Coconut Oil For The Skin: Benefits In Soap Making, And Bath and Beauty Products!

by | Soap Making

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Coconut Oil For The Skin:

Coconut oil for the record can be an extremely versatile oil. Today we focus on coconut oil for the skin!

coconut oil benefits for skin and body

What is Coconut Oil?

For many years coconut oil has been touted for it’s broad range of health benefits. This includes both in consumption and beauty products. However, with all the touted claims and anecdotal evidence, comes a lot of claim’s as well. It’s important to have an basic understanding of components we use on our skin. This includes carriers oils, butters, even essential oils. Only then should you form a decision on the appropriateness of using it on your specific skin-type.

So what is coconut oil? Coconut oil is solid at room temperature, but has a relatively low melting point of 76 degrees. Coconut oil is produced from a coconut. Specifically, the meat of the coconut, called copra. It is obtained through the process of pressing. Fresh coconut or dried coconut meat is obtained and then pressed.

The process of the “dry” method vs. the “wet” method is slightly different. the “wet” method, once pressed, produces milk and oil. Then, the two are separated by methods including fermentation and centrifuge machines.

The “dry” method uses heat to dry the copra. Afterwards, is pressed, to yield coconut oil. 
Coconut oil is a staple in many soap makers collection. Why? Two big reasons are:

  • It has great cleansing qualities
  • it adds a lathering property to finished soaps

Specifically, as we move forward, we’ll discuss some of the touted benefits of this oil and how it may be beneficial for your skin. Alongside, we’ll introduce some research and literature about coconut oil.

Uses of Coconut Oil For Health: 

Uses of Coconut Oil For Health

Coconut oil is hugely popular. Specifically, in things like cooking. Oftentimes, the use of coconut oil surrounds it’s touted physcial benefits.

This includes; helping support brain function, and decrease cholesterol levels. Specifically, your “bad” cholesterols, called LDL’s. 

Furthermore, coconut oil, being somewhat high in medium chain-fatty acids, suggest it has unique properties that may be helpful with certain conditions like high blood pressure, obesity and diabetes. However, repeatable evidence to support this seems to be lacking. 

One particular study in 2009, performed a randomized double-blind clinical trial and looked at women with waste circumference > 88cm. Half of the women took supplementation with coconut oil and the other half soy bean oil over a 12-week period along with specific diet and daily walks. The group that took coconut oil daily had increased HDL’s levels, lower LDL levels and lower BMI. It was concluded that coconut oil may help to promote reduction in abdominal obesity. 

However, Nutrition Reviews 2016, which was a literature review of coconut oil and cardiovascular health, made arguments against oral coconut oil supplementation, specifically bettering cardiovascular health, compared to other cis unsaturated fats. 

So what about the skin?

Coconut Oil For The Skin & Body Benefits:

coconut oil for the skin

Moisturizes the Skin:

One of the most touted benefits of coconut oil for the skin is it’s moisturizing effect. Coconut oil is easy to apply, and from current and past literature, it does not pose harm to the skin. 
Topically there is research of it’s ability to prevent and treat skin conditions like atopic dermatitis. 
Another study in 2004 compared coconut oil to mineral oil, concluding that it is a safe and as effective an oil as mineral oil for moisturizing. Coconut oil also showed significant improve in skin hydration and an increase in skin surface lipid levels. 
According to this same study, there was also a slight trend towards coconut oil being a better treatment of conditions  skin like xerosis(dry skin).

Cleans The Skin:

Coconut oil has shown the ability in research to significantly reduce Staphylococcus aureus colonization in patient with atopic dermatitis. The study concluded that this may be useful in proactive treatment against atopic dermatitis. 

Coconut oil not only keeps you looking smooth and moisturized, but this oil also helps to disinfect your skin, and is why it is heavily used in homemade soap for it’s cleansing properties. 

This can be useful for people trying to kill acne-causing bacteria. In addition, considering these medicinal properties, coconut oil is also good for preventing skin infections.

coconut oil cleans the skin

Helps With Wound Healing/Skin Protective Properties:

In addition to sanitizing the surface of your skin, can coconut oil help with protecting the skin, or even act as an anti-inflammatory? Several studies have shown that this oil can help speed up the healing process. 
In one study from the Journal of Traditional and Complementary Medicine 2019, it was concluded that virgin coconut oil (VCO), demonstrated the ability to suppress inflammatory markers, as well as enhance skin barrier function. 

A study out of the International Journal of Molecular Science 2017 found that coconut oil, out of all the plant oils that were studied, had one of the highest skin permeabilities and lipid penetration within the epidermis. This same article concluded that coconut oil has the ability to help in promoting wound healing through faster epithelization. 

One specific component within coconut oil, called monolaurin, has showed antimicrobial activity. An animal study on rats and wound healing in 2010 showed that virgin coconut oil treated wound, healed “much” faster due to the various biological components within the oil, compared to the control group. 

Keeps Your Hair Healthy:

Coconut oil has been shown to help in hair penetration that may lead to smoother and softer hair as well as lead to your hair looking fuller and healthier because of this.
Coconut oil, according to one study in 2015, reduced protein loss from hair. Could this lead to less breakage of hair? Coconut oil can also be left in the hair for considerable amount of time for this penetration to occur. 

Final Thoughts On Coconut Oil For The Skin!

Tried any great product with coconut oil lately? We’d love to hear about them in our comments section below! 


Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. If you use them to purchase items, then we may earn a small commission. Hope you find something that you like!
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