When you think about the health benefits of coconut oil, the last thing that might come to mind is rubbing the edible plant grease all over your face! Or your arms. Or coconut oil for your hair. But a growing body of research, countless experts, and an army of natural-beauty devotees swear by the stuff for just about everything!
Coconut oil is used in many natural beauty products, and for good reason: It’s naturally antibacterial and anti fungal, coconut oil for skin is an excellent moisturizer, it can penetrate hair better than other oils, and, well, it smells amazing!
Here are my favorite 10 beauty uses for coconut oil that don’t require spending a fortune on store-bought products. In fact, all you need is one thing: Raw (and preferably organic) virgin coconut oil.
1. Deep-condition your strands overnight
There’s a reason many conditioners contain coconut oil: It’s better able to penetrate hair (and prevent protein loss) than mineral and sunflower oil, according to research. Apply a 10p sized dollop to your hair, comb it, and then pile it into a loose bun. You’ll want to place a soft towel over your pillow or sleep in a shower cap. In the morning, shampoo as usual.
2. Tame frizz
If you struggle with taming your mane, coconut oil can definitely help. Calm your frizzy, flyaway strands with just a bit of oil to leave your hair looking smooth and polished. As an alternative to straightening serum.
3. Add shine
Smooth a tiny amount of organic coconut oil onto your ends of your hair to add a little shine if you have dark hair. Remember that a dab will do you: Any more and your hair might appear greasy
4. Remove eye makeup
Yes, coconut oil even works on waterproof mascara! Put a little on a cotton ball and gently sweep it over your eyes, paying attention to your under-eyes as well. The oil does a great job breaking down waxy, inky eye makeup, and leaves the delicate area hydrated, too. Once you’re done, wash your face as usual.
5. Freshen your breath
Remember oil pulling? Turns out, swishing coconut oil around in your mouth may actually pull the toxicity out of your mouth. Just swirl it around your mouth for 10 to 20 minutes until it turns a milky white color, then spit it out into the trash and rinse with water. If this sounds like a gross way to spend 15 minutes, you’d be surprised—it becomes routine fairly quickly and can even feel meditative and relaxing.
6. Soothe dry hands
This won’t work for dry hands when you’re on the go, but at home, coconut oil for skin can work wonders on your dishwashing-parched hands. You can get a jar at your local grocery store, keep a jar of organic extra virgin coconut oil by the kitchen sink and put a little on after washing hands to keep them soft. And if you cook with coconut oil—you can sub it for butter in baking recipes because it’s solid at room temperature—scoop out a little extra for your hands, too!
7. Moisturize your body
A recent study found that when applied topically, virgin organic coconut oil for skin can speed up wound healing, and found it to be effective in increasing hydration and reducing water loss in seriously dry skin.
8. Have a little rubdown
Many store-bought massage oils have either coconut or jojoba oil as their base. Cut out the middleman and go straight to the bottle. It’s slippery, skin-friendly, and moisturizing.
9. Nourish cracked cuticles
Massaging coconut oil into your cuticles and the skin around your nails can bring some much-needed moisture to an often overlooked part of the body.
10. Relieve psoriasis
Apply coconut oil to relieve itchy, scaly skin caused by psoriasis.