5 Unexpected Ways to Use Coconut Oil
Last week, my 7 month-old broke out with her first diaper rash. It was sore and inflamed and I couldn’t seem to get it under control with normally suggested methods. Several moms in my mommy’s group recommended coconut oil. I was skeptical but feeling desperate so I gave it a try and to my surprise, it worked. Her rash cleared up in a matter of days. My husband later informed me that I am late to the coconut oil party, but I’m here now and I’m on board!
As it turns out, you can use coconut oil for just about anything beauty and health related (cooking is a bonus). Here are five uses for coconut oil that I found especially interesting.
1. Diaper Rash Cream
Make sure that the baby’s bottom is clean and dry. Once the area is prepped, you can just warm a little solid coconut oil between your fingers and rub it on. The antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory components of coconut oil help sooth and heal the rash.
2. Eye Make-up Remover
Warm up coconut oil in your hands, rub in a circular motion gently on your eyes and wipe with a cotton pad or ball and off comes your make-up. Once you’ve removed the oil, you can rinse with warm water, and then re-apply a little coconut oil as a moisturizing under-eye cream.
3. Cold Sores/ Lip Balm
Coconut oil smells great and is extremely moisturizing, so it works great as a lip balm. You just need to cut off a small solid piece and find a nice container with a re-sealable lid, pop it in your bag and you’re good to go! It is also believed to be helpful in curing cold sores because of its antimicrobial properties. The research is still out on this one, but it can’t hurt to try.
4. Deep Conditioner
Coconut oil is a natural, deep conditioner for dry hair. Apply on damp hair and leave in for 20-30 minutes and then wash out. Remember, it’s oil so you don’t want to get it on your clothes. It also works wonders on detangling hair (and it smells so yummy).
5. Body Lotion
You can use coconut oil on any part of your body as a lotion. A spoonful goes a long way, so no need to overdo it. And don’t worry, the oily feeling goes away quickly once it absorbs fully into your skin. If your feet are dry and cracked from a long winter, you can slather them up, slap on some socks and let the oil do its job.
You can pick up a container of virgin coconut oil in the natural section of just about any grocery store but there are two things you need to look out for.
First, you want a virgin coconut oil as you want to make sure it is unrefined and has not been hydrogenated, bleached or deodorized. Secondly, you want to ensure it is cold pressed (instead of a heat-based extraction) because if coconut oil is heated past its smoking point, it can lead to the formation of carcinogens.