Caring for a baby is a tough job, and the winter season brings its own set of challenges. The dry, cold winds of winter can rob off moisture from the delicate, soft, smooth skin of your baby. Keeping their skin soft and supple becomes an issue. Baby oil massages are one of the best ways to ensure moisturization and hydration of your baby's skin. Therefore, Pink Orchid has curated a list of the top 5 best baby massage oils in winter that will rejuvenate your baby's skin.
Furthermore, learn the secret baby massage techniques with the expert - Annie Hakim. These massage techniques will give you ample time to bond with your little one & help them get rid of different health issues if any.
Related: Top 5 Baby Massage Oils In Summer Season For Newborns
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Which Is The Best Baby Massage Oil In Winter Season?
Winters can be harsh to a baby's delicate skin. Chilly winds can rob off their skin's natural moisture and plumpness. The constant switching from cold, dry outdoor air to overheated indoor air can make their skin dry and chapped. Massaging your babies with oil will help their skin restore the much-needed moisture. It will keep your baby's skin warm and nourished while aiding their growth and development. Here are some of the best baby massage oils for winter, which will also help generate much-needed heat keeping your baby warm and cozy for winters.
1. Mustard Oil
Mustard oil is commonly used in northern India. It is a strong oil often used with another oil to protect a baby's sensitive skin. Mustard oil is great to use in regions where it gets especially cold. It improves blood circulation and helps in keeping the body warm by retaining heat. It also works as a decongestant. Mustard oil heated with a few pieces of garlic or basil leaves rubbed onto a baby's chest helps them ward off cough and cold to a certain extent. It also has antibacterial and antifungal properties.
2. Castor Oil
It is heavy oil and excellent for the winter season. It is one of the best remedies for dry and chapped skin caused by winter, helping skin remain smooth and supple. Castor oil also provides relief to babies from colic and sore muscles. You can also use it as a pain reliever for sunburn. Take care not to apply castor oil on broken skin or lips, mouth, eyes, and genitals. Castor oil has poisonous properties, so ensure that your baby doesn't ingest it.
Ghee is a safe, edible, and natural oil to use for baby massages. It has moisturizing qualities. This helps in keeping the baby's skin soft, supple, and healthy. Ghee is rich in vitamins A, D, and E. As a massage oil helps improve the circulation of blood and helps keep the baby warm and cozy. Rubbing warm ghee on the baby's chest to help them fight cough and cold is a tried and tested remedy. It is also a better alternative than baby lotions which have chemicals in them. It is one of the best oil for newborn baby massage.
4. Vegetable Oil
Vegetable oils are generally high in polyunsaturated fat called linoleic acid. Linoleic acid is an essential fatty acid that helps in protecting the skin barrier. It is also gentle for sensitive-skinned babies. Vegetable oil is light which is one of the reasons it is used as massaging oil. It helps in warming and relaxing the baby. Take care that the chosen vegetable oil does not contain a monounsaturated fat called oleic acid. Oleic acid makes skin prone to drying.
5. Petroleum Jelly
Petroleum jelly is an old remedy that was used to moisturize a baby's skin deeply and lock hydration into their skin. It is one of the safest baby massage gels. It is also used to relieve cold symptoms like a blocked nose by rubbing it on the baby's chest. You can also make it a camphor-free insect repellent by adding four drops of eucalyptus oil to 4 tablespoons of petroleum jelly.
Top 6 Health Benefits Of Baby Massages
Massaging in winter has several other benefits besides healthy moisturizing skin and hydration. Therefore, given below are such benefits:
1. Better Blood Circulation
Baby massage stimulates better blood circulation in the baby's body. The movement of your fingers during the massage will improve the circulation of blood. Better blood circulation due to oil massage improves oxygen supply to all the organs in the baby's body. This helps their growth and development.
2. Boosts Immunity
Oil massage for babies boosts their immunity. It flushes out toxins from their body. It also increases blood flow in the body while enhancing white blood cell activity. Baby massage also reduces cortisol levels.
3. Improves Digestion
Massaging a baby's stomach with oil helps them move stools in their colon. The massage relaxes their tight stomach muscles and releases pressure on them. This helps the baby in relieving abdominal gases better. Baby massage also reduces bloating and colic.
4. Provides Warmth
One of the main reasons to do baby massages in winter is that it keeps the baby warm. An oil massage promotes better blood circulation and heat retention in the baby's body. Warmth is an essential thing for babies in winter for better joint development.
5. Better Sleeping Cycle
A regular routine of oil massages for the baby would keep their circadian rhythm on track. It would soothe their muscles and make them relax. This would help in improving their quality of sleep as well as the number of hours in the night. Hence, the baby would be more energetic and active during the day.
6. Builds Parent-Child Bond
A baby needs regular skin-to-skin touch. Otherwise, they can get touch starved. It also helps the baby to establish trust and love with their caregiver. A regular oil massage routine would help the parent and the baby have a specific bonding time.
Should You Stop Massaging Your Baby In Winters?
There is no reason why you should stop massaging your baby in the winter. If the environment is warm enough, massaging your baby would actually be a beneficial activity. It would help your baby's blood circulation, retain body heat, and keep them warm and cozy.
You might be worried about your baby catching a cold if you undress them for massaging in winter. You can use the following tips to prepare the room and make the massage comfortable.
You can place a heater in the room during the baby's massage to keep the temperature warm enough. Keep it far enough from the baby, so there is no chance of any injury.
If you are going to bathe your baby post-massage, then keep the bathing items ready.
Make sure to warm up your hands before you start massaging your baby. Otherwise, your hands might be too cold for the baby.
Heat up the massaging oil, so it is at room temperature or the same temperature as your warm hands.
Your baby might cry at the cold temperature of the room when you undress them for massaging. But as you begin stroking them with warm hands and oil, they should start enjoying themselves. If they still don't, stop and massage another time.
If you are worried about the cold, you can keep your baby partially dressed as you massage them. Only keep those portions uncovered that you are currently massaging.
What Is The Best Time For Baby Massage In The Winter Season?
In the winter season, the best time to massage your baby would be during the early evening or at night. Since mornings and late nights are usually chilly, it is better to massage in late afternoons or early evenings. You could also massage at night because it would help your baby get a good night's sleep. Keep in mind to choose a time when your baby is both not hungry or full or just about to fall asleep.
6 Tips To Look After Your Infant During Winter Season
Baby massages keep your baby moisturized and warm. Amongst other benefits, here are a couple of extra tips for babies in the winter season.
During winters, heaters are used to heat the room. But heaters also dry out the moisture in the air of a room. This would also dry the baby's skin. Use a humidifier to maintain moisture levels.
Use a moisturizer to protect your baby's skin from the winter season's rough, chilly winds and drying effect on the skin.
Avoid using a lot of products on your baby's skin. Putting too many soaps and shampoos daily on their skin would make it dry.
Keep updated on vaccinations as winters increase susceptibility to infections. Also, wash and clean your hands regularly as you are most often the first point of contact for your baby.
Unless it's absolutely freezing, take your baby outside for some fresh air regularly. Just make sure to dress them warmly.
If your baby has started a semi-solid diet, you can start feeding them soups. A healthy soup in the cold winter months would keep your baby warm.
Related: Top 5 Baby Massage Oils For Fairness & Skin Care
1. How can you protect your baby's skin in winter?
You can use the following tips to protect your baby's skin in winter.
Moisturize regularly if their skin is prone to drying
Give short, lukewarm baths to avoid moisture loss
Moisturize deeply after bathing
Use a humidifier if the environment is too drying
Dress in soft, breathable fabrics
Use fragrance-free products on the skin
2. Which oil is best for baby massage in winter?
During winter, oils that moisturize deeply and help in retaining body heat are best to use for baby massages.
Mustard oil is great to use in regions where it gets especially cold. It improves blood circulation and helps in keeping the body warm by retaining heat.
Castor oil is one of the best remedies for dry and chapped skin caused by winter, helping skin remain smooth and supple.
Ghee warmed and rubbed on the baby's chest helps them fight cough and cold.
3. Does ghee make your baby's skin dark?
No, ghee does not darken a bay's skin. In fact, ghee has a brightening effect on the skin due to the presence of antioxidants. It hydrates the skin, lightens dark spots, decreases dark circles, and gives a natural glow to the skin.
Baby massages are a wonderful way to relax in winter. They have several benefits associated with them. The most obvious one is protection from drying of the skin, chapped lips, and skin roughness. Winter requires special care for baby skin, and oil massages are a step in the right direction.