Tuesday, November 20, 2012

::{Adventures with Coconut Oil}::

Lately on Pinterest and blogs and everywhere I go, I have been finding coconut oil.  At first, I wasn't really sure what to think; I pinned a few DIY beauty treatments using coconut oil, but didn't really go to any of the link or read anything in depth about it.  One day, I decided to find out what all the hoopla was about, and read some bloggers' testimonials about how coconut oil has changed the way they do everything, from hair deep conditioning, to toothpaste, to deodorant, to cooking.  Supposedly, coconut oil is antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal, as well.  So out of curiosity the next time I was at the grocery store, I checked out the price.  Let me tell you, it is not cheap!  So I left the little jar on the shelf and continued my shopping.
Then this weekend, my husband and I went and stayed with our good friends who live out of town.  I noticed that on her kitchen counter, there sat none other than a jar of coconut oil.  I inquired and my friend went on to tell me that last year for Christmas, her mom had given everyone a jar, and lately she has been taking a tablespoon a day for stomach problems (she has been diagnosed with ulcers), and it has seemed to have been helping; and also occasionally uses it on her face.  She said her mom and sister use it for everything...  Then she went on to pull a jar out of her pantry and gave it to me, saying that she doesn't go through it fast enough, and didn't want it to go bad.  Needless to say, I was pretty psyched to now have the means to experiment with all those ideas I had encountered!
Last night, I tried it on my face as a moisturizer.  I was a little skeptical of putting it on my face, but countless bloggers assured me that it works wonders; including Family Sponge who lists her reasons for loving coconut oil and how she uses it here.  Note, a little bit goes a long way.  First I washed my face as normal, then took a pea sized amount of coconut oil in my hands, it will quickly start melting in your hand (coconut oil is a solid at room temperature, but melts at body temp), then rubbed it all over my face.  I like the way it feels on my face, but it does take quite a while to absorb, so I probably will not use it during the day under my makeup.  It also works wonderfully as an eye makeup remover; my caked on mascara came right off, and the skin around my eyes feels great.
Yesterday, I tried it as a pre-shower hair deep conditioner; an idea I found through Pinterest, on How Does She?.  Once again remember, a little goes a long way!  I took a small palm-full and worked it through my hair, with my hair flipped upside-down over the tub.  I mostly focused on the ends of my hair, but also massaged it into my roots.  Once it was all worked in, I twisted my hair in a loose bun on top of my head and clipped it up to let it set for ~1 hour.
During that time, I decided to try another coconut oil method I had found previously on Pinterest.  Awhile back, I had read an article on an Ayurveda process called oil pulling.  I had never heard of this before, but supposedly it whitens teeth, strengthens gums, and works as a kind of detoxification.  Skeptical, I read some blogs, which talked about personal experiences and results.  All that I read, stated that they did notice whiter teeth and healthy gums after a few weeks of utilizing this method.  According to this website, it is best to do it on an empty stomach (so first thing in the morning or at least 3-4 hours after eating), because this detoxifying effect is stimulating.  You can read more about it here for further explanations.  What you do, is take ~1 tsp oil (any cooking oil works; I used coconut oil), and swish it around in your mouth for 20 minutes. I did this for the fist time yesterday, and it wasn't as unpleasant as I expected.  It is difficult to ignore the urge to swallow, but once you get the hang of it, it's not too bad.  You are supposed to gently swish it around your teeth, and if your jaw starts to get tired, you are probably swishing more vigorously than necessary.  At the end of 20 mins (or whenever you can't stand it anymore), spit out the oil/saliva mixture and rinse your mouth with salt water to remove any remaining "toxins," then brush your teeth as normal.  I plan to continue trying this method, and I will try to remember to keep y'all updated on what I find.
About the time I was done oil pulling, my hair was ready to be rinsed.  So I hopped in the shower and scrubbed away! I had to shampoo twice to fully rinse out the coconut oil, then I conditioned as normal.  When I'm done showering, I do not use a towel to dry my hair, as the roughness and fibers of a towel causes breakage; I use an old T-shirt.  After ringing as much water as I can out of my hair, I wrap it up in the T-shirt by sticking my head the wrong way through the head hole, twisting the shirt around my hair, then wrapping the whole thing around my head (I'll try to remember to post a picture); I then leave this on my head until my hair is mostly dry.  I noticed, after using the coconut oil, my hair felt very soft and silky, and looks very shiny and healthy all day.  I will definitely be trying this again, probably no more than once a week, as it is pretty time consuming.  I may have overdone the amount of oil I used, as this was my first attempt; next time I will use smaller blobs, multiple times (instead of one big glob at the beginning), until I have completely worked through my hair...  Today I did notice that my hair looks kind of greasy, which is not usually a problem for me; probably because I was not able to get it all completely rinsed out.  This is not an issue, as I usually shower everyday, but may be something to keep in mind...
Side note, several blogs I have read, recommend Nutiva as a good brand of coconut oil.  Vitacost offers a $10 off of a $30 purchase coupon here.  If you purchase through this link, you and I will both get $10 off... I got actually purchased a 78 oz jar of Nutiva from Costco for $21.99 (Dec, 2012)... Best price I've seen so far, plus it will last me quite awhile!


1 comment:

  1. Found your blog thru Pinterest and your How Does She comment. Are you still oil pulling? I would love to know if you've noticed any changes! I'm so curious and wanting to try it but would like to hear more testimonials of people doing it longer than a week! you can email me at nikkijay21@yahoo.com. thanks!!!