The aim of this study is to compare the use of Beniktol spray and alcohol swab for cord care in our unit. Over a 6-month period (November 2001 to April 2002), all infants whose parents signed the consent form, were enrolled in the study. The nurse randomly used either Beniktol spray or alcohol swab for the baby’s cord care. It was a prospective study designed to compare cord separation time, and the presence of stump discharge, bad smell, cellulititis or sepsis that necessitated admission. Telephone calls were made to the mothers by our nurse on days 7, 14, 21 or until the cord fell off. Seventy six infants completed the study 38 in alcohol group and 38 in Beniktol group. Infants in the alcohol group had a shorter time for cord separation by 2.5 days compared with the Beniktol group (P < 0.01). There were no significant differences between the two groups concerning the other parameters. The use of alcohol alone appears to be safe and cost-effective for cord care in our nursery.