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What You Need to Know

As a new mom or dad, you’re probably (understandably) wary about ingredients in products that could irritate your baby’s skin—like fragrances and parabens. But as important as it is to avoid irritants, certain ingredients, like ceramides, can actually benefit your baby’s delicate skin. Looking at product labels is important during the first years of your child’s life, when your little one’s skin is still building its protective properties 1, because choosing products that nurture skin now can help your child have healthy looking skin for years to come. Here are three superstar ingredients you’ll want to prioritize.

Look for These 3 Ingredients to Promote a Strong Skin Barrier

  • Ceramides: These naturally occurring lipids make up about 50% of the skin’s barrier 2 which helps keep moisture inside the skin. Ceramides help maintain the balance of the skin barrier, so if baby doesn’t have enough of them, their skin can become especially prone to dryness, which may lead to irritation and itching.
  • Niacinamide: Also known as vitamin B3, niacinamide helps soothe skin and maintain the skin barrier, helping baby’s skin stay moisturized and protected. 3 It’s also an antioxidant. 4
  • Hyaluronic acid: This is sugar the body produces naturally, which attracts and retains water, much like a sponge. In skin products, it provides gentle hydration.

Ceramides: Keeping moisture in skin

We all have ceramides in our skin. In fact, they comprise up to 50% of the lipids in skin’s outermost layer. Lipids like ceramides fill in the gaps between your skin cells so your skin can seal in moisture and keep impurities out. 5 In the womb, babies have a ceramide-rich coating on their skin called the vernix caseosa, designed to protect their skin barrier as it develops. 6 This is lost soon after birth, and it’s not uncommon to see dryness and skin peeling as a result.7 Ceramide-rich moisturizers, such as CeraVe Baby Moisturizing Lotion and CeraVe Baby Moisturizing Cream, can help soothe dry skin and maintain the skin’s barrier. 6 As your baby matures, benefits from choosing products rich in ceramides may extend into adulthood, imparting lasting benefits for skin.

How CeraVe helps:

Developed with pediatric dermatologists, all CeraVe Baby products contain a blend

of three essential ceramides: ceramides 1, 3, and 6-II, which are identical to those found

naturally in baby’s skin. CeraVe Baby Wash & Shampoo leaves skin feeling nourished and soft without disrupting the barrier. CeraVe Baby Moisturizing Lotion and CeraVe Baby Moisturizing Cream both help to soothe dry skin by reducing moisture loss, increasing hydration and maintaining the skin barrier.


Niacinamide: Soothing and strengthening skin

Niacinamide (also known as vitamin B3) plays an important role in soothing and strengthening the skin barrier, helping baby’s skin stay moisturized and protected.3 It’s also a potent antioxidant, so it aids in neutralizing free radicals, those unstable molecules that attach to healthy skin cells and cause damage, and may protect your baby’s skin against environmental damage.4

How CeraVe helps:

Niacinamide is considered a gentle ingredient, and is typically well-tolerated by those with sensitive skin—like babies. CeraVe Baby Moisturizing Lotion contains this skin soother, and using this lightweight formula daily helps to hydrate and maintain your baby’s delicate skin as it reinforces the skin’s natural barrier.


Hyaluronic Acid: Maintaining skin’s moisture balance

Hyaluronic acid is a sugar the body naturally produces, which is found in the skin. It helps maintain a proper moisture balance, giving skin its plump volume and smooth texture. Hyaluronic attracts and retains water, much like a sponge. In topical skin products, it provides surface hydration without a heavy or greasy feel, and is suitable for sensitive baby skin. Hyaluronic acid can draw moisture from the air and provide a layer of hydration on top of the skin, providing softness and smoothness. 

How CeraVe helps:

Developed by dermatologists, CeraVe baby products contain hyaluronic acid, which helps to keep baby’s developing skin barrier moisturized. CeraVe Baby Moisturizing Lotion helps skin hold onto moisture all day. CeraVe Baby Moisturizing Cream is formulated to deliver up to 24 hours of moisture, and is a fragrance free, paraben free, and dye free formula, providing baby with gentle hydration for healthy looking skin.


Once you know the nourishing ingredients to look for (and why they matter), you’ll be able to keep your baby’s skin soft, smooth and healthy now—and as your little one grows.

    1. Schachner, Lawrence A., et al. “A Consensus About the Importance of Ceramide Containing Skincare for Normal and Sensitive Skin Conditions in Neonates and Infants.” Journal of drugs in dermatology: JDD 19.8 (2020): 769-776.
    2. Coderch, L., López, O., de la Maza, A. et al.Ceramides and Skin Function. Am J Clin Dermatol4, 107–129 (2003). https://doi.org/10.2165/00128071-200304020-00004.
    3. Tanno O, Ota Y, Kitamura N, Katsube T, Inoue S. (2000). Nicotinamide increases biosynthesis of ceramides as well as other stratum corneum lipids to improve the epidermal permeability. Br J Dermatol.143, 524–531
    4. Shindo Y., Witt E., Han D., Epstein W., Packer L.. (1994). Enzymatic and non-enzymatic antioxidants in epidermis and dermis of human skin. J Invest Dermatol. 102, 122–124
    5. Telofski, L., Morello, .A, Mack Correa, M., Stamatas, G.. (2012). The Infant Skin Barrier: Can We Preserve, Protect, and Enhance the Barrier? Dermatology Research and Practice. 198789.
    6. Schachner, L., Andriessen, A., Benjamin, L., Bree, A., Lechman, P., Pinera-Lllano, A., Kircik, L.. (2020). “A Consensus About the Importance of Ceramide Containing Skincare for Normal and Sensitive Skin Conditions in Neonates and Infants.” Journal of Drugs in Dermatology 19 (8), 772.
    7. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/322499#causes
    8. Lowe, A., Leung, D., Tang, M., Su J., Allen, K. (2018). The skin as a target for pre-vention of the atopic march. Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol. 120(2), 145-151.
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