Coconut oil is well known for its health and beauty benefits and in the last few years has become a staple in many homes, being used in home cooking, home beauty products and home remedies. But how can it really benefit your skin? What specific skin complaints can coconut oil combat and how do you use it?
Acne and Acne Scars
Acne is caused by a build-up of sebum and blocked sebum glands. When bacteria clog the sebum glands, the result is inflammation, redness, pain and swelling. Coconut oil is fantastic at fighting infection. It contains two of the most powerful antimicrobial agents, Capric Acid and Lauric Acid. Both of these are also found in breast milk, where they are vital in helping newborn babies fight infection and build a strong immune system. Without microbes, antibacterial infections cannot thrive. So simply applying coconut oil to the skin is enough to combat acne. Once the blockage has been cleared, the high Vitamin E content of coconut oil will help the skin to heal, clear blockages and help the sebum glands to function properly.
Coconut oil is easily absorbed, meaning it goes directly to the root of the problem without delay. Applying the oil directly to the skin is the most effective way of using coconut oil, though some experts also suggest that you supplement your diet with 2-5 tablespoons of coconut oil each day. This is easily done when cooking curry, sauces or even to add a little fragrant taste to a healthy homemade smoothie.
If you are suffering from dry, itchy, dehydrated skin then coconut oil will bring immediate relief as well as softening your skin. Whether your dry skin is linked to eczema, your natural skin type or environmental elements such as central heating, coconut oil is a great way to get moisture back into your skin.
Our skin is so absorbent that it makes sense to only apply things that we would be happy to eat. Coconut oil will hydrate your skin, as well as plumpening it out to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. There is also some evidence to show that coconut oil can fight against free radical formation, meaning it may even help protect against skin cancer. Of course, this does not mean you should avoid using sunblock. However, using coconut oil as a moisturiser could well help in your fight against skin cancer and melanoma.
Coconut oil is immediately soothing which makes it the ideal thing to apply to rashes. As a rash is usually caused by an allergic reaction, it makes sense to use something gentle and natural to treat it. The soothing effect of coconut oil will mean that the itching will stop and you won’t feel the need to scratch it. The antibacterial properties will keep the area clean and will help fight potential infection.
The high Vitamin E content means that the rash will heal much quicker than it would if you did not apply anything to it. Coconut oil is safe to use on children and babies, making it a very safe family treatment.
When buying coconut oil, ideally look for organic extra-virgin cold pressed oil. The light fragrance and the way that it is easily absorbed without leaving a greasy residue means that it can be used to beautify your skin as well as treating the skin conditions that we have mentioned.