The Stink About Baby Products

Thank you to Johnson’s Baby for supporting our family and sponsoring this post.

My wife sort of knew about why baby products are scented waaay before me. She used to use a lavender scented baby wash on Master11 as part of his bedtime routine.

Whereas when Johnson’s Baby approached me and asked if I’d do a post on Why do Johnson’s products contain fragrance? I giggled and scoffed and rolled my eyes a lot. Surely that’s the sort of question which only gets asked by pregnant women, because anyone who’s actually had a baby knows the reason. Hint: it’s poo. Poo which gets pressed out between a cute pair of buttocks and squashed between cheeks and a nappy. And baby poo isn’t even the worst poo you’re going to be dealing with. Once your kid hits solids you’ll be burning incense and spraying all the air freshener you can get your hands on.

But I’m wrong.

The smell isn’t actually there for us adults to sniff: that’s all just a pleasant byproduct.

The thing is that babies relax more, can fall into their sleep routine faster, engage better with their parent during the bath and, importantly, cry up to 25% less if they have a nice odour to enjoy – and I’m not just talking about the sweet smell of chloroform.

Which all makes sense – I reckon I gag 25% less if something is masking their efforts.

But is it worth it? After all, these are our babies we’re talking about. If we’re going to stick something on their skin we want to know it’s okay.

Now I admit I’m a little biased about Johnson’s Baby. They’re the people who brought us No More Tears shampoo and forever changed bath time for the better. You don’t realise how wonderful that stuff is until you run out and substitute your own.

But few years ago when our Miss12 was born my wife was wary of Johnson’s baby products. It’s easy to do. Your combined sexiness has entrusted you with this wonderful new bundle of sweet, soft, gurgling love and you’re determined, despite knowing what you did to yourself every weekend prior to getting pregnant, you’re going to be a responsible adult, and won’t let any harm come to your protege. That becomes your mission.


And because you’re being trusted with this baby, you want to work with companies you can trust.

Johnson’s baby has been around for 120 years. Think about what’s happened in that timeframe – roads weren’t even bitumen back then, and people had outhouses instead of powder rooms. The idea of health and the essentially non-existent idea of sanitary looked very different. As for science…blood testing wasn’t even a thing.

What you probably don’t realise, or like me just hadn’t thought about, is when it comes to looking out for babies and working out what is safest, Johnson’s Baby are more often the ones doing the research, including on the topic of fragrances. According to Sharon Dowling (J&J Skincare Technical Affairs Manager), “A baby’s skin is up to 30% thinner than an adult’s, and this can make it more delicate. If there’s a fragrance that shows evidence of being irritating, we just won’t use it.”

So smelly stuff: it’s not to make you like your kid more but rather all part of a plan to help your baby relax and get to sleep.


But of course, now I know this it may explain why Tracey rubs scented lotions on before jumping into bed with me.

Dammit, she’s smarts.


Raising a family on little more than laughs


What do you think?