12 Great Uses for Coconut Oil
Coconut oil is being talked about a lot these days, and rightfully so. The many uses for coconut oil were some of the first things I discovered when I personally made the switch to a healthier lifestyle. I was amazed by what I found. Here are 12 of my favorites:
- Skin Moisturizer: Toss that bottle of lotion in the trash because coconut oil works great as a skin moisturizer. A little bit goes a long way though, so be sure to not over do it. Your skin will of course be oily after applying it, but give it a few minutes and it will dry completely.
- Coffee Creamer: Combining coconut oil with coffee gained a lot of popularity with the Bulletproof Coffee movement. But really, coconut oil makes for a healthy and delicious alternative to your usual sugar laden coffee creamer. I’m big on the texture of my foods. If you’re anything like me, you’ll want to avoid sipping on a “clumpy” cup of joe in the mornings. The key to avoiding clumps is to mix it while the coffee is piping hot. This will ensure that the oil melts completely and is easier to mix. It’s an added step, but a blender works wonders for emulsifying the oil completely and it’s totally worth it.
- Cooking: One of the best ways to reap the benefits of coconut oil is to use it as a substitute for other less desirable fats. Whether you’re frying, baking or just looking to spread something a little healthier on your toast, coconut oil is a wonderful alternative.
- Oil Pulling: Put simply, oil pulling is when you swish oil around in your mouth for about 20 minutes. It’s an ancient Ayurvedic practice that detoxifies the teeth and gums and promotes overall oral health. A variety of oils can be used, such as avocado or sesame oil, but personally, I prefer the taste of coconut oil.
- Ointment for Slight Scrapes/Burns: Coconut oil has antibacterial properties and can be used on minor scrapes and burns. To help soothe burns, just mix it with a little bit of honey! Ironically, this mixture can also be used to provide relief from bee stings.
- Carrier or Base Oil: Body and personal hygiene products are a tremendous source of exposure to harmful chemicals. Fortunately, there’s a DIY option for pretty much every kind of body or personal hygiene product, and coconut oil works great in all of them. Chapstick, Toothpaste, lotion, deodorant, body butters, you name it! Coconut oil is an ideal choice as a carrier or base oil for these products because the texture and consistency will hold everything together extremely well.
- Shaving Cream: I rock a full beard these days so I haven’t used a razor in years. However, I do remember how frustrating it was that regular shaving cream washed away so easily. Coconut oil is hydrophobic, meaning water will bead right off. So apply coconut oil like you would shaving cream and enjoy a clean shave that will leave your skin soft, moisturized and razor bump/burn free. Speaking of beards though; coconut oil can also be used to help condition or shape beards and mustaches!
- Makeup Remover: You may have guessed it from the beard comment, but I don’t actually use makeup. But the women in my life do! And they swear by using coconut oil as a makeup remover. Coconut oil will gently (a huge benefit considering most removers can be harsh on your skin) remove all of your makeup while simultaneously moisturizing your face.
- Diaper Cream: Nothing will make you read the ingredients label more than a little one in your life. What’s something you apply to your baby’s skin every day? Diaper cream. Coconut oil has antifungal, antibacterial, and antiviral properties that make it a perfect replacement. If you want to take it a step futher, whip coconut oil and shea butter together to add even more soothing effects. To apply, use just as much as you would with a conventional cream.
- Massage Oil: Who doesn’t love a massage? Rather than using a synthetic oil or heavy lotion, just melt down some coconut oi! Feel free to add in any of your favorite essential oils for a relaxing aromatic experience.
- Vapor Rub: I got turned on to essential oils a little over a year ago and continue to fall in love with them more and more every day. One of my favorite ways I learned to use them was as a sort of vapor rub. (Thing Vicks.) If you’re congested at night, mix a couple drops of peppermint oil with some coconut oil and apply it on your chest and under your nose. You could also use lavender oil to help promote a good night’s sleep.
- A Shiny Coat: I know, I know, this doesn’t apply to us humans. But pets deserve the benefits of coconut oil as much as the rest of us! Coconut oil provides a number of positive affects for our animal companions. Feed your pet a tablespoon or two a day to promote a healthy, shiny coat. Dry, cracked paws? Coconut oil, one again, comes to the rescue.
These are only a dozen uses for coconut oil! There are hundreds! Coconut oil can be used several ways whether topically, hygienically, in the kitchen, on your pets, or in a variety of ways in your personal life. Keep an eye out for future posts on further benefits and uses that can be had from coconut oil because there’s definitely more to come! How do you use coconut oil in your own life? Let me know in the comments.