The Topical Coconut Oil Experiment

When I returned from my trip to Ohio in December parts of my face were dry, slightly red, and starting to flake. Damn you veggie oils and gluten! I had read about how some people use coconut oil to both moisturize and rejuvenate their skin. Could coconut oil restore my skin? I decided to do an experiment in my own unique way.

Instead of using coconut oil on my entire face, I decided that I wanted a control in the experiment, so I only applied the coconut oil to the right side of my face. I did this for two months. What I discovered was that the coconut oil did an excellent job as a moisturizer, however, the dryness and redness healed at equal rates. After 2 months of use, I can say that coconut oil provided no additional healing benefit to my skin. The left and right sides healed at equal rates.

Nutiva Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil, 15-Ounce Tubs (Pack of 2) – The brand I used.

Without having a control, I may have given credit for my improved skin complexion on the product and not the body’s ability to self-heal. My guess is what I discovered may be true for other skincare products and procedures. Run your own experiments and find out for yourself. The worst-case scenario is one side gets beautiful while the other remains constant. If that happens, start a “catch up” routine for the ugly side. Problem solved.

I’m ending the one-sided coconut oil experiment. A new skin experiment begins today. That will be the topic of a future post.


Add yours

  1. John (aka Wish I Were Riding)

    Feb 25, 2012 — 11:06 am

    This is interesting. I have been struggling with red, dry, flaky skin under my eye for more than a year. I usually don’t worry about it too much, but I think people other than myself are starting to recognize it as well. I have been trying all kinds of things, but haven’t found anything that definitively works. (I also probably haven’t consistently used any one thing for a prolonged enough time.)

    Looking forward to your follow up posts on this.

    P.S. I don’t think mine is related to vegetable oils and gluten. (I”m not perfect, but good enough it shouldn’t be causing my issue.)

  2. @John – Some people get skin issues with corn or dairy. Doing elimination diets should help you figure out what is or isn’t making the problem worse. For me my problems were gluten, veggie oils and liquid histamines (cider, kefir, wine, beer). I can tolerate fermented dairy up to a point. Too much will result in skin flare ups.

  3. Very interesting. So far the only things I find helpful for my facial skin are:
    1- vigorous scrubbing with plain old warm/hot water and a normal washcloth
    2- dessicated cod liver oil (rehydrated and drunk – not-so-yummmy but effective…

  4. @Glenn – Interesting about the cod liver oil. I consume a fermented cod liver oil during the winter months. Mine in flavored with ginger and tastes pretty good.

  5. Interesting post. I’ve been using coconut oil as moisturizer for my skin (everywhere but my face) for the past couple months too. And I gotta say I agree, it works… but it’s not magical. My skin still gets pretty dry sometimes. Think I might start to switch it up to something else

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