Dear SafeMama, The Two Days Late Edition (Inexpensive Shampoo)

By Kristie Turck •  Published 03/13/09 •  5 min read

I’m relatively new to being “green” but I’m trying to make good choices for my 9 month old little girl.  Your site definitely helps!

I’ve gone through your info about the safe baby care many, many times and the cosmetics database site trying to come up with a good, not insanely expensive brand of lotion and shampoo/body wash to try for her.  Many of them are just so expensive I don’t think my husband would ever go for it and it seems that most are similar.  Can you recommend some pocket friendly brands out of your list?  I’m leaning towards California Baby at this point.

We get this question a lot.    And I get it.   We’re all trying to save a bit of money, but still do better things for our family.   I’m still a big believer in you get what you pay for.  Does that mean that I think you should go out and buy the most expensive shampoo/body wash/conditioner, for your baby?  No, absolutely not.   I think there are great products out there, of decent quality, that are both safe and inexpensive.    The skin care cheat sheet that we put out last year, was simply a list of things that were safer choices, with a wide range of pricing.    We’re working on a newer list with more information, but it’s a slow process with the two of us gestating (read:  we pretty much pass out right after our toddlers’ bedtime).

We do have our favorites that we love and we’re pinching pennies too.   So here are our favorites:

As for California Baby, this is a great line, but a lot of people complain about it being a little pricey.  It can be expensive, but it’s readily available at nearly all Targets and Whole Foods stores.  I’ve also seen it in my local conventional grocery store (Giant if you’re in the eastern PA region), but again, some people find that the line to be too expensive.

There’s also Burts Bees, which I didn’t list here because I have to say, it’s not my favorite.  It’s not a bad line, and it’s inexpensive and available everywhere, but I’ve had mixed results with it.   My son also ended up with a rash on his belly from the Baby Bee lotion, and I know of one other person who had the same problem.   That said, I know people who swear by it and it is a safer option.

There’s been a lot of people who have voiced concern about availability.   Unfortunately, until safer skin care catches on, it’s going to be a little harder to find something that works for you.   And it’s going to be trial and error, just like it was for us.    If you’re lucky to have a local health foods store nearby, take advantage of that, and ask them if they would be willing to stock your favorite brand.   If you’re lucky, you have a Whole Foods nearby (although, I find beauty products at Whole Foods to be much more expensive, so I try not to buy them there).   Which leaves the internet.   Really, this is our prime mode of purchase these days.   Amazon, drugstore.com, diapers.com, or directly from the manufacturer.   Just like with anything else, shop around to find the best bang for your buck.    Chances are,  you’ll be paying around the same price with shipping, as you would by going out and spending money on gas to buy the product.

Kathy Tip: Go to the company websites for some of these companies and sign up for their newsletters.  I’ve gotten TruKid and other brands for a discount this way including sunscreen for much much less… and sometimes for free shipping offers.