My family and I have practiced a very simple, natural lifestyle for many years. It was during my years as a student studying dietary nutrition and food science that I came to a realization that if I couldn’t eat it then it didn’t belong on my skin. I’m not a skin and hair care guru but I have tried many products since my teenage years.
I struggled with naturally oily skin and facial acne until I changed my diet, level of physical activity and products I used on my skin. Some fortunate people are able to get rid of acne without having to spend much time, energy, or money in its treatment, while others spend a fortune on treatment and still don’t get the results they hoped for. Unfortunately for me, I spent many years trying different products until I found coconut oil to be an inexpensive solution to my problem.
What Causes Acne?
Acne is caused by an infection in the openings of sebum glands, which are the glands on the skin that secrete various oils to keep the skin moist and prevent drying and cracking. These glands can become clogged by dirt and bacteria and result in the obstruction in sebum secretion which leads to inflammation, redness, swelling and pain. In one word this is called acne. Acne is common during the teenage years, due to certain hormonal changes; sebum production is greatly increased, which causes the skin to be oily. I have learned that many of the products I used for acne do not stop natural oil secretions but they do remove the natural antimicrobial acid guard, leaving the skin pores open and vulnerable to infections.
Benefits of Coconut Oil on Acne
I recommend a less processed coconut oil, I currently use unrefined, expeller pressed, virgin coconut oil by 365 Everyday Value. When choosing coconut oil for your skin, it is best to choose the highest quality possible; do not go for the unrefined, crude variety as it may contain more particles that cause blockage of the sebum glands.
Coconut oil in its purest form has many nutritional properties that help to combat acne. It replaces protective acid layer on the skin, reduces the risk of microbial infections that may cause acne, reduces skin inflammation, and is rich in vitamins and minerals that improves the overall health and appearance of the skin.
I have also incorporated coconut oil into my diet; it indirectly aids in the removal of acne by boosting the liver’s ability to remove toxins from the body and energizes the cells to expel toxins via the skin. By now you are thinking that coconut oil might just be the best thing on earth and indeed it is one of the best things, however I have realized that this process requires some combined effort. Reducing those foods which increase the toxin levels in the body such as animal proteins, and highly processed foods and increasing those foods which promote healthy bodily functions also help to combat acne.
Increasing your level of physical activity also helps your skin by increasing your blood circulation, which sends more oxygen to your skin cells and carries cell waste away. I prefer to use the words physical activity; exercise sounds treacherous at times. Keep in mind that sweat from physical activity can also lead to breakouts by irritating your skin. So it's important to shower right after a workout using the most natural soap possible!
Take a sip of water, it also helps. Increasing the amount of water you drink is a great way to flush out internal toxins and hydrate your skin from the inside out.
Although using coconut oil works well for me, I do not have severe acne. Results may vary from person to person depending upon factors such as skin type, age, profession, lifestyle, eating habits, hygiene, and sanitary behavior. It should also be remembered that coconut oil is not a cure for acne, simply a natural treatment.
My Beauty Regimen
Within two weeks of using coconut oil on my face, I have noticed a difference. My skin is smooth to the touch, and appears brighter and rejuvenated. I have fewer pimples, as a matter of fact, at the moment, I only have one and I have been able to maintain the size and redness of this pimple by using coconut oil.
Before bed, every night I exfoliate my skin with a mixture composed of half part bentonite clay and half coconut oil (unrefined, expeller pressed, virgin coconut oil by 365 Everyday Value), I rub gently in a circular motion for approximately 30 seconds and rinse with warm water. After gently rinsing the clay mixture away, the coconut oil remains on my skin. While you are probably wondering if this is a recipe for changing your pillowcase every morning, I am here to assure you that the coconut oil is so light that it will be quickly absorbed by the skin.
Here is a hint, the bentonite clay and coconut oil mixture is great for removing makeup, especially eye makeup. Coconut oil used alone makes a great eye makeup remover.
I have been using coconut oil as a moisturizer for my hair, twice a week I section my locs and using the finger technique apply melted coconut oil to my scalp. I also discovered the benefits of applying coconut oil to my scalp and locs before washing; I apply it the night before in order to give ample time for the oil to penetrate my locs. The coconut oil will protect the cuticle from expanding excessively as water is taken up from the wash and protect your hair from losing its protein.
If coconut oil is a part of your beauty regimen, then share your experience with us.