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When we begin to try to choose natural remedies or solutions for everyday things, some common household items we all have keep coming to the forefront, illuminated in a new way and application.
When I started to dig deeper to learn more about natural-minded living and how that applies to motherhood, I heard a lot about coconut oil.
In this article I’d like to share 15 everyday uses for coconut oil for us natural-minded mamas.
If you want something more in depth, check out my article for The Joyful Life Magazine, for even more uses for coconut oil – 60 total! Although there are literally hundreds of known uses. Also included in that article are explanations on how natural remedies can be a pivotal part of how we see our faith and approach our families and homes when any of these everyday needs arise.
Following are my top 15 everyday uses for coconut oil:
A carrier oil is also known as a base oil, used to dilute essential oils and absolutes before they are applied to the skin. Coconut oil is often used as a carrier, especially in making roll-on bottles. My favorite recipe is this: adding 5-10 drops of lavender in a roller bottle, and filling it the rest of the way with coconut oil. (Directly applying oils to the skin is called neat and is not recommended. As with anything essential oil related, please consult an aromatherapist before using, and be sure you are getting your oils from a refutable source)
Oil pulling is a traditional dental technique that involves swishing a tablespoon of oil in your mouth on an empty stomach for around twenty minutes. This is known to draw out toxins and improve your oral and overall health. Because coconut oil is antimicrobial and has antibacterial properties.
Coconut oil can be used as a moisturizer, and is best when applied to sunburn as the skin has started to recover. It can be applied alone to soothe skin, or with a few drops of lavender essential oil, or aloe vera. If the burn is blistering, use is not suggested. I’d also recommend Sun Soothe.
Seasoning a cast-iron skillet for use is easy to do, and for this you can use coconut oil. Simply dry the skillet with a clean, dry cloth. Pour a small amount of liquid coconut oil (about 1 teaspoon) onto the skillet, to cover the entire surface. Then rub the oil into all sides thoroughly, including the bottom and sides. You can then place it in the oven or stove top for at least 10 minutes, letting the oil dry completely.
Lotion bars may be a new concept to some,but they are pretty simple: get your lotion in a bar! It saves on waste, and once it’s gone, it’s gone. No more plastic in the landfill, and less counter space used on your dresser or counter top. Simply hold the bar in your hands, allow your body heat to soften the bar, and rub it directly onto your hands or your body to apply. Coconut oil is a wonderful addition to your lotion bar (homemade recipes are easy to find, check out your local farmer’s market, or buy one from my favorite natural-minded company here) Most common recipes include coconut oil, cocoa butter, beeswax, vitamin E, and essential oils. Would you like a DIY tutorial? Let me know and I may just write/record one!
Homemade Dog Treats
Peanut butter are a common ingredient in dog treats… But have you thought of coconut oil? It is super simple to make; just add coconut oil, peanut butter, and cinnamon. You can also find a recipe at in this edition of The Joyful Life Magazine. Coconut oil is good for dogs and can help aid in digestion, improve their coats, help to prevent infections, and more.
Nursing/Postpartum Mother’s Balm
There are many prenatal and postpartum applications of coconut oil for moms. It can be taken internally and topically, to help treat yeast, which causes thrush and candida. Simply include some in your daily cooking, and apply it before nursing your baby. Coconut oil has antimicrobial properties that sink into the bloodstream and transfer to your baby via breastmilk; so it’s good for many things!
If you are going dairy-free, or just want to check out an alternative, try using coconut oil in your cooking as a replacement for butter. Generally it is a 1:1 concept, which means that for the amount of butter in a recipe, use the same amount of coconut oil. It is a personal preference, but also beneficial for those who are staying away from dairy, for a multitude of reasons.
Homemade Coffee Creamer
There are many reasons to add coconut oil to your coffee!! It doesn’t cool down a hot cup of coffee, it doesn’t dilute the flavor, it’s generally easy to find and always on-hand, and it helps you to feel more alert longer (some would say). It’s also really easy to make; just combine coconut oil, raw honey, cinnamon, vanilla, and cocoa powder. Blend up your coffee and homemade mixture of creamer for about 5 seconds – yes, blend it, as it better distributes the coconut oil based on consistency – and enjoy! This is not the same as Bulletproof Coffee, which does contain coconut oil.
Energy Boosting Snack
Energy bites are super simple and quick to make! Why not add coconut oil to them? A great example of these includes various amounts of: almonds, cocoa, flax seed, sea salt, oats, dates, coconut oil, and shredded coconut – all mixed up in a food processor, shaped into balls, then put in the fridge. There are so many recipes of these out there – but be sure to add your coconut oil to them for that extra energy boost.
Fairly self-explanatory; add a dollop of coconut oil to your smoothies. One of my favorite food-based coffee smoothies is in this article, where I also include coconut oil as an ingredient. Feel free to find the printable version of it here (just be sure to sign up for my emails to access this). Another example of a smoothie includes: coconut oil, spinach, almond milks, banana, frozen strawberries, honey, and cinnamon. Mix and match healthy ingredients to your desire! The possibilities with smoothies are endless; We have them every day.
Natural SPF and Moisturizer
Coconut oil is naturally anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, and moisturizing. Because coconut oil is made up of primarily nourishing fatty acids and la-uric acids, as well as vitamin-E and healthy fats – this is pivotal use for it. These all are properties that work together to make skin smooth and moisturize. Coconut oil also has a natural SPF of 4-5 and contains antioxidants that help protect the skin from harmful radiation. Simply apply to the skin as a combination moisturizer/SPF, and go about your day.
Eye Makeup Remover
Fairly self-explanatory; just dab some coconut oil onto a cotton ball to remove your eye makeup. Works like a charm! Be sure you use a liquid coconut oil (like this one, or take coconut oil in its solid state and hold in your hands fora few minutes until it liquefies) then rub onto skin, to rub/melt away your makeup. Rinse your face with warm water, pat dry, and enjoy a new natural skincare routine!
Natural Lip Balm
A wonderful natural DIY lip balm recipe comprises of three main parts: 1 part oil + 1 part butters + 1 part beeswax. You can use 2 tablespoons each of coconut oil, mango/cocoa butters, and beeswax; then add vanilla, or whichever other ingredients you’d like your lip balm to be flavored/scented with. It’s really easy to make with a double boiler, and be sure to also have the tubes to fill; Depending on the amounts of the ingredients you use, you can make 10-20 lip balms in one easy batch.
Body scrubs are so simple to make – with 3 easy to find core ingredients – and are a fun way to include your kids in creating something for bath time, or to make for a girls night/spa night. Simply mix together 1 cup sugar or salt, 1/2 cup coconut oil, to make a base; Then add various amounts of whichever other ingredients you’d like. Common additions include coffee, cinnamon, vanilla, lavender oil, and more.
Can you think of any other fun and easy uses for coconut oil?
There are literally hundreds!
If you use coconut oil in any of these ways, let us know how it went in the comments!
~Katherine Newsom writes at Simple Natural Mama
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