Coconut Oil$ - 1020
- Moisturises and nourishes like no other product can
- The only natural oil that penetrates deeply
- Cheap yet super effective
- Many possible uses
- Some people don't like the smell
- Can give an oily look if used in excess or not washed out properly
Since I love keeping my dry, frizzy locks as long as possible, but have very fine and fragile hair, it needs a lot of TLC and proper maintenance to prevent me from looking like I was just attacked by a lawnmower.
I’ve already given some tips in Keep Frizz at Bay, but the one thing my hair has been most grateful for is without a doubt the coconut oil I treat it to every once in a while.
Coconut oil has been proven to be one of the only natural oils that penetrates deeply into the hair and strengthens it from within, instead of just temporarily coating the hair as most other oils do. The reason for this is (alongside some other variables) that its short-chain fatty acids and triglyceride levels are ideal. Long-chain lipids (like those in Jojoba oil) are too big to penetrate the hair. Also, oils that are high in monounsaturated fats tend to penetrate better than polyunsaturated fats.
In addition, coconut oil has protein preserving properties and helps make your hair more water-repellant (as is the case in naturally healthy hair), meaning your hair won’t swell as much when wet, leading to less damage and breakage.
- Using it as a pre-wash treatment on dry hair helps prevent dehydration whilst somewhat protecting the hair from shampoo detergents. How to: Leave it in for several hours before washing: in an hour, hair can absorb about 15% of its weight in coconut oil, and after leaving it in overnight, this increases to about 20-25%.
- Alternatively, it can also be used as a hot oil treatment. Heating the oil slightly will improve penetration, but be careful not to overheat, as this would only damage your hair. How to: Apply slightly heated coconut oil to clean, damp hair, wrap your hair in a warm (wet) towel or plastic cap, and sit under a hooded drier or steamer or for half an hour before washing it out.
Cheap, natural and effective, coconut oil can do wonders for curly, frizzy hair. It will become more flexible, which reduces breakage and helps puts the oomph back in your bounce.
Other uses include using it as a cooking tool full of vitamins, as a gentle makeup remover, moisturiser and sugar scrub ingredient. It is said to help with conditions from acne to eczema, psoriasis, inflammation, and herpes. It also contains actual magic. Luckily we don’t believe everything on the Internet, and I doubt it would help on severe eczema or herpes. Also beware when using it on acne prone skin, since it can be comedogenic (i.e. pore blocking). Either way, dermatologists are starting to confirm its benefits too:
Research has shown coconut oil to “hydrate as well as mineral oil and reduce bacterial skin colonization of dangerous Staph aureus infections,” says Dr. Cynthia Bailey, a dermatologist in Sebastopol, Calif. Many of her patients prefer chemical-free products, and she has found coconut oil to be effective in treating eczema, dermatitis and skin inflammation. “It’s also economical and lasts forever if you keep it in the fridge.”