Brother-Bug had horrible diaper rash for a while there. As a first time mom, using cloth diapers, I had a learning curve. There are three things that are really important, and one recipes that really works for us. Between these things we have been free of pervasive diaper rash, experiencing the rare flare up, for all our sweet little diaper butts.
Tip one: I always, always rinse our diaper and rag loads with white vinegar. The vinegar strips out all the nasty fungus and accumulated proteins that soap can't touch. When I skip this step (if we run out of vinegar, for example) more than once, I can assume we will have a rash flare up for our diaper-butt. I rinse our rags with vinegar even if I don't have diapers in my rag load. Vinegar is amazing and keeps my rags from developing any kind of rang-funk. And it's so cheap.
Tip two: I make sure we have some solid naked-butt time almost every day. Most diaper rash is caused by fungus, and those bugs hate air and sunlight. And who doesn't adore a dimpled baby butt out in the sun? Also, the naked time is good for me to pay attention to the baby's cues, which helps me. We play with elimination communication and think toward a future of learning to use the potty.
Tip three: I use plain coconut oil on anything that looks at all rashly in the diaper area. I just slather it on, and it clears up all our minor rashes. Many of the diaper creams out there have some petroleum product in them, and the ones that don't are so expensive! Coconut oil and homemade wipes are cheap and more effective anyway.
I'm getting to the recipe. Promise.
One of the problems was that the wipes we bought at the store just weren't right – even the nice, environmentally friendly wipes. I don't know if there is an ingredient that irritated already compromised skin, or if they just weren't getting rid of all the little fungals, but when I changed from store wipes to our own wipe solution… That was the key.
First go grab 2 or 3 receiving blankets. Tear them into squares approximately 4″x4″. Look! Washable wipes! I use these for all kinds of things – nose blowing, face washing, butt wiping, small mess clean-up… They get washed and vinegar rinsed with the diapers and rags, so I know they're as clean as anything else.
Diaper Wipe Solution
Make a strong tea with one or more of the following plants:
Calendula (anti-fungal, soothing), Lavender (anti-fungal, anti-microbial), & Rose leaves (skin soothing).
Any one of these will be good, but it is the combination of all three that really makes this solution super effective. To make the tea, boil water and pour a quart of water over approximately 1/2 cup of plants (a wide mouth quart canning jar is perfect for this). Lid the tea and let steep for at least two hours. Strain the plants off.
Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil, 1 tablespoon of liquid Castile soap (I use Dr. Bronners), 10 drops of tea-tree essential oil, and 20 drops of lavender essential oil. Shake well. Your finished project should be greenish-brown and murky looking.
This is incredibly concentrated. Store the concentrate in a glass jar in the fridge – a quart lasts us six months! Keep a small spray bottle of 1/2 concentrate and 1/2 water with your flannel wipes. Spray a little on a wipe and get that little butt all clean! Refil the spray bottle as needed.
This is all I do to prevent diaper rash. And it's so successful – I haven't seen more than a hint of a rash once or twice on Baby-Bug.