5 Things I Never Thought I’d Clean So Much—Until I Had Baby

You knew parenting would be messy—but we bet you didn’t expect to have to clean these surprising things after baby arrived.
profile picture of Double Cherry
ByDouble Cherry
Updated
Feb 2018
baby clean bath water droplets
Photo: iStock

Babies are messy—a fact I was well aware of before getting into this whole parenting thing. I knew I’d have to bathe my child, change poopy diapers and wipe snotty noses—but still, there were a few surprises that popped up in those first months with baby. Hold on to your wipes, ladies: These are the five most unexpected things I’ve had to constantly clean since baby arrived.

1. Lint

It’s everywhere! Under babies’ nails, between their fingers and toes, and even in their itty bitty belly buttons! And I don’t mean dry lint, I mean soggy, foul-smelling, peel-from-the-skin gobs of it.

2. Earwax

I knew this was coming, but boy, was I surprised at the amount. The rate this stuff builds up in baby’s ear is amazingly fast.

3. Boogers

Whether you’re stuck suctioning it out or are experiencing the joys of having it wiped on your shoulder while babywearing, prepare yourself for shockingly large quantities of snot!

4. Bottom Crevices

You’ve wiped baby’s bottom all over, you’ve surveyed your work and it looks good—until you peer into that little dip at the top of the butt (aka the cleftal horizon), which has an incredible capacity to hide poop, lint and diaper cream.

5. Neck Cheese

Infant necks tend to accumulate something in those folds that the finest cheese experts turn their noses up at: Dried milk, sweat and, yep, more lint! As you nuzzle into the neck of your little one during a cuddle session, there it will be—and even after you clean it, the smell will linger in your nostrils all day.

It’s not all bad, though—these things just give you another reason to enjoy the bonding of bath time with baby!

Updated January 2018

Related Video

Itchy Skin in Babies

Wendy Sue Swanson, MD
Pediatrician

How to Check for Lice

Kristina Cappetta

Where Do Birthmarks Come From?

Alanna Levine, MD
Pediatrician

Lump in a Baby’s Abdomen

Wendy Sue Swanson, MD
Pediatrician

Diaper Rash

Jennifer L.W. Fink
Registered Nurse

Genius New Postpartum Underwear Makes Recovery Way Easier

Ashley Edwards Walker
Contributing Writer
Published
09/23/2019

6 Ways to Keep Baby Healthy

Elena Donovan Mauer

A Reminder to Moms: Showering Is Not Selfish

Anisa Arsenault
Associate Editor
Published
08/17/2017

Two-Year Molars?

Hannah Chow-Johnson, MD, assistant professor in the Department of Pediatrics at Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine and pediatrician at Loyola University Health System
Pediatrician

Head Lice 101

Kristina Cappetta

How to Care for Baby's Umbilical Cord

Paula Prezioso, MD
Pediatrician
Advertisement