When caring for baby, only the best will do. Whether it’s organic food, natural fabrics or safety-tested toys, we all demand the highest quality -- and standards -- when it comes to our children. This also applies to bath-time products -- or anything that comes in contact with baby’s skin. The following ingredients are generally gentle enough to add to baby's bath (for infants under two months, however, it’s prudent not to add anything to the water at all). These herbal ingredients are usually available as essential oils and can be found at most health-food stores.
Calendula: Good for common skin conditions such as rashes, eczema and cradle cap.
Eucalyptus Radiata: Helps to clear congestion from colds and flu (do not use other types of eucalyptus since some are too strong for babies).
Lavender: Calms and soothes. Helps “balance” a tense, finicky baby.
Mandarin: Effective as both a natural sedative or stimulant. Mild sweet and fruity fragrance is appealing to babies.
Myrtle: Mildly stimulating and cleansing; helps soothe colds, flus and coughs with its spicy fresh scent.
Neroli: Good as a natural relaxer; also known as orange blossom flower.
Rose Maroc: Soothes with a sweet, floral scent. Helps with problem skin.
Tangerine: Uplifting fruity fragrance restores calm to restless baby.
Tea Tree Oil: Soothes problem skin. Is an effective antibacterial agent.
(Reprinted with permission from “Rub-a-Dub-Dub Baby in the Tub” by Leslie Crawford, published by Chronicle Books.)