature.

It smells delicious (although the scent does fade after a little while) and it doesn’t stain clothes.  

Coconut Oil for Babies and Mamas

I think I’m just going to use baby oil…

That’s totally fine and completely your choice. I’ve found articles online that say terrible things about baby oil and ones that say it’s absolutely fine. I don’t know who to trust. What I do know is that organic coconut oil is all natural, there are no nasty chemicals or perfumes and it’s environmental impact is very low. It’s also really cost effective. I usually pay around £7 for a jar (although I’m sure you will find some cheaper/dearer ones) and it literally lasts for months - a little goes a long way. 

Where can I buy coconut oil?

You can pick it up at your local supermarket. You will find it next to the cooking oils. There might be just one or two brands to choose from. I have used several brands and I don’t have a favourite so pick whichever one takes your fancy but make sure it’s organic. 

How to use coconut oil

Coconut oil is solid when in a cool environment and liquid when in a warm environment. Use a spoon to scoop a small amount out of the jar (this avoids germs from your fingers getting into the jar) and rub it between your fingers until it melts then massage it in to your baby’s skin. 

Coconut Oil for Babies and Mamas

What else can I use coconut oil for? 

I started using coconut oil when my daughter was just a week old. She recently turned 4 and I still use it on her today. But actually I use it more on myself than I ever have done on her. Here are some of the uses for both baby and mama: 

Massage oil - coconut oil is perfect for baby massage and for when your hubby wants to give you a lovely foot rub 

Cradle cap - apply plenty of coconut oil to your baby’s head before putting them to bed and then in the morning comb out their cradle cap - it’s that simple and it WORKS

Nappy rash - forget sudocrem, coconut oil acts as a barrier to protect and nourish irritated skin

Burns - you can use coconut oil on minor burns to relieve the discomfort 

Aftersun - coconut oil does offer a small amount of protection from the sun (it has a natural SPF of around 4-5) but I wouldn’t use it as a sunscreen instead apply it after exposure to sunlight to help regain moisture  

Makeup remover - coconut oil is a lovely way to gently remove your makeup (particularly eye makeup) and of course it nourishes your skin at the same time. 

Lip balm - brilliant for dry and chapped lips 

Leave in conditioner - perfect for when your hair needs some TLC

Frizz control - I use a tiny amount of coconut oil to help style my curls and it works far better than any product I have ever bought for frizz control. 

Apparently coconut oil is pretty good to cook with as well but it’s never made it out of the bathroom in our house! 

If you enjoyed this blog you may also like: 

10 Things that Surprised Me About Having a Newborn

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