Cradle Cap Remedies?

Updated on February 20, 2010
A.H. asks from Richmond, VA
28 answers

My 2.5 month old has terrible cradle cap and now has icky crusty patches on his arms too. The ped only suggested we use Head and Shoulders for the cap but I know there's got to be something else to put on that could help. I started using Aveeno Baby body wash and lotion instead of the Johnson's but it's stayed the same. Any ideas?

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D.S.

answers from Norfolk on

Both my children had cradle cap and both their doctors recommended using Neutrogena T/Sal. It worked quit well to clear it up and keep it away. It's several years since but I THINK it was use every bath until it clears then once a week after to keep it gone.

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B.G.

answers from Amarillo on

Tried several things but the pediatrician told me to use Selsun Blue every other bath. My son had it on his head and face. I was just very careful using it on his face so that I didn't get it in his eyes. It helped to clear it right up!

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C.P.

answers from Richmond on

When my daughter developed cradle cap I used mineral oil and a very fine toothed comb. Mineral oil is thicker than baby oil, so it's easier to control. Rub a small amount into the crusty area and then use the comb to gently loosen the patches. She only had cradle cap once and I only bathed her every other or every three days. At that age little ones don't get that dirty unless they had an explosive BM.

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A.A.

answers from Atlanta on

Awww! My little one had bad eczema on his scalp, too, but it was not diagnosed as cradle cap by his ped. I tried the olive oil and baby oil....He smelled like a nice healthy salad! :) Aveeno didn't help either. He was sensitive to that as well. To put it briefly, California Baby Super Sensitive Baby Wash saved the day. I bathed my son everyday in lukewarm water for no more than a couple of minutes and put two layers ofCetaphil lotion on him to retain the moisture. I reapplied the lotion whenever I thought of it. He's been clear ever since. Good luck! Hope something works for you!

3 moms found this helpful
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L.W.

answers from Norfolk on

I used olive oil for my daughter. Just rub it in gently with your fingers and/or a baby hair brush, let it sit for a bit if you can, then wash it out.

1 mom found this helpful
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A.F.

answers from Washington DC on

I think I used olive oil on my baby. Have you tried baby oil? AF

1 mom found this helpful
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K.H.

answers from Washington DC on

Bath & body works sell a lotion for cradle cap , it not a very big bottle and about $15 but it works really well. Quite hard to locate in the store so best to ask.

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M.F.

answers from Phoenix on

I used the Gentle Naturals Cradle Cap Care after I just couldn't stand my daughter's cradle cap and having Daddy rub it with his beard stubble after a bath wasn't working. I used it once a day for 2 days, then put her in her exersaucer and *gently* rubbed all the scales off with a plastic doll's brush. Gently is the key word! I bathed her afterwards and the cradle cap was gone, never to return. I recommend using this in between baths and when you don't have to take the baby out anywhere. The cream is kind-of greasy, smells great going on, but stinks like old soap after a night. Gentle Naturals is sold at Babies R Us and Target in a green bottle with Pooh characters. Good luck!

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L.C.

answers from Norfolk on

Burts bees has worked every time for my family members and clients. Good luck...and it smells good too.

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E.K.

answers from Washington DC on

Renew body oil and Melaleuca Oil for the cradle cap, and they just came out with Renew body wash, I bet you can use that all over. Renew is the ONLY thing that has worked for my childrens' dry patches, they use it every day. I can help you get some if you would like, just send me a message or e-mail: [email protected]____.com

D.P.

answers from Gainesville on

my daughter had cradle cap to. my grandma told me to use cooking oil or baby oil and put it on at least 1 a day and use a baby brush so it not hurtful to him and kinda rud on the cradle cap the oil will loosen it up the the brush will take it off.the bath will wash it all off and repeat it at least every other day and it should be gone within a week or 2 and for his arm disney exzema cream will do wonders thats is what worked for me not head an shoulders witch can also burn the baby eyes if it gets in the. baby oil wont because it sticks to the cradle cap.hope it woeks for you

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M.H.

answers from Atlanta on

Hi A.,

Cradle cap is simply baby eczema of the scalp. That means it's systemic and coming from the inside out. Head and Shoulders will simply exacerbate the symptoms and the Aveeno is safer than the JandJ but like you said is not being effective. Renew lotion is the only lotion that I have ever seen that was effective. A detox of the home will build his immune system as well.

Are you still breast feeding? If you are, then you need to see what you're eating and adjust it for him. If you are formula feeding, it may be a reaction to that particular brand. I find formulas have way too many chemicals in them to help with the immune system. Goats milk generally will not cause the cradle cap.

god bless!

M.

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N.B.

answers from Washington DC on

Hi, A. - Many personal care & laundry products contain ingredients that are harsh, damagaing to sensitive skin, and potentially carcinogenic - even baby products! You may want to consider shopping with a wellness company, that manufactures all of its products with health, wellness, safety and prevention in mind, i.e. treat the cause too and not just the problem. The company I shop with helps me save time & money, and the health changes we have seen are incredible! You might find this video to be of interest: www.10Americans.com. I think all moms and future moms should see it! I wish I had that info when my kids were small. Feel free to contact me for more; happy to share. Good luck! N.
P.S. more great info: saferforyourhome.com :)

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M.K.

answers from Dover on

I used olive oil. It doesn't make their hair look good, but it cured the cradle cap. I had a little scrub brush they gave me in the hospital. I would use that too, to scrap the loose stuff away. It worked well.

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V.G.

answers from Portland on

I would use olive oil before anything else. Make sure whatever you're putting on your little ones head isn't full of chemicals that do more harm than good.
If it doesn't go away completely w/ the olive oil, at least you know it's not bad for the babe, just a little yucky looking for a little while :)

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L.C.

answers from Saginaw on

The only solution I've ever heard of (and I'm pretty sure Head and Shoulders would have something to say about their product being used on an infant!!) is oil.

Just good-quality olive oil, plain sesame oil or a light salad oil. Just rub it on and let it sit there for a few hours, then you can comb the cradle cap without difficulty.

Shampoos, particularly the ones formulated for infants (there is nothing harsher on the market than Johnson&Johnson's baby shampoo --stylists recommend it for taking incorrect semi-permanent dye out) actually make the problem a whole lot worse by disturbing the pH of baby's skin, which is actually slightly acidic (soap and shampoo are alkaline). You can stop it coming back by using oil as a moisturizer after bathing.

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D.S.

answers from New York on

I always used baby oil and let it sit on overnight. You can put a little cap on their head to keep it moist and then use a very fine toothed comb to gently remove it. It there are patches on their arms then it could be eczema. Has the doctor checked that out. Also, California baby carries great all natural products for dry scalp etc. Check out the site. www.californiababies.com
Good luck!!

S.G.

answers from Washington DC on

My daughter had it a little bit when she was a newborn...What worked great for her is baby oil...Put a little bit on the hair and let it sit for 10-15 min..Take a baby brush and scrape the scales off the scalp. Depending on how thick it is it may take more than one application. My daughters went away in a week completely. Also try not to wash the hair everyday.

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D.P.

answers from Pittsburgh on

Try baby oil on his scalp. Be careful, baby oil can be toxic if ingested by a baby but dab it on his scalp with a cotton ball. And you can put it on his arms before putting him into a sleeper w/ long sleeves. Aveeno is lightyears better than Johnson's which I found to be ridiculously HARSH.

K.I.

answers from Spokane on

I always heard that baby oil on the scalp is supposed to work?

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I.D.

answers from Dayton on

After seeing the other responses, and from personal experience, use olive oil. It's natural, it's not dangerous and won't affect your baby at all! Completely safe :)...and you probably have it at home already! It also works like a charm. Our son had terrible cradle cap and after several uses it went away completely.

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T.D.

answers from Norfolk on

Target, Walgreens and possible some other drug stores sell a product called Gentle Naturals. They make different products for babies and they have a cradle cap treatment product. I used this with my son and you will see instant results. It works very well! A little expensive though, between $6-$7 but worth it of course. I hope this helps you and your little one.

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B.H.

answers from Seattle on

Ok this may sound strange but it worked a miracle on my babys terrible cradle cap.
A old wise lady recomended i try using original (yellow) listerine and dabbing it on his cradle cap with cotton ball and rubbing around. then brush. and bathe your child like you usally would.

Within 2 washes my sons cradle cap was gone. i so could not believe it.

I talked to his dermatoligist (has bad exzema also) and she said theres actually been studys done on it, and its harmless. and works most of the time.

For his skin, i would bathe him only 2 time a week. the less the better. And as soon as he gets out of the baath while still kinda damp rub aquaphor lotion on him, it will help his dry patchs. retains moisture.
Also use like cetaphil cleanser, or a dye free non soap wash. it will help not dry out his skin.
Also you could try a bit of over the counter hydrocortizone on his patches if using different soaps and lotions dont help.

Also try washing his laundry in a dye free wash, We use purex free and that helped a bit to.

These are just some things ive learned in the past 2 years with extreme exzema.

Hope that helps you.

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S.H.

answers from Chicago on

Babies often suffer from birth until about the age of 3 years with a condition that is termed cradle cap but is actually a form of eczema known as seborrhea dermatitis. This form of dermatitis appears often on the head of the baby in the form of crusty dandruff and is linked to a low amount of biotin in the body. For more information:http://www.eczemaandyourlife.com

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S.C.

answers from Philadelphia on

My pediatrician told me to rub baby oil on the night before bathing then use a soft baby brush (like the one they give you at the hospital) to loosen the scales prior to bathing. This helped my son's cradle cap clear up after several times. I have also found that not using soap (just water) when bathing his head has prevented it from returning - if I ever forget and wash his scalp with soap, it becomes dry and a little scaly the next morning. Good luck!

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W.S.

answers from Washington DC on

Head and Shoulders is the best thing, but you have to put it on his head right out of the bottle, undiluted. Rub it on his scalp, then take a soft toothbrush or one of those soft baby hair brushes and rub it in circular motions. (very softly)

let it sit for a while, not long enough to let it dry or anything, just a few minutes.

Rinse with cool water and then pour apple cider vinegar on all of the patches. Let it sit and then rinse that with cool water too.

Do not put any kind of oil or lotion on it! That will make the cradle cap worse.

If this does not work, call a dermatologist for him.

You are in my prayers,

W.

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A.G.

answers from Boston on

baby oil worked for my boys. I just used it on my 6 year old because he had a very dry scalp. It takes awhile to wash out but well worth it.

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T.P.

answers from Salinas on

They say you can even use olive oil on the scalp. Just leave it on there for a little while then you have to make sure you wash off any oil from the scalp with shampoo and wash it well. You can clog the pores on the scalp and that's not good. Also take a little baby comb and gently comb it loose. There isn't that much you can do, they just have to out grow it. My baby had it too but it didn't last too long. Also, some people say not to wash their hair too often but you can wash it everyday. I did and it went away fast.

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