The amazing super-powers of coconut oil… Don’t worry, this isn’t a post about how coconut oil is the answer to all your cancer prayers. I’m sure you’ve already had more than enough people telling you all about the wonders of various superfoods in the fight against cancer – this is not one of “those” posts…But, superfood status aside, coconut oil is a really handy thing to have around when you are going through treatment and can be a great addition to your beauty regime during this time.
So what makes coconut oil so good as a beauty product, in particular when you are having treatment for cancer? For starters, coconut oil is a natural emollient which is known for its exceptional hydrating properties, it is naturally disinfecting, antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory, plus it’s cheap as chips and can be picked up very easily in most supermarkets/health food shops.
Make sure to use pure, virgin coconut oil only. This ensures you’re using a product that hasn’t been chemically altered or refined in any way so you get the most benefits for your skin.
Here are a few ideas about how to incorporate coconut oil for maximum beauty benefits:
- Coconut oil can make a great natural and ultra-gentle make up remover. Simply massage into skin and remove with a hot, damp face cloth
- It is also brilliant for massaging/moisturising your scalp – this can help relieve the itch when your hair is falling out, keep your scalp moisturised when it’s gone, and regular scalp massage with it can help to stimulate the hair follicles and speed up hair growth when it is time for hair to re-emerge
- 1 cup of coconut oil, mixed with 1 cup of sugar, and 20 drops of essential oils (I like sweet orange & peppermint for a zingy, fresh pick me up) makes honestly one of the best (and cheapest) body scrubs I’ve ever used, whilst still being super gentle! Just apply in a circular motion once a week, and rinse off for baby soft skin. Ideal if chemo has turned your skin into scaly crocodile skin, but still needs to be treated with care.
- Again on the home-made lotion & potion front. Melt 2 parts coconut oil with 1 part Shea Butter in a bowl over boiling water, once it has all melted together add a few drops of essential oils. I like to use lavender, rose absolute and frankincense for a skin healing/calming/soothing blend. Once it is all mixed together, pop the mixture in the fridge to cool. Keep checking on the oil mix as it cools, and as it starts to solidify and then once again when fully set, whisk with a hand-held electric whisk until it has a light and fluffy texture. Voila! An amazing home-made whipped body butter that is incredibly rich and moisturising, but also healing and soothing – perfect for ultra-dry chemo skin and great on radiotherapy burns too.
- Whilst you can use coconut oil on dry lips on its own as a basic lip balm, if your lips are very dry, another top tip is to mix it with a bit of honey and apply as an overnight lip mask for silky soft pout
- A drop or two of pure coconut oil massaged onto your nail beds/cuticles will help strengthen and hydrate cuticles, speed up growth (handy if your nails have been affected by chemo) and also naturally protect against nail infections
- Oil pullingSwish a tablespoon of coconut oil around your mouth for 15-20 minutes (this one can be hard to stomach, especially if you are nauseous but give it a go if you can bear it!) to help treat tooth decay, mouth ulcers, kill bad breath and heal bleeding gums
- Back to hair growth… slick a little coconut oil onto eyebrows and lashes to stimulate, strengthen & protect new hair growth
I’m sure there are loads of other uses, but hopefully this is enough to to get you started, and convince you that a pot of coconut oil is worth keeping in the house… and if all else fails, remember you can always cook your dinner with it too!
Have you got any other top beauty tips for coconut oil or any other natural food stuff that helped you during treatment? Share your top tips and let us know what has worked for you