Using almond oil on baby skin and hair is a tradition in India and many other places. Almond oil has a light, sweet scent and, according to the experts at Eco- Planet, it contains vitamins A, B1, B2, B6 and E, as well as monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. Almond massage oil is an excellent choice for use on babies because it is naturally rich in emollients and pure enough for sensitive baby skin. Almond oil massages for babies are useful in several ways.
Place a clean, folded towel on your lap and sit or lay your baby on top of it.
Massage almond oil into your infant’s scalp using gentle, circular motions with just the tips of your fingers. This will help loosen cradle cap, which is a common, scaly rash that looks like large dandruff flakes, and loosening the cradle cap will enable you to wash it out more easily.
Pour a dime-sized amount of almond oil onto your fingers. Comb the oil through your older baby’s hair with your fingers and massage it into her scalp. Almond oil smells sweet, and although there is no scientific evidence that it promotes thick, healthy hair, Indian parents have been applying it this way for centuries.
Pour a quarter-sized puddle of almond oil into your palm. Rub your hands gently together to warm it, then massage your baby’s skin. Start with his arms, working gently from his shoulders down, then move to his legs, his chest and belly, then his back. According to Angela Shears at Vanderbilt University, “The massage stimulates respiration, circulation, digestion and elimination. The infant is also more relaxed, and therefore, he sleeps more soundly. Massage is also thought to help relieve gas and colic; it also helps heal the infant during illness by easing congestion and pain.” Gentle massage also encourages bonding between baby and parent.
Use pre-moistened wipes to clean the almond oil off your hands when you are done, so your hands are not slippery when picking up your baby.
Avoid getting almond on your baby’s hands or feet, as they are likely to end up in her mouth.
Emmy-award nominated screenwriter Brynne Chandler is a single mother of three who divides her time between professional research and varied cooking, fitness and home & gardening enterprises. A running enthusiast who regularly participates in San Francisco's Bay to Breakers run, Chandler works as an independent caterer, preparing healthy, nutritious meals for Phoenix area residents.