I wanted to write a blog about Baby Acne because it's not really talked about but it's something that a lot of babies get. Of course they do, they spend 9 months in fluid and then they are catapulted in to the Earth's atmosphere, with all it's pollutants, gasses and chemicals. Their delicate skin is bound to have some sort of reaction. It's rarely shared between mums though and certainly no celebs would admit their little treasure has something as unsightly as Baby Acne.
Well, my little Phoenix suffered with it and I was frantic to try and find a cure. Phoenix got baby acne on the 4th September 2015, so 10 days after he was born and it lasted until about the 10th September, almost a week. That week felt like a lifetime though. When it first came, I didn't panic. I knew what it was straight away as I've seen plenty of babies with it. His was right across his eyes though, so I knew also to keep an (forgive the pun) eye on it. Lots of people asked me what had happened to his skin and it made me feel really quite awkward, which is so silly, as they shouldn't be so personal and rude to a new mum about her baby and I should have just told them that and then told them exactly where to stick their thoughtless comments!
However, when the Health visitor came to see us, she thought it looked pretty bad and that I should call the Doctor immediately and get something for it straight away. Of course, you don't tell the health visitor where to stick it, you listen to her, she's an expert! So then the mum guilt swept in. How could I have left him like that, what was I thinking? Were the authorities going to take him off me for negligence? Etc etc. So I took him to the Doctors that day. When I got there he told me, "There's is nothing we could do, it may last up to 6 months, you will just have to wait and see, it's no big deal". So I left, now feeling like an over reacting mother who's hormones should probably be in a psychiatric hospital to protect humanity from her hysteria. You really cannot win.
Obviously I wasn't going to stand for just leaving him to suffer now the Health visitor had confirmed it was bad case. My little perfect baby had a rash across his pretty eyes and it looked sore. The stupid Doctor, what did he know? Health visitors have a degree in babies, Doctors do not. I would find a way to cure my little sweetheart. I was his mum, I would do what I had to.....
(Phoenix 4th September 2015, with baby acne across his eye mask area...)
I must admit, he also had his photo shoot booked in with Bundles Of Joy on the 13th September and I really wanted him to look his best for that. Very shallow of me but what mother doesn't want her little sweetheart to look his best so that everyone will love him as much as she does? So, I was on a mission.
I looked on-line and there really isn't very much at all to help frantic mums looking for the best thing to do for baby acne. The only things I could find were on forums, but they are not straight forward to search and can be quite irritating to go through.
Now, I'm generally very good with skin. With my own skin, there's not a blemish I don't know how to get rid of, so I figured I could definitely find the right way forward to aid my baby boy and his little face.
Looking at all the options, it seemed to me that for a baby 'pure' is always best for babies and children I think that is the case. So I decided on the following course of action:
I was already using Surcare washing powder and fabric conditioner and I can't recommend this product enough. You can generally only find it at Morrison's but I'm sure it can be tracked down elsewhere too. It's really cheap, so that's a bonus. It smells super fresh and it is so pure and simple for your babies skin. The mistake I made was that I was putting a little Vanish in his wash too, to make his baby clothes stay white. I stopped this immediately and figured I'd soak his clothes in Vanish before the main wash instead, if they needed it.
The next thing I did was to boil water 3-4 times a day. I allowed it to cool and then I cleaned the affected area with cotton wool and sterilised water. I also patted it dry - and this is important, I believe, don't leave the skin damp.
Finally, as his little face started to get better, I could see it was a little dry. I had been using coconut oil on his skin, but I banned this too and I only allowed Vaseline to moisten any dry areas. I only put a tiny bit on, I didn't smother his baby acne in it, as I felt it needed to get used the air.
I also did NOT pick or peel the skin at all. This is really important. Just keep it clean and dry and moisten if you have to but do NOT pick it or peel the flaky dry skin off. Just be patient.
That's it! That's all I did and it started to get better straight away and within 6 days it was completely gone and it has not returned.
Here's a shot of his photo shoot on the 13th September, you can see his skin is clear and soothed.
Of course, it doesn't matter if your baby has baby acne and it may last longer. They are still, perfect miracles of joy. But I am best if I am proactive. I like to feel like I'm doing something to help. I also know how I felt, looking on the internet and finding very little hope, information, help or even pictures while trying to heal my baby.
I was told it wasn't sore but if I had that on my face I think it would feel uncomfortable at least and I wanted my little Phoenix to feel like the world was his friend.
I hope if you are searching 'baby acne' now and you come across this blog it will help you a little or maybe you will read this and share it with a friend who needs it further down the line.
I do think mums feel a hidden shame if their little babies have baby acne but it's the most natural, normal reaction a new born can have to the Earth's air and I promise you it does go but you can do things to help your baby and also to make you feel better too.