Wondering what to do with your extra breast milk in the fridge or freezer? Give your baby a breast milk bath.
As strange as it may sound, there are numerous benefits associated with breast milk baths, and why let all that unused milk go to waste if you don’t have to?
What is a breast milk bath? A breast milk bath is a lukewarm bath mixed with enough breast milk to make the water cloudy. Breast milk moisturizes your baby’s skin and helps reduce the risk of infection. It can also help relieve any unpleasant skin conditions, such as eczema or cradle cap, your baby may have.
Read on to learn more about the benefits of a breast milk bath and how to make a breast milk bath for your baby.
Why Add Breast Milk to Bath?
Adding breast milk to your baby’s bath nourishes their skin. Breast milk has many benefits, including moisturizing your little one’s skin and fighting infection.
Combining breast milk and lukewarm water gives your baby a relaxing bath experience, locks in moisture, and relieves any itchy, rashy skin.
Breast Milk Bath Benefits
Breast milk has many nutrients, vitamins, and fats that contribute to the healthy development of your baby’s skin. Some of these nourishing qualities include:
- Linoleic acid: Reduces inflammation and lightens spots
- Immunoglobulin A (IgA): Contains bacteria that fight infections
- Vaccenic acid: Nourishes and protects the skin
- Palmitic acid: Moistures the skin
- Oleic acid: Reduces signs of aging and moisturizes the skin
- Lauric acid: Moisturizes the skin while protecting against harmful bacteria
Breast Milk Bath for Eczema
A breast milk bath can help with eczema, an inflammatory skin condition that shows up through blisters, dry skin, itchiness, or rashes.
Breast milk has been proven to be as effective at relieving symptoms of mild to moderate eczema as hydrocortisone 1%.
Breast Milk Bath for Cradle Cap
Cradle cap consists of crusty, peeling scales on a baby’s scalp. Mix breast milk with your baby’s shampoo or add breast milk to your baby’s scalp after washing their hair.
After applying breast milk to your baby’s shampoo or directly onto the scalp, massage their head to rub it in completely.
Breast Milk Bath for Baby Acne
Breast milk baths are known to heal and treat baby acne.
If your baby suffers from irritated skin and acne, use anti-inflammatory, antibacterial breast milk in your baby’s bath at least two times a week to get the full effects of this liquid gold. Breast milk will help restore your baby’s smooth skin.
Breast Milk Bath for Heat Rash
Giving your baby a breast milk bath can help relieve the heat rash on their skin by moisturizing it and soothing the sting from the rash.
Breast milk also has anti-inflammatory qualities to reduce swelling. Gently rub their skin with breast milk mixed with lukewarm water to relieve symptoms.
Breast Milk Bath for Dry Skin
Whether your baby has chronic dry skin or the occasional skin irritation in the cold winter months, a breast milk bath can help relieve symptoms.
Due to the high fat content in your breast milk, the fatty acids have qualities that lock in moisture in the skin.
Breast Milk Bath: How-To Guide
Follow these steps to give your baby a breast milk bath:
- Fill your full-size tub or baby bathtub with lukewarm water as you would with a usual bath.
- Add enough breast milk to the tub to make the water cloudy. The exact amount depends on whether you have a full-size tub or a baby tub.
- Gently splash the milky water on your baby’s body as they soak in the tub for about 5 to 15 minutes, depending on your child’s comfort level.
- Pat your baby dry after taking them out of the tub.
- Apply baby-safe moisturizer to your baby’s skin to lock in the hydrating qualities from the bath.
Breast Milk Bath Recipe
The only ingredients you need for a breast milk bath are breast milk and lukewarm water in a full-size or baby bathtub.
If you want to make the bath cute for pictures and sweet smelling for your baby, you can add some colorful flowers (make sure they are out of baby’s reach) and baby-safe essential oils.
How Often To Give Breast Milk Baths
Even though it’s safe to give a breast milk bath every day, it isn’t necessary. Instead, you can give your baby a breast milk bath every week or two.
If your baby has eczema or a diaper rash you’re trying to treat, give them a breast milk bath twice a week as symptoms persist.
Breast Milk Bath for Newborn
A breast milk bath can be beneficial for a newborn. At this age, babies have sensitive skin and may not be ready for baths with soap yet.
Breast milk has natural moisturizing properties that, combined with the nutrients and germ-fighting agents, will keep your baby healthy and comfortable.
Breast Milk Bath for Older Babies
A breast milk bath is great for older babies because you may be weaning them and you may have some unused milk left in the refrigerator or freezer.
Besides giving you a sweet photo opportunity to show off your baby, breast milk baths can treat diaper rashes and other unpleasant skin irritations.
Breast Milk Bath for Toddlers
A breast milk bath is an excellent way to use up the frozen breast milk you have in the freezer.
Whether you’ve weaned your toddler or they’re not taking as many feedings, you can give them a breast milk bath to help moisturize their skin and treat minor irritations and skin conditions.
Breast Milk Bath for Mom
Besides giving your baby a breast milk bath, there’s no harm in a mom taking a breast milk bath with her leftover breast milk.
Breast milk has anti-aging, moisturizing, antimicrobial, and antiseptic benefits the whole family can enjoy. Take a breast milk bath to keep your skin soft and smooth.
Can You Use Leftover Breast Milk for Milk Bath?
Yes, you can use leftover breast milk for your baby’s milk bath. You only need enough breast milk to make the bath look cloudy.
Breast milk treats cradle cap, eczema, and other uncomfortable skin conditions. Adding leftover breast milk to the bath can help keep your baby’s skin moisturized.
Can You Use Frozen Breast Milk for Milk Bath?
Yes, you can use frozen breast milk for your or your baby’s milk bath. If you use frozen breast milk, make sure you thaw it before adding it to the warm bath.
Thawing frozen breast milk allows you to control the temperature of the bath better so that your baby will be more comfortable.
How Much Milk Is Needed for Milk Bath?
If you’re making a breast milk bath for your baby, you need enough milk to make the water look cloudy. The exact amount depends on whether you’re using a full-size bathtub or a baby tub.
It’s best to use lukewarm water with your breast milk bath to make it a safe, comfortable temperature.
Do You Use Soap in Breast Milk Bath?
No, it’s not necessary to use soap in a breast milk bath. When you give your baby a breast milk bath, you fill the tub with water and some breast milk and let them soak for several minutes.
After the bath, you may want to rinse out your tub to remove the milky residue.
Do You Rinse After Breast Milk Bath?
No, you don’t need to rinse your baby after a breast milk bath. After letting them soak in the bath for about 10 to 15 minutes, all you need to do is dry them by patting them with a towel.
To get the full effects of the breast milk bath, you can moisturize their skin with baby-safe lotion right after the bath.
Can I Wash My Baby’s Face With Breast Milk?
Yes, you can wash your baby’s face with breast milk. Besides giving your baby a breast milk bath, you can take a cotton ball soaked with breast milk and gently rub your baby’s face.
Washing your baby’s face with breast milk will help relieve baby acne and other unpleasant skin irritations.
Breast milk has many nutritional benefits for the skin. Give your baby a breast milk bath to fight dry, irritated skin and give their skin the nutrients it needs.
Mom of three (including identical twin boys), wife, and owner of Parents Wonder. This is my place to share my journey as a mother and the helpful insights I learn along the way.