My Q&A with Dr. Gupta got me thinking about something…should I start using more baby products? I’m not talking about doing a full sweep, of course, but just making some small adjustments here and there. One such product I’ve been considering is CeraVe Daily Moisturizing Lotion. It’s an oldie but goodie that I’ve been using for a long time now, but the “baby” version of this product seemed like it could be a an even better option.
Before we get any further, please indulge me as I explain a bit of the backstory that led to this new (very blue) photo…it all has to do with the following quote.
"I wish that you were my sister. I'd teach you to have some confidence in yourself. The different people are not like other people, but being different is nothing to be ashamed of. Because other people are not such wonderful people. They're one hundred times one thousand. You're one times one! They walk all over the earth. You just stay here. They're common as...weeds, but you—well, you're...Blue Roses!"
—The Glass Menagerie, Tennessee Williams
This pretty much describes how I feel about the world of skin care. Not all skin care products are wonderful. All you have to do is search for “vitamin C serum” on Amazon, and you’ll see thousands of options from questionable companies. It’s that overwhelming-ness that first led me to start this blog, and that continues to make me more likely to trust brands like CeraVe over generic options. CeraVe’s products make sense to me right away—like one times one, not one hundred times one thousand. They’re not trying to be something more than they should be, and that’s what makes them as beautiful as blue roses in my mind…like Laura in Tennessee Williams’s classic play, The Glass Menagerie.
This is all my long-winded way of explaining why I chose to take a picture of my trusty old bottle of CeraVe Daily Moisturizing Lotion against a backdrop of blue roses. Still, sometimes I wonder if I could be getting more out of the minimal skin care products that I do use. That’s why I chose to conduct this comparison and ask my dad for his input on the matter.
Without further ado, let’s get into this comparison of CeraVe Daily Moisturizing Lotion vs. CeraVe Baby Daily Moisturizing Lotion.
CeraVe Daily Moisturizing Lotion ingredients
purified water, glycerin, caprylic/capric triglyceride, behentrimonium methosulfate and cetearyl alcohol, ceteareth-20 and cetearyl alcohol, ceramide 3, ceramide 6-ii, ceramide 1, hyaluronic acid, cholesterol, dimethicone, polysorbate 20, polyglyceryl-3 diisostearate, potassium phosphate, dipotassium phosphate, sodium lauroyl lactylate, cetyl alcohol, disodium edta, phytosphingosine, methylparaben, propylparaben, carbomer, xanthan gum
CeraVe Baby Daily Moisturizing Lotion ingredients
Active ingredient: dimethicone (1%)
Inactive ingredients: purified water, caprylic/capric triglyceride, cetostearyl alcohol, cetyl alcohol, emulsifying wax, niacinamide, ceramide 3, ceramide 6-ii, ceramide 1, hyaluronic acid, allantoin, tocopheryl acetate, lauric acid, zinc citrate, polygylceryl-3 diisotearate, behentrimonium methosulfate, sodium lauroyl lactylate, arginine pca, potassium phosphate, dipotassium phosphate, edta, sodium pca, phytosphingosine, cholesterol, xanthan gum, carbomer
Upon first glance, it looks like the main difference between these two products is that the baby version doesn’t contain any parabens. Instead, it uses EDTA as its preservative. The baby lotion also contains some extra ingredients that the adult version does not, including niacinamide (which is included in the CeraVe PM moisturizing lotion). It also lists dimethicone as an active ingredient, for use as a skin protectant.
CeraVe Daily Moisturizing Lotion vs CeraVe Baby Daily Moisturizing Lotion ingredient comparison
I ran my script on these two products to see how their ingredients stacked up against each other. Here were the results.
Ingredients in CeraVe Baby Daily Moisturizing Lotion but not in CeraVe Daily Moisturizing Lotion:
cetostearyl alcohol, lauric acid, zinc citrate, edta, allantoin, behentrimonium methosulfate, emulsifying wax, polygylceryl-3 diisotearate, arginine pca, tocopheryl acetate, sodium pca, niacinamide
- lauric acid is a fatty acid that is found in coconut oil and some milks. It is used in cosmetics and has may help fight bacteria that causes inflammatory acne (the kind that leads to acne scarring), but more research is needed to achieve more conclusive results.
- zinc citrate: a form of zinc, which may be beneficial for various skin conditions. Read more about studies that found to be helpful for skin conditions including acne, rosacea, psoriasis, and eczema (note that these studies involve other forms of zinc—not zinc citrate, but zinc pyrithione, zinc sulphate, etc.).
- niacinamide: an ingredient that has known to improve the texture of skin, provide anti-aging benefits, and soothe acne, rosacea and other skin conditions.
- allantoin: an ingredient that can help promote wound healing and soothe irritated skin.
- cetostearyl alcohol is a fatty alcohol, used to increase the viscosity (thickness) of formulas. It is also used to create a luxurious velvety feel.
- emulsifying wax: used as a way to bind oil and water together (emulsify them).
- polygylceryl-3 diisotearate: used as an emulsifier and conditioning agent
- arginine pca: used as a humectant and conditioning agent
The (maybe?) not so good
- EDTA: a preservative that received a GreenScreen Benchmark Score of 2 (“Use but Search for Safer Substitutes”) by the Environmental Defense Fund. Since the baby lotion doesn’t contain parabens, it has to replace those parabens with some other kind of preservative, which was EDTA in this case.
- behentrimonium methosulfate: often used as a hair conditioning agent, this ingredient is rated a 4 on EWG, and may cause irritation to the skin and eyes. However, I haven’t been able to find much concrete information or details about the extent of the irritation (or how high of a percentage is required to cause such irritation).
Ingredients in CeraVe Daily Moisturizing Lotion that are missing in CeraVe Baby Daily Moisturizing Lotion:
polyglyceryl-3 diisostearate, glycerin, polysorbate 20, behentrimonium methosulfate and cetearyl alcohol, disodium edta, propylparaben, ceteareth-20 and cetearyl alcohol, methylparaben
ingredients in both CeraVe products:
xanthan gum, dimethicone, hyaluronic acid, dipotassium phosphate, ceramide 6-ii, phytosphingosine, cetyl alcohol, purified water, potassium phosphate, caprylic/capric triglyceride, sodium lauroyl lactylate, carbomer, cholesterol, ceramide 3, ceramide 1
It looks like these products both contain the same trio of ingredients that is in most CeraVe Products: the ceramides (6-ii, 3, and 1), phytosphingosine, and cholesterol. Hyaluronic acid is also in both lotions.
My Dad the Chemist’s review of CeraVe Daily Moisturizing Lotion vs. CeraVe Baby Daily Moisturizing Lotion
Dear Emily, I like the second one better,, it contains 1% Dimethicone and Niacinamide (vitamin B3), allantoin as well as tocopheryl acetate (vitamin E) all these provide additional benefits for the skin.
The cost may be higher because the first one is considered a otc drug prouduct.
My dad also likes the baby version of the CeraVe lotion better, mainly because it contains a higher amount of dimethicone (enough to list as an active ingredient in the baby lotion). He also says that this could make it a pricier product.
The FDA allows product labels to list some types of ingredients as “active” ingredients if they’re included at the listed percentages in this document. For example, if a product contains between 1 and 30 percent dimethicone, it can list this as an active ingredient for “skin protectant” purposes.
The same goes for allantoin at a concentration that falls somewhere from 0.5 to 2 percent. It’s interesting that the CeraVe Baby Daily Moisturizing Lotion contains allantoin, but doesn’t list it under “active ingredients”—does this mean that it doesn’t contain enough of this ingredient to meet the minimum threshold to list it as an active skin protectant ingredient (0.5 percent)? Perhaps, or perhaps not. Everything is purely speculation at this point. Other skin protectants include colloidal oatmeal, glycerin, lanolin, and petrolatum. Read the full list here.
My dad also liked that the CeraVe Baby Daily Moisturizing Lotion included some beneficial ingredients like niacinamide, allantoin, and vitamin E, which he says will provide additional benefits to the skin.
Baby soft skin, here we come
It turns out in this your skin (and mine) could probably benefit from using the slightly pricier CeraVe Baby Daily Moisturizing Lotion rather than the regular CeraVe Daily Moisturizing Lotion. Just because a product is labeled for “babies” doesn’t mean that adults can’t use it, too. After I finish up my current bottle of my regular lotion, I think I’ll switch over to the baby version just because it contains all those extra goodies (niacinamide, allantoin, etc.).
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