Coconut oil for skin is probably one of the most hyped treatments and remedies in the past few years. And in most cases, anyone would tell you, do not believe the hype. But in the case of coconut oil, the hype is very much real.
Now, there are some precautions for usage, but coconut oil is one of the best things you can apply to your face.
Long gone are the days’ coconut oil was only good for cooking, baking, and salad dressings. Now, this natural oil has found its way to beauty treatments, as a great moisturizing oil.
Coconut oil a wide and diverse range of beauty uses, and we will talk about all of them.
- 1 What is coconut oil?
- 2 How coconut oil helps your skin?
- 3 How to use coconut oil for skin?
- 4 When to avoid coconut oil for skin?
What is coconut oil?
Before we get to the uses of coconut oil, let’s talk a little about the product. After all, you need to know what you are putting on your face.
Simply put, coconut oil is a highly saturated oil that is made by extracting the oil from raw coconuts or dried coconut kernels.
Coconut oil is solid at room temperature, but when heated, it can melt. Coconut oil has been used in cooking for many years, and lately, it has found its way to beauty treatments.
Most of the benefits of coconut oil come from the medium-chain fatty acids it has. Those are all a form of saturated fats, and they make up 65% of coconut oil’s composition.
These are the fatty acids you can find in coconut oil:
- Lauric acid
- Linoleic acid
- Myristic acid
- Palmitic acid
- Oleic acid
- Caprylic acid
- Stearic acid
In addition to saturated fat, coconut oil contains a small amount of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. One tablespoon of the oil contains 12g of saturated fat and 1g of unsaturated fats.
How coconut oil helps your skin?
Coconut oil is antimicrobial
Coconut oil has antimicrobial and antibacterial properties. Therefore, it can protect your skin against harmful microorganisms.
In most cases, these are the microorganisms that cause infections like acne. Simply applying the oil to your skin will prevent the growth of the organisms, and reduce the risk of infections by 50%.
Lauric acid, the main component of coconut oil, is one of the most effective fatty acids against blocking the growth of bacteria.
If you didn’t know it by now, now you will know, inflammation is the root of all evil and problems. Inflammation causes your body to act differently, and when in an inflamed state, your body’s immune system is down.
Chronic inflammation can cause many skin disorders, including even eczema and psoriasis. Coconut oil has anti-inflammatory properties, and can easily calm your skin. You can use it against skin conditions, but also when your skin is irritated and inflamed.
Coconut oil helps with inflammation by improving the antioxidant status of your skin, stabilizing free radicals and neutralizing the atoms that cause inflammation.
Treating acne with coconut oil is a bit of a controversial topic. Why? Because it works in some cases, and it doesn’t it others. If you have oily skin, do not use coconut oil on your acne.
However, if you have normal skin, coconut oil can eliminate causes of acne like dryness and inflammation.
Furthermore, we said before coconut oil has antimicrobial properties. And in most cases, acne is a reaction to bacteria in the skin.
One of the main benefits of coconut oil is its moisturizing ability. Coconut can lock in moisture in your skin, create a barrier, and prevent your skin from drying. In some studies, coconut oil has shown the same effectiveness as mineral oil.
As a moisturizing agent, coconut oil can be used to treat eczema, skin condition that often causes dry and itchy skin.
How to use coconut oil for skin?
There are many ways you can use coconut oil for skin, starting from moisturizer, cleanser, as a face massage and more. With that in mind, here is a quick breakdown of all coconut oil skin uses.
You can use coconut oil as both cleanser for your face, and makeup remover. Massage the oil into the skin, and then remove with a flannel cloth.
Then, do a second cleanse with a skin type-specific cleanser. This method will give your skin enough time to reap the benefits of coconut oil, without coating and possibly clogging the skin.
As a face massage
Facial massages are great for blood flow and circulation. They get your lymphatic system working, and enhance the glow of your skin.
Apply some pressure, and use enough oil so your skin is slippery. Use firm and round massage movements on your face for two to three minutes. Then, wash your skin with lukewarm water to remove the excess oil.
As a moisturizer
The primary use of coconut oil for skin is moisturizing. It works on dry and itchy skin. Just keep a jar of extra virgin oil at your hand, and put some on your skin after washing your face.
Do not apply too much oil, you do not want to clog your pores. Just a dab is enough to cover your entire face. Do not wash afterward.
As a face wash
Because of its antibacterial and antimicrobial properties, coconut oil can be used as a face wash as well. Most women use it as a face wash in the evening.
Rub the oil around the face and neck in circular motions before going to bed. That will give you a gentle massage. Then, wash the residue with a gentle face wash.
If you want to get the most benefits of coconut oil, you need a facial mask. And after all, we all love some pampering. This healing mask needs to be applied to a clean face. Therefore, make sure to wash your face before.
Mix a pinch of turmeric, a teaspoon of lemon juice, a teaspoon of raw honey, and a tablespoon of melted coconut oil. Once you have a smooth mixture, apply to the face. Leave the mask for 15 minutes, and then wash with lukewarm water.
There are many hydrating eye creams. But if you like something natural, and free of toxins and chemicals, coconut oil can work as a night cream as well.
When you have dry under the eyes patches, apply some coconut oil to rejuvenate your complexion. Just a light layer of the oil will be enough. Use the ring finger to avoid applying too much pressure. To the treatment before going to bed.
When to avoid coconut oil for skin?
Coconut oil is generally considered safe for usage on your skin. However, there are situations when you would be better off with something else.
That being said, people with oily skin will find coconut oil too heavy and comedogenic for their face. If you are wondering what does that mean, it means that coconut oil can clog your pores if you have oily skin.
Therefore, people with oily skin should avoid using coconut oil. Trial and error is the way to determine if coconut oil works for you. But once you try, if you notice redness, or even pimples appearing on your face, stop using it.
People with sensitive skin should also try a patch test to see if the oil causes any irritation. With that in mind, cooking with coconut oil is safe for all people.