How to make a Greer’s Goo alternative at home

Let’s face it, diaper rashes happen and they suck.

There are a number of over the counter options available that work to varying degrees. Some are great as a prophylactic and others are better when things have gone bad.

The reality is that even with diligent efforts at avoiding diaper rash they can creep up on you. Recently, our nearly one month old daughter developed a rather nasty diaper rash that our normal ointments and creams just couldn’t handle.

While I was performing my mid-feeding pit crew duties, my wife told me that she planned on whipping something up to help fix things for our little girl.

Excited, I ran to the mudroom and returned with duct tape, paper clips and a pen – the basic elements of any MacGuyver solution. Sadly, that was not exactly what my wife had in mind.

She explained that she was going to use her mad compounding skills to make a batch of ointment that is similar in nature to Greer’s Goo. Since I didn’t know what that was I googled it to find out more and I learned that it is essentially a topical formulation of hydrocortisone, nystatin and zinc oxide.

Zinc oxide is the main ingredient in several over the counter diaper ointments, such as Desitin, and is considered a barrier element preventing skin contact with the diaper and its contents. Nystatin is an antifungal, but it requires a prescription, which is the main reason why Greer’s Goo isn’t available over the counter. Finally, hydrocortisone provides an anti-inflammatory element. It is also a steroid that should not be used extensively in the diaper area for a prolonged period of time.

In my quest for more information I did come across some bad information saying that Triple Paste was the commercial equivalent. This, however, is not true. Zinc oxide is the only common element Triple Paste shares with Greer’s Goo.

After a quick trip to the store with the big red bullseye to procure the ingredients, we had everything we needed to make a 4 ounce batch of our homemade alternative to Greer’s Goo for about $9.00. Coincidentally, that is double the amount of ointment for the same price as compared with some other over the counter options.

Being a pharmacist in a major hospital my wife is used to making this stuff in four pound batches using a large kitchen mixer. While this was an adjustment for her, the basic ratio remains the same.

If you need something with a little more kick to it and want to save yourself the co-pay for a doctor’s visit, as well as the cost of the prescription, then you can give this a try:

Homemade Alternative to Greer’s Goo


1 oz. Clotrimazole (active ingredient in Lotrimin cream)
1 oz. Hydrocortisone 1% Cream
2 oz. Zinc oxide (generic diaper ointment)


Here’s how we put our batch together, but do it however works for you.

Squirt out ingredients onto a flat surface (we used parchment paper that we taped to our countertops)

Schmear around to combine until smooth

Scoop into containment vessel

Apply liberally. A batch like this should be good for about six months.

Warnings & Disclaimers:

This should go without saying, but I’m going to say it anyway. Despite this information coming from a pharmacist with 15 years experience who used the same formula on her own children, this blog post and its contents are not a substitute to obtaining professional medical advice. If you choose to try this for your children and it isn’t helping after a few days, then discontinue use and call your pediatrician.

Finally, this is a homemade alternative to Greer’s Goo, as it contains a different anti-fungal (clotrimazole), which may or may not be as effective as the anti-fungal (nystatin) contained in the prescription version.

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About PJ Mullen

PJ Mullen is a dad, husband, amateur chef and prolific air drummer blogging about his life as a dad and anything else that is on his mind. Occasionally he blogs about being a dad in the kitchen at peaches en risotto and is a contributor over at Digital Dads.

Facebook comments:

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  • Weasel Momma

    Where was this post 15 years ago when I needed it????????
    Great idea.

  • PJ Mullen

    Personally, I blame Al Gore for not inventing the internet sooner so we could blog about these things :)

  • http://LifeofaNewDad otter321

    So you cook the food and your wife cooks up the drugs. Sounds like a great partnership.

  • Keith Wilcox

    I love instructional blog posts! I bought a tube of Butt Paste way back when, but somehow we never managed to use the whole thing. I think, 5 years after the fact, that it is still sitting somewhere under the sink. On the same not, my sister's kids went through the stuff like crazy. Thanks for the tips, PJ!

  • jt12blk

    This is great! I'm with WeaselMomma – I could have used this a bunch of years ago. I too have a butt paste post in my archives, but it isn't clever and helpful like this.

  • PJ Mullen

    It is a pretty sweet arrangement :)

  • PJ Mullen

    My first attempt at a useful blog post, the best thing is that all the of the research for it was conducted offline by making my wife tell me what to do :)

  • PJ Mullen

    Thanks! The benefits of being married to a woman who is a pharmaceutical MacGuyver.

  • simplefather

    Are you sure that's not c4? Like WeaselMomma, too bad I didn't see this a while ago. Fortunately our oldest didn't get much diaper rash, and the little one is almost out of diapers.

  • PJ Mullen

    Neither did our first one, but for some reason baby girl had an out of control one early on. Thankfully the Mrs. has mad skills.

  • PJ Mullen

    Neither did our first one, but for some reason baby girl had an out of control one early on. Thankfully the Mrs. has mad skills.

  • Father Knows (Travis) Best

    So I guess the age-old sports addage “Rub some dirt on it” doesn’t work in an instance like this?

  • PJ Mullen

    Regrettably, no. Fortunately for my kids my wife is smarter than I.

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