Cradle Cap

I know, I know, I probably should have addressed this months ago! But I had heard that you shouldn't "scrape" at cradle cap. I had also heard that adult dandruff shampoo (a couple treatments of it) will get rid of the flaky skin. I had also heard that you should leave it alone. I had also heard that you should rub at it with an old toothbrush....

As you can tell, I was confused and conflicted! How's a mom supposed to know who to believe?!?

I guess I figured "scrape" or "pick" was virtually the same as scrubbing at it in any sense - so I decided not to do any of those. (Oh the technicalities of the English language!) I also disliked the idea of using adult dandruff shampoo on my little baby! For one, what if I got it in her eyes?!?! For two, that stuff is full of chemicals. and for three, I've heard that with some adults (some brands) actually GIVE you dandruff! Because it's so drying to the scalp. (good job security for the dandruff shampoo people, huh?!)

Then when I started consistently playing with and "doing" Q's hair, I could really see that she still had quite a bit of cradle cap. (as you may have noticed in the pictures) I felt so bad! But I didn't know what to do about it. So I left it. However, as I combed her hair more and was parting it and putting in ponytails and braids, etc, I noticed that it was loosening some of the flakes. Not in a harsh way, just in an "active use" kind of way. :)

So... I decided to try to learn some more.

What I found recently said that you could use oil (coconut, olive, mineral, etc.) to soak the scalp and then gently scrub at the flakes. Then wash the head/hair as usual to get the oil off.

So we tried it tonight! I should have taken pictures to spice up this post.... but I didn't. Anyway, it seems to have worked! I'll know more in the morning when I go to do her hair again, but after her bath tonight it looked very promising!

The details of what I did:
1. Rub lots of coconut oil onto her scalp
2. Make sure it got down to the scalp, not just on the ends of her long hair
3. Using my fingers and a comb, I just gave her a little head massage/scratch - as though I was rubbing her back. :)
4. She got to nurse and watch a movie while I did this so she was pretty happy about it all :) and although I was "rubbing" at it, and maybe even "scratching", and her head did turn a little pink, she never showed any signs of it hurting her at all.
5. Then I put her in the bathtub  :)
6. I used a gentle organic baby shampoo in her hair to get the oil out.

I hope this helps anyone else who might be confused about the conflicting info on cradle cap out there!!


  1. My two year old never had cradle cap as a baby, but she had it BAD at two. I just did the same coconut oil treatment a couple weeks ago, although I just rubbed it in pretty good, left it for a few minutes and then washed out. Her head didn't show much improvement that day, but by the next it was all gone and hasn't come back! I hope you have the same luck!

  2. That's awesome! Yeah, Q's looks great today!! I'm so happy! I'm glad to hear someone else has had a good experience with this method, too. :)

  3. Yep, oils are great for stuff like that! When I get dandruff I use jojoba oil in my hair.

  4. Here is too much info :)

    Cradle cap is from an over production of oil glands on the scalp. The oils make the skin that would normally fall off each day sticky and that creates a thick "crust" on the scalp. Best treatment is to use oils or vasoline/aquaphor to soften the "crust" then gently brush out. You can even leave a thin layer of vasoline/aquaphor on overnight. Using a soft bristle brush daily, focusing on teh scalp/roots of the hair will help to keep the oils distributed through the hair and prevent the "crust" from returning.

    As always, Q is adorable in your photos!!

  5. That wasn't too much info - that was GREAT! Thank you!! (and Thanks - I think she's a cutie too :) )

    Q actually was born with her cradle cap and we put coconut oil on her head often as a baby, but we didn't brush at it at all. Just the oil itself helped, but it didn't clear it up by any means. Then I guess I lost motivation as her hair got longer, the oil made her hair greasy constantly and it didn't seem to get getting rid of it - I still didn't know what else to try other than dandruff shampoo - so I just left it alone! :S

    I'm so glad I finally addressed it now!

    The bristle brush is a great idea - I don't know why I didn't think of it before! I use one on my own hair. It works really well - and I don't use shampoo anymore, so it distributes my natural oils! :D Q doesn't use shampoo much either ... I guess I should do a post about "no 'poo" (Why did they use that catch phrase?!)

  6. I was so excited to see this! Bria didn't have cradle cap for a long time, then it was just a little for a while. Now it seems to be getting worse under there, though the hair has gotten long enough no one probably notices but me. I'll have to try the coconut oil, thanks!

  7. oh Meghan! Sorry, I didn't answer you earlier :) Yes, she still nurses! Even now! Here's some more info on the benefits of extende breastfeeding...


Post a Comment

Please leave a comment - I love hearing from you!

(If you have trouble leaving a comment, please email me at and let me know! I don't want anything getting lost out here in cyber-space! lol)

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...