Cradle Cap Remedies for Children

| Modified on Mar 15, 2018
Essential Oils
Posted by Mary (Middle, Tn) on 12/01/2015

My daughter is 7 and has cradle cap since birth. I've done baking soda which worked some, but it seemed to have come back. We are wheat free, sugar free, etc so I am surprised she even has it. She only drinks kefir and never has lactose. Anyway, I am so tired of not being able to part her hair in certain areas. I saw this treatment on a blog and tried it (I've tried several natural treatments over the years) and I knew it was going to work instantly. I used a carrier oil, in this case sweet almond oil, but I think anything would work, with a few drops of lemon essential oil and a few drops of melaleuca (tea tree) essential oil. If I had to guess, I used about a half cup of carrier oil to 6 drops lemon and 8 drops melaleuca.

I took out a comb and put a small amount of the oil mixture in her hair along a parted section. It IMMEDIATELY soaked in and allowed me to comb the flakes right off. It didn't hurt her a bit. I went through and did section after section, just using the small end of a tapered comb (where the little tines get really close together) and her scalp looks like new. I then washed her hair twice with an all natural shampoo and the oil is all gone, and the cradle cap is all gone. I am so happy. I'm also a little shocked after all this time, it's really gone!

Olive Oil
Posted by Rachel (Hartford, Ct, Usa) on 08/26/2010

My daughter had what was probably an average case of cradle cap. Thinking I'd save myself the time and aggravation, I went straight to a big box baby store and bought an expensive cradle cap shampoo that all of my friends with babies swore by. Not only didn't the stuff work, it was super greasy and smelled HORRIBLE. My husband had to wash our daughter's head something like four times in a row to get the grossness out, and even then, her hair still felt oily and I had to suppress the gag reflex when I nursed her because she continued to smell like this shampoo. When I brought up my daughter's cradle cap problem at my local mommy group, the lactation consultant who runs the group recommended olive oil. She said to leave it on for twenty minutes to allow the cradle cap to soften, then gently comb out the flakes with a fine-tooth comb. That night before her bath, I did just that. I filled a little dish with some extra virgin olive oil, then put my daughter in her Bjorn facing outward so she could be distracted by a show on TV and not touch her head with her hands. I placed a rolled-up burp cloth behind her head to prevent oil from getting all over my shirt. I dipped a finger in the oil and applied it to her head, rubbing it in gently. We watched TV, walked around the house for a bit, and straightened up the kitchen to kill those twenty minutes, and then I grabbed her comb. The flakes came off with almost no effort at all, and I got most of the cradle cap with one application. The rest of it came off with the next treatment two days later. My husband and I were thrilled. This solution is simple, cheap, and according to my husband, makes your baby smell delicious!

Baking Soda Paste
Posted by New Mom (Oakville, Ontario) on 04/24/2013

My 6 week old son had is spot of cradle cap on his eyebrow. I applied the baking soda paste and let sit for 10 mins before his bath and usingwarm water and a wash cloth gently wiped the paste off in an upward motion to avoid getting any in his eye. One treatment and the spot was gone!

The only thing to be aware of is that when the paste dryd on the eyebrow it becomes very loose and gritty, you need to be careful the dry bits don't get in your baby's eye.... this can be challenging if they cry and scrunch their forehead.

I highly recommend this treatment!

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Emily (Charlotte, NC) on 11/18/2008

I nanny for infant twins who had terrible cradle cap. We began using a cotton ball to apply undiluted organic apple cider vinegar to their heads twice on bath day only, which is twice a week for them. To my knowledge, this was just to control the smell. Within a week or so, the cradle cap had drastically improved and after 2 weeks, was completely gone. We continue the application to ensure that it doesn't come back. I'm a believer and now am looking into remedies for myself!

Antibacterial Soap
Posted by Mommy V (Washington, D. C. ) on 05/05/2011


Warning - wide use of commercial antibacterial soaps, with low-grade antimicrobials like triclosan, has been a significant factor in the rise of MRSA and other bacterial superbugs in the states. Our pediatrician, our naturopath, and my father's physician all recommended we get rid of antibacterial soaps in our house. (You can make your own antimicrobial soap using essential oils or grapefruit seed extract.)

Baking Soda Paste
Posted by Rosie (Blue Mountains, Australia) on 07/13/2012


I used this paste on my daughter and she screamed while it was on and as I was rinsing it out. The cradle cap looks like it is mostly gone but now her scalp is red raw and looks really sore. I wouldn't recommend this remedy.

Baking Soda Paste
Posted by Ife (Uk) on 02/28/2015

It worked a treat. I used the baking soda mix on my 3 month old baby. After first application cradle cap was gone, but after a few days a small amounts of it came back after a second application was gone and has never came back.

I also told my mother to use this on her scalp as she had flaky dry skin almost looked like cradle cap after 3 applications it has not come back.

Antibacterial Soap
Posted by Tina (Edgecomb, Maine USA) on 02/24/2009

My daughter had a beautiful thick jet black head of hair and a horrible case of cradle cap - My Pediatrician told me to wash her hair with Liquid Dial Gold anti bacterial soap. I did and it worked. The cradle cap was gone after 2 or 3 washings.

Olive Oil
Posted by Dovechilla (London, Uk) on 05/07/2017

The secret in getting oil out of hair is not wetting the hair before using shampoo. That's because water and oil don't combine well and water slides off oil, making the soap work harder to get rid of lots of oily matter. Just apply your usual shampoo directly onto the oily hair, lather into a thick paste, and only then rinse with warm water. Voilà, gone in one.

Baking Soda Paste
Posted by Chastity (Seattle, Wa) on 07/09/2016

I combined a handful of baking soda and about 2 tablespoons of water. I applied the paste to my infant's scalp and I massaged gently for about 1 minute. I used a baby comb to remove the large flakes and buildup. I rinsed the paste out with warm water and the cradle cap/buildup was gone. It hasn't returned, and it's been 4+ months.

Vitamin B-6
Posted by Dee (Australia) on 07/18/2015

B6 for Cradle cap:

Most cradle's cap is due to a deficiency of Vitamin B6 and magnesium (B6 needs magnesium to be absorbed).

*Take B6. A nursing mother should take 30mg of P5P (P5P is the best form of B6, it is active B6) supplement each day for at least a month, plus 250 milligrams of magnesium.

Topical B6 for Cradle cap.

This works very very well.

*Apply a vit-b6 salve or cream to head 2x daily for 2 to 3 days.

Topical B6 recipe:

Things You'll Need

  • Vitamin P5P (B6) capsules (or tablets)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • Mortar and pestle (*if using tablets.)
  • Measuring cup


1. Using P5P capsules is best because there is less fillers in the capsules than the tablets. If using tablets, Mortar and pestle. Crush two or three Vitamin B6 tablets with a mortar and pestle until very fine.

2. Measure 1/4 cup vegetable oil and pour into a clean bowl. Add crushed B6 tablets and mix well.

3. Apply mixture to baby's scalp two times daily. The cradle cap should clear up in two days.

Baking Soda Paste
Posted by K Kendera (Nassau, Bahamas) on 03/23/2013

I noticed that my five week old had cradle cap and it really worried me so I went online to see if I could find a home remedy and I stumbled upon this site. I had heard that baking soda was good for acne but never thought it would work for cradle cap. Hesitant, but I gave it a shot. I AM SPEECHLESS! IT WORKS!! I made the paste, left it on for about five to ten minutes then I wet her soft hair brush and brushed the areas where the CC was, rinced, and it was gone. My girl and I are thankful.

Jojoba Oil
Posted by Jazzz (Delta Junction, Alaska, Usa) on 03/19/2013

My son developed bad cradle cap (we live in a dry cabin), I tried baking soda which did work well but the cradle cap came back. The next time I tried washing my three year old's scalp with baking soda I accidentely got some in his eyes while rinsing (which I am sure was painful! ) I decided to find an alternative and found Jojoba oil. This stuff works BETTER than baking soda. I just smeared it over his cradle cap and let it sit over night and then washed his hair. If you have a little one please try this method! It works better and you don't have to worry about getting it in eyes.

Baby Oil
Posted by Barbara (Los Angeles, Ca. United States) on 05/16/2012

My baby boy developed a bad case of Cradle Cap when he was only 3 months old.

A friend of the family used Baby Oil on his scalp to soften the junk on his scalp and a small Comb to comb out the Cradle Cap and this worked for my baby boy. The Cradle Cap combed right out.

Posted by Christi (Little Rock, Arkansas) on 05/15/2012

My son had terrible cradle cap that went from his eyebrows straight back to the crown of his head. It was terribly thick and crusty. Everytime I would wash it off it would be back by the next morning. I tried olive oil, coconut oil, Oil of Oregano, Apple Cider Vinegar etc. With no avail.

It then occured to me that perhaps Kombucha's acidity and probiotics might help. So the next bath I washed of the cradle cap secretions and put a fresh kombucha scoby on top of his head and left it there for 10 or 15 minutes, then rinsed his head with water. The next morning his head was smooth and shiny bald (the cradle cap was retarding hair growth). The cradle cap was completely gone and two months later it is still gone, replaced with a headful of hair and an impeccably healthy scalp!

Posted by Ashleigh (Austin Tx) on 01/10/2014

Kombucha can not be found in wal-mart, yet anyway. However here in Texas super HEBs will sometimes carry the brand GT Synergy in the health food isle, with the protein shakes and what not. Sprouts also carries a variety of brands. To get the scoby, you are most likely going to need to find someone on CL ( craigslist ) and get a scoby from them. the scoby is the 'mother' that you actually ferment the drink from. If you have not already, looking into Kombucha is well worth the time spent. We live off of them in our house!!

Dandruff Shampoo
Posted by April (Memphis, Tn) on 07/15/2009

When my son was a baby he had severe cradle cap. I used dandruff shampoo and after washing his hair a couple of of times, his cradle cap was completely gone.

Baking Soda Paste
Posted by Melinda (Ballarat, Victoria, Australia) on 05/28/2009

This one has been in my family for decades. Want to see instant results? It's wonderful. To get rid of cradle cap simply mix together 2 tablespoons of bi-carb soda with enough water to make a thick paste. About 40 mls of water. Gently rub the paste in to the baby's scalp for a minute and rinse off with warm water. Once a day.The cradle cap usually disappears completely within a few days. Try it, it works.

Baking Soda Paste
Posted by Webiegail (Irvine, California) on 10/21/2010

Wow! It worked! I've been trying to get rid of my girl's cradle cap for 3 years now. Last night I applied baking soda paste on her scalp, gave her a gentle scalp massage then rinsed her hair with warm water and it was gone! All gone! I couldn't believe my eyes. :)

Antibacterial Soap
Posted by Francisca (Michelbach-le-bas, Alsace, France) on 05/05/2011

Mommy, I wouldn't use any anti-microbial soap, to be honest.... We need some microbes around in order to build up our immune system. They think that a lot more children have leukemia nowadays exactly because of our obsession with cleaniness and little girls who have no big brothers are at risk too because the brothers bring home the dirt they need for their immune system. Be careful.......

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Brijette (Bettendorf, Iowa)

My Chiropractor told me to use vinegar on my baby girl's cradle cap. I applied it straight and let it sit for 10 minutes before her bath. I've done this only four times now and her cradle cap is almost gone already!!! Maybe this straight vinegar treatment could work for other scalp problems as well.

Baking Soda Paste
Posted by 2nd Time Mom (Atl, Ga) on 11/05/2014
★★★★★ 3mth old just got cradle cap a couple of weeks ago and I was going crazy trying to get it out, I even took her to the dr and got some prescribed shampoo but it was just taking its own time. I tried the baking soda paste one time and saw tremendous is gone!!! I am keeping that baking soda as ammunition just in case it decides to come back!!!!

Posted by Becci (Gainesville, Tx) on 05/28/2013

What exactly is Kombucha and where can I find it? Would Walmart have it and if so in what department? Thank you so much.

Posted by Om (Hope, Bc, Canada) on 01/10/2014

Ashleigh from Austin, Tx: I have to tell you when I read "Kombucha", ha I am hooked now. Considering the many health benefits it is worth while to make one's own. I have so many Moms and babies now and while it needs some practice, it is a wonderful drink. In Russia, where it has been brewed for a century at least, those places where it was used regularly, there was no cancer to be found. It is also a wonderful probiotic.

Thanks for mentioning it. Namaste, Om

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