I’ve shared these before, on the Scottish Mum Blog, but this is a great place to remind myself, and find a new audience as time goes on.
Coconut is something I’ve always been quite passionate about. I’ve used it since I was in my teens, when there was only one shop to buy it from. Now, it’s almost everywhere, in glass jars or metal tubs, or sold at many times the price in supermarkets for cooking with.
Saying that, although I used to buy mine in quantities of 6 large tubs or more, the simplicity of finding it in the supermarket for me, seems to have taken over.
Extra virgin organic and raw coconut oil is solid at room temperature, but melts very quickly when heat is added. I’ve just learned to live with the fact that the solid state of my tub of oil can fluctuate greatly, especially if I leave it out on a hot day, which thankfully, isn’t too often in the UK.
The smell is what draws me to the oil I love, and it came into my life as a sixteen year old in Greece. I’d got burnt by the sun and my hair began to frazzle. It was a Greek lady who came up to me, felt my hair and told me to go and buy a tub of coconut oil to rub into my hair and leave it overnight. Old wives tales are sometimes very useful indeed. I’m lucky enough that people often ask me what I use, and I love telling them about coconuts and how good they are.
Before using coconut oil on any skin or body part, make sure you do an allergy response at least 24 hours before so that you know there won’t be any negative reactions to it. I’m not a doctor, so ask their advice if you’re not sure about using it on your body. An inside elbow patch is probably a good place to try it out.
People say coconut oil has anti-fungal properties and can be used as an anti-inflammatory and anti-parasitic. I’ve never used it for anything like that, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it helped with all of them.
Why more people don’t cook with coconut oil, I have no idea. I suspect some are cottoning onto the good uses of it as the price is beginning to come down in supermarkets for the good stuff. I love it to add to fried fish that I’m not dry frying and to give a lovely coating for things I’d rather not stick to pans. It has a high smoke point so it’s great for baking and replacing butter to make a recipe dairy free.
2 – Skin Cream
Yes really. I’ve had years where the only skin care regimen I’ve had is to slap on coconut oil twice a day. I now alternate that with oilatum in the morning and the coconut oil at night as my skin is really very very dry and can break out in dry patches. I’ve not had any dry patch breakouts since I started using coconut oil, so for me, it’s a no brainer to use it.
3 – Make Up Remover
Are you out of baby oil, or eye make up remover liquid? If so, your tub of coconut oil can come in extremely handy.
4 – Baby Rash Cream
Slimy to apply it may be, but coconut oil makes a for a fabulously soothing balm for sore babies bums. Just make sure they’re not allergic before using it.
5 – Hair Conditioner and Deep Nourisher
This is what I did in Greece. Slap it on and then pop on a towel and keep it on while you sleep. It will take some amount of rinsing out the next morning, but your hair will feel amazing a couple of days later. If you’re too wary of leaving it on all night, just pop it on for an hour and take it off then.
6 – Stretch Marks
People tell me that it helps to prevent stretch marks if you rub it directly on your skin when you’re pregnant.
7 – Sun Protection
I believe it’s a natural sun protection factor of 4, but you’d have to research that for yourself.
8 – Home Made Soaps
Add it to your home-made smellies and it’ll add a fabulous moisturising effect.
9 – Home Made Soy Candles
Add it to home-made candles and the smell of your soy candles may well be enhanced and the texture improved.
10 – Massage Oil
It’s an oil. It’s more practical to have one oil with multi functional purposes than to buy lots of different oils for different purposes. Some people can’t take the smell of coconut oil as a massage, but if you do, it’s perfect for it.
11 – Lip Balm
Buy wee lip balm tubs and put some in for a lovely natural lip cream.
12 – Eczema
Helps to improve and sooth dry skin and skin problems like eczema.
13 – Energy Source
I am told it doesn’t store calories as fat in our bodies and is wrongly labelled as one of the bad fats.
14 – Cradle Cap
Soothes babies skin and flaking misery by moisturising and helps remove the horrible itching.
15 – Acne
I didn’t have acne as I always had dry skin, but people tell me that it helps with acne. It can cause an increase in the outbreak over the first 5 days so I’d recommend anyone wishing to try it makes sure they know what the potential is before they try it.