Homemade baby lotion is exactly what every parent needs to have on hand for the nighttime routine. Made with soothing ingredients and calming essential oils, this sleep rub is perfect for a healthy night’s sleep.
Is bedtime a struggle in your home? My kids always seem to get their second wind just as the bedtime routine begins. This homemade bedtime baby lotion is the perfect lotion to rub on your child before bed to promote a good night’s sleep.
Having a bedtime routine can be very helpful for children and even adults. Bedtime routines don’t have to be extravagant, just some sort of daily normality, so they know what to expect. Children thrive on schedules!
Aside from the fact that this baby lotion is excellent for sleep, it’s still a lotion with its moisturizing and protective properties!
BEDTIME BABY LOTION RECIPE
Lotions for kids and babies are going to differ from regular lotions, primarily by using milder ingredients safe for delicate skin.
With a texture similar to a body butter, it is made without water to extend its shelf life up to a year when stored in a cool, dry place.
It is easy to apply on little kids, and is highly moisturizing for the skin.
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- 1/4 cup shea butter (or substitute for cocoa butter or mango butter)
- 1/4 cup coconut oil
- 4-8 drops of essential oils (see list below)
How to make baby lotion
Melt the shea butter and coconut oil in the double boiler on the stove. If you don’t have a double boiler, place a heat-resistant glass bowl over a pot of water. The bowl should be big enough that it rests on the edges of the pot and is partially submerged in the water.
Bring the water to a boil and stir the ingredients every couple of minutes until melted. Once melted, remove from heat and allow it to cool slightly. Then, stir in essential oils and place the bowl into the refrigerator to set up.
Keep an eye on the lotion. When you can press your thumb into the mixture, and it holds the print of your thumb, it’s ready for the next step.
Whip with a hand mixer until light, fluffy and firm peaks start to form.
Transfer to a glass mason jar with an airtight lid for storage.
How to use
To hydrate dry skin, gently massage into the area of concern, avoiding the eyes, ears and mouth.
To help with sleep, apply a dime-size amount of the sleep lotion to the bottom of the feet and down the back of the spine. Massage it in, then cover it with socks and a shirt.
It is best to apply right before going to bed. You can also add essential oils for calming and relaxation to the diffuser. Choose an oil or two from the list below to diffuse at nighttime. The extra aroma from the diffuser may help children and adults sleep more soundly at night.
Diluting for all ages
To make this baby lotion for children under three, use half the amount of essential oils, or up to 4 drops total. My favorite blend for children is two drops of lavender, one drop of frankincense, and one drop of Roman chamomile. These oils are very gentle on the skin, soothing, and smell amazing together.
Essential oils to help baby sleep
Essential oils can be very helpful for sleep. Several oils have very calming scents that can help to turn the brain off. When I lay down to go to sleep, my brain starts going a million different directions reflecting on the day, what I need to get done tomorrow, worrying, etc.; the list goes on. This can happen to kids too!
Most people are familiar with the benefits of lavender oil for sleep, but did you know there are quite a few essential oils to help with sleep? Here are a few of my favorite essential oils to use in the diffuser at nighttime and to add to my homemade baby lotion:
- Roman Chamomile
Each of these essential oils are great for promoting relaxation and calming the mind.
Best natural ingredients for baby skin
Choosing natural ingredients for skincare products ensures no harmful or synthetic ingredients were used, including fragrances; that alone can come with a whole host of side effects.
Shea Butter: Gentle for sensitive skin types, does not clog pores and reduces the effects of many skin conditions.
Coconut Oil: Naturally moisturizing, reduces inflammation, antibacterial, antiviral as well as strengthens and thickens babys delicate skin.
Lavender: Safe for sensitive skin, soothes skin irritations, and reduces the appearance of skin imperfections.
Frankincense: This oil is gentle and calming with incredible benefits for the skin.
Roman Chamomile: One of the most gentle oils, it has wonderful calming properties, promotes healthy sleep, and soothes tired muscles and joints.
Baby oil vs Lotion
Both body oil and lotion hydrate and moisturize skin. The two most noticeable differences are that lotions are made up using a combination of ingredients to serve specific purposes, while body oil generally consists of mineral oil and fragrances.
Body oil is effective in sealing in moisture, such as after a shower, but beware, most body oils are made using mineral oil, a by-product of petroleum. Instead, look for a plant-based body oil with natural fragrances, or make your own.
Lotions are less messy and easily customized to serve different conditions, from dry skin to calming sleepless children. In addition, making your own gives you confidence in knowing exactly what is in the product and will almost certainly save you money!
PIN IT FOR LATER
BEDTIME ROUTINE TIPS
Kids require a lot of sleep, and when they don’t get it, the adults seem to be the ones who pay for it!
As the saying goes, “you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink.” I think the same goes for kids, you can put your child to bed, but you can’t make them sleep.
Having “wind down time” or some sort of calming activities before bed is one way to help kids to fall asleep quicker.
With our busy, ever-changing schedules, evening sporting practices, gymnastics, other after-school activities, the list goes on. It’s nearly impossible to juggle those activities and allot the time to wind down before getting to bed at a reasonable time.
WHAT WORKS FOR US:
Consistency has been key with bedtime routines for us. We have been doing the same thing every single night for years. As a result, the kids know what we expect from them and they know what they can expect from us.
- Brush teeth, put on jammies, and get a drink (We always do potty and drinks before going into the room for bed so no one needs to come out for anything.)
- Bedtime story
- Apply calming essential oils (You can use a roller bottle or make a sleep rub.)
- Everyone in their beds
- Each kid gets a song or short book read and then a reminder that it is time to sleep. (Kids need lots of reminders!)
- Turn on diffusers with a drop or two of lavender.
- Lights out
Now, of course, things come up, and more often than not, we’re getting home well past bedtime. But doing the best to stick to somewhat of a routine, whatever it is that works and can be associated with going to bed. This is what has worked for us, and thankfully our kids all sleep really well at night.
- 1/4 cup shea butter
- 1/4 cup coconut oil
- 2 drops lavender essential oil
- 1 drop of Roman chamomile essential oil
- 1 drop of frankincense essential oil
- Melt the shea butter and coconut oil in the double boiler. If you don't have a double boiler, place a heat-resistant glass bowl over a pot of water and then bring it to a boil. The bowl should be big enough that it rests on the edges of the pot while partially submerged in the water.
- Stir the ingredients every couple mintues until melted before removing it from the heat to cool slightly.
- Stir in the essential oils and place the bowl into the refrigerator. We need to let it set up slightly before whipping.
- Keep an eye on the lotion. When you are able to press your thumb into the mixture and it holds the imprint, its ready for the next step.
- Using a hand mixer, whip the lotion until it is light, fluffy and firm peaks start to form.
- Transfer to a glass jar with an airtight lid for storage.
Store in a cool, dry place for up to one year.
Check with your doctor before applying this lotion to children under 2.