Whether you're shopping online or IRL, choosing the right baby moisturizer proves a bit tricky. There are seemingly endless amounts of options and when you factor in that infant skin is easily irritated by fragrances, dyes, and other ingredients in skin care products and the environment? The choice can look even more complicated.
One good (and simple) rule of thumb: Ointments are more hydrating than creams, which are more hydrating than lotions.
To find the perfect moisturizer to keep your baby's skin soft and rash-free, try out one of these baby lube picks from top dermatologists who just so happen to be moms themselves.
Aquaphor Healing Ointment
Kavita Mariwalla, M.D., a dermatologist in West Islip, New York relies on this brand to keep her son's eczema-prone skin smooth. Aquaphor works wonders as a daily moisturizer after bathing, and is a go-to for diaper rash. Petrolatum conditions and protects, and lanolin is less likely to cause an allergic reaction.
To buy! Aquaphor Healing Ointment, $14; amazon.com
Aveeno Baby Daily Moisture Lotion
For babies with sensitive skin, Rebecca Tung, M.D., director of the division of dermatology at Loyola University, recommends Aveeno Daily Moisture Lotion. She notes that this product "sinks in without feeling sticky and relieves dry, itchy skin for hours." This lotion is also fragrance-free and non-comedogenic and has minimal ingredients.
To buy! Aveeno Baby Daily Moisture Lotion, $14; amazon.com
Aveeno Skin Relief Healing Ointment
Thicker than a cream, this product is a good choice for chapped skin, especially in those cold winter months. For maximum protection (and a little bonding), parents can massage the ointment in right after a bath. Valerie Callender, M.D., medical director of the Callender Dermatology & Cosmetics Center in Glenn Dale, Maryland recommends using Aveeno Skin Relief to protect against the irritation that can result from a pacifier or messy meals.
Apply to your baby's face as a barrier before they eat or nap, the times when drool is most likely to pool.
To buy! Aveeno Skin Relief Healing Ointment, $10; amazon.com
Babytime! Soothing Cream by Episencial
If you're looking for an all-natural moisturizer, Babytime Soothing Cream features ingredients that would be just as at home in the kitchen: chamomile, shea butter, safflower, avocado, and jojoba oils. Antioxidants and probiotics help to settle easily inflamed infant skin. Infused essential oils make this a nice choice for postbath pampering.
To buy! Babytime! Soothing Cream by Episencial, $12; amazon.com
Eucerin Baby Eczema Relief Body Creme
This steroid-free, dye-free, and fragrance-free option is great for kids who have eczema or sensitive skin, according to Elizabeth Tanzi, M.D., founder and director at Capital Laser & Skin Care in Washington, D.C. Oats calm the rash, while ceramides strengthen the compromised skin barrier.
To buy! Eucerin Baby Eczema Relief Body Creme, $7; amazon.com
Vanicream Moisturizing Skin Cream with Pump Dispenser
Vanicream's moisturizing cream is a favorite among dermatologists, thanks to its hypoallergenic composition—it's free of dyes, fragrance, lanolin, masking fragrance, formaldehyde, parabens, and common chemical irritants found in other skin care products. It's intensely hydrating, making it perfect for nursing moms with cracked or dried nipples—and the pump dispenser helps cut down on the mess.
To buy! Vanicream Moisturizing Skin Cream with Pump Dispenser, $13; amazon.com
CeraVe Baby Moisturizing Lotion
This paraben-, sulfate- and fragrance-free mix of vitamins and ceramides, packaged in a bottle that is free of phthalates and BPA, locks in moisture for 24 hours after application. CeraVe isn't tested on animals, so your baby and your favorite pet will love you for this one!
To buy! CeraVe Baby Moisturizing Lotion, $10; amazon.com