Last updated: 16/10/2022

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Chafing cream is an indispensable product in the home, whether you are caring for a baby or child, or an older adult. We are all exposed to any skin damage that needs to be treated appropriately.

In the following article we will solve the doubts that surround this product and give you the necessary tools so that you know and can make the best choice of purchase. You already know! If you need to learn more about the uses, types or how to apply it, we can help you!


  • Usually when we first experience this type of damage on our children, we have many questions. How and how often should they be applied, are they useful for chafing experienced by adults or what does it contain? This and much more will be discussed in the following reading.
  • There are three different types of chafing creams: the traditional cream, ointments and pastes. You should choose according to the level of irritation of the skin and always consult a specialist to rule out an infection that requires specialised care.
  • Finally, to make sure you are using a product you can trust, consider the ingredients, identify the type of chafing your child has, the durability of the product on the skin and any special conditions the child may have.

The best chafing cream: Our picks

Buying guide: what you need to know about chafing cream

There’s no need to lose our cool or worry too much when our children have this type of injury. A cream for chafing will give you the peace of mind that it is something normal that has a solution and is within your reach. Stay with us and find out all about it!

Chafing cream can be used to prevent or treat further damage (Photo: famveldman /

How often and how should chafe cream be applied?

In general it will depend on the type of skin or level of irritation your child has, as well as whether it is to prevent or treat existing or advanced damage. In any case, most creams are fine if used daily.

It can be applied to the area of most rubbing or directly to rashes and rashes after every nappy change. Avoid wiping off residue, as this will only cause further irritation from friction. If it is in a preventative mode or for minor damage, it is fine to apply it at night or once a day.

Chafing cream, ointment or paste – what to look out for?

Although they are very similar, we must distinguish their differences in order to be able to choose the one that is best for the child’s needs. Their differences basically lie in their use, as each one is best for treating different ailments. We tell you about them below!

Cream. They are created from an oil and water base, so their consistency is rather liquid, making them easy to apply to the skin. However, this can cause the protective barrier to last less long, fade easily and not protect the skin from moisture. Therefore, they are recommended for prevention or daily use.

Ointment. Characterised by the absence of water. Because they are oil-based they can spread very well, despite having a thicker consistency than a cream. This creates a protective barrier that is difficult to remove, which works against moisture and serves to care for mild to moderate irritations.

Paste. This has a thick consistency that is somewhat difficult to spread. It is used when greater, impenetrable protection is required, for maximum effectiveness or for moderate to severe irritations. As a disadvantage, it can stain nappies and is very difficult to remove from the skin, due to its high adhesion.

Cream Ointment Paste
Ideal use Daily and/or prevention Moisturising Heavy duty care and protection
Consistency Semi-thick Oily Thick
Protection Protection Mild damage Mild to moderate damage
Caution Does not protect against wetness Difficult to remove and may stain fabric Requires custom prescription

What is in the chafe cream?

The main ingredient is Zinc Oxide which soothes irritation by forming a protective layer that prevents direct contact with the skin. Remember that it is only for mild to moderate damage. Always visit a specialist to confirm that it is not serious.

As a general recommendation, prefer natural products that will be friendlier to baby’s delicate skin. A good idea is to look for natural chafing creams that may contain calendula, chamomile, aloe vera, among others. These are responsible for reducing the burning and inflammation, without being aggressive to the skin.

Can chafing cream be used on adults?

Anyone who has exposure to moisture and constant rubbing against skin or clothing can suffer irritation. Especially if you are at the beach or do sports that generate friction. The most common places are the thighs and genitals. You can consider spray or gel stick versions depending on the problem to be treated.

Remember to clean the area and choose according to your level of irritation or damage

Nipple irritation can also occur in both men and women, but wearing high heels, poor quality materials or incorrect sizing are also common conditions that can be easily treated with a chafing cream. Remember to clean the area and choose according to your level of irritation or damage.

Buying criteria

Finally, we will show you the key factors that will help you choose the right cream for your baby’s chafing. Remember that there are many varieties on the market and not all of them do their job properly. Consider the following recommendations to avoid pain and irritation on the skin of your loved ones.


The skin of children and babies is very sensitive, which is why we must be careful about the ingredients contained in the products we use, as we do not know for sure if our baby is allergic to a specific component. Pay attention to the following recommendations:

  • Prefer natural ingredients such as calendula to soothe the skin and as an anti-inflammatory.
  • Aloe vera will give a cooling sensation, is anti-inflammatory, reduces itching and burning.
  • Vitamin B5 is perfect for fast healing and keeping the skin moisturised.
  • Vitamin E promotes new cell growth and regenerates the skin.
  • Perfumes, alcohol and parabens should be avoided to reduce the chances of an allergic reaction

Type of chafing

Skin chafing causes irritation, also known as skin dermatitis. It is important to recognise the level or type of chafing, so that the most effective treatment can be purchased. There are three levels of chafing:

Fungal dermatitis. This is a condition caused by not changing the nappy constantly. Sometimes it is caused by the use of antibiotics in the mother and/or child. This generates the presence of a fungus called Candida albicans, which is recommended to be treated with pastes or ointments prescribed by a specialist.

Allergic dermatitis. the rash is generated due to incorrect use of the nappy, either because it is not the correct size or more frequently, due to the use of products with fragrances or additives that irritate the baby’s skin. It is recommended to use diaper rash cream according to the level of irritation and always consult a doctor about it.


Depending on the level of irritation and protection your baby requires, you will need to discern between a traditional or long-lasting product. This information can be found on the product label. Generally, a low-medium duration is for prevention or mild damage and a long duration is for severe damage.

Average duration. Chafing creams are usually washed off with clothes and nappies. Inevitably you will have to touch up every time you want to change the nappy, otherwise you can also touch up every 1-2 hours.

Long lasting. If you need to protect your baby’s skin for several hours, for example on walks or overnight, it is best to choose a long-lasting diaper cream. You should add a fairly generous layer, like a cake. This way the barrier can last intact for 2-6 hours.

Did you know that 98% of babies with nappy rash experience relief within 12 hours after using a diaper rash cream treatment?

Special conditions

Within the wide range of diaper rash creams on the market, we can find special products that are able to reach all types of users. If your child has a special condition or you want to use it for different purposes, consider the following options:

Sensitive skin. It is more prone to irritation and more difficult to treat because of the aggressiveness of chemicals. Make sure you choose products that are hypoallergenic, oily in consistency and easy to spread. Of course avoid ingredients that may cause an allergic reaction such as fragrances, alcohol or parabens.

Multifunctional. There are diaper rash creams that can be used by all members of the family and in addition to helping nappy rash, you can use them to treat sunburn, shoe rashes, thigh rashes and any wound. If this is the case, it is advisable to include an antiseptic to avoid infection.

Instant relief. If your baby expresses discomfort by crying or continuous discomfort, you may want to try a specialised chafing cream for immediate relief. These have ingredients such as zinc oxide, calendula or aloe vera, which will soothe immediately and heal within 12 hours.

(Featured image photo: tiagozr /