Establishing a hair care regimen for baby.
Whether you’re a first-time mom or not, trying to figure out a haircare routine for baby can seem more confusing than it is! The first things many of us moms think soon as we see baby’s beautiful, thick hair is “how am I going to maintain his/her hair”, “it’s so pretty and full, I don’t want it to fall out”, and so forth.
We are in a time now where the natural hair movement is big. Companies are popping up with products made for all age groups which can be overwhelming when trying to figure out what will work for baby. Surprisingly, you’re not alone! As a mom to an 8 month old girl, I am in the same boat as you in regards to finding what works best for my daughter. We’ve tried different baby shampoos and moisturizers and I’ve realized that keeping their haircare routine simple is the key to healthier hair and growth especially during this stage. Many products aren’t made for babies for a reason— they don’t need all of the products and chemicals that we use on our hairs. Their delicate scalps just need some oil and water! That’s it! We go to over-analyzing what their hair needs and treating it like our own using products we use on our own heads, when in all actuality that can do the opposite of what we want! It can also lead to scalp irritation and allergic reactions.
Here’s some common Do’s and Dont’s to help you when figuring out what routine is best for you and baby:
Do be Gentle.
Unnecessary stress should be prevented at all times when caring for baby’s hair. When establishing a hair care routine, it is important to remember to be gentle because early hair maintenance can set the tone for how baby will see getting their hair combed as they grow.
Don’t over-wash the hair.
Hair produces its own natural oils and over-washing can strip the hair of it leading to dryness and breakage. Listen to baby’s hair to see when it is best to shampoo. Some babies do well with weekly washes and some do well with biweekly washes. Again, it all depends on what your baby’s hair needs. If dryness and dullness is an issue, it can be a sign that the hair may be getting over-washed and you many want to try stretching out shampoos.
Don’t use the same products you use on your hair on your baby’s hair.
Remember, baby have a sensitive scalp and products we use on our hair can cause irritation and allergic reactions.
Do keep in mind that baby’s newborn hair texture (yep, when baby is fresh out the womb and you’re thinking “that’s that Indian in him” lol) may change over time once all that fluid from mommy’s belly is rinsed out.
I remember when my 8-month-old daughter was born and her hair was black, super soft, straight, and shiny. Then, I washed it for the first time and it turned curly, still soft, but now lacked shine and I begin to think what happened! Don’t panic like I did because it completely normal especially for many African-American babies. Once those natural juices are rinsed from baby’s hair, many times their real hair textures begin to appear. This is the time when that haircare routine kicks in because, now, their hair may be more dry and need moisture put back in.
Don’t be alarmed when/if they develop a bald patch in the back (or sides).
With the Back to Sleep baby movement in prevention of SIDS, it is completely normal for baby to develop bald patches in the back of their heads, as well as the sides. This is nothing to be alarmed about because, remember, hair grows back! Safety is number 1 priority! Water and oil or some kind of gentle moisturizer will be your best friend during this time. An infant satin bonnet will also help put a barrier between the back of baby’s head and the surface their lying on decreasing that friction causing the breakage.
Don’t over style or put tension on the hair.
This can lead to hair thinning and traction alopecia (hair loss caused from repeatedly pulling the hair). Stay away from rubber bands and opt for scrunchies or you can dress up their hair with cute baby bows!
Do remember to keep their haircare routine simple.
Remember, when it comes to creating a haircare routine for baby, keeping it simple will do the trick. Many times, at this age, water and oil will be more than enough.
Have some baby haircare tips you’d like to share or have questions you’d like answered, then please leave a comment below!