How to Get Rid of Cradle Cap: 5 Natural Treatments

Cradle cap is mostly a cosmetic issue and usually goes away on its own, but read on to learn how to get rid of cradle cap quickly and naturally.

So your precious newborn has developed scaly yellow patches on his or her head? Don’t worry: It’s probably just cradle cap—a common skin condition in newborns that usually goes away on its own. It’s mostly a cosmetic issue—and something that probably bothers you more than it bothers baby—but if you want to know how to get rid of cradle cap, read on.

Cradle Cap Treatment: How to Get Rid of Cradle Cap

Since cradle cap doesn’t hurt or itch, the easiest option is to just let it be. In most cases, cradle cap isn’t harmful and will clear on its own, typically within a few months. But if you still want to know how to get rid of cradle cap, you can try these natural remedies.

1. Soften with oil

Some parents have found simply massaging a raw, vegetable oil into the scalp once a day works wonders to calm inflammation and nourish baby’s tender skin. Plus, massaging the scalp is great for stimulating baby’s neural pathways.

  1. Apply coconut, almond, or olive oil to the affected area.
  2. Let sit for about an hour.
  3. Follow up with shampoo.

Alternatively, apply calendula infused cream or a thin layer of shea butter to the scalp.


2. Exfoliate with a brush

After using a special shampoo, or several hours after applying an oil, brush the scalp gently. The softened scales will come off much more easily, without damaging the scalp itself. Just be sure to use a natural brush with very soft bristles, like this one.

3. Use a special shampoo

Conventional dandruff shampoos are sometimes used on babies, but they contain harsh ingredients like coal tar and salicylic acid. Fortunately, you can make your own natural and gentle cradle cap shampoo (see recipes below).

Just be careful not to over wash. Frequent shampooing strips the natural oils from delicate skin and can actually cause an overproduction of the scalp’s sebum, exacerbating cradle cap. Shampoo two to three times per week, no more.

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