Baby rashes: Types, Prevention & Treatment

Nikki Chase



Time to read 9 min

Learn the best ways to prevent baby rashes and what steps you can follow to remedy them fast

No one likes to see their little one with an uncomfortable, itchy skin condition. Unfortunately, there are a host of baby rashes that can affect your child. Rashes may be the result of many different things. It could be due to genetic factors or something present in their environment. Even detergents and lotions can cause skin irritation in children. Did you know that changes in temperature could cause a flair up?

The reason for this is that a baby's skin is actually dramatically different from an adults. Their skin is more permeable, and can absorb and lose moisture more readily. As well, the top layer of an infant's skin (the epidermis) isn’t totally attached to the layer below (the dermis), like in adult skin.

Because of these factors, a baby’s skin can absorb everything that is put on it, very easily. Many baby products on the market today actually contain harmful hormone disrupting chemicals or known allergens. Unknowingly, parents can be making their child’s skin irritation worse, by applying creams or lotions with ingredients that are harmful or only safe for adults.

It is important to determine what kind of rash your baby has so the right treatment can be given. General face and body rashes, baby heat rash and diaper rash are all different types of rashes your child may be suffering from and there are various ways these conditions can be caused and treated.

Let’s take a look at the different types of rashes and how they can be caused, treated and prevented.

Common Types of Baby Rashes

1. How to Get Rid of Diaper Rashes:

A diaper rash is another type of skin rash that can affect all children from newborns to toddlers.  Most often, though, it affects babies between 9-12 months old.  This is because they are sitting a lot and tend to be in a wet diaper more often.

The diaper rash is fairly easy to diagnose because it is under the diaper and occurs in places where the diaper is in close contact with the skin.  The skin will look red and inflamed and might affect their bum and/or genital area as well as the folds of skin near their legs where the diaper sits.  Your baby’s skin might be warm to the touch in these areas.

There are a number of possible causes of diaper rash:

  1. The most common reason is wetness. But even the most attentive parent who changes diapers frequently can have a infant who suffers from rashes. This is because all diapers trap a certain amount of moisture against the skin and the combination of urine and stool can create ammonia which can lead to skin irritation.

  2. General chafing from friction can also cause skin irritation as well as sensitivity to any chemicals in detergent if you are using cloth diapers.

  3. Your baby could also be having an allergic reaction to whatever diaper cream or wet wipes are using during changing. Many wet wipes also contain alcohol which can be drying and irritate the skin further.

  4. Changes in your baby’s diet  which leads to their stool becoming more acidic.

In terms of treatment, relieving your child’s diaper rash is similar to that of heat rash.  Above all, try to keep your baby’s skin dry and the rash will probably clear up on its own. 

You can also follow these additional steps:

  1. Bathe them in lukewarm water and gently pat dry the area to remove the bulk of the water.

  2. Allow their body to air dry the rest of the way and then let them be naked as much as possible.

  3. If they aren’t walking yet, let them lay on a towel without a diaper so their skin can stay dry and comfortable.

  4. Use a natural  baby powder  to help soak up any excess moisture and lower friction.

Diaper rash can also be often prevented by avoiding the use of any products with harsh chemicals, including soaps, detergents and lotions. If you are using a  diaper cream , make sure it is a gentle one, without ingredients you don’t recognize and without added fragrance.

Look for herbal ingredients in your  baby’s skin care , with soothing, skin calming properties such as calendula and chamomile. Choose creams that have natural plant based butters and oils instead of petroleum based jellies.

2. How to Get Rid of Baby Heat rashes

A heat rash shows up as patches of  small red or pink bumps that look visibly irritated . You may even see some of these bumps as small blisters with fluid inside.

It can be cropped up just about anywhere, but particularly where the skin is covered by clothes. It can also be found in the folds and creases of your baby’s skin, such as around the neck, the armpits or groin.

A heat rash is caused by a baby’s sensitive skin getting too hot.  The sweat clogs the sweat glands and causes skin irritation and pimple-like bumps. It can happen when the weather is warm and is most frequent in the summer.

Sometimes heat rash can even be caused by well-meaning parents who overdress their infants. Because of this, heat rashes can also happen in the winter when a baby is wearing too many tight layers.

You might notice your baby is irritated or uncomfortable or trying to scratch their skin. It’s important to treat a heat rash quickly as scratching and bleeding can leave the skin open to infection. Most cases of heat rash should clear up on their own. But you can help healing along with a few steps:

  1. Because the rash is moist, keep your baby’s skin as dry as possible. Let them dry with a light fan or air dry as opposed to a towel that might irritate their skin further.

  2. Let your baby be naked whenever possible. This will allow air to circulate around the skin and prevent clothing from further irritating their skin.

  3. Avoid heavy lotions or oils as this will only further clog their pores.

This type of rash can be prevented by making sure your baby is dressed in clothing appropriate for the weather. 

Even in winter, an infant doesn’t need more clothing than an adult despite how their hands and feet may feel.

In the summer they should have cool, breathable, lose clothing and be dressed in as few layers or tight clothes as possible. If it is extra hot, let them sleep with a low fan in the room, and don’t overdo it with blankets and pajamas. The best temperature for a baby to sleep in is between 65-70 degrees.

Their skin should be able to breathe as much as possible in the summer, so avoid tights and other uncomfortable clothing. Having a cutely dress child comes second to their comfort.

3. Cradle Cap

Also known as seborrheic dermatitis, cradle cap causes thick, yellowish scales on a baby's scalp. It's typically harmless and goes away on its own. If you want a full guide on causes and treatments then check out our cradle cap article.

4. Baby Eczema

Eczema is one type of general skin condition that children can experience. Eczema is a term that can encompass a number of different skin conditions including dermatitis. Atopic dermatitis or atopic eczema is a painful, itchy skin condition that can leave children with uncomfortable red patches of skin on the face or body.

5. Milia

Milia are these tiny white bumps, prevalent on a newborn's nose, cheeks, or chin, are unpreventable and usually clear up within a few weeks without treatment.

6. Baby Acne

Newborns may temporarily develop acne , characterized by red pimples and whiteheads. It's most common on the cheeks, but can also appear on the forehead or chin. No treatment usually hits the spot; however, washing your baby's face with a mild soap can be beneficial.

How to Prevent Baby Rashes

Skin irritations are unfortunately a common part of childhood, whether your child is a newborn or toddler. No one likes to see their kid uncomfortable, itchy or in pain. While many childhood rashes can be eliminated by getting rid of the environmental triggers, many more are just genetic or environmental.

Baby skin is like a sieve and a sponge at the same time.  A lot of moisture can escape from it and a lot can be easily absorbed.  As parents, we must be conscious of what we put on our baby’s skin and what the ingredients are.

Next time you are in your nursery, take a look at all the products you use on your child on a daily basis. Are the ingredients natural? Can you pronounce them? Do you know what they are and why they have been added? What about the type of detergent you are using to wash your baby’s clothing or cloth diapers?

By eliminating many of these irritants your baby can see a big change in their itchy skin and rashes, and be happy and comfortable. To help you do as much as possible for your kid’s skin we put together a whole line of USDA Certified Organic baby products. They are packed full of natural ingredients proven to help rashes, dry skin, dermatitis and itchy skin.

Parents who’ve used them on their kids have see amazing results and we think you will too. Head over to our store to learn more:

We hope you’ve found this article informative and useful. Kids are the future and we want to help as much as possible in keeping them healthy! If you liked this article share it with other parents you know!

Natural Products for Baby Rashes


This article covers types of skin irritations that may impact infants, such, as diaper rash, cradle cap, eczema, milia, baby acne and heat rash. It details the reasons behind each type of irritation, their symptoms and the recommended treatments while stressing the significance of recognizing and addressing them promptly. Additionally it underscores measures, like ensuring the baby's skin stays dry, dressing them suitably for the climate using skincare items and steering clear of harsh chemicals. The piece wraps up by advocating for the usage of organic baby products to skin issues and uphold the well being and comfort of the infant.

Related Questions

1. What are the most common types of baby rashes?

The most common types of baby rashes include diaper rash, eczema, cradle cap, baby acne, viral rashes like fifth disease and hand-foot-mouth disease, and allergic reactions like hives.

2. What causes baby rashes?

Babies can develop rashes due to reasons such as irritation, from wetness rubbing, chemicals, materials, warmth, allergies and viral or bacterial infections.

3. How can I prevent baby rashes?

To prevent rashes, key steps include changing diapers frequently, keeping the skin clean and dry, using gentle cleansers, applying protective ointments, dressing baby in breathable fabrics, and avoiding potential irritants.

4. When should I see a doctor for a baby rash?

If the rash lasts for, then a week if it doesn't improve with home remedies or if it comes with fever, lack of appetite or other worrying signs it's best to see a doctor.

5. How do I treat a baby rash at home?

Minor skin irritations can usually be managed at home by maintaining cleanliness and dryness using comforting lotions or balms and letting the skin breathe. In situations seeking medical attention, prescription antibiotics or antifungal medications may be necessary.

Yes, products with fragrances, harsh chemicals, or irritating ingredients can potentially cause or exacerbate baby rashes. It's best to use gentle, hypoallergenic products formulated specifically for babies.

Nikki Chase

Nikki Chase

As co-owner Era Organics, Nikki's expertise runs deep. She spends her days immersed in the latest medical studies and scouring trusted websites, ensuring her knowledge reflects the cutting edge of science.

About Nikki Chase