This is the best homemade diaper cream, made with healing and soothing ingredients like shea butter, zinc oxide, and coconut oil. Infused with essential oils or calendula, this cream works to keep diaper-rash away, or heal a bad diaper rash quickly. Click to learn how to make this easy, natural cream that’s also safe for cloth diapers!
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Diaper rash sucks.
How’s that for an intro?
If you’ve found your way here, though, you probably would agree 100%.
Diaper rashes can happen so quickly, too, causing your poor little kiddo quite a bit of discomfort or pain overnight.
Related: How to Get Yellow Poop Stains Out of Baby Clothes
What’s Wrong with Store-bought Diaper Cream?
I try hard to keep things as natural as I can in our home. Most generic store-bought creams and lotions are full of artificial, toxic ingredients. The main diaper cream brands use a chemical emulsifier that is then absorbed into the body because, get this: Our skin has no natural filter. We absorb everything in whatever we put on our skin. It doesn’t allow certain aspects of the cream in and not other aspects.
Why I Make My Own DIY Diaper Cream
When my first born son developed a bad diaper rash after switching to cloth diapers, I went out and bought a really good all-natural diaper cream.
And…wait for it…
He broke out in hives. Bad. All over.
Which made the bad diaper rash even worse, too.
I called his pediatrician (panicked), and was told to discontinue the cream, bathe him immediately, and just use coconut oil until the hives went away.
That was an awful time, my friend. He was so uncomfortable and my mama heart broke for him.
And I felt totally betrayed by that stupid natural cream. It was supposed to be the healthy option!
But everyone’s skin is different. My poor guy was just highly sensitive to a couple of the ingredients (essential oils) in that cream.
So I make my own homemade diaper cream so that I can know exactly what is in it and keep it as neutral as I can for all the sensitive skin in my family.
Are you a busy mama?
If you’re a mom, I know you are busy. Personally as a mom, I don’t have time for a really lengthy process when it comes to making butt cream. Really. I know it’s super important, but I don’t want to spend a ton of time on it.
I’ve tested SO many recipes trying to get a cream that not only works great, but is also really easy.
Enter this DIY Diaper Cream.
It is just the best I’ve ever tried.
With some healing and multi-purpose ingredients that will last a long time, you can whip up some of this simple, effective homemade diaper cream in no time.
Here are the kick-butt ingredients you’ll need to make this diaper cream:
Shea Butter, Coconut Oil, and Aloe Vera Gel
These ingredients are super stars when it comes to healing, moisturizing, and soothing. Coconut oil is also an anti-bacterial, which is why it’s perfect for a diaper cream. When skin is in contact with, uh hem, poop and pee, adding natural antibacterial ingredients is super important. Shea butter is a fantastic anti-fungal, too, so it helps to fight off any yeast infection.
This is my favorite healing element in DIY creams and lotions. Calendula (which is a flowering plant) offers antibacterial and antiviral properties, and has been shown in studies to speed up the healing process in wounds. To incorporate it into this cream, I infuse coconut oil with the dried calendula flowers. This is the only time consuming part (and even that only takes 30 minutes for the quick version). If you don’t want to take the time to infuse your own oil, you can buy calendula oil here.
Zinc oxide can be found in a lot of diaper creams because it fights bacteria and protects the skin. This is even used for natural acne products for it’s anti-inflammatory properties.
Zinc oxide is controversial with cloth diaper users, but because it’s a small amount, it has not caused issues for me. If you use cloth diapers and don’t want to risk it causing build up, you can absolutely leave it out!
You can also use zinc oxide for an easy and quick natural sunscreen! Check out this recipe for a simple nontoxic sunscreen.
Another super star with diaper rash, bentonite clay is known for removing toxins and drawing out bacteria. Adding a small amount of bentonite clay to your homemade diaper cream adds another level of drawing out any infection from lesions and aids in healing a bad diaper rash.
These are absolutely optional. Some great ones to add are roman chamomile, rose, or lavender. You definitely want to incorporate these very carefully and lightly. Just 1-3 drops for the whole batch. I choose not to add them to my diaper cream because each of my four babies has been sensitive to different and various essential oils. It’s easier to just leave them out here.
How to infuse the oil with calendula (and a great alternative if you don’t have that)
What you’ll need:
- 1 cup of coconut oil
- ½ cup to 1 cup of dried calendula flowers
This amount will make multiple batches. If you’d rather just make enough for one recipe, use ¼ cup oil with 1-2 tablespoons of the dried calendula.
Using a double broiler, heat coconut oil and calendula flowers together, stirring and crushing them periodically. Let them “stew” for half an hour to 2-6 hours (longer is always better, but if you’re crunched for time, do it fast!). Remove the infused oil from heat and let it cool until it’s a good temperature to handle.
Strain it through cheese cloth or a loose-weave towel, squeezing it to get as much of that medicinal oil out as possible.
Tip: rub any extra oil on your hands into your arms or legs for moisurizer to not let any go to waste!
You can totally use a make-shift double broiler, by simply using a bowl and small saucepan combo. Just fill the saucepan with an inch or two of water and bring it to a simmer (not a rapid boil). You want the bottom of the bowl to be above the water.
The long way to infuse oil is to put the oil and dried flowers in a jar and let it sit in the sun for 2-3 weeks. If that’s your thing, go for it!
If you don’t have calendula and would rather use something more easily accessible, you can substitute it for chamomile. You can either cut open 2-6 bags of plain chamomile tea bags (depending on how much you’re making), or use loose leaf chamomile in the same amount as the calendula.
The Easy Diaper Cream How-To
Now let’s get into how to make this fluffy whipped diaper cream.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- ¼ cup shea butter
- 1 T aloe vera gel
- 3 T liquified coconut oil, infused with calendula or chamomile (not hot! If using solid coconut oil, melt it until it’s liquid and wait until it’s room temperature before using)
- 1 T zinc oxide
- 1 tsp bentonite clay
- 1-3 drops of roman chamomile, rose, or lavender essential oil
Here’s what you’ll do:
- You’ll start by adding the shea butter to the bowl of a kitchen mixer.
- Whip this alone on high until it starts to get fluffy and smooth
- With the mixer going on high, very slowly add the aloe vera gel. Because this does not use an emulsifer, and oil and water-based things don’t always mix well, you need to do this process slowly. Otherwise it will seperate.
- Once that’s whipped together, slowly stream in the 3 tablespoons of liquified infused coconut oil.
- Continue beating the diaper cream until it resemble frosting
- Stop the mixer and scrape everything down, then whip it again on high to make sure everything is fully incorporated
- With the mixer on low, add in both the zinc oxide and the bentonite clay, if using. Then add in the essential oils and give it a quick mix
- Store your diaper cream in a container or two that seals tightly. If you’re using bentonite clay, store it in a container where it won’t come into contact with metal. I won’t pretend to fully understand the science of why, but I’ve read that it makes the bentonite clay less effective.
Related: How to Get Yellow Poop Stains Out of Baby Clothes
You can store the diaper cream at room temperature, but if it’s a particulary warm day, you might want to toss it in the fridge to help it firm up.
If you notice it separating after a while, you can always add it back to your mixer and whip it again to recombine it.
Quick clean up tip: To easily clean up the oil from your kitchen mixer, bring a pot of water to a boil and dump it into the mixing boil (preferably with that mixing bowl in the sink ;)). Then just wash like normal with dish soap and you’re golden!
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