Taking care of a baby who isn't a good sleeper (my first one was not!) is super tough, then sprinkling in your own sleep deprivation... can make it unbearable.
One trick we use in our house for better baby sleep is an herbal baby bath.
An herbal bath like this can soothe, calm and relax the both of you and may be just what you need.
It's a calming element that's perfect to add to your babies bedtime routine that helps baby (and mama) welcome sleep.
An herb bath helps to clean baby without using soaps that can be too harsh on their delicate skin. Soap should be avoided as much as possible those first few weeks to let the good bacteria (aka the skin biome) develop properly. The herbs will also help they can help soothe their skin and calm restless nerves.
Your herb bath can be a specialty mixture taken straight from the garden, created especially for baby from your dried herb stash, or if you don't use herbs very often you can get a premade mix.
Baby Herb Bath Mix
You can get your own pre-made mix from a variety of places. You can get a great mix of calming herbs in this herbal baby bath mix formulated specifically to help calm a baby.
- Lavender: Eases tension and lifts the mood
- Chamomile: Helps lull children to sleep
- Rose petals: Cleansing properties and soothes the skin
- Oat tops: Very nourishing and soothing to skin
- Calendula blossoms: Soothes and moisturizes skin
These are all perfect to help those little baby skin problems that newborns seem to get. Mine both had some sort of combination of baby acne, random rashes, cradle cap and my second had the worst diaper rash due to his super sensitive skin.
He got herb baths on the regular, and they helped him calm down and soothe his skin.
Diy Herb Bath Mix for Baby
This is a great option for those who already use herbs, or are interested in starting your own herb collection. Easily put together your own mix and add or subtract ingredients based on preferences and needs. This is a great alternative if you are concerned that baby may have an allergy to a particular herb. Make sure to use quality, organic herbs. Good ingredients to use that are safe for baby are:
- Chamomile: Reduces inflammation, heals diaper rash, helps calm nerves
- Lavender: Induces sleep, calms nerves, improves circulation
- Calendula: Antimicrobial and antiviral, calms muscles, heals diaper rash
- Yarrow: Heals rashes, can help eczema and dry skin, antiviral
- Rose petals: Cleanses skin, relieves inflammation
- Oatstraw: High in nutrients, including magnesium which absorbs through the skin and promotes sleep
To make your mix just use equal parts of whichever herbs you prefer or have on hand and store in a dark container or paper bag.
Why Use Loose Leaf Herbs?
If you've never bought loose leaf herbs to keep in the house before, you're in for a treat. It may sound weird if you didn't grow up using herbs, but bear with me.
When I first became a mom, I realized I needed to clean up my act. I didn't want my baby to suffer from all the chronic disease that everyone around me was struggling with. Many of which are preventable.
I decided to ditch the "conventional" approach. I wanted to educate myself on everything natural living so that my children never suffer from things they don't need to. I want them to have healthy, happy lives. Fact is that prescription medications can be dangerous. (They are great when necessary, but are way overused.)
My first choice of action was a healthy diet, and the second was getting started using herbs. It was one of the best choices I ever made! The great thing is if you buy these herbs as loose leaf herbs, you can start building up your own little herb stash to use for all sorts of quick remedies.
You can buy some of these basics like the ones above for your baby bath, and then find other ways to use them. One of the best ways to learn about herbs is by using them!
I really like Starwest Botanicals to purchase herbs. Since they are dedicated to just serving dried herbs, they ensure everything is cared for properly and that your herbs stay fresh until delivery.
Making Your Herb Bath
You can put the bath mix into a reusable muslin bag and just drop it in the water. However, when I did this I felt like the water didn’t get hot enough to extract all the goodness out of the herbs.
To counter this, I just filled up the baby bath with really hot water and tossed in the tea bag. Then I let the bath cool down enough before adding baby. If that’s not easy enough for you there’s always my go-to method.
Easiest Baby Herb Bath
This is the easiest and quickest way, although not as many healing benefits because it uses only a couple herbs.
Every night after dinner I make a big pot of chamomile and lavender tea for everyone. It eases digestion and helps everyone wind down for the night.
I make enough tea to have leftovers and add more hot water and rebrew whatever is still in there. I simply pour that in my baby’s bath. Just make sure to add the herbal tea to the bath before putting in your baby.
And there we go, a simple chamomile and lavender bath to help baby sleep a little better.
This is my personal favorite way because there is no waste of herbs, it barely takes a couple of minutes, and no extra mess to deal with.
I definitely prefer loose leaf tea. (You can read why you should too here.) But if you're more of a tea bag kinda gal I suggest this brand. It's the only brand of herbal tea I buy. Its all organic, and the safest brand I've found.
Herbal and Bath Time Safety
Always watch for allergies, I personally have never had a problem with skin irritation for my baby with any of these herbs, but it can happen. When using hot water to brew your bath, make sure to always check that the water is cool enough for baby. What feels warm to us can feel too hot for baby.
And just as a little public service announcement, NEVER leave baby unattended in or near any water, not even for a “second.” Drowning is the number one cause of death in children under 6! Always follow the ABCDs of water safety.
- How to help toddler sleep with bedtime tea
- Super Healing Postpartum Herb Bath
- Why you Should be Using Loose Leaf Tea