Best Baby Body Wash

Nikki Chase



Time to read 9 min

The best baby body wash is plant-based, not loaded with chemicals. Here's what you should look for to keep your baby safe during bath time.

Whether it’s the toxic chemicals in carpets and household cleaning products or the BPA in plastic toys, most infants and young children come in contact with harmful substances during their regular activities. While it may be impossible to avoid exposing your child to a single nasty chemical, we can probably all agree that you child’s daily cleansing routine shouldn’t contribute to this toxic load.

Unfortunately, many parents are unwittingly slathering harmful chemicals onto their children’s skin on a regular basis. A 2009 report from the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics (CSC) found that more than 60 percent of the tested children’s bath soaps, lotions, shampoos, and other skin care products contained carcinogenic chemicals. (That’s a sciencey way of saying these chemicals may cause cancer.)

While it’s been nearly a decade since that report sent shockwaves throughout the parenting community, the CSC maintains that toxic chemicals are still ubiquitous in many mainstream baby body washes. That’s partly because the Food and Drug Administration doesn’t require companies to prove their products are safe before they sell them. (We know: It sounds crazy, but it’s true.)

If this news has sent you into a parental panic, take a deep breath. While it’s pretty shocking to learn that baby skin care products might not actually be safe for your baby, the good news is there are ways to care for your baby’s skin (and their overall health) every time you bathe them. Here’s an overview of the hidden dangers in baby soaps—plus the best ingredients and the best baby body wash

for safe, gentle, and effective cleansing.

The Hidden Dangers in Baby Body Wash

Baby soaps all have one thing in common: They’re designed to cleanse infants’ skin. Beyond that, not all baby body washes are created equal. Some baby soaps are packed with potentially harmful chemicals that should have no place on a baby’s body; others are packed with organic ingredients that can improve your baby’s skin health in a safe and gentle way.

Unfortunately, safe options are often harder to come by than toxic ones. Many conventional baby soaps contain a slew of potentially harmful ingredients, which include but are not limited to:

  • FD&C Colors: In order to appear more “cutesy,” many baby soaps contain colorants. But you’re much better off using boring old rainbow-color-free soaps. Synthetic colors have been linked to skin irritation, ADHD, and even cancer. To avoid them, steer clear of ingredients that start with “FD&C” or “D&C” followed by a color and number (such as FD&C Red No. 6).

  • Formaldehyde: Formaldehyde is used to preserve dead things, so it may be surprising to learn that it also shows up in a slew of baby skin care products. Manufacturers don’t add formaldehyde directly to their products, but it’s a byproduct of many other potentially harmful chemicals that  are  frequently used in mainstream baby body wash. These formaldehyde-releasing chemicals include 1,3-dimethylol-5, diazolidinyl urea, DMDM hydantoin, glyoxal, meethenamine, sodium hydroxymethylglycinate, and quaternium-15. No matter how formaldehyde shows up in a product, its presence is bad news. The toxic substance has been linked to central nervous system issues and cancer.

  • Parabens: These preservatives show up in a huge range of skin care products—from baby soaps and lotions to shampoos and conditioners—in spite of the fact that they’ve been linked to a slew of health issues. For example, studies suggest a connection between parabens, endocrine system dysfunction, and cancer. These links are particularly concerning when you consider that parabens are easily absorbed through the skin. To avoid them, opt out of products that contain any ingredient ending in “paraben.”

  • Sodium lauryl sulfate and sodium laureth sulfate (SLS): SLS is nearly as ubiquitous as parabens, and its reputation is equally nefarious. The common foaming agent has been associated with a variety of negative health effects including diarrhea, depression, eye damage, liver issues, skin rashes, and cancer.

  • Synthetic fragrance: Head to your nearest pharmacy and scan its skin care products, and you’ll be hard pressed to locate a product that doesn’t utilize synthetic fragrance. That’s bad news, because synthetic fragrances have been shown to provoke allergic reactions and cause skin irritation. Perfumes that contain phthalates have also been shown to cause endocrine system issues, and fragrances that contain styrene have even been linked to cancer. There’s also evidence that some synthetic fragrances may impair infant development.

The fact these nasty ingredients show up in a lot of baby body washes is reason enough to opt for products that feature organic, recognizable ingredients in lieu of the toxic products described above.

But if you need another reason to go the organic route, consider that there are tons of botanical ingredients that can effectively care for your baby’s skin—without any harmful side effects.

The Best Plant-Based Ingredients for Baby Body Wash

When selecting the baby body wash choosing products, with plant based ingredients can ensure that your baby's soft skin is cleansed gently and nourished effectively. Plant based ingredients are often free from chemicals. Are recognized for their calming, moisturizing and protective qualities.

Some of the plant based ingredients to seek in baby body washes include aloe vera, coconut oil, chamomile extract calendula extract, oatmeal avocado oil, shea butter, lavender oil, pomegranate extract and blueberry extract. These components not offer moisture and nutrients but also aid in soothing and safeguarding delicate baby skin during bath time, for a pleasant experience.

Aloe Vera

Aloe vera, a natural plant extract known for its hydrating properties is particularly beneficial, for baby skin due to its nature and ability to moisturize without causing any irritation. Rich in vitamins, minerals and enzymes aloe vera works harmoniously to calm and rejuvenate the skin. Its anti inflammatory qualities make it ideal for addressing skin concerns like redness, rashes or dryness.

Additionally aloe vera is predominantly composed of water, which helps retain skin moisture and promotes breathability. Brands like CITTA baby wash and Co Natural Baby Shampoo & Bodywash often incorporate aloe vera in their products to deliver a soothing and hydrating experience, for babies delicate skin.

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil has become wildly popular in the skin care space over the past few years, and for good reason. The saturated fats in coconut oil have been shown to help reduce pores, moisturize dry skin, and smooth the skin. Coconut oil is also antibacterial and antimicrobial, which means it can help protect the skin from infection. It’s also been shown to help in the treatment of atopic dermatitis. Its strong antioxidant properties partly explain why it’s linked to potent skin healing effects.

Chamomile Extract

Chamomile extract comes from the chamomile plant. Is widely recognized for its anti inflammatory properties. It's especially good, for baby skin as it helps to ease redness, irritation and swelling. Chamomile is also valued for its calming qualities, which can be helpful in comforting a baby during bath time.

This extract contains antioxidants that shield the skin from harm and support healing. Chamomile Extract is commonly found in baby body wash products such, as Connatural Baby Shampoo & Bodywash and Mother Sparse Plant Powered Baby Wash to offer an soothing cleansing experience.

Calendula Extract

Calendula, also known as pot marigold is a plant that possesses inflammatory and healing properties. It is an ingredient, in baby skincare items, known for its ability to calm and repair skin. Calendula extract aids in reducing inflammation accelerating wound recovery and shielding the skin against infections. 

It proves effective in addressing diaper rash, eczema and various skin irritations. Gentle enough for application calendula helps maintain well moisturized skin. Skincare products such as Conatural Baby Shampoo & Bodywash and Weleda Calendula Shampoo and Body Wash frequently incorporate calendula extract for its soothing effects, on the skin.


Oatmeal is an ingredient that's well known for its soothing and moisturizing qualities making it particularly helpful, for infants with dry, sensitive or eczema prone skin. Avenanthramides, compounds found in oatmeal possess inflammatory and antioxidant properties that can alleviate redness, itching and irritation.

Taking a bath can offer relief for skin issues such as diaper rash, baby acne and sunburn. Colloidal oatmeal, a type of oatmeal is commonly included in baby body washes and bath products to ensure even application and maximize skin benefits. Popular products like Baby Wash & Bubble Bath and Pure & Beyond Baby Body Wash often include oatmeal due to its effective skincare attributes.

Avocado Oil

Avocado oil is packed with fatty acids, vitamins and antioxidants making it a great addition, to baby body wash. It works wonders in hydrating and nourishing the skin leaving it looking healthy and smooth. Especially beneficial for sensitive skin avocado oil moisturizes without blocking pores. 

Its anti inflammatory properties also help calm skin and reduce redness. Moreover avocado oil can assist in healing cuts and scrapes. Popular baby wash products, like Mother Sparsh Plant Powered Baby Wash and GAIA Natural Baby Bath and Body Wash often feature avocado oil to boost their moisturizing and protective benefits.

Lavender Essential Oil

Just like vanilla extract, lavender oil boasts more than a natural, great smell (although that’s a real perk!). It’s also antibacterial, antifungal, antimicrobial, and antioxidant-rich. Together, these qualities can assist in healing damaged skin, treating acne, and reducing free radical damage to improve overall skin health.

Shea Butter

Shea butter, a nourishing ingredient extracted from the shea trees nuts is packed with vitamins A and E along, with fatty acids that nourish and safeguard the skin. Renowned for its moisture locking abilities and prevention of dryness by forming a barrier on the skin. Moreover its anti inflammatory properties can calm skin. Reduce redness. Shea butter is gentle, for use. Is commonly found in baby body washes like Pure & Beyond Baby Body Wash ensuring lasting hydration and protection.

Pomegranate Extract

Pomegranate extract contains an amount of antioxidants that safeguard the skin against harm and support skin health. Its anti inflammatory characteristics can calm skin and lessen redness. Additionally pomegranate extract aids in enhancing skin moisture levels and elasticity making it a valuable ingredient, in baby body wash formulations. Popular choices such as EllaOla Superfood Baby Shampoo & Body Wash frequently incorporate extract to boost their nourishing effects, on the skin.

Blueberry Extract

Blueberry extract is a source of antioxidants that can safeguard the skin from harm and enhance a complexion. With its abundance of vitamins A and C it works to nourish and revitalize the skin. Additionally blueberry extract boasts inflammatory properties that offer relief for irritated skin and diminish redness. It is commonly found in baby body wash products such, as Ella Ola Superfood Baby Shampoo & Body Wash to deliver added protection and nourishment to the skin.

Opting for baby body washes containing these ingredients ensures that your babys skin receives cleansing, ample nourishment and shield, from harmful substances.


Here’s the bad news about baby body wash: Unfortunately, parents can’t always trust baby skin care product manufacturers to have their baby’s best interests at heart. Many mainstream products are packed with potentially harmful chemicals that shouldn’t touch your baby’s skin with a 10-foot pole. Now here’s the good news: When you know which ingredients to avoid and which to seek out, you’re empowered to better care for your baby’s skin (not to mention their overall health). By reading labels carefully and choosing plant-based options from brands you trust, you can ensure that your baby’s skin stays healthy, nourished, and happy for years to come.

Related Questions:

1. How do 2-in-1 shampoo and body washes compare to separate products?

2-in-1 shampoo and body washes use similar soap bases but with different ratios of ingredients, making them suitable for both hair and body cleansing. They are generally less effective than separate shampoo and conditioner products, which are specifically formulated for hair care and skin cleansing

2. Which baby body washes are best for sensitive skin?

When choosing body wash, for skin opt for products labeled hypoallergenic, of fragrance and tear free. These qualities help provide a cleansing experience that minimizes the risk of irritation or allergic responses ideal, for the delicate skin of babies.

3. What ingredients should I look for in a baby body wash for sensitive skin?

When choosing baby body washes for skin opt, for products that're hypoallergenic and free of fragrances. Also consider using ingredients such as glycerin, oat extract and natural oils, like coconut or olive oil to help moisturize and soothe the skin.

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