In the first few weeks of my daughters life, she developed a really bad diaper rash. I think it was because she slept so well in the beginning (lucky for us) and her bottom was exposed to moisture for too long overnight. Once it took hold, it was difficult to get it to go away. We gave her plenty of air time and also exposed her bottom to sunlight in 10 minute intervals, both of which helped a bit. Eventually, the diaper would go back on, and any moisture would irritate the rash all over again. I tried all of my usual oils but none of them did the trick. Finally, I decided to experiment with zinc oxide. Zinc oxide is a mineral used in most natural sunscreens and also diaper creams. It is the main ingredient in Desitin Diaper Cream (which unfortunately has a bunch of other junk in it too). Zinc creates a protective barrier on the skin. This barrier protects the diaper rash from moisture and further irritation, thus allowing it to heal. The results were amazing and fast! I applied a layer of cream over her rash any time she had a diaper on and continued giving her bottom plenty of air time. Within 2 days, her rash was completely gone.
This cream is a lifesaver if your baby develops one of those irritating rashes that just doesn’t want to heal. Remember to also give their bottom plenty of air time and, if possible, a little bit of direct sunlight on the rash a couple of times a day in 10 minute intervals. If the rash is chronic, I would highly recommend looking into any possible food intolerance that could be at the root of the problem.
My recipe uses 25% zinc oxide and all ingredients are measured by weight. You can add more if you feel it is necessary (Desitin Full Strength uses 40% Zinc), but I found 25% to be plenty strong enough. The ingredients are simple, clean, safe and gentle on the skin.
Don’t have time to make your own? Check out our Magic Diaper Cream, available now in The Little Herbal Apothecary
4 oz net wt. Coconut Oil
0.5 oz net wt. Beeswax, chopped
1.5 oz net wt. Zinc Oxide Powder (25% strength)
1 Tsp Vitamin E
Yields 6 fluid ounces of Cream
Coconut Oil is a great addition to any diaper cream. It’s anti-fungal properties help to clear up diaper rash and it is also so soothing to the skin.
Zinc Oxide is a mineral that is used often in natural sunscreens and diaper creams. It creates a barrier on the skin that protects against moisture. When purchasing zinc oxide, you want to get a non-nano powder. This ensures that the particles are large enough that they will create a barrier and not be absorbed into the skin. Zinc oxide, like most powders, can be a health risk if inhaled, so be sure take extra care when working with it. Once it is mixed into your cream, the risk of inhalation goes away.
Measure out your zinc oxide and place it in a mixing bowl.
Measure the coconut oil and beeswax and combine in a mason jar or heat safe measuring cup.
Place in a double boiler and heat on low until beeswax is completely melted.
Remove from heat, add the vitamin E and mix well. Pour over the zinc oxide. Mix with a stick blender until smooth and creamy.
Spoon into clean containers and allow it to cool before putting the lid on.