Extra virgin coconut oil (EVCO) has a myriad of health benefits. When eaten, it can help regulate blood sugar, fight heart disease, speed up weight loss, and improve the immune system. Used topically, it can dramatically recover the condition of both skin and hair, preventing wrinkles and making your tresses stronger and shinier.
One of the best things about coconut oil benefits is the fact that it eradicates the need for some of the most toxic, potentially harmful and drying “beauty” concoctions out there on the market. Look on the back of any one of your shampoo or conditioner bottles and you will almost without fail find alcohol of some sort or another as one of the main ingredients. How does adding alcohol to a product that is supposed to moisturize hydrate anything?
Another common culprit in most beauty products is petroleum- despite being a known carcinogen that potentially causes cancer, it’s in almost everything. Seriously, it’s in almost everything; toothpaste, makeup, lotions, deodorant, clothing, foods…
EVCO is a natural and effective way to lessen your exposure to toxins without having to sacrifice any superficial benefits of a beauty routine.
It is important to choose a product that is cold pressed, unrefined, organic, and basically as minimally processed as possible. I highly recommend Natures Way Coconut Oil – Extra Virgin, as it is as minimally processed as possible and also has no trans or hydrogenated fats (which is especially important if you are going to be using it for cooking or as a supplement). It smells fantastic, but the smell quickly fades once you have applied it to skin or hair.
How to use extra virgin coconut oil for skin
You may be taken aback initially because the oil actually comes in a solid form. In order to be able to use it as a natural moisturizer, you need to melt it a bit, first.
All you need to do is fill a sink a couple of inches deep with warm water. Set your EVCO container in the warm water and let it set for at least 3 minutes. When it has warmed, you will be able to pour the oil out of the jar. For sanitary reasons, it’s a good idea to have 2 different jars; one for cooking and one for topical use.
Pour the liquid oil into your hands and apply liberally anywhere you want to moisturize your skin.
Surprisingly, you can use it on your face without worrying about breakouts. In fact, many people have been able to see some success in treating acne and eczema with coconut oil. This is likely due to it’s natural antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral properties.
Another feature you might not expect from using an oil topically is that when applied to the skin, EVCO does not leave a thick, greasy or overbearing residue. It actually absorbs quite quickly and is not uncomfortable to wear under makeup or clothing.
How to use extra virgin coconut oil for hair
EVCO is excellent for increasing hair’s strength and vitality, and therefore it’s appearance of being shiny and free of splint ends and damage.
The exact way that you use EVCO on hair is going to depend on the texture of your tresses and what kind of styling you’re after.
For example, those with thin, fine hair would benefit from using this natural moisturizer as a conditioner that you apply one to two hours before doing a regular wash. To use this way, dampen hair slightly, and then apply warmed, liquefied oil to strands, particularly focusing on distribution on the ends where the oldest part of the strand is and where the most damage is typically found. Using it this way would make for healthier, more robust tresses that are more resistant to breakage and softer to the touch.
If you have a thick, coarse, or highly unmanageable mane, you can use EVCO after hair straightening or as an aid to relax tight curls. Depending on how dry your locks are (the more dry it is, the more liberally you can use EVCO for hair and the less you have to worry about washing it out in order to keep it from weighing it down), you can use it as a washout conditioner, as a leave-in conditioner, or as a way to make strands glisten or to stay straighter for longer, via a more natural (chemical free) method.
Adding this natural oil to your routine in place of overly processed, chemical ridden products is a great way to lessen your exposure to potentially hazardous substances, and it works as good as, if not far better than, any other comparable man made option out there.