It's everywhere. Coconut oil seems to be super trendy right now, but it's been around 4-eva. You can use it to soften skin, you can use it in your food to help with digestion, and I haven't clarified, but I've heard rumor that you can use it as currency in some countries.
Okay JK on that last part, but it's pretty versatile stuff.
My aunt and cousin run an Herb & Health Foods store, so I'm lucky enough to have access to the really good stuff. If you're using it for any health purposes, you want to make sure you get Certified Organic, Virgin Coconut Oil. Another tip I learned from my Aunt is that you do NOT want to microwave it to soften it. The microwaves will break down the molecular structure of the oil and turns it into a bad fat. Instead, leave the jar in a bath of warm water until it softens the oil.
Last year around this time I ran across a recipe for a sugar scrub using coconut oil. I tried it, and fell in love. I keep it on hand in my bathroom and use it for a hand scrub when my hands are extra dry. I also use it as a substitute for shaving cream. *Ah-mazing* Your legs will be super silky!
Just soak your legs in the tub for a good 5-10 minutes after your shower. Then take a few minutes to rub-rub-rub your legs with the scrub. It will exfoliate your skin incredibly. Use your hands or a cup to barely wash away the sugar, leaving the oil on your skin, and use that to shave with. You will not be disappointed!
I keep seeing links on Pinterest about using Coconut Oil in your hair, so a few weeks ago I decided to give it a try. My hair is permed, so when I fix my hair curly it gets mousse, curl spray and hair spray. After a day of wearing my hair down and a few days of wearing it up, this is what it typically looks like.
Very dry and brittle, as you can see. (And as you can see, my curls turn into dreads if I leave it up too long!) So, going off a tutorial I found on Pinterest, I set out to see if Coconut Oil could do anything for this hot mess of hair!
Because I was going to be massaging the oil into my hair, I didn't need to pre-soften the oil. I just scooped some into my hand and it immediately started to soften by the warmth in my hands.
Because my hair is curly, and already had product in it, it was a task getting my fingers through my hair enough to coat it with the oil and not have clumps here and there. But I succeeded and twisted it up in a bun to dry. I ended up using about three big handfuls.
I left the oil in for about 30 minutes without heat, then spent five minutes slowly going over my head with a hairdryer on a low setting. Then it was time to rinse it out! I took some time to just rinse the oil out without any shampoo. After I felt like most of it was gone I used shampoo/conditioner like I normally would.
I let it dry naturally (which takes all day with my hair) and used a straightener when it was dry. If I want perfectly straight hair, it typically takes me about an hour and a half to straighten my super thick hair. Because it was so soft, I didn't spend much time straightening it. Maybe 20-30 minutes.
Look at the difference! Granted, my hair before had curl and this doesn't, but I can definitely say it helped. My hair was super soft and felt much less dry and brittle.
So, there ya have it. Coconut oil really does help with dry hair.
And because I'm a dork, here is an ode to coconut oil in the form of a few haiku.
Oh, coconut oil,
You never cease to amaze.
Will you run for prez?
Skin so soft and clean
Hair so lush and moisturized
What can you not do?
How I love you so.
What else can I use you for?
Oh, coconut oil.
Have you used coconut oil for anything special? I'd love to find more ways to use my endless supply! :)
-Jenn (With 2 N's)