Friday, August 23, 2013

That Time I Put Coconut Oil In My Hair

Over the past few months it seems like I've been stumbling upon article after article raving about the beauty-related benefits of coconut oil, most popularly discussing its use as a conditioner. So on a lazy Saturday when I had nothing better to do when I was a super motivated blogger on a quest to help my readers, I decided to give it a try. 

beauty-uses-for-coconut-oil

First of all, for anyone interested in using coconut oil, you should be able to pick it up at your typical grocery store. I went searching at Superstore (a Canadian chain) and eventually found Nutiva Organic Virgin Coconut Oil in the health food section. It took me a while to find it, seeing as how I am the furthest thing for a "health nut" and rarely wander into this area of the store, but there it was, my extra virgin preservative-free coconut oil, waiting for me next to Larabars and gluten-free pasta. (Clearly I grabbed the coconut oil and ran.)

After I shampooed my hair in the shower, I reached for the tub and thought, "Errr... what do I do now?" You think it'd be self-explanatory, right? Not quite. Depending on the temperature, coconut oil will either be in solid or liquid form. If it's solid, scrape off a little bit with your fingers and rub it around in the palm of your hands to heat up the product. If you're like me, loving surviving through the heat of summer without air conditioning, your tub of coconut oil turned liquid as soon as you left the grocery store and won't solidify until October. In that case, mix it around a bit then pour the tiniest amount of oil in the palm of your hand.

coconut-oil-in-hair
This is how much I *should* use with my medium-long hair

After conditioning my hair this way several times, I've learned to apply two small amounts (totalling 1 tablespoon) to my hair from midway to the ends only, never touching the roots. The amount of oil should not come close to the amount of regular conditioner you'd normally use. In fact, I'd say to use less than half your usual amount of conditioner, otherwise you'll learn just as I did that coconut oil doesn't rinse out very easily.

I raked through the ends of my hair with my fingers and waited about five minutes before rinsing. The oil smelled lovely and had me reminiscing about our honeymoon in Jamaica as I daydreamed about eating coconut macaroons and drinking water fresh out of the 'nut. Mmmm :)

Back to reality... I spent extra long rinsing out the oil as I definitely used a bit too much the day I took these pics. My hair is 100% dry, but as you can see it certainly doesn't look that way.

coconut-oil-conditioner

Even when I've used the perfect amount, my hair was noticeably oilier than usual, which is why I would recommend trying this out on a day off so you have a bit of time to de-oilify before jumping back into normal work/social life engagements, especially if you get a lil overzealous like me. That being said, my hair was definitely softer (like way softer) for the next couple of days after some coco-oil lovin'. To see how I ended up styling my hair that day, check out this outfit post.

I also really enjoy using coconut oil as a facial cleanser/moisturizer. It's super messy if you're trying to do it over the sink, but in the shower that doesn't really matter. I know it sounds counter-intuitive to rub oil on your face, I thought I was for sure going to break out, but it's amazing how soft it makes my skin feel and leaves it with a little glow. For a one-stop shop in the shower, I also use coconut oil in place of shaving cream and body lotion. Some people use it for makeup remover as well, but I don't find it to be very effective especially if I'm wearing eyeliner and/or waterproof mascara.

Curious about other beauty-related uses for coconut oil? Wellness Mama has a list of 101 uses right here. My next experiment? DIY lip exfoliator :D

Have you ever tried using coconut oil for anything besides cooking? What's your verdict?

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2 comments:

  1. Try adding baking soda and using it as a facial moisturizer/cleanser/scrub! I use it every other day to exfoliate :) I keep it in a little jar in the shower.
    Also - Costco sells HUGE tubs of it for under $20 now...

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    Replies
    1. That's a great idea! You have such beautiful skin too, so if you're suggesting it I will give it a shot ;)

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