It’s an age-old remedy for skin ailments like bug bites and poison ivy, and an oatmeal bath is also an excellent solution for dry skin, says Winnipeg dermatologist Victoria Taraska. “Oats contain phenols and antioxidants that will reduce skin inflammation and quell itchiness,” she says.
Pour a ½ cup of whole oats into the tub as you fill it with warm water (hot water can irritate sensitized skin). For a milkier soak that may be more effective for severely dry skin, blend oats to a fine dust in a food processor so they dissolve completely in the water. After you add the oats, run your hand along the bottom of the tub to break up any clumps that may form, then carefully lower your little one into the bath – the oats may make the tub more slippery than usual.
Allow him to soak for about 15 minutes, then gently pat him dry with a soft towel. (Any rubbing can exacerbate problem spots.)
Add a drizzle of bath oil (you could even use olive oil) to the water for an ultra-moisturizing alternative.
Having trouble convincing your little guy that pouring oatmeal into the tub is a great (not gross) idea? Turn it into a game. Say, “Imagine the tub is a big bowl of porridge. What kind of topping do you want to be?” Trust us, he’ll be making like a raisin in no time.
Looking for more dry skin remedies? Find out how to take care of dry skin
Stay in touch
Subscribe to Today's Parent's daily newsletter for our best parenting news, tips, essays and recipes.