If you are looking for a natural way to treat diaper rash, or any other skin irritation your baby might have, then you can consider using Aloe Vera.
Aloe Vera is a miracle plant that can help! Our blog post will teach you all about the benefits of this plant, as well as how to use it to treat diaper rash. This is part of our series on natural ingredients to treat diaper rashes.
Aloe Vera: from Plant of Immortality to Natural Healer
Many parents use the gel derived from the Aloe Vera plant to treat skin inflammations, but did you know that it was also used many years ago by Native Americans to treat burns and wounds? The Aztecs were also aware of its beneficial properties, so they included this unusual looking plant in their pharmacopoeia.
The gel that can be obtained from the leaves of this plant has many medicinal properties, and it is said that even Cleopatra used to apply Aloe Vera to her skin in order to enhance its beauty and softness on a daily basis. Indeed the Egyptians called aloe vera the plant of immortality and there is evidence on papyrus about them talking about these anti-inflammatory and pain relief properties.
Besides using the gel for cosmetic purposes, people also use it to treat sunburns, Psoriasis, acne and even fungus problems.
What is Aloe Vera?
Aloe Vera is an unusual looking plant that has been used for centuries in the treatment of burns and wounds.
It is also known as Aloe vera, Lily of the Desert, Curacao, Elephant’s Gall and Miracle Plant. The leaves are thick and fleshy with small spines around them, while the flowers are yellow and tubular.
Aloe vera is a small plant that grows in the wild, but you can also cultivate it at home even if you don’t have green fingers as it is quite easy to do so. The best way to use Aloe Vera is by cutting one of its leaves and applying the gel contained inside on the affected area, but you can also prepare a cream or a lotion that you will then use for massaging the skin.
There are many benefits of using Aloe Vera for treating skin inflammations, either on your baby’s bottom during diaper changes, or any other part of the body that needs some soothing and relief from pain or inflammation.
Benefits of using Aloe Vera
Aloe Vera is an excellent antiseptic, so it can be used to clean wounds and prevent bacterial infections. It’s also helpful in the treatment of burns, as it speeds up regeneration on the skin cells that were affected by heat. It can soothe both internal and external inflammations, including diaper rash.
It is also helpful in the treatment of psoriasis or other fungal infections, due to its antimicrobial properties. Furthermore, it has anti-inflammatory effects that can be used for treating skin problems like acne or dermatitis. Finally, it’s safe to use for the whole family.
How to use Aloe Vera for diaper rashes?
Many babies have rashes on their bottom due to diapers that are too tight, or because they are allergic to the chemicals used in them. If your baby is suffering from a diaper rash, then you can apply some Aloe Vera gel on the affected area and it will relieve the pain and discomfort after a matter of minutes.
Because aloe does not offer a barrier against wetness, if you use disposable diapers, you need to mix them with zinc oxide or shea butter to establish a barrier (read our guide to using shea butter for diaper rash). Baking soda (a baking soda bath is very effective for diaper rash) and aloe vera can be used to provide a safe and efficient treatment for irritated skin, especially sensitive skin. You may also combine aloe and breast milk to produce a breast milk lotion, which is an excellent natural therapy for any skin ailment ranging from diaper rash to bug bites!
You can use aloe vera in the following ways:
- Directly as a gel onto the irritated skin
- Use it to make a natural diaper cream
- Use aloe vera juice to make an aloe vera bath (using lukewarm water).
- Use the juice with water to make a spritz for use at diaper change time. Use with a soft cloth instead of using baby wipes.
Here’s what you need to do:
Wash your hands properly with soap and water. Pour a small amount of Aloe Vera gel on a cotton ball, and use it to dab the affected area. You can cover with a thin layer of shea butter in order to protect the skin from any wetness in case the baby starts crying or during nighttime when you are changing diapers.
You can also use Aloe Vera with every diaper change by cutting an Aloe Vera leaf and squeezing its gel on the affected area after each diaper change. This is one of the most efficient natural remedies for diaper rash.
Aloe Vera Diaper Cream Recipe
- 4 TBS of beeswax (or shea butter if you prefer a vegan option)
- 2 TBS of Aloe Vera gel
- 1 tsp of Vitamin E oil
- 1 tsp lavender essential oil (optional) (When lavender oil is combined, it adds hydration and antimicrobial activity)
First, you need to melt the beeswax in a double boiler and add the Aloe Vera gel. Stir it well and add the remaining Vitamin E and lavender essential oil.
Transfer the mixture to a glass container and let it cool down. Apply some of this cream on the affected area, or use it as an ointment for diaper rash. Keep in mind that Aloe Vera powder can stain your clothes if you don’t wait long enough before getting dressed after applying this remedy.
Is Aloe Vera safe for babies?
Yes, you can apply some Aloe Vera gel on the baby’s bottom during a diaper change to prevent and soothe the discomfort of a diaper rash. Always do a patch test first as some babies might have an allergic response to aloe vera.
Can babies eat or drink aloe vera juice?
Aloe vera juice is often used to treat constipation however it’s a very strong substance and might be too harsh on their delicate digestive system. Under 6 months of age stick to topical aloe vera gel to treat inflamed skin, after this age as your doctor before you feed your child the aloe plant.
The importance of natural skin care ingredients for babies
Babies have very sensitive skin and are more likely to get an irritating skin condition. There are lots of natural treatments that you can use which are extremely beneficial as well as being a safe and effective treatment. Most home remedies will include coconut oil (see our guide to coconut oil and diaper rash), apple cider vinegar, shea butter, olive oil (see olive oil for diaper rash) and oatmeal (an oatmeal bath is great for all rashes) all of which have anti-inflammatory properties.
You can mix in essential oil or apply these into a warm water bath to help most babies. If you read our series on home remedies for diaper rashes you can see we have lots of diaper cream recipes as well as tips for using natural products for yeast infections, diaper rashes, skin irritations and even insect bites.
Applying aloe can be done on its own or mixed with baking soda, coconut oil or any of our natural active ingredients. It can be used as a natural barrier against the burning sensation of an acidic bowel movement in the diaper area or just against the friction of a wet diaper rubbing. You can even just apply aloe direct to a baby’s face for a teething rash.
Can aloe vera make a rash worse?
No, there are no recognized side effects of aloe vera. However, some children are sensitive to aloe vera, so always test for sensitivities before usage and if there is an adverse effect or allergic reactions stop use. Aloe vera is a healing gel, much better than most shop-bought creams at keeping moisture out and healing redness.
Can aloe vera harm a baby?
No, it is safe to use on a baby’s skin on any irritated skin conditions but always do a patch test first.
Can aloe vera be used with cloth diapers?
Aloe Vera has no negative effects on cloth diapers if you only use the gel for treating diaper rashes, but it might stain them. You can also check our article about other herbal remedies for cloth diapering.
The Bottom Line on Preventing and Treating a Diaper Rash with Aloe Vera Gel
There is a reason why the Egyptians idolised this miracle gel and called it the ‘plant of immortality’. Its ability to heal and repair skin from the ravages of dryness, inflammation and infections is indeed miraculous. If you have a baby in your life, remember that natural remedies are always a welcome addition to any home medicine cabinet. Don’t be afraid to try out these effective, safe and gentle treatments when you need them.