So it’s been a long time since I posted anything, and there’s a reason why, but that story is for another night. Right now, I simply want to rave a little bit about a recent discovery: coconut oil.
Ok, so I didn’t discover it and actually I’ve known of and used it in cooking for quite a while now. However, what I have recently discovered is its use as a skincare product.
I’ve always been a bit lazy with skin care. I was lucky to have pretty good skin growing up, and the occasional pimples I did get didn’t ever seem to be affected by the different creams and washes I tried as a teen. Occasionally this troubled me but for the most part it was and still is a low priority in my life. My worth does not lie in the unblemished-ness of my skin.
What I have always been drawn to, however, is the idea of a skin care routine. Whether this is because of the bombardment of advertising we are all exposed to these days (helped in large part by my over-consumption of daytime tv and its plethora of infomercials), the instructions in glossy magazines or simply because some part of me always loved the idea of pampering and self-care even before I realised how important it really was, I don’t know. Anyway, I tried and failed many times to follow a ‘cleanse, tone and moisturise morning and night’ routine. I was ok at the cleanse part and even frequently the moisturise part, although neither of these were never twice-a-day or even everyday occurrences. The tone part in particular was really a battle. I always found it kind of hurt my skin. Plus, it couldn’t be done in the shower and involved getting a cotton bud out of the drawer, so honestly who could be bothered? Eventually I just accepted that I was never going to be a toner or even a twice-a-day cleanser and I happily became a wash-my-face-in-the-shower-at-night kinda gal. I had a cleanser I really liked and I stuck with it. Problem solved, right?
Well not really. Towards the end of last year I started having a few more skin problems. I had a couple of facials to try to fix it and the beauty salon lady expertly talked me into a very expensive cleanser, and promptly up-sold me the very expensive exfoliating scrub. I used them semi-regularly and put my less-than-amazing skin down to the fact that I was too lazy to follow the routine strictly. Then in February after I went off The Pill, I began to break out a lot more. I tried both this fancy new, very harsh face wash and my old regular to no avail. My skins was getting worse but I put it down to stress and hormones and reminded myself, quite successfully, that my worth does not lie in external and arbitrary ideas of physical beauty. It was a minor annoyance and I decided not to worry too much.
Until two weeks ago when my girlfriend told me she’s been using coconut oil as a cleanser. I thought it sounded really nice. I’ve been doing lots of learning of late about all the bad things added to our personal care products and had already figured out that the very expensive and very strong cleanser sold to me by the beauty salon was probably not that good for me. I liked the idea that the products in your kitchen could/should also be the products in your bathroom cabinet. I had been actually about to buy a very expensive absolutely-no-bad-chemicals-included face wash but I’m glad my laziness/frugality prevented me because this coconut oil is much cheaper — and it WORKS!
First up, it just feels/smells great and is really simple. Just smooth a bit of coconut oil (extra virgin and organic of course) on your face and leave it for a minute. Then wet a washer in hot water and wipe your face. That’s it. You’re done. My friend tells me she then uses apple cider vinegar as a toner and then a very thin layer of coconut oil as a moisturiser, but as we already know, I can’t be bothered with toning and if you don’t scrub too hard you don’t actually need another layer of coconut oil to moisturise.
I was sold after the first time I tried this purely because it smells so amazing and left my skin feeling really nice — not dry and not too greasy either. The hot towel over the face, when left for a few moments before wiping the coconut oil off, also is a nice sinus clearer and a little moment for a mini-meditation. It also feels like a mini spa treatment every single time, which is what has kept me going back morning and night EVERY DAY FOR TWO WEEKS! This in itself is a major achievement and even if the results hadn’t been spectacular, I like the ‘me time’ feeling it’s giving me so I probably would have kept going anyway. But within week my face was ten times better. I am so sold on this that I just wanted to tell the whole world. And since I’d been sort of procrastinating getting back into blogging, I figured this would make the perfect come-back post.
So there you have it. I’m coco-loco. I have since learned via the magic interwebs that you can use coconut oil for all kinds of awesome home-made skin care: deodorant, soap, mouthwash, hair treatments…just google and you will see.
Give it a try, I think you’ll like it. I can’t get enough!