Diaper Rash Home Remedies

Mama OT: Diaper rash home remedies

Diaper rash is miserable. It’s a totally common irritation of the skin in the diaper region that can be caused by a number of factors such as a too-tight diaper that inhibits air flow, a soiled diaper left on too long, antibiotics being taken by baby or nursing mother (which is then passed to baby), too many acidic foods/drinks that irritate the skin on their way out, sensitive skin, etc.

Our 18-month-old recently experienced an unfortunate encounter with the worst diaper rash of his life and, after several days of treating with our go-to diaper cream, it became apparent it wouldn’t be going down without a fight. I decided to reached out to our community of Mama OT Facebook fans and asked people to share their best diaper rash home remedies.

Diaper Rash Home Remedies

You guys really delivered. What a thread of suggestions! And some even sent MamaOT private Facebook messages so you could go into more detail. Love it! Thanks to you all, our little guy is now rash-free and back to his silly old self.

So, you wanna know what people shared about how to cure bad diaper rash without using traditional diaper cream? I’ve listed them below, looked into why they work, and have even found a few twists to throw in there. Keep reading to the bottom to see all the great (and some totally unique) ideas. Be sure to like MamaOT on Facebook so you can participate in our community and, please, if you have any other suggested home remedies for diaper rash, leave a comment so we can learn from you!

Please remember this is NOT medical advice. These suggestions were provided by readers. Each individual is responsible for doing his or her own research before implementing any home treatment program. Keep an eye out for diaper-area yeast infections or other secondary infections. Follow common guidelines for home treatment and contact your pediatrician if you are at all concerned about your child’s diaper rash.

Diaper Rash Home Remedies:

» 2 Tbsp Baking Soda in the bath: Combats acidity.
» Plenty of time with a bare bum: Allows skin to breathe and eliminates moisture.
» Lanolin: Acts as skin/moisture barrier, has healing properties, can be applied to broken skin whereas diaper creams cannot.
» Coconut oil: Soothing properties, apparently can also be used to treat yeast because it kills the Candida yeast cell’s nucleus (can also be used for cradle cap and at least two dozen other things).
» Breast milk: Fights infection, soothes skin, can be used in nearly five dozen other ways as well. Watch out for yeast infections though.
» Culturelle: A probiotic that basically neutralizes the gut, combats acidity.
» Oil (olive, grapeseed, etc.): Creates protective barrier, soothes skin.
» Cornstarch: Absorbs moisture. Can mix with petroleum jelly to create paste to block out moisture. However, recent knowledge discourages the use of cornstarch on diaper rash because it can allow bacteria to grow. Look into it more before trying this one.
» Oatmeal in a nylon stocking in a bath: Put it in the bath like a teabag, soothes irritated skin.
» Regular flour (not enriched): Sprinkle it on the rash, combats acidity. Use browned flour to really knock it out.
» Motherlove diaper ointment: Contains olive oil and beeswax, safe for cloth diapers, also good for nursing moms.
» Boudreaux’s Butt Paste: Unique skin protectant formula.
» CJ’s BUTTer: Soothes skin, can also be used for eczema, rug burns, healing of circumcision, and more.

Want more handy tips and tricks to help the kids in your life? Then subscribe to Mama OT by clicking "Subscribe!" on the homepage so you can receive new posts via email. And be sure to keep up with all of Mama OT's tips and info shared on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest!

Mama OT In addition to being mama to two sweet little boys and wife to a crazy awesome husband, Christie is a Registered & Licensed Occupational Therapist (OTR/L). She holds a B.A. in Psychology with a Minor in Education from the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA...Go Bruins!), and an M.A. in Occupational Therapy from the University of Southern California (USC OT). She has experience working as a pediatric OT in early intervention (birth to 3), clinic-based, and school-based settings. Her mission with MamaOT.com is to encourage, educate, and empower those who care for children. Christie loves that she gets to PLAY when she goes to work, is hopelessly addicted to Kettle Corn, and is known for being able to turn virtually anything into a therapeutic tool or activity, from empty food containers to laundry and everything in between. Learn more about Christie and what inspired her to become an OT.

Occupational therapy (OT) is a holistic profession that helps people across the lifespan participate in the things they want and need to do through the therapeutic use of everyday activities, also known as “occupations”. Some OTs help people diagnosed with disability, injury, or disease. Others help prevent disability, injury, or disease. Because of occupational therapy, people of all ages are able to say, "I can!" no matter what their struggle. Isn't that amazing?!

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Please provide appropriate supervision to the child in your care when completing any activities from this site. You as the grown-up will need to decide what types of products/activities on this list will be safe for your child. If you’re not sure, check with your child’s occupational therapist or pediatrician. Appropriate and reasonable caution should be used when implementing any ideas or activities from this site, particularly if there is any risk of injury (e.g., falling, crashing), choking (e.g., small parts), drowning (e.g., water play), or allergic/adverse reaction (e.g., materials/ingredients). The author and blog disclaim liability for any damage, mishap, or injury that may occur from engaging in any activities or ideas from this site. 
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32 thoughts on “Diaper Rash Home Remedies

  1. Our doctor recommended maalox or mylanta to be applied topically. It works amazingly well! The mint is cooling and actually makes my son giggle when we put it on a red tushy.

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  3. Butt Paste made my daughter’s poor buns blister and bleed!!! I’ll never use it (or Baby Aquaphor) again. CJs & coconut oil work for us if the redness is minor, but diaper-free time and a baking soda bath have never let us down.

    • Oh no! Every baby’s skin is so different and I know for us we cannot use Johnson & Johnson bath products because they dry out our little one’s skin and make eczema worse. Glad you’ve found remedies you can rely on.

  4. tea tree oil mixed with coconut oil is working wonders for us right now! it was 10 drops of tea tree oil mixed into about a fourth of a cup of coconut oil and we apply it at every diaper change.

  5. We are firm users of Vinegar in the bath and Triple Paste. We had a 3 week run with a terrible rash a few months ago and tried everything, the corn starch, baking soda, lots of no diaper time, coconut oil, every OTC cream known to man. The only thing that worked was vinegar baths and triple paste. Has yet to fail us since. The first signs of a rash the Triple paste goes on, that night she gets a vinegar bath and more triple paste and by morning no more rash! And my daughter has super sensitive skin most crams make her scream but this doesn’t. She cries for a second in the bath, but I think that is more because her bum is raw and the water hurts… but vinegar washes are recommended for rashes and sun burns. haven’t tried on a sun burn but I did burn my hand on the oven and soaked it in vinegar and water and the pain went away almost immediately!

      • Good question. The user did not specify. You may need to do some additional research to find out the proportions. Sorry I don’t have the answer, but I’m sure it’s out there somewhere!

    • White vinegar will work but I heard apple cider vinegar works too. Vinegar works if the diaper rash is caused by skin irritation from urine. Urine is alkaline so vinegar (acid) balances it out.

      If that doesn’t work, it could be your child’s diaper rash is caused by a different reason, like acids in foods (like some fruits, etc). If this is the case, a sitz bath in baking soda may work instead because it is more alkaline and neutralizes acids.

  6. We use bag balm on our sons bottom, it’s used to heal cracked cow utters and it works miracles! We tried powders, paste and creams nothing like the bag balm on the booty actually worked

    • Excellent suggestion! I am very familiar with bag balm. When I was a competitive gymnast with blisters and sores all over my hands, I used to lather bag balm on my hands every night, cover them with socks, and sleep with them coated in bag balm all night long. They were always refreshed and ready for another day of gym practice the next day. That stuff really does work wonders…how did I not think of it for baby’s sore bottom?!

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  8. I always used dirt daubers nest from out in the shed or garage.It Iis the only thing that would help my oldest daughter. She was very sensitive and very acidic. I had never seen a baby’s bottom so bad. It was so bad that I was afraid to change her in front of anyone who didn’t know me. I changed her as soon as I knew she was wet or messy. I tried all sorts of powders, balms (bad idea – She screamed bloody murder), the spray – still no good. So, I finally convinced my husband to let me use dirt daubers nest like my mom always did on us kids. Her bottom went from bleeding raw blisters to perfect peach in the same day. I never used anything else after that and used it on the last three too.

    Find the dirt clots (dirt daubers nest) in the corners of out buildings. Make sure no live ones are in them.

    Knock them down.

    Wrap it up in a cloth.

    Break it up with a hammer until like a fine powder.

    Place in a container along with a soft washcloth with a lid.

    Then when you need it, dust it on their bottom. (No need to rub it on).

    Works great! !!

    • You might also try not using diapers. The chemicals in commercial diapers may irritate some babies who are sensative to them. Or there are some brands like 7th Generation that have chemical free ones. Also perfume free wipes (or a soft wet washcloth!)

  9. We have had incredible results with vinegar/baking soda baths. One in the morning, one before bed. Air dry. Coconut oil. Almost all the way gone! and baby so enjoyed the baths… the sensation was so soothing for her. (Butt paste was making it worse.) thanks for the home remedy…this one is a keeper..and so inexpensive and easy!

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  11. Our doctor recommended Dr. Smith’s cream when our oldest was a baby, and that stuff knocks even the worst diaper rashes out in no more than 2 days – usually by the next morning. LOVE it!! I’ve tried coconut oil and that just made our son’s rash worse, but we do the baking soda baths and diaper free time in combination with the Dr. Smith’s and it’s the best 😀

  12. I use this cream called Formula II it cleared my little Serenity’s diaper rash in just 3 days. Works wonders for eczema, dry cracked heels (in adults) as well as a number of other minor to major irritations in children and adults. All natural, which will never steer you wrong. Its a little expensive but you can’t put a price on your little ones well being. I live in Morgantown WV and have only found it in our little local pharmacy. I’m sure if you were to ask your pharmacist, it would not be difficult to order. Also, stay away from Aveeno eczema treatment lotion, which claims it helps rashes as well. My daughter is only 4 1/2 months, this stuff caused her to have her second diaper rash and it is horrible I threw it away I will never EVER use Aveeno baby products again.

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  14. Hi
    This is great. Hope the home remedy of diaper rash will really be helpful for baby’s rash removal. I will try it for the diaper rash removal of my 1 and half years baby who severly affected by irritated rashes. Thanks for this post.

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  16. Grandson has eczema and nothing helps he has to be held down to change .butt paste,no,Crisco,no,olive oil no,triple paste no,prescriptions no,nothing works.his issue is in his blood .we are awaiting bone marrow transfusion so we can’t use just anything. Would love to try bagbalm.is it like tummy cream for stretch marks?

So, whadya think?