This research has been designed and conducted as a randomized controlled trial to evaluate the effect of three regimens of cord care on cord separation time and umbilical cord colonization. Umbilical cord cares of 70% alcohol, 10% povidone-iodine and 0.4% chlorhexidine were applied to 40 term neonates who were randomly assigned (N = 120). Wipe samples were taken from babies just after the delivery and re-taken from umbilicus on the 5th day, and the separation time of umbilical cord was determined. The mean time to cord separation was significantly higher in the 70% alcohol group (7.10 +/- 1.61, p < 0.05). There were significant differences between the groups considering the culture results on the 5th day (p < 0.05); coagulase-negative staphylococci reproduced in a substantial part (27.5%) of the babies applied with 70% alcohol cares. Alcohol use delayed the time for cord separation compared to other methods. The authors concluded that 0.4% chlorhexidine may be effectively and safely used for umbilical cord care of healthy term neonates.