Diaper Rash Remedies

July 07, 2013
With Jewel almost two and Rosie well on her way to the age of four we thought we just might make it through the diapering era never having to deal with a bad case of diaper rash.
So, when Jewel awoke with an AWFUL rash so bad she was walking bowlegged I was at a loss for what to do. I wanted to provide instant relief and also treat the rash as expediently as possible. We began by using a common household brand of diaper ointment which irritated Jewel and seemed to do very little for the rash. In desperate need of help I turned to my lovely readers for tips and advice. I put a call out on the Growing a Jeweled Rose facebook page and was given tons of tips and remedies from experienced parents. These tips were so helpful I wanted to compile them here for other parents who are battling a bad case of diaper rash.

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Diaper Rash- Tips, Remedies, and Treatments
Home Remedies

Corn Starch
Corn starch is fantastic for clearing up diaper rash.  It helps dry out the rash which then allows it to begin to clear.  You can also make a corn starch paste using water and apply it to the skin.  The paste creates a great barrier for protecting the skin between changes.

Baking Soda Bath Soak
Baking soda has amazing healing properties and is used to treat all sorts of skin irritations.  Making a baking soda bath is a great way to help sooth rashed skin.  Add roughly one cup of baking soda to your child's bath.  Skip bubbles and any other soaps if possible.  Those are loaded with chemicals which will only further irritate the skin. Let baby soak and play for roughly 10-15 minutes and once bath time is over be sure to pat the skin dry so that the baking soda stays on the skin.

Whisked Up Egg Whites
I know this one sounds bizarre but many readers mentioned it so I did some searching.  It turns out this is one odd home remedy that actually works.  The egg whites create a barrier to protect the healing skin.  The protein in the whites also helps the rash to heal.  It is an all natural, old fashioned remedy that will work in a pinch. Just be mindful and cautious of allergies.  If your child is not yet old enough to consume egg you should skip this or reserve it for after, once you know they do not have an allergy.

Add roughly one cup of Epsom salt to your babies bath and let them soak.  The salt helps relieve soreness and dry out the rash.

An Oatmeal Soak
Oatmeal helps cleanse the skin and makes a great addition to the bath in place of your usual soaps and washes.  You can buy oatmeal bath products like Aveeno Soothing Baby Bath Treatment or you could whip up a home remedy.  One reader said she placed regular oatmeal in a sock and then tossed it in the tub and it worked wonders.   Another reader used a grinder to finely grind the oatmeal from her pantry before adding it directly to the bath water.

Store Bought Remedies

Coconut Oil can be found in the cooking section of most major grocery stores as well as in drug stores.  It helps fight yeast, smells great, is soothing, and is a great natural remedy free of chemicals.  It is easy to apply and usually clears up a standard to severe diaper rash within a few applications.  There are also TONS of other ways to use coconut oil.  It is good stuff!

Many readers recommended Boudreaux's Butt Paste to me, and it REALLY does work!  We saw a huge difference after just one application.  This is one store bought remedy I can really get behind, pun intended.

Triple paste is a medicated ointment that works quickly to relieve and heal irritated skin.  It is fragrance free and hypoallergenic.  Many readers mentioned Triple Paste and said they LOVE it.  I have never tried it but I trust the experienced mama's that are my readers.  If we were to battle a future bad rash this would be one product I would purchase without hesitation.

Anti Monkey Butt
Anti Monkey Butt is specially formulated to eliminate moisture and sweat.  It is marketed for butt busting activities like bicycling, motorcycling, and running.  While it is not made exclusively for diaper rash prevention many readers said that it works fantastically! Anti Monkey Butt would surely produce giggles from my girls, making me a fan of their marketing.

Lanolin is used by breastfeeding moms to treat irritated or cracked nipples.  What makes Lanolin great for diaper rash is that it is specifically made to be applied to irritated and cracked skin.  Many other store bought creams should only be applied as a barrier for the healthy, unrashed skin as they can burn or cause further irritation.

There are a TON more creams and ointments on the market that would provide relief.  Many were recommended to me, but the above were the ones that were most mentioned or that I personally tried and loved.  Some others that were mentioned as products that provide fast relief were Aquaphor Baby Healing Ointment,  A&D Ointment, and Burt's Bees Baby Bee Diaper Ointment.

For Rashes that will not go away from any of the above treatments

See the doctor.  What looks like a diaper rash is sometimes more.  Yeast infections are commonly mistaken for diaper rash in babies. A prescription ointment like Nystatin might be needed.  Some readers recommended trying things like athletes foot cream or anti-fungal foot powder.  While these might actually work I would recommend seeing the doctor and getting a proper prescription.  Things that are not made for the diaper area should not be applied, especially on girls.  Also, the rash could be something more severe that needs to be treated.

Other Tips -Things you Should & Should NOT Do:
  • Do NOT use baby wipes- they may burn the skin and spread the bacteria, and in turn, the rash. 
  • DO let baby go diaper free as much as possible- diaper rash thrives in dark, moist places.  Leaving your child diaper free takes away the environment the rash needs to thrive.  The air is also very soothing to sore bums.
  • DO give baby lots of fluids, especially water-  this makes urine less concentrated and less irritating to the skin.  Cranberry juice is okay, but most other juices should be given in small amounts.  The sugar from the juice can make the urine more irritating and the rash worse.
  • Do NOT use baby powder-  Baby powder is made from talc.  These very small particles are too easily inhaled and can cause breathing issues and lung problems.  The corn starch baby powders are a safer alternative, but I would skip it altogether. Plain corn starch works wonders!
  • DO pat dry baby- any type of wiping or rubbing will hurt and further irritate and even spread the rash.  Also always make sure baby is 100% dry before applying any creams or ointments. If you apply ointment over wet skin it traps the moisture and make the rash worse.

Thanks so much to the wonderful mamas who shared their tips and expertise with me!  I hope this resource helps others heal those sore baby bums fast!

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More About the Author

Crystal Underwood is the writer and creator of Growing A Jeweled Rose. She has worked extensively with children and strongly believes in the importance of play at the core of early learning. She is passionate about the early years and believes that childhood should be a truly magical time in life. For all the best kids activities connect with Growing a Jeweled Rose below!