Note to my readers: Hi everyone! Whew, I’ve been M.I.A. for awhile. I’ll be honest – it’s hard for me to stay consistent with writing blog posts while being in school and working and everything. Plus, I feel like it takes me forever to write a good blog post with good content for you guys. Maybe I should switch to a different medium, like videos or something. Hmmm… anyways, enough blabbing, onto the blog post!
Coconut oil is excellent for your overall health, whether you use it internally or externally. It has tons of beneficial “anti” properties in it: antifungal, antibacterial, antimicrobial, antioxidant… all of these in one oil!
Eating Coconut Oil
Cooking with coconut oil, or just eating it straight out of the container, can improve digestive health by getting rid of harmful bacteria and fungus in your body, as well as fight off infections and diseases by boosting your immune system. (A spoonful of coconut oil a day keeps the doctor away?) It also tastes really yummy, mmm!
Coconut Oil for Skin
Coconut oil is SUPER moisturizing. Since it’s an oil, the oil itself does not moisturize, but it helps your skin retain moisture (which is usually water). I used coconut oil as a body moisturizer for a few months during the summer and fall months, and I’m currently using it as a face moisturizer (but not for much longer). It’s a pretty thick oil, so even after leaving it on your skin for a few minutes, your skin may still feel oily to the touch. That is one of the reasons I stopped using it, I just didn’t like the “oily” feeling. My skin always felt moisturized and looked shiny, though!
For aging skin, coconut oil’s properties can help protect skin from free radicals, as well as prevent wrinkles. It also has healing properties, so it can help heal scars, and might even help certain skin ailments such as acne, psoriasis and eczema.
Coconut Oil for Hair
My curly hair looooveeees coconut oil! Not only is it moisturizing, but it’s one of a few oils that can penetrate the hair shaft, so using it in a deep conditioning treatment is very beneficial for damaged hair. Sometimes, I like to use it after my leave-in conditioner, or I’ll just spritz my hair with water and use it as a moisturizer for 3rd or 4th day hair when my curls are starting to look crazy.
So… How Do I REALLY Feel About Coconut Oil?
After using coconut oil for over 6 months, I kind of have a love-hate relationship with it. The oil I use is the Vitamin Shoppe’s Extra Virgin Organic Coconut Oil, which is also non-GMO, cold pressed, and unrefined. (Extra virgin, organic, and unrefined are definitely important properties to look for when purchasing coconut oil because this means it is probably in its most natural state and hasn’t lost any nutrients in the way it was processed.) I don’t normally store it in the refrigerator, just in my bathroom with my hair and body care stuff. Sometimes in the summer I had to throw it in the refrigerator, though, as it would melt in the hot temperature.
Since it is a solid, you have to warm the coconut oil up a little bit in your hands before you can use it, which I don’t mind. However, sometimes when I put the oil in my hair, I will find tiny solid pieces of coconut oil in my hair, which I definitely don’t like. But, like I said earlier, my hair loves it, and it’s one of the only oils I’ve tried thus far that actually moisturizes my hair. So, I can deal with that.
Now, onto the biggie. When I first started using coconut oil as a face moisturizer, I was pretty skeptical. I have combination skin, so my skin gets oily in some spots and dry in others. I had read that coconut oil was great for skin though, so I figured I’d give it a shot. To my surprise, after about a week or so, the oily spots on my face weren’t oily anymore! And my face felt soft and moisturized! Using an oil to get rid of oily skin? That seems implausible, really, but it worked for me, and I was happy. Until…
My acne started flaring up, BADLY. The first few weeks I used the coconut oil, my skin felt good, I didn’t see any new major breakouts, so I thought I was in the clear. But then, I started getting cystic acne in places where I normally didn’t break out, like my jawline and my neck. I figured the coconut oil was just ridding my skin of bacteria, which I had read on other blogs might happen, and that was why I was breaking out. However, once I found out that coconut oil might be comedogenic and clogs pores, I knew I was in trouble. If I’m honest with myself, I feel like my skin has never looked this bad or felt this bad. Sometimes my face itches, and I find myself picking at it more than I ever did before.
There’s quite a bit of debate on the internet about whether or not coconut oil helps or hinders acne-prone skin. One of my favorite natural skin care bloggers Tracy from The Love Vitamin actually wrote an article discussing coconut oil and acne. Check it out, as well as some of her other articles. Her blog is very informative, and it’s helped me quite a bit during my natural journey.
As I said before, I’m still using the coconut oil on my face today for a few reasons. I think part of me is afraid to try another oil or moisturizer for fear of irritating my skin even more than it already is. Also, I wanted to make sure that the next product or oil that I use to moisturize my face is less likely to break out my skin.
Today’s the last day I had to use coconut oil on my face, yay! I recently ordered some organic jojoba oil from The Jojoba Company, and I received it in the mail today. I can’t wait to try it! Jojoba oil is non-comedogenic, and it’s also great for sensitive skin, so I’m hoping it works for me. I will definitely update you all on it after I’ve been using it for awhile!
Overall, coconut oil has tons of great properties, and it can be really beneficial to your health. I’ve read many success stories online from people who have used coconut oil on their hair and skin, and it’s even helped some people clear their acne. Different things work for different people, so I guess it’s just a matter of trial and error. (I’m crossing my fingers that this jojoba oil will work for me though).
Hope you enjoyed!
Have you ever used coconut oil? What is your experience with it?
If you haven’t, would you incorporate it into your everyday routine?