I cannot believe that I cloth diapered my first son for 2 years without coming across this remedy. When it comes to cloth diapers, using Desitin (or a zinc-based) diaper ointment is a “no-no.” These ointments are water repellant and therefore keep your baby’s bottom dry. They also stick to the cloth diapers and cause the cloth to be water repellant, which is not what we want. The ointment will not come out easily in the wash, so it can do some real damage to your diapers.
With my first son I tried lining the diapers with cloth diaper liners to create a barrier between the ointment and the diaper, but it would leak through to the diaper. I also tried cornstarch to keep him dry, but it did not seem to help clear up his rash. Finally, I tried tee tree oil to clear up the rash, but that just gets expensive and didn’t seem to make much of a difference.
Now, what was the remedy that actually works? This is so simple, and you may even have some in your pantry to use. It took some researching on what to use with cloth diapers before I finally came across this. It is organic extra virgin coconut oil. Coconut oil has many wonderful properties, which make it excellent to cook with, but it can also be used on the skin. Coconut has natural anti-fungal, anti-viral and anti-bacterial health protection properties, which make it perfect for diaper rash.
At 76 degrees and lower the oil is solid, otherwise it will be a clear liquid. In the colder months I dip my finger in the solid coconut oil and just rub it on baby’s bottom. Now that it is summertime I dip a dry cloth wipe in the oil and then rub it on that way. The coconut oil helps clear up diaper rash in 1 to 2 days and leaves your baby’s bottom smelling like a pina colada! The best part is that the oil does not stick to the diapers and will not mess with their absorbency, so feel free to slather it on.
If you are looking to buy the oil you will find it at your local Whole Foods Market or organic market in your area. Buy a big tub of it because it is also great to cook with…mmm!
Happy cloth diapering!