Image by Kate Murray Photography
Vernix-What is it?
It's a cheesy or waxy white substance that is found coating the skin of newborn babies. Vernix is secreted by the baby’s sebaceous glands while it is still in the uterus and is thought to protect the baby’s skin from the amniotic fluid surrounding it.
The amount of vernix present on the baby’s skin decreases near the end of the pregnancy. At birth, some babies have a lot and some a little.
How long should you wait to bathe your baby?
WAIT FOR 8! Keep that vernix (the yellow-white coating) on your baby for at least 8 hours before bathing. It helps provide a germ barrier first and foremost and has also shown to help maintain your baby's temperature and skin moisture.
For some babies, the loss of vernix can cause the skin to peel during their first week after birth.
Many hospitals are now asking parents when they want their baby bathed. If they are born with a lot of vernix, rub it in a little so they aren't sticky and wait at least 8 hours.