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May 16, 2017

Skin Care for Babies!

Happy Tuesday all! Today I’m partnering up with iHerb to talk to you a bit about taking care of baby’s skin! As a dermatology resident we see pediatric patients every week - and the most common condition we see is eczema! And as a mama to 3 crazy girls with skin that ranges from just dry (Liv) to full on super-sensitive/eczema prone (Elli-belly) I know firsthand what it’s like to actually try and put some of the dermatologist knowledge to use!


So today I wanted to share a few tips for baby skin care and a couple of my favorite products. First - did you know that simply using a moisturizer every day in the first 6 months can reduce rates of eczema? My Harvard Med classmate and current dermatology resident in Chicago published an amazing study a few months ago on just this - and they found that daily use of a moisturizer reduced rates of atopic dermatitis (more commonly known as eczema).

They wanted to make a cost-effectiveness argument (since moisturizer isn’t currently covered by insurance), so they really hammered in on the cheapest moisturizer available - petroleum jelly. But I mention it in clinic and I always get a bit of pushback from parents who are worried about its safety. One of our other favorite moisturizers is Aveeno Baby Eczema Therapy Cream (another brand that was used in the study too)! This (along with the Aveeno Baby Cleansing Therapy Moisturizing Wash) is what I use for Elli Belly and what keeps her skin happiest. This line is recommended by both pediatricians and dermatologists alike! 



The key is to take short baths in lukewarm (never hot) water (hot water dries out the skin too much) - in fact now that Elli is a bit older we do showers way more often - they’re easier, she seems to have more fun (we take the shower head off, turn down the pressure, and let her play with it like a sprinkler)! Remember that soap/body wash doesn’t have to lather to be effectively cleansing - I love the Cleansing Therapy Moisturizing Wash, and it doesn’t lather much, which I actually like! The more a product lathers up the more potentially drying soap it has! Immediately after the shower, gently pat dry making sure the skin is still slightly damp - and that’s when you slather on the Eczema Therapy Cream. Elli is super into being independent now so the first thing I do is give her a nice quarter size amount of cream to do with as she pleases, and then she’s more than happy to let me rub her down lol! Before bed with her last diaper change I’ll also put a bit of cream on her - particularly around her elbows and knees. 



Liv and Ro don’t have nearly as sensitive skin as El, so with them I don’t use the Eczema Therapy line. Instead for Ro I’m currently using the Aveeno Baby Calming Comfort line (I love the gentle lavender/vanilla scent - more lavender than vanilla for those who haven’t smelled it but I LOVE lavender - I even keep a small roll-on essential oil in my bag and smell it throughout the day)! 



For Ro it is so much easier to do sink baths (I love our deep bathtub but it is a killer on my back to get her washed up)! I put a small amount of the Calming Comfort Bath in the sink and fill it with lukewarm water, then we get washed up, making sure to get in between all of her five million deep creases!! She’s a pudge that one! After we rinse making sure we get all of the soap off and then do the same - putting on the Calming Comfort Lotion to still slightly damp skin (but make sure to put on diaper first - more than once Ro has fallen asleep after her little bath and massage before I could even get PJs on)! And new mamas - don’t go crazy about having to give baby a bath every day - they really don’t need it! I give Ro a bath about every other day. 



All of my products I ordered through iHerb and it was a great experience - they’re a Google Trusted Store (and you can pay with PayPal as well) and I loved that they even offer 10 cent samples (I love samples)! Shipping was great too (and they ship to over 160 countries)! On top of that they provide customer support in 10 different languages. 

In collaboration with this post they’re offering 10% off Aveeno Baby products (ends June 30th)! 

PS - Make sure that if baby has dryness or a rash that doesn’t get better with emollients (ie creams/lotions like those mentioned in this post) you see a dermatologist! Anything with significant dryness/scaling/bright red bumps/vesicles/etc may need a doctor’s prescription for either steroid cream, antibiotic cream, or antifungal cream depending on what’s going on, so don’t hesitate to get them seen! All of what I mentioned in my post above is considered more maintenance care for sensitive skin, but if there are any active issues make sure to see a dermatologist for treatment!

May 15, 2017

Instagram Round Up!

Happy Monday all!! Today I'm linking up some of the looks you've seen over on my Instagram feed or my Instagram stories (for those who have asked about my snapchat, I almost never use it anymore and almost exclusively now post all of our behind-the-scenes/day-to-day stuff on Instagram stories)! 

These last two weeks have been a bit crazy with work, an amazing conference I went to in NYC, more work and side projects,  an incredible The Weeknd concert I went to with one of my dermatology attendings, and thankfully wrapped up with a relaxing Mother's Day!

Many of you asked about this necklace I posted wearing in clinic on my Instagram stories. Believe it or not I snagged it for just about $10!! I honestly wasn't too sure about what quality it would be at such an insanely cheap price, but I've already worn it about a dozen or so times (and even Liv and Elli have worn it since they love dressing up with my stuff) and it's still going strong! I love that it can dress up any outfit (seriously - I got away with looking dressed up this day even though I was wearing my comfiest tee shirt)! 

pink shirt  //  pants  //  necklace (on sale for $10 right now!!)  //  white coat  //  shoes  //  glasses  //  bracelet


Here's a selfie of me and two other dermies - @derm.talk and @drgoodfood! I had a blast meeting them in New York City and learning about issues relevant to skin of color!

wrap "coat"/cardigan  //  grey knot top (love this short sleeved option too!) //  pants  //  shoes


His and hers drinks - N has a cold brew with coconut milk and I've got a pink drink (a strawberry acai refresher with coconut milk)! Yum! 

bracelet  //  shoes  //  jean shorts  //  button down top (just ordered 2 more of these because they're my FAVORITE - SO soft, perfect to dress up at work or down like I did here, AND they're on clearance for $10)


Me and my girls (and daddy behind the camera)! Heading to the park! 

nursing friendly top (makes nursing while baby wearing so easy, same for pumping at work) //  baby wrap  //  shorts  //  shoes (in the plover grey color)  //  tricycle 

Stay tuned this week as I'll be doing some much-requested skin-care posts - including one on skin care for little ones, the best suncreens, and my daily skin routine! Xoxo!

May 2, 2017

Baby's First Foods

Happy Monday! I hope you all had a wonderful weekend! Today I'm partnering with Stonyfield to talk a little bit about baby's first foods (which definitely includes yogurt, but I want to talk about other foods and some tips too)!

The first question I get? When is it ok to start introducing solids? And what should be first? Research has shown that parents are really confused about this - in a study conducted by ORC International and Stonyfield, at least one-third of parents admit to feeding confusion during baby’s first months, and over half feel overwhelmed by the varying opinions of early childhood nutrition. So you're note alone! It doesn't help that some pediatricians don't keep up to date with new data, so they continue sharing old, outdated information. With all of my babies I started right around 4 months with just simple rice cereal (I loved and still love this one, it's got probiotics and choline and tons of other nutrients, and is organic)! I'd mix a small amount with breastmilk and spoon-feed, gradually increasing the consistency as they got used to it. 

While I like to start first with spoon-feeding, I also love letting baby pick up foods and feed themselves from an early age. Soft, finger-friendly foods are the best (think cut up bananas, raspberries, avocado, etc)! I would introduce a new fruit or veggie and give it about 3 days before introducing something else to make sure I'd be able to identify any foods that baby may be allergic to.  So from 4-6 months my babies got just breastmilk, rice cereal, and soft fruits or veggies (either pureed or cut up). 

By 6 months I started introducing soft proteins like scrambled eggs and yogurt. Yogurt is Elli's absolute favorite (mine too, I pretty much always grab a cup of greek yogurt to eat on my drive into work every morning) - and Elli is taking after mama! But it really is such a great food - with a good mix of protein, healthy fats, and carbohydrates; the Stonyfield YoBaby yogurt is also a great source of probiotics - in fact Stonyfield YoBaby was selected as the number one pediatrician-recommended yogurt for babies 6 months to 2 years old!

So proud of herself using her spoon! 

Abandoned the spoon to get every last drop lol

To help protect your baby’s gut health, you want to ensure they’re getting enough probiotics. While naturally found in breast milk, probiotics are also found in yogurt - Stonyfield has added probiotic BB-12 to YoBaby (along with other live active cultures). BB-12 has been shown to have a digestive health benefit when consumed regularly by promoting beneficial gut bacteria and regular, soft stools. Stonyfield YoBaby is the only organic yogurt made especially for babies, and comes in lots of flavors (plain, vanilla, banana/mango, blueberry/apple and peach/pear)! 

Many parents don't introduce yogurt early because they think they aren't allowed to give dairy before age 1 - and while it is true that you shouldn't give a baby cow's milk before age 1, dairy itself is safe and yogurt and cheese are great first foods (and good sources of calcium and vitamin D). During the first year even while introducing new solids baby's first food is still breast milk, so don't feel like they need to be eating a certain amount of food or be on some strict schedule - I see it more as a way to get them introduced to new tastes and textures and a great nutritional supplement to breastmilk when using the right foods! Try to have fun with it! 

April 29, 2017

Mother's Day Plans

Happy weekend all! It's crazy to think that Monday is already May 1st - seriously, how are we already nearly half way through the year!?!? And that means that Mother's Day is only 2 weeks away!




Do you all have any plans for mother's day? We don't yet, but I'm hoping to just have a relaxing, low-stress day with N and the girls. I think what almost all mothers want for mothers day (and obviously I'm over-generalizing here - there are all types of moms who want all types of things) - but for moms like myself and others I know well, what moms want most of all is acknowledgement and appreciation



Being a mother is a thankless job. And it's not even a job - on a job you get breaks, weekends, vacation time, all things that are basically imaginary for moms. Many of us work tirelessly making sure bellies are fed and clothes are washed and messes are cleaned - and the work. never. stops. All of these things need to happen every. single. day. So it's understandable that no one says thank you every day - moms do so many things that go seemingly unnoticed on the daily that it's hard to always say thank you. We get that.  But a little acknowledgement goes so very far. 



So in this next week I pose to you this challenge if you're lucky enough to have your mom still in your life - pay attention to everything she does. Take note of the meals (even if they're store-bought or fast food), take note of the bills that get paid, take note of the clean clothes you have folded in your drawer, take note of the text message checking in to make sure you're ok, take note. And this mother's day maybe you can write a heartfelt card (or make a photobook, or something creative - I love this site and all of the beautiful gift ideas there) that lets her know that you see everything she does, and that you appreciate it. And then spend some time with her on Mother's Day! Like I said, I don't know what we'll be doing, but hopefully it's something fun with all of us!



I'm wearing my Sofft Somers II in this post - yes I loved my first pair so much I had to get a second! These are a little bit darker than my original blush Somers - I went with the Plover Grey color this time (although the Somers II also comes in the same blush I have for my original Somers)! I love that these are another easy neutral that go with anything (and are a tiny bit more forgiving than the blush when it comes to dirt and whatever other messes the girls through my way - like spilled bubbles the day we took these pics)!! 

Outfit details:
Dress (under $20! I also love this option with tiny pom poms, it comes in pink too!)
Cardigan (I'm so sad it's sold out now, but here is a very similar option!)
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