Coconut not only enriches our kitchen. The oil of the tropical nut also tastes good on skin and hair. Because it is a real beauty all-rounder when it comes to a radiant complexion, baby soft skin and shiny hair.
In this article:
- What does coconut oil do for skin and hair?
- How healthy is coconut oil for the skin?
- What can you do with coconut oil?
- How do I apply coconut oil to the skin?
- Why is coconut oil so good for the hair?
- How does coconut oil stimulate hair growth?
- Which coconut oil is the best?
- What is the good thing about coconut milk?
If anyone knows what people want to know, it’s Google. And that’s exactly why we asked the world’s largest search engine what is actually at the top of the list of beauty ingredients. Coconut is by far the number one – far, far ahead of lavender, olive oil and hyaluronic acid. “Since 2011, interest in coconut and coconut-based ingredients has risen steadily,” says industry manager Frauke Cooper, who analyses beauty trends at Google Europe.
Compared to the previous year, there was a 15 percent increase in demand for what you can do with this exotic fruit. So it’s high time to clarify the most important questions about the beautiful nut:
How to make natural cosmetics yourself Coconut oil nourishes the hair without weighing it down © Pixel-Shot / Shutterstock.com
What does coconut oil do for skin and hair?
The best thing about coconut oil is the lauric acid. It makes up about 44 percent of the content, is quite rare in nature and has antiviral and antibacterial effects. Indigenous peoples from Asia or the Caribbean have known about its great properties for ages, where the cold-pressed oil is in great demand, especially for skin and hair. In Thailand, the pure fat is used by masseuses because it cools, is a very good radical scavenger and soothes stressed skin.
After application, the ingredients unfold very well and lie down on the skin without leaving an oily film. This makes coconut oil very well tolerated, especially by dry and sensitive, but also by impure and oily skin. Coconut oil is also said to have an anti-wrinkle effect.
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How healthy is coconut oil for the skin?
“The main components of vegetable fats used in cosmetic applications are triglycerides,” explains Tamar Vingron, head of research and development at FETTE Pharma, “The free fatty acids resulting from triglycerides are part of the lipid or barrier layer in the uppermost layer of the epidermis, i.e. the epidermis. When applied to the skin, the primary skin care property of vegetable oils is that they supplement the lipid layer and can, for example, balance scaly skin”.
In products containing coconut oil, for example, this leads to the well-known noticeable smoothing effect. Vingron: “Vegetable triglycerides also have the effect that the transepidermal water loss of the skin decreases moderately, i.e. the skin can – in contrast to products with mineral oils – still ‘breathe'”.
What can you do with coconut oil?
Coconut oil is available in many variations, e.g. as cream, shampoo or bath additive © 279photo Studio / Shutterstock.com
In the kitchen it has long been known as a healthy alternative: The easily digestible fat is lower in calories than other oils and even boosts the metabolism. But the cosmetic properties are also impressive: coconut oil moisturizes the skin very well, pads out wrinkles and can even help with skin problems. For example, if you are prone to dry lips, simply dab the creamy fat on and you will soon have kiss-soft lips again. But coconut oil has other health-promoting properties as well.
Even small wounds or chapped skin have been observed to improve, which is why the chances of healing neurodermatitis or psoriasis can be increased by the pure natural product. Even pimples disappear faster due to the antibacterial effect. If you like to take a bath, you can melt a spoonful of coconut oil in warm water – and thus save yourself the trouble of applying cream later. A portion of coconut oil is also good for the hair: it gives it a particularly beautiful shine.
Curlers, however, should only knead the oil into the tips in pure form.
How do I apply coconut oil on the skin?
Vegetable oils integrate themselves wonderfully into the material structure of the skin. “Because of their similarity to the skin’s own fats, the nutrients contained in the oil are easily absorbed”, explains Tamar Vingron, “Coconut oil is rich in fats (approx. 70%), proteins, vitamins and numerous other nutrients. But beware: as with most active ingredients, excessive use of coconut oil can have the opposite effect on the skin. So ‘more’ not also ‘better’.”
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Why is coconut oil so good for the hair?
Coconut oil is one of the hair oils that beautifully nourishes the hair without weighing it down. Coconut oil based on coconut oil usually costs less than the likewise very effective hair oils based on argan, avocado or jojoba. Like them, it does not contain parabens, paraffins, sulphates and silicones, which can cause long-term damage to the hair and the environment.
The chemical nature of coconut oil allows its valuable components such as lauric acid, antioxidants and fatty acids to penetrate to the inside of the hair where they can develop their full effect. Coconut oil is also able to bind proteins so that they can upholster and strengthen the hair structure. Coconut oil not only gives the hair more shine. It also has a repairing effect, as a result of which the hair appears full and healthy.
In the case of split ends and hair breakage, hair gets its bounce back, e.g. through an overnight hair treatment made of coconut oil. Tip: To protect the pillow, you should put on a shower cap.
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How does coconut oil stimulate hair growth?
only on a healthy scalp the hair can grow well. If your scalp is out of balance, coconut oil can improve the growth conditions. The antibacterial and anti-fugal lauric acid soothes and regenerates the scalp. With its help, fungi and other negative influences on the scalp are neutralized. Do not expect a Walle mane overnight, but it is definitely worth a try!
Which coconut oil is the best?
Coconut oil is also used as a fragrance oil in wellness institutes © Robert Przybysz / Shutterstock.com
In contrast to other oils, coconut oil is quite insensitive to heat, light and oxygen – depending on the quality, it therefore has a shelf life of over 2 years. Virgin coconut oils in organic quality are best. They are harvested and processed by hand in organic family businesses. When buying, you can be sure that these organic oils are natural and not refined, bleached or deodorized.
In industrial processing, toxic chemicals are often used to extend the shelf life or to harden the original liquid consistency. These chemicals quickly turn the coconut oil into an unhealthy fat. In this case, the higher price for organic quality is actually worth it.
What is the good thing about coconut milk?
It is just as healthy and in great demand when it comes to nutrition, cosmetics and beauty. However, coconut milk has absolutely nothing to do with the liquid from inside the coconut, which can even be drunk directly from it – even if many people think so. No, coconut milk must first be produced: The flesh of the ripe brown nut is ground, squeezed and mixed with water to make milk.
The quick energy supplier for the body contains a lot of fat – and this is exactly what makes coconut milk a popular cosmetic ingredient for skin, lips and hair.
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Coconut oil is a particularly valuable oil for the care of skin and hair – and is even relatively inexpensive. Dry hair tips, rough lips or chapped cuticles? The fat from the nut will fix’s!