7 Natural Cradle Cap Treatments That Really Work

Sasha Brown-Worsham | Feb 7, 2013 Baby
7 Natural Cradle Cap Treatments That Really Work
Image: iStock.com/Photokanok

baby's head and hair

Cradle cap is one of those things about parenthood no one ever tells you to expect. All of a sudden your beautiful little peach is shedding big yellow scales of nastiness from their precious head and you have no idea why. Don't freak out! This is a normal condition called cradle cap that happens to many, many babies. Welcome to motherhood!

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Though at first it was worrying, we found that it isn't a hard problem to solve. We had this with my second child and spent a lot of time trying to figure out why and trying to treat it. It turns out, it was easier than we expected to prevent and keep it at bay.

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Doctors still aren't exactly sure why cradle cap occurs, but oily skin is one major issue. It could also be the mother's hormones that the baby is exposed to pre-birth. It could be as simple as dead skin that sticks to oily skin or even a kind of yeast infection. Whatever the cause, it isn't pretty. Here are 7 treatments for cradle cap, from the doctor-approved to the mom-tested.

cradle cap cures

  • Shampoo


    Image via SuperSup

    It's plain. It's simple. And it's apparently effective. Shampoo may be the single most effective way to treat cradle cap in infants. Regular, vigorous shampooing can make the difference between flakey flakes and smooth scalps. Whoo-hoo!

  • Olive Oil


    Image via _gee_/Flickr

    Olive or almond oil is often effective against cradle cap, as counter-intuitive as it may seem. Try rubbing it in baby's hair and letting it sit for a while, then gently rubbing with a clean toothbrush. Worked for us!

  • Coconut Oil


    Image via mlinksva/Flickr

    Every natural mama swears by coconut oil for good reason. It's a miracle! It smells amazing, too. Put a little on baby's head at night and brush off in the morning with a baby brush.

  • Vaseline


    Image via Amazon

    A lot of mamas swear by Vaseline. Put it in the hair at night (goopy but effective), and by morning, your little darling is flake-free. It can't hurt to try, right?

  • Fine-Toothed Comb


    Image via Amazon

    This is a lice comb, it's true. But with a little oil, this is probably one of the easiest and fastest ways to remove those flakes. So get to combing. And be glad it's flakes and not nits!

  • Shea Butter


    Image via Amazon

    Try shea butter on the scalp. Rub it in, then comb it off slowly. It works like a charm, according to some moms.

  • Time


    Image via oatsy40/Flickr

    The reality is even the most stubborn case of cradle cap (like my son had) goes away over time. Blink and your baby is 4 and cradle cap is a distant memory. No matter how much you try, the one surefire cure is time.

baby skin care cradle cap

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