My mom, Patty, has a subscription to First magazine, which she passes on to me (or to my grand-mom then me, depending on the issue lol) when she's finished. It has a bunch of great recipes and cute craft ideas, but a lot of times there's an article or two about a good find for your skin or hair.
I read an article a few months ago that talked about an array of great uses for coconut oil. So based on that, I tried the Palmer's Coconut Oil Protein Pack and Hair Milk, which I still LOVE! But it did say to use about 2 tbsp of pure coconut oil from the grocery store to revive and strongly hydrate dull, dry winter hair. Also, it said if massaged onto the scalp, it can help severely cut down on dandruff & psoriasis.
My hair is naturally dull & dry, and I'm in the process of lightening it from black so I need all the hydration I can get. My poor hubby has psoriasis, which is a big pain in the butt! It's itchy and causes sometimes painful, red irritation on the scalp and around the hair line. This also causes flaking, which gets uncomfortable and annoying for him.
We've been very happy with the Palmer's products, but since the magazine did recommend straight coconut oil, I figured we'd give it a try and I'm so happy we did! I massaged it on to my ends of my hair first and then through my whole head while my hair was dry, then let it sit for 30 minutes. I shampooed it out and followed with normal conditioner. My hair instantly was smoother and softer. It's less frizzy and looks like it has more life! It just feels great and I don't feel the need to run and put in a whole bunch of product!
My husband, Justin, said his hair feels great too, but he was blessed with naturally soft, perfect hair. His issue, psoriasis, though seems to be doing better so far! He said his scalp is not at all itchy and the flaking is greatly reduced. Normally, it gets itchy right after a shower from being hot in the bathroom, but so far so good!
An idea I came up with and tried too was a deep conditioning treatment for the skin. Justin does outdoor work all day and is constantly on his feet so they get rough and dry and callused. I used to dance and went to Catholic school for 12 years and had to wear their awful uniform shoes, so my feet are dry and callused as well. I gave us a each a little home-pedicure and then massaged the coconut oil into the bottom of our feet, focusing on the very dry and callused areas. I also massaged it on the entire foot and ankle then covered it with socks. We left the socks on for about an hour to an hour and a half, basically until the oil had soaked in completely. We were both left with soft skin and softened calluses. Our entire feet and ankles were very well hydrated and looked really soft and supple.
First magazine also lists coconut oil as a help to lose weight since coconut oil contains MCFA which make liver cells to burn fat "50% faster than normal" by adding only 2 tbs of it to your diet every day. It also helps your white blood cells fight infection so it can cut down on colds and the flu by adding 3 tbs daily. Aside from hydrating the skin, it can help heal irritated skin. According to First magazine, "Almost 60% of women struggle with dry skin patches, rashes, and more pronounced fine lines and wrinkles as a result of harsh cold weather. Dabbing coconut oil on trouble spots twice daily can conquer winter woes in a week." Also they say that the lauric acid in coconuts can kill pimple-causing bacteria! It can help reduce fatigue by consuming 2 tbs a day by kicking up your thyroid gland. Lastly, and this is a little private for women, but a nifty tidbit! It can relieve feminine dryness and can help ward off vaginal infections because the oil is both antifungal and antimicrobial. *Be careful with this tip though, the oil damages LATEX so do NOT use with condoms or diaphragms.*
Basically it's a miracle product with its amazing benefits for your body and health inside and out! Give it a try & let me know how it works for you & what you end up using it for!
I purchased mine from Walmart for about $6.00 from LouAna brand. It's out of stock online right now, but try in store!
This article can be found in First magazine in the January 2, 2012 issue on pgs. 22-23.