Baby skincare FAQ’s

Common infant skincare questions and evidence-based responses:

Infant skin care questionEvidence-based response
Water is good?Water can be an irritant to the skin1
A mild soap is appropriate to cleanse?All soaps (except moisturising cleansing bars) can raise skin pH significantly and adversely affect the skin barrier2
All wash products are bad?Certain pH balanced liquid cleansers have been clinically proven to be as safe as water3
Baby wipes are harsh for infant skin?Certain alcohol-free, unperfumed baby wipes have been clinically proven as safe as water4
Olive oil is appropriate for massage?Olive oil can damage the skin barrier5
Preservative-free is good?Preservatives prevent bacterial and fungal growth and ensure product stability


1) Tsai, T.F. Maibach HI, How irritant is water? An overview. Contact Dermatitis 1999;41(6):311-14.

2) Cork MJ, Danby SG, Vasilopoulos Y et al. Epidermal barrier dysfunction in atopic dermatitis. J Invest Dermatology 2009;129:1892–1908.

3) Lavender T, Bedwell C, Roberts SA, et al. Randomized, controlled trial evaluating a baby wash product on skin barrier function in healthy, term neonates. J Obstet Gynecol Neonatal Nurs 2013;42(2):203–14

4) Lavender T, Furber C, Campbell M, et al. Effect on skin hydration of using baby wipes to clean the napkin area of newborn babies: assessor-blinded randomised controlled equivalence trial. BMC Pediatrics 2012;12: 59.

5) Danby SG, AlEnezi T, Sultan A, et al. Effect of Olive and Sunflower Seed Oil on the Adult Skin Barrier: Implications for Neonatal Skin Care. Pediatric Dermatology 2012;1–9.