DIY | Coconut Oil Cures

I’ve finally come around to the worst kept beauty secret that is unrefined coconut oil.  New to the idea I recently looked online only to find articles like, “2,670 Uses for Coconut Oil”– overwhelming to say the least.  With equal parts frustration and inspiration, I felt like it was time to curate a list of coconut oil hair treatments and other cures that actually work.  Tried-and-true, here are the treatments that yielded the best results for me.

I’m not going full hippie on you… we won’t be discussing how to make toothpaste out of coconut oil, and we definitely won’t be learning how to make natural coconut oil deodorant.  I won’t even touch on all the ways to substitute it into your cooking and baking- we’re just taking it back to the basics.

Photo via Amazon

Photo via Amazon

Coconut Oil Hair Treatment

Things to avoid:

  • One common mistake I found bloggers doing is microwaving the coconut oil before using it, only to complain later that it was drippy and messy.  Coconut oil naturally has such a low melting point that running the jar under hot water, or even rubbing a scoop between your palms, will melt the oil with no trouble at all.
  • Instead of melting a whole jar, try scooping as you go.  A little bit goes a long way.
  • Don’t get too crazy with added ingredients.  The recipes that suggested adding blended strawberries and/or bananas to the coconut oil were my least favorite.  Not many things are more irritating that scrubbing strawberry seeds out of your hair, take my word for it.
  • Another popular ingredient to be careful adding is raw, organic honey.  The melted honey made my hair crunchy, sticky, and unpleasant and I couldn’t stand to have it in overnight.

A couple of benefits:

  • Coconut oils low molecular weight and lauric acid profile help it absorb into the follicle and seal the hair better than Moroccan Oil and other hair oils.  This means the hair retains its natural moisture better and doesn’t dry out as easily.
  • Reinforces your hairs fibers to prevent breakage.
  • Vitamins K and E help protect the scalp against dryness, itchiness, and dandruff.
My natural hair is untamable to say the least, so I was really glad that the benefits of this pre-wash hair treatment rang true even on my super porous strands.  I recently took out my microbead extensions and cut off as much dead hair as I could without getting a bob, but the tips are still split and extremely damaged from years of color treatment and straightening my naturally wavy mane.  After experimenting with various coconut oil treatments all week, I can’t stop running my hands through my hair.  It feels like silk and the crunchiness from the tips (so gross, sorry) is finally gone.  I would suggest doing this overnight once a week, but you can do it 30 minutes before a shower and still notice improvement.  Heat opens up your hair follicles, so you can sit under a blow dryer for 15-30 minutes in your shower cap to speed up the process.  I also like to rub a finger sized scoop of coconut oil onto the tips of my hair before I leave the house with freshly washed hair.  Use sparingly unless you want the wet-look hairdo.

 

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Sectioning and saturating the first, bottom layer // Similar Team Margiela tee here

Ingredients–
  • 1/4-1/2 cup Virgin coconut oil to scoop from, amount depending on the volume and length of your hair.
  • 8 drops essential oil, lavender or rosemary *
  • A few drops of olive oil
ellekae coconut hair treatment

Finishing the top layer, adding more to the tips for good measure, and tying it up for the night

 

Instructions–
  1. Section your hair into three layers with the first being at the top of your ears, then the mid-section, and the last being just the crown of your head.
  2. Melt the coconut oil down by running the jar under warm water.  Pour out 1/4-1/2 cup, depending on your hair length, and combine well with olive oil and essential oil.  I like to buy a jar just for hair purposes and make a big batch of the mixture in one go.
  3. Use 1/4 tbsp – 1/2 tbsp coconut oil treatment per 1″ piece of hair, depending on the length of your hair.  Start small and add more if you feel like the 1″ is still dry; we want the section soaked but not dripping.
  4. Continue this 1″ progression until you are done, at which time you can evaluate if you need to add more to the ends.  Tie your hair in a top bun, cover with a shower cap, and sleep on it.
  5. In the morning, shampoo twice before you condition and style as regular.
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A healthy shine, and vast improvement on my damaged ends

Other Great Uses for Coconut Oil

  • Shave scrub
    • coconut oil + coarse brown sugar, to your desired consistency
  • Lip scrub
    • 1 tbsp coconut oil + 3 tsp coarse sugar + 1 tsp honey + 5 drops essential oil; peppermint recommended
  • Tanning oil
    • does not protect against UV rays, wear sunblock under a layer of coconut oil
  • Makeup remover
    • q-tips dipped in coconut oil will remove stubborn waterproof mascara and liquid liner
  • Soothe sore throats
    • add a dollop of coconut oil to your tea
  • Leather Treatment
    • will gloss patent leather and restore sheen to smooth leather (my leather boots thanked me for this)

What are some other ways you like to use coconut oil for beauty?

TANGLED

You can look like a Disney Princess! Ummm, for the most part… (photo via Disneys Tangled)

*Lavender increases shine and stimulates hair growth alongside its soothing properties which make it perfect for an overnight treatment, and rosemary counteracts oily hair and stimulates hair growth.  Read more about essential oils and their affects on hair here.

xxLK

 

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