Ways Coconut Oil Can Save Your Skin and Hair
The Benefits of Coconut Oil for Hair and Skin
Coconut oil is used in a variety of hair and skincare products including cosmeceuticals, cosmetic products that have drug-like benefits and are intended as a bridge between the physicianâ€™s office and traditional cosmetics. While all drugs undergo a premarket review and approval by the FDA, cosmetics do not have to fulfill this requirement. Though the FDA considers cosmeceuticals to be cosmetics, many of these products have actions similar to drugs, as they effectively prevent skin changes and some skin disease with their active ingredients.
Along with canola oil, petrolatum, and mineral oil, coconut oil is commonly used in cosmetics and cosmeceuticals to calm itchy, dry skin and moisturize as a creamy, lotion-like oil. When buying coconut oil, it is recommended that you look for 100 percent coconut oil in solid form. Hereâ€™s how to get the benefits of coconut oil at home:
- How to use coconut oil for hair: Use as a pre-shampoo conditioner. Just rub a small amount of coconut oil into the dry hair and let it do its work for 20 to 30 minutes. Wash and condition hair as usual. You can also tame the frizzies. Rub Â½ teaspoon coconut in your hair after styling. The oil will calm down dryness and the frizzies and give your hair a wonderful fragrance.
- How to use coconut oil for skin: Moisten dry lips. Rub coconut oil on your lips and then rinse it off. Coat again with the oil to keep lips moist and soft. Also, fight fungus on your feet. Did you know that coconut oil has natural anti-fungal properties? It makes a great moisturizer for your legs, feet and heels. Use it daily to keep your feet smooth and prevent foot fungus.
â€œLook for extra-virgin coconut oil that has not been hydrogenated, bleached, or refined in any way or [has] any fragrance or dyes added to it,â€ advises Audrey Kunin, MD, a dermatologist and the creator of the DermaDoctor skin-care line. So, check the label before buying a bottle â€” it should say that no fragrances, flavors, or coloring have been added. Heal dry skin, strengthen weak hair, and reap the beauty benefits of coconut oil and more with these easy at-home coconut oil treatments.
Use Coconut Oil for Skin to Rehydrate
Create a spa-like experience at home by whipping up this skin-softening treatment that also contains oats, a soothing ingredient.
Mix 2 to 3 tablespoons of oats and coconut butter (the solid form of coconut oil) and place it in a reusable muslin bag (you can easily find the bags on Amazon.com or Etsy.com). Then heat it in the microwave for 30 seconds or until the mixture becomes a thick paste, says Vivian Villamizar, spa manager at Renew the Spa at the James Royal Palm Hotel in Miami. â€œ[The bag] may be massaged, rolled, and compressed all around the body,â€ Villamizar says. â€œThe active ingredients from the oats and the coconut oil will help restore your skinâ€™s pH levels, leaving your skin silky smooth.â€
Repair Damaged Hair While You Sleep
â€œBefore going to bed, apply virgin coconut oil onto your hair,â€ suggests Angelo David Pisacreta, a celebrity hairstylist and the owner of the Angelo David Salon in New York City. Rub the coconut oil into the palms of your hands and work your way along the hair shaft from the roots to the ends. Follow by combing through with a wide-tooth comb, then put your hair in a ponytail or bun and cover it with a shower cap before bed. In the morning, rinse with shampoo and conditioner.
â€œRaw organic coconut oil for hair is best,â€ says Sarah Potempa, another celebrity hairstylist. â€œOftentimes it solidifies in the jar, so itâ€™s best to put it in a small microwave-safe bowl for 30 seconds until it liquefies.â€ Let the coconut oil cool before you apply it.
Coconut Oil May Make Your Mouth Healthier
Want to get the benefits of oil pulling? Swish 1 to 2 teaspoons of a vegetable- based oil (coconut, sesame, or olive) in your mouth for 20 minutes, spit it out, rinse with warm water, and brush well after rinsing, says Marc Lowenberg, DDS, a dentist at Lowenberg, Lituchy & Kantor in New York City.
How to Use Coconut Oil for Hair to Tame the Frizzies
Is your hair a poufy mess? Get the benefits of coconut oil by using a small amount in your hair for instant control. Put a dime-size amount on your fingers and then run it through your hair to put frizz and flyaways in their place.
Taking a tropical vacation this winter to escape the cold? Use coconut oil for hair to prevent your hair from frying in the heat. â€œIf youâ€™re going to the pool or the beach, itâ€™s best to leave coconut oil in your hair,â€ says Potempa. â€œThis creates a barrier between your hair and the drying sun, chlorine, or saltwater and keeps it conditioned and healthy.â€
Prevent Toenail Infections With Coconut Oil for Skin
The benefits of coconut oil are many. Coconut oil contains antibacterial and antifungal properties, says Skyy Hadley, a celebrity manicurist and the owner of the As U Wish Nail Spa in Hoboken, New Jersey, making it the perfect ingredient to use to prevent toenail infections and foot fungus.
Try coconut oil for skin before your next pedicure: Pour coconut oil into an empty jar or small bowl until itâ€™s halfway full, then add 2 tablespoons of honey and mix in 1 tablespoon of sugar until the sugar is completely immersed in the oil, explains Hadley. â€œTake a couple of spoonfuls of the scrub and work it into your legs and feet to fully exfoliate, sloughing away dead skin and smoothing out calluses, cracked heels, and rough spots,â€ she says.
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