Baby Shopping Need-to-Knows with Shanice Vivenzio
Shopping for baby products can come with its fair share of challenges and questions: Is this safe? Will my little one like it? How do I know if it will work? At Sophie la Girafe Babycare it’s our job to not just offer you quality skincare solutions for your parenting needs but serve as a resource to help guide you in the right direction. One of the ways we do this is by checking in with our community to share all their tips, tricks, and learnings! Today we chat with Shanice Vivenzio, soon-to-be Mom of little Leila, as she shares her biggest shopping takeaways and best practices for all the new Moms out there!
- What were your biggest challenges when looking for baby products during your pregnancy journey?
- There are SO many products out there right now – some classics that have been around since I was little, but also a lot of new technology. As a first-time expecting mother, you don’t really know what’s going to work for you and your baby so it’s a bit of a guessing game at first since you’re having to look at everything from shampoos and diaper creams to toys and beyond. When it came to skincare products in particular, I wanted them to be moisturizing, soothing, organic and hypo-allergenic. When it came to wipes in particular, I knew they had to be mostly water-based (can’t wait to use the 99% Water Wipes from this line) - but the challenge then became “well what does that remaining percentage of ingredients do?” Fortunately, I did A LOT of Mommy-Talking to get some more insight and began to narrow my choices down from there with the research I had already done.
- I mentioned Mommy-Talking which was definitely up there in the ranks but for me, compilation lists and guides were super helpful. Going on pages like The Bump and Babylist (who I actually registered with because they were so comprehensive) gave me a lot of information on products, ingredients, and certifications. Being able to see accolades and awards let me know that I was headed in the right direction with the brands and products I was already leaning towards.
- With all products, but especially skin care products, I needed to know that anything potentially touching my baby’s skin wasn’t just hypoallergenic and fragrance-free but backed by proven-safe ingredients.. I like to joke that if I don’t know the ingredient, I probably don’t want it touching Leila’s skin! That’s why I often found myself looking for products with the least amount of ingredients. I was also open to newer innovations that had quality ingredients like Squalane and honestly, all of us should be using squalane - it’s so great for our skin!. I’ve been lucky enough to have a lot of skincare professionals in my circle who definitely helped sort out the good from the bad!
- I wouldn’t really say anything came as a huge surprise because I’m a big researcher. I know that some moms probably wouldn’t go on the deep-dive that I did but that’s just my nature! One thing I’ve heard though is to be prepared to throw out whatever you think you know because it’s all about tuning into your baby’s needs when the time comes. There are a lot of staple products out there but you never know if it’s going to be exactly right for them individually and whatever you thought would work, you may have to start from scratch! Like I mentioned before, there are so many ingredients and products out there so it became a little bit of a “what are you willing to sacrifice” game in a way. Some products promote more benefits but then you might sacrifice it not being gentle enough if your baby has ultra-sensitive skin. Leila is going to have melanated skin so that research is a little different because I need to think about what is really going to be soothing and moisturizing to the 10th degree for her because our skin is more prone to eczema and dryness - it's what I do for my own skin! I’ve really had to think about what is going to work best for her hair and skin versus what’s most trendy or the latest must-have.
- Try not to get overwhelmed! When I found myself thinking of “the 5 year” plan, I knew I had to take a step back. It’s way more realistic to start thinking about what essentials you’ll need for the first 6 months and go from there.
- Don’t think you only need to use what worked in the past! So much has changed thanks to further research and development with products in the past 30 years, so it’s ok to do your research on everything that’s new as long as you’re trusting your gut.
- Watch your baby and learn. The approach I’m taking when Leila arrives is similar to my own skincare. Some things will work, some things won’t and that’s ok – trial and error isn’t the end of the world if it finds you the best products for your baby.
- Be patient with yourself! You’re not expected to know everything and learning is one part of the journey.
To connect with Shanice and stay up to date with her pregnancy journey, follow her on Instagram @shanicevivenzio. Have tips to share with our community as well? Message us @sophielagirafebabycare to let us know for a chance to be featured!