The first few moments holding your precious little bundle of joy make you realize how soft and delicate they are. Along with the rest of their delicate body, you’ll also notice how different their skin is from yours.
Baby skin will always be an enigma - that soft, translucent, beautiful skin is a mystery. But not anymore. Here are some skin facts about your baby’s skin that will shed some light on all your baby skin questions:
1. Reddish Purple Skin?
Regardless of their ethnicity and genetics, babies are born with a reddish-purple complexion as a result of their developing circulatory system, that has to get used to the environment outside the womb.
2. Fine Hair All Over The Body
Babies are born with fine hair all over their body. This hair, called "LANUGO", develops and is usually shed in the womb, but some babies may be born with the hair. The hair soon sheds, and this is completely normal!
3. Oily Film On Skin?
Babies are born covered with a waxy, oily substance called vernix caseosa. This layer keeps their skin hydrated in the womb, and is believed to have a protective role for the baby's skin during and after pregnancy, so don't be in a hurry to scrub it off. Talk to your doctor about it to get some information first.
4. The change in skin tone is normal
Babies’ skin tone takes anywhere from a few weeks to a few months to become the final skin tone. So you may notice your baby’s skin darken slightly or lighten slightly, but there is no need to panic, as this is normal. Your baby's skin tone will finally be dependent on genetics.
5. Paper-thin skin
Don’t let those chubby cheeks and thighs fool you. The skin on your baby is super thin, and this makes it very vulnerable to rashes and pimple-like breakouts. It takes a few months for the skin to settle and get used to the new environment after having been in the womb for so long.
6. Their skin gets oily and dry very easily
Due to how thin the skin is, it not only soaks up but also loses moisture very easily. That soft skin you envy and love so much therefore needs gentle care, so use mild, non-greasy products!
For 3-4 weeks after birth, your baby’s skin may turn yellow due to jaundice. Most newborns are affected by jaundice because their liver is still developing and is unable to regulate bilirubin levels. As long as your baby is feeding well and the levels are monitored, no serious complications will arise from this.
You should also know that your baby will sweat mildly because they are born with fully developed sweat glands. However, their sebaceous glands, which regulate oil production, take time to develop, making their skin vulnerable to dryness, rashes, and even breakouts which look like pimples. Your baby’s skin is very different from yours, and you should find out as much as you can about it so you can take care of your baby’s skin better.
Now that you do know, we hope this helps you understand baby skin care better. We also have a guide to taking care of their skin, which can help you with all your bath-time and post-bath skin care questions.