Mustela Stelatopia Foam Shampoo
Safe for newborns
Can be used on newborns, children, and adults
Great for sensitive skin or flaking scalps
No lather or scent
Foam is hard to measure
Left greasy residue on thicker hair
Mustela Stelatopia Foam Shampoo
We put Mustela Stelatopia Foam Shampoo to the test after receiving a complimentary sample from the brand. Keep reading for our full product review.
If you have babies of your own, you know that a newborn’s scalp goes through a lot of changes—from cradle cap to hair patches and hair loss—in their first few months. (Not to mention the rest of the ever-evolving changes your family is constantly adjusting to.) And if you’re eczema-prone as a parent, the idea of passing on that condition to your little one can be classically worrisome and daunting. 1 in 5 children will wind up encountering eczema, also known as atopic dermatitis. It is a dry, itchy discomfort that you can only hope doesn’t get passed down.
After having my first kid, I stocked up on oatmeal baths and realized quickly that my son, like me, wouldn’t be able to bathe every day due to his skin’s sensitivity. Needless to say, using cleaner, safer products that cater to sensitive skin types has become an important and necessary part of what we keep on hand in our house. When I got asked to test out a foam shampoo from a French-owned company called Mustela, I’d never heard of the brand before, but I quickly learned that they do exactly that: they make products for babies, children, and parents who have sensitive, eczema-prone skin using only the cleanest of ingredients. Naturally, I grew inquisitive and agreed to try it out on both myself and my son.
Keep reading for my honest results.
Best for: Infants, Eczema-prone skin, finer hair types, or sensitive scalps
Uses: Clean hair and scalp while protecting and strengthening skin
Active ingredients: Sunflower Oil Distillate, Avocado Perseose
Byrdie Clean?: Yes
About the brand: Mustela is a French family-owned brand that was founded in 1950 by a pharmacist and entrepreneur. Today, Mustela prides itself on using plant-derived ingredients and green technologies to create products that are safe for babies, moms, and the planet.
About My Hair: Thick hair, sensitive scalp
As an eczema-prone parent myself, I’ve never been able to find any long-standing cure to my rashes and flare-ups. Thankfully, it’s never spread to my scalp or face and my fingers are crossed that it stays that way. While I’m not someone that typically gets large flakey dandruff, I do have some light dandruff on occasion depending on the products I use or don’t use and how often I’m switching things up (I test a lot of products for work). The fact that I have very thick hair (and even more than usual due to pregnancy) which I don’t brush any more than once a month doesn’t help my scalp much either. With that in mind, I also cannot expose my skin or scalp to water every day without having eczema flare-ups all over my arms and legs, so it is a delicate balancing act and the health of my sensitive scalp fluctuates as a result.
Before testing the Mustela shampoo, I was using a high-low shampoo and conditioner combo (this rule doesn’t have to apply to fashion only) of Hask’s Tea Tree and Rosemary Shampoo and Oribe’s Serene Scalp Balancing Conditioner every three days. Unless testing a new shampoo or conditioner, those are my fallbacks at the moment, and together, they’ve helped my hair and scalp reset between product trials. As for my two-year-old son, we’ve used Aveeno on him since he was an infant, mostly due to accessibility, and the fact that they also cater to sensitive skin types at his age.
The Feel: Barely there foam
The Mustela Stelatopia Shampoo pumps out as foam. I’d never used foam shampoo before, so this was a really interesting new experience for me. The foam is so incredibly lightweight that it felt like air in my hands, and on my scalp. I did not enjoy the application because of this. Since I have thick hair, getting a good lather that I can feel on every inch of my scalp as I scrub product in is a favorite part of any shampoo experience for me. When using this on my son, the foam felt a little safer because I wasn’t worried about getting any of that excess lather in his eyes. With me, I used multiple pumps on each quadrant of my scalp because the moment I touched the foam to my head, it felt like it evaporated into the foggy, shower air. If it’s possible to overapply, the chances that I did that are probably pretty high. And even still, my wet hair still felt oily as I scrubbed around which I didn’t like.
Ingredients: Top notch
It’s surprising to think there are so many different formulations out there when it comes to addressing sensitive skin, but a sensitive scalp mostly gets treated with limited options. Mustela prides itself on using clean, natural ingredients and that’s one of the things I’ve come to love about the brand most. This Stelatopia Foam Shampoo in particular is fragrance-free, soap-free, and composed of 99% ingredients of natural origin. Their unique blend of Sunflower Oil Distillate and their trademarked Avocado Perseose help to soothe, moisturize, protect, and strengthen a baby’s delicate skin. All of their formulations, this shampoo included, have been recognized by the National Eczema Association and clinically tested on eczema-prone skin under pediatric and dermatological control. It makes me wonder, why aren’t all children’s products made with this level of intention? With zero fragrance, parabens, phthalates, phenoxyethanol, or steroids present in this shampoo, it’s clear that whatever Mustela is creating is nothing short of top-notch. As a B-Corp company that is NEA certified and makes all bottles recyclable, I only wish all my son’s products were crafted with this level of holistic thoughtfulness, dedication, and attention to detail.
The Results: Better for baby
My hair didn’t take to this shampoo very well. After my first use, my hair looked great despite how oily and dirty it felt while I was still in the shower. But beyond that, my second and third use just left my hair feeling, well, nasty. My hair was so oily, it looked and felt as though I hadn’t washed my hair in weeks. I very much looked forward to switching shampoos again.
This tear-free, pH-balanced formula left my little one empowered to wash his own hair and that was pretty cool to witness.
As for my toddler, this shampoo worked fine! The foam was much more manageable on his barely there hair and didn’t leave it greasy or weighed down the way it did with my full head of thick hair. Knowing this formula was specially made to cater to little ones like him, I let him scrub the shampoo in himself without worry. I had no fear that his soapy hands would get in his eyes or any other part of his body that would cause issues.
The Value: Pricey
When you have a baby, there are a lot of additional expenses that jolt their way into your life. Because of this, I don’t necessarily think that their bath products should be one of the things that eat up much of your money as a new parent. The Mustela Stelatopia Foam Shampoo offers just over 5 ounces for $16, whereas the other shampoos I’ve used for my son offered nearly four times the quantity for a fraction of the cost at less than $10 for 18 ounces. Still, if the cost doesn't bother you, I'd say it's a worthy purchase overall.
Similar Products: You've got options
Aveeno Baby Wash & Shampoo ($8): Before testing Mustela’s foam shampoo, we were using the Aveeno Baby Wash & Shampoo, which is similar to tear and soap-free, hypoallergenic formula. While it’s good for sensitive skin, it doesn’t specifically target eczema-prone or the scalp.
The cost and quantity of these products certainly stand out comparatively. The 18 ounces from Aveeno lasts us a close to a whole year, and I love that it’s multi-purpose, also serving as a body wash. While I’m sure that the Mustela shampoo is so carefully and intentionally crafted that it would have nothing shy of benefits for my son’s skin if used as a body wash, it is marketed to be used on the scalp, so I would follow those directions and limit it to scalp use. Plus, I can tell its sparing foam would run out quickly with only 5 oz per bottle.
There are a lot of things I love and respect about Mustela and the way they’ve approached every detail of their products. But if you aren’t prone to eczema and/or you have thick hair, don’t bother. While Mustela's Stelatopia Foam Shampoo was an empowering experience for my two-year-old to use this shampoo, I’m going to be saving this formula for the next baby to join our family this Winter so that I can see its magic at work on cradle cap and all the other sensitive scalp moments that infants face.
- Product Name Stelatopia Foam Shampoo
- Product Brand Mustela
- Price $16.00
- Weight 5.1 oz.
- Ingredients Aqua/water/eau, Coco-glucoside, Polyglyceryl-4 Caprate, Polyquaternium-10, Citric Acid, Sodium Benzoate, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil Unsaponifiables, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Fruit Extract.