Wow, so the most hits I have had on a blog post so far has been on the one about facial oils. Since a friend of mine pointed out that I had not included coconut oil, I decided it was time to explain why. Coconut oil is great as a facial oil, but I chose not to write about it then because coconut oil can also be used for a variety of things, completely unrelated to skin!
Coconut oil first starting blowing up because it has a ton of health benefits, as well as being gluten-free (celiacs rejoice!) and sugar-free (people trying to lose weight rejoice!). It was shunned for a long time by the health community due to its high content of saurated fats which was said to be linked to heart disease. A lot of new research has emerged that has refuted this by saying that it does NOT lead to heart disease or high serum cholesterol. Another study was conducted which found that adding coconut oil into an individuals diet seems to promote a reduction in abdominal fat. With all research though everyone, be sure to place it in context. These studies are not saying that MASS QUANTITIES of coconut oil will benefit you, they are simply implying that there are health benefits to using coconut oil. So be sensible, and use coconut oil sparingly as it is high in calories which means that if you eat 6 tablespoons a day, you are eating an extra 700+ calories. Make it fit within what your body needs (most people are recommended to keep the percentage of fat they eat to 20-35% of total calories).
Anyway, here is a list of some ways you can use coconut oil You should be buying organic (if you can) virgin cold pressed coconut oil because it contains no hydrogenation.
1. Coconut oil can be used in cooking. Use a teaspoon, or table spoon of cold pressed coconut oil in place of your normal cooking oil. It can also be used in fun ways such as in smoothies, in your morning coffee, or as a butter replacement in baking. I LOVE baking with coconut oil and love the taste, but it is not for everyone. It is also amazing spread on toast with some mashed up berries.
2. Coconut oil can be used for your hair. This is not one I have tried personally just yet (quite happy with my serum), but I have heard from various online and in person sources that it has done wonders for their hair. Michelle Phan recommends using some as a hair moisturizer by leaving it in your hair for 30 minutes (or overnight!) and then rinding it out and shampooing and conditioning your hair as normal.
3. Coconut oil can be used as a make up remover. Yep, I use either coconut oil or one of my facial oils as a natural make up remover and it is fabulous. And what a good way to moisturize the area surrounding your eyes!
4. Coconut oil can be used as a moisturizer. It is great for particularly dry and cracked areas, such as the elbows. I also use it on my hands during the winter to protect the skin of my hands from getting gross and crackly. And this is a weird tip .. but if you moisturize some coconut oil into your feet, put some socks on and go to sleep, I swear you will ahve the softest feet in the world!!
5. Coconut oil can be used to make body scrubs. I have used it to make a brown sugar body scrub by using a ratio of 1parts coconut oil to 2 parts brown sugar (so for example mix 1 cup of coconut oil with 2 cups of brown sugar). You can also find other body scrub ideas here and here
6. Coconut oil can be used to make deodorant. Isn’t that wild?! Learn how to make a natural coconout oil deodorant here.
7. Coconut oil can be used as a massage oil. Kind of speaks for itself. If you want to give your significant other (or friend who you lost a bet with) a massage, simply warm up some coconut oil and use it in place of a normal massage oil.
8. Coconut oil can be used for oil pulling. I know right, what the heck is oil pulling? Well, oil pulling is seen as a natural way to whiten your teeth, and to boost oral health by cleaning gums and removing bacteria .. pretty cool huh? What you need to do is put 1-2 teaspoons in your mouth (let it melt first, in or out of your mouth) and then literally just swish it around for 20 minutes. After the 20 minutes is up, spit it out into your trash can. Let me know how this goes for you!
9. And last but not least, coconut oil can be used as a natural lubricant I got told this by a friend who had it tried and tested, much to her satisfaction lol.
I hope this was helpful and enlightens you as to why there is so much buzz over coconut oil. Let me know if you try out any of the suggestions above! Thank you so much for reading, and please leave a comment or subscribe if you enjoy the posts.
Coconut Oil Consumption and Coronary Heart Disease – Kaunitz, H. and Dayritz, C.S. Columbia University, New York
Effects of Dietary Coconut Oil on the Biochemical and Anthropometric Profiles of Women Presenting Abdominal Obesity - Assuncao et al, 2009.