Every bit of plastic ever made still exists in this planet.Every plastic bottle, bags, packaging or takeaway container that we use only once or for a short period of time is designed to last forever. Unless it is recycled or reused, plastics will end up in landfills or inadertedly in our beautiful oceans.
In order to support Plastic Free July we compiled 25 ways in which coconut oil can help reduce plastic consumption.
Coconut oil is extremely versatile and can be used for almost everything in daily life including for nutritional health, personal care, cosmetics, cleaning and pet care products.
Unfortunately, most of these products are packaged in some form of plastic, making it challenging to find a plastic free alternative for simple daily essential products. One of the best ways to avoid consuming plastic packaged products is to unleash your creativity and make your own favourite products!
The trick is to start slowly by introducing a few new habits at a time, and by slowly incorporating more as you become more acquainted with the use of these new homemade products. Hopefully, you will find that one day, most of these new habits will be fully integrated into your life and nothing will seem easier and more gratifying.
There is something beautiful about being able to make your own household and cosmetic products knowing it has a positive impact for your health and the environment.
We’ve made it easy by compiling 25 different recipes including coconut oil to make your daily life plastic free!
1. Body Moisturiser
Coconut oil has been used as a skin moisturizer for thousands of years. It is ideal for dry, rough and wrinkled skin. Its high content of Medium Chain Fatty Acids (MCFA’s) makes it easily absorbed by the skin. You can use coconut oil as it is and massage in the skin or turn it into a creamy body butter
An easy solution to a healthy and safe toothpaste is to make your own with coconut oil. The natural anti-bacterial, and anti-fungal properties in coconut oil benefit oral health and hygiene, and help keep teeth clean and white.
Coconut oil based deodorant does not block the pores, or prevent the natural process of detoxing. It does not put chemicals either into this sensitive area of the body. It' is an antioxidant, and the anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties cleanse and moisturise the area.
Coconut oil is known to work wonders as natural skin protection. When applied topically it's natural anti-microbial, anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties will detoxify the outer layers of your skin. This will help to avoid the harmful chemical reaction these toxins can have when exposed to the suns UV rays. You can also choose to mix it with Zinc Oxide, red raspberry seed oil and carrot seed oil for extra protection.
5. Makeup remover/Face cleanser
Moisturise, cleanse and exfoliate gently, all in one with coconut oil. It really is that amazing and a must have for all natural beauty regimes. This recipe is an antibacterial soothing and calming wash to eliminate acne and heal acne scars.
6. Body Scrub
Coconut oil itself is a natural exfoliate. For added benefit you can mix it with pink salt - this is particularly useful for troubled areas such as those ingrown hairs or blackheads. This exfoliant also works amazingly well to remove any remaining sunscreen, zinc or makeup.
7. Lip butter
Made with pure ingredients, no synthetic fragrance or chemical additives. So clean you can eat it! Treat your lips with only the purest. Coconut oil lip balm is nourishing, healing and protective.
8. Shaving cream
Coconut oil is a multi-tasking product. Not only is it delicious in your cooking and packed with health benefits, but it also allows you to ditch your chemical-laden, expensive beauty products by providing a natural alternative. Using coconut oil for shaving is just one way to reduce toxins in your body and improve your beauty regime. Use for both men and women. Find out how.
9. Hand Cream
Nourishing and repairing the skin with coconut oil can have wonderful results for dry hands and cracked heals, especially during the Winter months. Coconut oil reverses the tissue damaging process by providing fat-soluble vitamins, minerals, and super nutrition factors directly to the damaged tissues. Make your own hand cream to keep your hands hydrated and protected.
10. Cellulite lotion
Cellulite is one of the hardest types of fats to dissolve in the body. Cellulite is an accumulation of old fat cell clusters that solidify and harden as the surrounding tissue loses its elasticity.
Tangerine, orange and lemon essential oils actually help reduce fat cells. Grapefruit essential oil is fat-dissolving and also detoxifies. All you have to do is add a 1 - 2 drops of your favourite citrus blend of essential oil to a small amount of coconut oil and massage into the affected areas. Find out more.
11. Sexual lubricant
Feeling naturally sexy? When it comes to getting personal, coconut oil is a natural option you might want to also consider. Its ability to penetrate skin and provide all that vitamin E makes it a wonderful massage oil. Coconut oil can also be used as a personal lubricant since it is completely natural with no parabens, petroleum, glycerin or chemicals. Find out more about coconut oil as lubricant here.
12. Massage Oil
Coconut oil is usually to most popular oil used by massage therapists. Its neutral and exotic smell combined with its healing properties for the tissue makes it ideal for massage. Coconut oil has been used as a skin moisturizer for thousands of years. It is ideal for dry, rough and wrinkled skin. Its high content of Medium Chain Fatty Acids (MCFA’s) makes it easily absorbed by the skin. It prevents stretch marks and lightens existing ones. Its antiseptic elements keep the skin young and healthy and relatively free from infections.
13. Hair Conditionner
Polynesian, Asian and Pacific Islander women often attribute their long, silky, shiny and rich looking hair to the regular use of coconut oil as a hair moisturising treatment. Coconut oil offers moisture and hair nourishment that unlike many commercially produced products is pure and nutrient rich. Simply massage the oil through your hair and leave it in as a treatment for 2 or more hours and wash it out.
14. Wrinkle cream
Coconut oil is readily available and very popular right now because of its ample benefits to skin and body. It’s a natural, easily absorbed moisturizer that is solid at room temperature. Coconut oil can protect from free radicals and delays wrinkles and sagging skin. When whipped in a stand mixer, this delicious body butter is silky smooth, and can be used on the face as well as the body. More recipes here.
15. Eczema cream
Coconut oil is renowned for its anti-fungal, antimicrobial and antibacterial properties. This makes it an efficient oil to treat candida, athlete's foot, eczema and psoriasis. It is also hydrating, anti-inflammatory and relieves itching. It can be used for eczema on hands, legs, neck, eyes and other affected areas. It moisturizes the skin and prevents the skin from drying out. Spread a thin layer of coconut oil on the affected areas until fully absorbed by the skin. Repeat the process 2-3 times daily. You can choose to mix coconut oil lavender oil, Vitamin E oil or shea butter for enhanced results. Find more recipes here.
16. Mouth wash
One of the best way to wash your mouth and promote gum & teeth health is by practicing oil pulling. Oil pulling is an ancient Ayurvedic health tradition for detox and rejuvenation. It is a simple morning practice that offers remarkable results. Coconut oil offers the additional benefits of antimicrobial, anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and enzymatic properties. The added benefits of using coconut oil help to remove plaque from your teeth and strengthen your gums by thoroughly cleansing this area. Find out more about oil pulling here.
17. Diaper rash cream
Diaper can be caused by yeast infection, acid in the stool, ammonia from urine or diaper material. Coconut oil is an antimicrobial, anti-bacterial and antifungal properties that promote and accelerates healing. To use, make sure you wash your baby’s bottom properly. Apply coconut oil on the affected area and let dry before putting on a new diaper. The coconut oil will act as barrier between the skin and waste in the diaper. There are a few varitaions, if you are looking for a thicker, more cream-like option. You can add lavender oil, beeswax, shea butter and zinc oxide. Find a few different recipes here.
18. Soap bars
Coconut oil soap has excellent cleansing properties, lathers well, and smells nice, even if you decide to leave it unscented. You can even turn your homemade soap bars into liquid hand soap for the kitchen!
19. Laundry detergent
Loving the new soap bar? Turn it into laundry detergent by simply grating it and mixing it with borax and washing soda. Soap is an emulsifier and surfactant. This creates an environment in which water and oil can mix. Therefore soap suspends oil and dirt allowing it to be washed away during rinse or when in the shower. Borax and washing soda are both laundry boosters, acting as solvents to help remove stains. Find out how to make homemade laundry detergent here.
20. Flea and Tick solution for pets
Coconut oil is an organic food-grade product that contains lauric acid which acts as a repellent to fleas and ticks. It is especially good to note that coconut oil is non-toxic so if your pet licks it (and they usually do), it is perfectly safe! Find Jenni Madison's homemade recipe here.
21. Leather Shoes, Belt, Handbags & Furniture Polisher
Popular accessories & furniture polish can usually be quite toxic. Coconut oil works wonderfully to polish and restore the appearance of your favourite shoes, leather accessories or wood furniture. Simply apply a small quantity of oil to the leather item and rub thoroughly with a polish cloth. Alternatively, for wood furniture, you can mix ¼ cup melted coconut oil with 2 tbs lemon juice and 4 tbs distilled white vinegar.
22. Cough Drops
Because of their antimicrobial, antibacterial, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, coconut oil , honey and cinnamon make a powerful combination to treat cold symptoms, boost immunity and soothe throat inflammation. Whip 1/2 cup coconut oil and combine with with 1/2 cup raw honey and 1 tsp of cinnamon. Pour in ice cube tray in the freezer until hard. Keep in airtight container in the fridge. You can also add ginger, lemon juice or essential oils as you wish. Full recipe here.
23. Shower & Sink Scum Remover
Use coconut oil to remove stains and scum from the bathroom sink & shower. It works surprisingly well! Simply apply melted coconut oil to a rag and rub thoroughly before rinsing with water. You can also add bicarb and vinegar for tough stains.
24. Insect Repellant
Coconut oil acts as a perfect barrier to prevent mosquitoes from latching onto the skin. It also acts as a moisturiser for the skin and can help treat bug bites. Simply add your favourite essential oil to coconut oil. Recommended essential oils are tea tree, eucalyptus, lemongrass, lavender, citronella, peppermint, or spearmint which are known to repeal mosquitoes and other insects
25. Remove sticky label residue
Coconut oil is a little miracle to remove tough labels. Simply cover the label with a thin layer of coconut oil and let it soak in. The label should wipe off by itself. You can rub a little more oil with a cloth to remove the remaining pieces. It also works incredibly well for chewing gum stuck in hair!
I hope this allows you to rediscover coconut oil and encourages you to use it in entirely new different ways to protect your health and the environment.
AUTHOR: LIZ LEMIEUX
Liz grew up in the beautiful nordic city of Quebec in Canada. A qualified yoga instructor and a business graduate, Liz is passionate about health, sustainability and social entrepreneurship. Besides yoga, she enjoys surfing, outdoors, cooking, and planning her next travel adventure. Liz manages marketing and social media at Coconut Magic. You can learn more about Liz at lizlemi.