There are carrier oils, and there are carrier oils, but coconut oil is a curly classic.
It's not without reason either. In every country coconuts can be found, people have been making their own DIY coconut oil products for centuries! In the here and now, new research has concluded that it is a nourishing way to replenish moisture to both hair and skin. It is loaded with healthy fatty acid complexes which are helpful in sealing in moisture and keeping hair strong, and skin supple. According to the Journal of Cosmetic Science, "Coconut oil, being a triglyceride of lauric acid (principal fatty acid), has a high affinity for hair proteins and, because of its low molecular weight and straight linear chain, is able to penetrate inside the hair shaft." Nice!
In addition to being super hydrating, it is also antibacterial which makes it great for certain skin concerns. In a study covered in the leading journal, Dermatitis, researchers found that virgin coconut oil was a successful means of treating not only dryness, but also reducing and removing Staphylococcus aureus which is an accumulation of harmful bacteria and fungi. Makes you wonder if you should start washing your hands with it...
Another benefit is that it's easy to apply in its semi-solid state and it dries relatively quickly across different hair and skin types since it is easily absorbed. The best thing about DIY coconut oil products is that you can honestly make a one ingredient solution for almost any issue you have. Coconut oil on its own can be applied to hair and skin for noticeable results. However, when you're looking to get fancy with it, here are four recipes well worth trying out.
Coconut Conditioning Mask
This is an easy way to keep your hair hydrated and elastic! Combine 1-2 teaspoons melted coconut oil, 2 teaspoons olive oil, and 1 teaspoon of honey. Stir until well blended. Apply to strands and put on a shower cap. After 30 minutes, rinse it out for glossy beautiful strands. If you've got a big beautiful head of curls, especially if they're high porosity, feel free to ratchet up the amounts of the materials in the same ratio you see here. Just don't let any of this goodness go to waste!
Tropical Acne Medicine
One of the best DIY coconut oil products is this super easy acne fighter! Since acne is caused partly by dryness, the moisturizing properties of coconut oil make it an ideal solution. The tea tree oil in this recipe also has natural antibacterial abilities to remove the bacteria which causes acne. But since essential oils can be a little harsh by themselves, using coconut oil as a carrier can be ideal for spot treatment! Combine 1/8 cup melted coconut oil with 1-5 drops of tea tree oil. Mix until well blended. Transfer to a clean container and store in a cool place. Apply as needed while your face is still damp from regular cleansing to problem areas to help reduce acne.
Island Love Lip Balm
Coconut oil works nicely as lip balm thanks to both the moisturizing ability and the nice sheen it creates. This recipe also uses beeswax which can work to make the end product firmer and less likely to end up as chin, neck, and collarbone balm as it melts with your body heat. Melt 1 tablespoon coconut oil, 1 tablespoon beeswax, and 1 teaspoon of olive oil and stir until blended. Transfer to clean lip balm containers. Allow to fully cool prior to use—haste makes slippery waste...unless you have wood floors that need polishing.
Soothing Shaving Cream
Coconut oil is great for a shaving cream since it keeps moisture on your legs and gives good slip to prevent cuts and razor burn. For this recipe, you only need the coconut oil and a few drops of your favorite essential oil for fragrance (no more than 3). Stir until well blended and store in a container with a lid. If you're feeling extra fancy, use a whisk or batter blender to get a little air into the oil for a whipped spreadable shaving experience! Don't forget to exfoliate beforehand so the coconut oil can get your new skin rather than the old.