Does Breast Milk Help Baby Acne? Facts & Treatments

Who doesn’t want to stare at a baby’s face, which is so pure and innocent? However, there are instances when you might notice that there are small bumps in your child’s face or body. And would you believe that those are acne?

You might have heard of many solutions to treat acne for babies, including applying breast milk. But does breast milk help baby acne to be treated, or are those just unproven advise? Read on to learn more about the surprising truth about breast milk and baby acne.

does breast milk help baby acne

What Is Baby Acne?

Baby acne, also known as neonatal acne, typically appears within the first few weeks after birth. Characterized by red or white bumps, it often manifests on the cheeks, forehead, and chin. Unlike adult acne, baby acne does not result from clogged pores. It is a common condition affecting many newborns and can cause concern for new parents. However, baby acne is usually harmless and temporary.

What Causes Baby Acne?

Several factors can contribute to the development of baby acne. Here are the most common causes:

  1. Maternal hormones: During pregnancy, maternal hormones pass through the placenta to the baby. These hormones can stimulate the baby’s sebaceous glands, leading to acne.
  2. Immature pores: Newborns have underdeveloped skin pores. These pores can become easily irritated and inflamed, resulting in acne.
  3. Skin irritation: Rough fabrics, saliva, milk, or even spit-up can irritate a baby's sensitive skin. This irritation may trigger or worsen acne.
  4. Medications: Certain medications, taken by the mother during pregnancy or by the baby after birth, can cause acne. These medications can influence the baby’s hormonal balance or skin condition.
  5. Family history: If one or both parents experienced acne as infants, their baby might also be predisposed to developing baby acne. Genetic factors can play a role in its occurrence.
  6. Exposure to Oily or Greasy Substances: Contact with oily or greasy skin care products or hair oils can clog the baby’s pores, leading to acne.
  7. Yeast Infections: Baby acne can sometimes be an inflammatory response to a high level of a specific type of yeast called Malassezia on the newborn’s skin. This type of inflammatory reaction is common in newborns and can cause an acne-like outbreak.
what causes baby acne

Does Breast Milk Help Baby Acne? How?

The question "does breast milk help baby acne" often arises among new moms seeking natural remedies. Breast milk contains lauric acid, which possesses antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. These properties can help reduce the inflammation and redness associated with baby acne. By gently applying breast milk to the affected area, many parents observe an improvement in their baby's skin condition.

Applying breast milk to baby acne involves a simple process. First, clean your hands thoroughly. Then, express a small amount of breast milk into a clean container. Using a cotton ball or your fingers, dab the breast milk onto the baby’s acne. Allow the milk to air dry on the skin. Repeating this process several times a day can promote healing.

Breast milk's natural composition makes it an appealing option for treating baby acne. Unlike over-the-counter medications, which may contain harsh chemicals, breast milk is gentle on the baby’s delicate skin. Moreover, breastfeeding moms can easily access this natural remedy, enhancing its practicality.

If you need to pump some breast milk for later use but you are in public, then you use a wearable breast pump. These breast pumps are quiet and can fit comfortably in your bra while it does your job. Doing so will ensure you get milk anytime you need to apply breastmilk to your child’s acne.

We highly recommend you use a eufy breast pump that has a built-in heating feature. It can maintain the pump’s temperature at the comfortable levels of 95 degrees to 105 degrees Fahrenheit. By heating the area around your nipple, it clears clogs and promotes better milk flow in your breast.

Other Treatments and Care Tips for Baby Acne

Aside from breast milk, several other treatments and care tips can help manage baby acne. Here are some effective options:

  1. Gentle cleansing: Use a mild baby soap and lukewarm water to cleanse your baby's face once daily. This can help remove excess oils and prevent further irritation.
  1. Avoid harsh products: Steer clear of lotions, oils, or other skincare products not specifically designed for babies. These products can clog pores and exacerbate acne.
  1. Soft fabrics: Dress your baby in soft, breathable fabrics to minimize skin irritation. Avoid rough or scratchy materials that could worsen acne.
  1. Pat dry: After washing your baby’s face, gently pat it dry with a soft towel. Avoid rubbing, which can irritate the skin and aggravate acne.
  1. Monitor temperature: Ensure your baby’s environment is comfortably cool. Overheating can lead to sweating and further irritate the skin, making acne worse.
eufy breast pump

Effective Strategies to Prevent Newborn Acne

Preventing newborn acne involves several strategies aimed at maintaining your baby’s skin health and minimizing irritation. Here’s an in-depth look at each strategy:

  • Regular washing: Daily cleansing of your baby’s face with mild soap and lukewarm water is essential. Use a soft washcloth to gently remove any dirt, milk residue, or other impurities that can clog the pores. Be sure to rinse thoroughly to avoid leaving any soap residue, which can further irritate the skin.
  • Breastfeeding benefits: Breastfeeding offers numerous benefits, including providing your baby with antibodies and nutrients that support overall health. The natural antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties of breast milk can help in preventing and managing baby acne. Regular breastfeeding can contribute to healthier skin.
  • Soft fabrics: Dressing your baby in soft, breathable fabrics helps reduce skin irritation. Natural fibers like cotton are gentle on the skin and allow for better air circulation. Avoid rough, scratchy, or tight-fitting clothing that can rub against the skin and aggravate acne. Bedding should also be soft and clean to prevent irritation.
  • Keep nails trimmed: Keeping your baby’s nails short is crucial to prevent scratching. Babies can inadvertently scratch their faces, leading to further irritation or infection of acne-prone areas. Using baby mittens can also help in preventing scratches while their nails grow.
  • Avoid excessive heat: Maintaining a comfortably cool environment for your baby is important. Excessive heat can cause sweating, which can irritate the skin and exacerbate acne. Dress your baby appropriately for the temperature and use a fan or air conditioning to keep the room cool if necessary.
  • Use gentle skincare products: When selecting skincare products for your baby, choose those specifically formulated for infants. Harsh chemicals and fragrances in regular skincare products can irritate your baby’s delicate skin. Look for hypoallergenic and fragrance-free options.
  • Limit exposure to irritants: Be mindful of potential irritants in your baby’s environment. Pet hair, dust, and strong detergents can all contribute to skin irritation. Keeping your baby’s surroundings clean and using gentle, baby-friendly detergents for laundry can help minimize exposure to these irritants.


We hope that this answers your question about: Does breast milk help baby acne? Applying breast milk to your baby’s acne can help remove it in the long term. However, prevention is still better than cure. So, make sure to regularly wash your baby’s face, avoid using products that may irritate their skin, and prevent them from touching any irritants.


Can mom's diet cause baby acne?

A mother’s diet does not directly cause baby acne. However, some experts observe that certain foods consumed by the mother might affect the baby’s skin through breastfeeding. No conclusive scientific evidence supports this claim. Most experts agree that baby acne results from hormonal changes and skin sensitivity rather than maternal diet.

How often should I apply breast milk to my baby's acne?

Applying breast milk to baby acne several times a day can be beneficial. Gently dab the milk on the affected areas and let it air dry. Consistent application, especially after feeding sessions, can promote healing. Breast milk’s natural properties help reduce inflammation and irritation, potentially speeding up the resolution of acne.

Does breast milk clear baby skin?

Breast milk contains natural antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. These properties can help soothe and improve baby acne, making the skin appear clearer. While breast milk may not completely clear all types of baby skin conditions, many parents find it helpful in managing and reducing the appearance of baby acne.

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