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Thread: Perfume/scented lotion okay while BFing?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2011

    Default Perfume/scented lotion okay while BFing?

    Before DS came, I used to wear perfume or scented lotion. It was one of my "treats," something I did just for me. But when DS came, I stopped for a couple reasons: 1) I wanted the mommy smell to be the same all the time, and 2) I didn't want to overwhelm him with the smell, since he was always in my arms and always breastfeeding.

    Within the past few weeks, I've started wearing scented lotion on my legs, because sometimes I need that "treat", and I figure the scent isn't too strong for him. I'd like to eventually one day wear perfume, even just one spritz, again. But I worry that it will negatively affect our breastfeeding relationship. I don't have a particular reason to worry--DS breastfeeds every 1-2 hours still while he's with me, even at night and even though he eats solids fairly well now. He has also continued breastfeeding through multiple colds and an ear infection that lasted almost a month. So, he's pretty easy going, yet enthusiastic!, about breastfeeding in general. But I really, really don't want to screw things up. We had a rocky start, and I hope to continue breastfeeding for at least another year.

    So, do you think it's okay to wear perfume/scented lotion while breastfeeding? Or would you just wait until later?
    Mom to a spirited DS1, born 2/21/2011, and DS2, born 7/3/2014.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2006

    Default Re: Perfume/scented lotion okay while BF

    It's funny, I thought I was the only one that thought about that. The mommy smell being the same. I use to wear mens cologne before having my daughter and haven't since. When she was in the NICU I used the same shampoo every day so I would smell the same (I have an addiction to shampoo, I have about 30 bottles ). I'm sure it won't deter him though. My only other concern might be what chemicals are on it and if it should stay off him or out of his mouth.
    If you obey all the rules, you miss all the fun. - Katharine Hepburn

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2011

    Default Re: Perfume/scented lotion okay while BF

    I would think it's fine as long as you don't notice a reaction in your LO. I wear a naturally scented perfume (it's piƱon pine made by Perfumes of the Desert) and I just confine it to my hair and neck and avoid areas like my breasts and chest so DD doesn't get it directly on her hands (where they will end up in her mouth). I do steer clear of wearing my Chanel still since it is such a strong, unnatural (although beautiful) scent. Just try a little and watch your LO for any aversion. You might try it first when someone else is around in case you need to hop in the shower real quick!
    I'm a dreadlock wearing lucky SAHM to Sabeen Hunter (1/08/11) and wife to my sweet husband Amin.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2010

    Default Re: Perfume/scented lotion okay while BF

    DD is still nursing at 2 and I have only felt comfortable wearing Cetaphil, on occasion ... but nowhere near my breasts. Prior to her birth I used Burts Bees from neck to toe after every shower. When she was a newborn I stopped and then just got so used to my life being unscented as possible so I keep it that way. My husband uses after shave lotion every 2-3 days and on the days he wears it I can smell it on DD's head all day. It is kinda nice so I don't complain but it is VERY noticeable. Burts Bees makes an unscented version but the natural ingredient scent was not agreeable to me.

    One thing to consider is that some pretty resilient and unnatural chemicals can go into scented items. Think about our cleaning products, handsoaps, laundry detergents, shampoos ... I think in future generations they will look back on us much like we do with the liberal use of butter in previous cooking generations. All of these synthetic processes used for extracting and maintaining the stability of the scent just doesn't seem worth it to me.
    being a SAHM to DD born 12/09

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Southern NM

    Default Re: Perfume/scented lotion okay while BF

    I had scented body wash/lotion in my bag that I had at the hospital. I do stay away from my nipples with the soap and my lotion is really just for my arms and legs. I would try it and see if it bothers your LO.

    With DD and DS1, they were in daycare when they were babies and often came home smelling of the caregivers perfume. It bothered me until I realized that the only way that they could smell like that is if they were being held close--and I liked that.

    DS2 is being cared for during the day by DH, who uses everything unscented, from soap and lotion to laundry detergent and softener.
    I am Erin--happily married to the nerd of my dreams for 15 years
    High School Science Teacher
    Mother to: Thing 1 9/23/01, bf 15 mo, diagnosed with stage 4 neuroblastoma 1/29/02, officially cancer free for ten years in August 2012
    Thing 2 6/6/05, bf 12 mo, obsessed with dynamite
    Glowworm 2/18/11, bf 15 months and counting

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2006

    Default Re: Perfume/scented lotion okay while BF

    If it doesn't bug your baby, it's fine. Three of my four didnt care. But I remember Colton was like 8 weeks old or so, and I finally got around to using a body scrub DH gave me for Christmas. It had a scent I loved...but Colton hated it. He refused to nurse until I took a shower and washed the residual oils off along with the scent
    Mama to my all-natural boys: Ian, 9-4-04, 11.5 lbs; Colton, 11-7-06, 9 lbs, in the water; Logan, 12-8-08, 9 lbs; Gavin, 1-18-11, 9 lbs; and an angel 1-15-06
    18+ months and for Gavin, born with an incomplete cleft lip and incomplete posterior cleft palate
    Sealed for time and eternity, 7-7-93
    Always babywearing, cosleeping and cloth diapering. Living with oppositional defiant disorder and ADHD. Ask me about cloth diapering and sewing your own diapers!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2008

    Default Re: Perfume/scented lotion okay while BF

    I was using a heavily scented apricot scrub/soap that caused my DS2 to break out. I had to switch to an unscented bar soap. I'm sure your perfume will be fine, but watch for a reaction just in case.
    Stay at home mom to my 2 boys:
    R - born 4/20/08, nursed for 20 months
    G - born 8/6/11, EPd for 4 months, until he refused the bottle!
    Loving CDing this time around!

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