Is Calendula (Calendula Officinalis) Safe For Baby?

Is calendula safe for baby?  Yes – Calendula oil is extracted from its dried flower petals and has been safe to use since the 12th century.  It has been used both orally and topically to treat wounds, inflammation, irritation, and prevent harmful bacteria from residing in the skin.  Additionally, Calendula Officinalis oil herb boasts antiviral, antimicrobial, and anti-inflammatory properties [30].

Table Of Contents

What Is Calendula  •  Origins  •  Health Benefits
Is Calendula Safe For Baby  •  Calendula In Baby Products

Are Marigolds Calendula Officinalis Safe For Baby

What Is Calendula Officinalis?

Calendula, or Calendula oil, is a plant from the genus Calendula of the Asteraceae family. It has a bitter, earthy, yet slightly sweet taste, hence its association with food flavoring and coloring [1].   Named “Herb of the Year” by the International Herb Association back in 2008, the Calendula flower grows prominently across Western Europe as well as the Mediterranean and Southeast Asia [2].  The daisy-like flowers look very much like the marigold that grows commonly throughout North America, but the former belongs to a different genus called the Tagetes [3].

Calendula’s Cultivation

Calendula plants are cultivated internationally because it readily blooms wherever it is planted. In fact, it is a popular addition to private home gardens as it also attracts honey-producing bees and keeps dangerous insects away from its neighboring plants. All you need are seeds and well-drained soil to grow these plants [4].  The herb thrives all year round, can easily be harvested and can grow up to about two feet in height [5].  When in full bloom, it boasts vibrant colors from orange to yellow, making it reminiscent of the structure of the daisy flower [6].

Calendula Oil’s Natural Use

The Calendula oil is easily extracted from the flower petals and can be processed into creams, teas, facial washes, toothpaste, mouthwashes, and internal medicine. It is also gentle enough for sensitive skin [7].

Table Of Contents

What Is Calendula  •  Origins  •  Health Benefits
Is Calendula Safe For Baby  •  Calendula In Baby Products

Origins Of Calendula Officinalis
Origins Of Calendula Officinalis

Calendula is a plant genus of around 15 – 20 types of annual and seasonal herbaceous plants [11].  Its name Calendula comes from the modern Latin diminutive of calendae which means “little calendar” or “little clock. [12]”  The Romans were the first civilization to make use of the herb. Since it blooms on the first day of every month, the Romans called it calends. Growing Calendula signified jocosity for the Romans. The plant also provided herbs for food and medicine [13].

Marigolds Are Also Referred To As Virgin Mary

Marigold, the household name of Calendula, is sometimes referred to as the Virgin Mary [14].  Pot marigold or Calendula officinalis is the most commonly used and cultivated type. It is also the source of the commercial calendula found in cosmetic products [15].  It goes by many different English names such as the English or Aztec marigold, holligold, gold bloom, ruddes, Mary Bud or Mary Gowles [16].

Use For Sacred Occasions

Indigenous people acknowledge the Calendula flower as a sacred entity for worship. It is also widely used in religious services in ancient Mayan and Aztec civilizations. In fact, to this day, the Calendula is still prominently present in Mexico’s Day of the Dead celebration [18].

Table Of Contents

What Is Calendula  •  Origins  •  Health Benefits
Is Calendula Safe For Baby  •  Calendula In Baby Products

Calendula Officinalis An Edible And Medicinal Herb
Calendula Officinalis – An Edible And Medicinal Herb

Calendula works for the treatment of perioral dermatitis. This is a facial rash that produces bumps around the mouth. Non-fluoride toothpaste that contains calendula oil has been known to help this condition [27].

Calendula’s Sweet Aroma

Its flowers are responsible for its honey-like aroma. And because they are safe to eat, they are used in salads or dishes to add a little bit of spice [8].  Calendula officinalis petals contain high amounts of antioxidants commonly in the form of flavonoids and carotenoids. It also has beta-carotene and lutein, both of which convert into Vitamin A once absorbed by the body [9].

Table Of Contents

What Is Calendula  •  Origins  •  Health Benefits
Is Calendula Safe For Baby  •  Calendula In Baby Products

Calendula Officinalis Uses For Babies
Calendula Officinalis Health Benefits For Babies

The Calendula oil used in topical creams and lotions is extracted by steam distillation from the flower’s dried flower heads. These products are highly advised to store at room temperature and away from direct sunlight. The effectiveness of the oil depends on the dried Calendula. The drying process of the flowers is crucial because it predicts the quality of the Calendula oil. The infusion of the flower’s oil into carrier oil takes about a month [17].  The infused oil is often a combination of coconut oil and Calendula oil.

Treats Wounds And Hemorrhoids

Countless studies, including animal studies, have concluded that calendula cream or calendula-based topical medicines may help decrease the healing time of injuries among infants [19].

Aside from treating lacerations or cuts, Calendula oil is also known to improve the firmness
of baby’s skin and help grow new tissue in infected areas [20].  It’s often used to treat hemorrhoids among babies, also known as piles. This skin disease is usually caused by constipation and can be very painful especially in the anus and lower rectum.

Treats Diaper Rash And Dermatitis

Plant-based topical treatments such as Calendula cream or oil are found to have potent anti-inflammatory nutrients such as flavonoids and linoleic acid. These plant-based antioxidants defend the body’s pro-inflammatory compounds such as cytokines and C-reactive proteins from damage [22].  The oil extracted from the herbal plant help treat various skin issues among babies such as dermatitis, diaper rash, and ear infections, to mention a few.

Prevents Harmful Bacteria

Calendula succus is the juice that is secreted from the flower. It contains powerful antiviral and antimicrobial components that help prevent dangerous virus and bacteria from living in your baby’s skin. The treated dried petals have shown to be effective in killing pathogens especially strains of bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics and candida symptoms [23].  Because of these anti-inflammatory effects, it is a favorite among naturalists.

Table Of Contents

What Is Calendula  •  Origins  •  Health Benefits
Is Calendula Safe For Baby  •  Calendula In Baby Products

How Does Calendula Officinalis Work In Baby Skin Care Products
How Does Calendula Officinalis Work In Baby Products?

Calendula is found in almost 200 skincare and cosmetics products available for purchase on the market today, composed of shampoos, body lotions, and cream [10].  Calendula flowers have a number of healing properties. Because of their emulsifying properties, Calendula based products go on smooth leaving no residue.

Skincare And Cosmetic Products Use

Calendula ointment is often used to treat radiodermatitis. Approximately 95% of women who undergo radiation therapy for breast cancer develop this condition. Specifically, the calendula tincture is used to prevent oxidative stress [28].

It’s also found to ease the discomfort of varicose veins. The infused oils can help relieve itchy, dry, or irritation. The Calendula petals can bring down swelling and reduce pain to improve circulation and restore the skin [21].


This flowering plant is a useful first aid treatment because of its antiseptic properties. The Calendula oil has healing properties that promote the growth of tissues and skin cells, making wounds heal faster. What makes it even more ideal for babies is its ability in preventing infection from burns, cuts, and bug bites [24].


Natural Calendula cream can kill infection-causing germs as the Staphylococcus aureus and the Pseudomonas species of bacteria. These bacteria can cause numerous skin infections such as dermatitis, joint infections, urinary tract infections, gastrointestinal infections, bacteremia, soft tissue infections, and lung infections. It is also known to prevent cancer [25].


Skin inflammation is not uncommon in infants as they have very sensitive skin. Calendula ointment is a powerful anti-inflammatory known to give comfort and ease the irritation of diaper rash. This is because the Calendula infused oil in the cream is high with triterpenoid which reduces pain in inflamed regions of the skin. It also treats blisters, redness, swelling, and red, patchy skin [26].

Table Of Contents

What Is Calendula  •  Origins  •  Health Benefits
Is Calendula Safe For Baby  •  Calendula In Baby Products

Transparent Ingredients

Calendula Officinalis Resources

Calendula Safe For Baby References;

[1]    New Flora of the British Isles; Third Edition Clive Stace, May 2010.
[2]   International Herb Association; Herb of the Year, Calendula, 2008.
[3]   Wikipedia; Marigold.
[4]   The Pacific Northwest Gardener’s Book of Lists; Ray McNeilan, Jan McNeilan, April 07, 1997.
[5]   University of Florida, IFAS Extensions; Calendula officinalis Calendula, Pot Marigold, Edward F. Gilman, Teresa Howe, October 1999.
[6]   Creating the Prairie Xeriscape; Coteau Books, Sara Williams, 2013.
[7]   National Center for Biotechnology Information; Herbal Medicine: Biomolecular and Clinical Aspects, 2nd edition, Chapter 18 Herbal Treatment for Dermatologic Disorders, Philip D. Shenefelt, 2011.
[8]   Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine; Calendula, Sunshine Incarnate – An Edible and Medicinal Flower.
[9]   Springer Open; Chemistry Central Journal, Evaluation of Biologically Active Compounds from Calendula officinalis Flowers using Spectrophotometry, Monica Butnariu, Cristina Zepa Coradini, April 27, 2012.
[10]   US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health; A review on phytochemistry and ethnopharmacological aspects of genus Calendula, Disha Arora, Anita Rani, Anupam Sharma, December 2013.
[11]   Flora of China; 186. Calendula Linnaeus, Sp. Pl. 2: 921. 1753., Jin Zhan Hua Shu.
[12]   Essential Herbal Wisdom; A Complete Exploration of 50 Remarkable Herbs, Nancy Arrowsmith, February 08, 2009.
[13]   Penn State Hershey; Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, Calendula, Steven D. Ehrlich, June 22, 2015.
[14]   Shorter Oxford English Dictionary; Sixth Edition,  Calendula, 2007.
[15]   New Zealand Journal of Crop and Horticultural Science; Effect of plant population on calendula (Calendula officinalis L.) flower production, R. J. Martin, B. Deo, 2000.
[16]  Edible Medicinal And Non-Medicinal Plants; Volume 7, Flowers, T.K. Lim, 2014.
[17]   Mercola; Here’s Why You Can Count on Calendula Oil, 2017.
[18]   American University of Beirut; Nature Conservation Center, Calendulaf officinalis.
[19]   US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health; Wound healing activity of flower extract of Calendula officinalis, KC Preethi, R. Kuttan, 2009.
[20]   University of Maryland; Medical Center, Alternative Medicine.
[21]   Holistic Health Herbalist; The Best Herbal Remedies For Varicose Veins.
[22]   US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health; Anti-inflammatory activity of flower extract of Calendula officinalis Linn. and its possible mechanism of action, KC Preethi, G. Kuttan, R. Kuttan, February 2009.
[23]   Center Chen; Calendula Oil, 2005.
[24]   Homeopathic Medicine: First Aid and Emergency Care, Lyle W. Morgan II Ph.D. H.M.D., January 01, 1990.
[25]    U.S. National Library of Medicine; Calendula, November, 01, 2017.
[26]   Herbal Treatment of Children, Western and Ayurvedic Perspectives; 1st Edition, Anne McIntyre FNIMH.
[27]   The Strategist; Switching To This Red Toothpaste Cleared Up My Skin, Margaret Rhodes, June 27, 2017.
[28]   US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health; A Review of the Use of Topical Calendula in the Prevention and Treatment of Radiotherapy-Induced Skin Reactions, Joyson Kodiyan, Kyle T. Amber, June 4, 2015.

Table Of Contents

What Is Calendula  •  Origins  •  Health Benefits
Is Calendula Safe For Baby  •  Calendula In Baby Products

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