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Friday, June 10, 2011Around babies

Our baby's skin and its very specific properties

© fotolia.com

A baby’s skin requires specific cares and meticulous attentions; but do you know why? The skin of a very young child, even more an infant’s, has very specific characteristics, all in frailty, sensitivity and lack of protection. A picture of a baby’s skin … to help you choose the most suitable cosmetics!

Reading time
~ 7 minutes

Smooth and velvety, often said as similar to peach or apricot skins; smooth, soft, smelling good, good enough to eat, perfect to welcome hugs and gentle stroking … Babies’ skin is mythically seen as an immaculate and silky perfection. Their skins are often far from this perfection. Their specific properties require suitable care.

A very specific epidermis

For sure, a baby’s skin is first a skin, with a structure very similar to the skin of any human. Nevertheless, it is also a not yet mature organ, more fragile, more sensitive, with specific characteristics: to summarize, similar but different.

It is also the organ, which faces peculiar drawbacks, such as diaper rash , cradle cap, the nappy rubbing … Further, due to the small size of a baby, its surface is in proportion far larger than an adult’s. This leads to specific consequences.

The newborn’s skin

When he appears out of his mother’s womb, the newborn is coated with a kind of waxy layer, called vernix caseosa. Made of sticky sebum and cells that have sloughed off the fetus's skin, it protects the epidermis during the in-utero aquatic life. Its thickness depends on the time spent in utero by the infant. …

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