Your guide to buying the best coconut oil in 2019 |

How to buy the best coconut oil for every purpose

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The perfect oil for your skin, your hair or in your kitchen.

Beloved for its rich vitamin and fatty-acid content that contribute to a range of purported health benefits, coconut oil has been a health, beauty and wellness trend for quite some time now. In fact, it’s so multifunctional that you can use it to moisturize your skin and hair or when cooking in the kitchen. But the best pick for you will depend on what you’ll be using it for.

Best coconut oil for hair

Coconut is an excellent ingredient to help moisturize and condition your hair, and can also be used as a deep treatment for added shine or to tame flyaways.

It is an oil, so how much you need and what effect it will have on your locks will be best determined by what kind of hair you have. Coconut oil is quite absorbent, but it might still weigh down finer hair or be too oily for naturally oily hair. Dry, curly or kinky hair will be better able to use coconut oil as a leave-in treatment.

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How to make a deep hair treatment with coconut oil

  1. Warm the coconut oil on low heat.
  2. Apply to damp or dry hair.
  3. Massage it into your scalp, the length of your hair and the ends.
  4. Put on a shower cap and leave it on for at least 30 minutes.
  5. Wash it out thoroughly. Depending on your hair type, you might need to use shampoo for this step. If you have dry or very curly hair, plain warm water might do the trick.
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Best coconut oil for skin

One of the most popular uses for coconut oil is in cosmetics. It’s adored for its light texture and absorbent quality. Coconut oil can be used alone on your skin as a makeup remover, as well as shaving lubricant, after-sun lotion, moisturizer and more. Virgin coconut oil is the favored type of oil for direct use on the skin, especially on the face, because it is unbleached.

If you are looking for natural ingredients to use on your face, then extra-virgin coconut oil is probably the best way to go. If you would like to get the most active and nutritive coconut oil, look for coconut oil that has been cold pressed.

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Best coconut oil for cooking

Most dietitians and cooks would agree that for the highest quality cooking oil, virgin coconut is the healthiest choice. However, refined coconut oils can also be used in the kitchen.

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What’s the difference between refined and virgin coconut oil?

There are two main production methods used to create coconut oil, which result in either refined or virgin oil.

Refined coconut oil

Refined coconut oil is generally considered to be lesser-quality than virgin coconut oil, though it is the most common type and is invariably the most economical choice. It has gone through a refining process, usually at very high temperatures and sometimes with the assistance of different chemicals to help extract the highest quantity of oil from the coconut.

Refined coconut oil is made from the dried white “meat” of the coconut, called copra. To extract the oil, the copra is pressed, heated and blended. Then the oil is extracted and processed. Some brands actually take the coconut smell and flavor out of the oil to make it more of general-purpose vegetable oil.

For this reason, refined coconut oil is sometimes called and labeled “RBD oil,” which is an acronym for refined, bleached and deodorized.

If you prefer to buy products that have been through as little processing as possible, then you will probably prefer virgin coconut oil.

Virgin coconut oil

First things first: unrefined coconut oil and virgin coconut oil are the same product.

And despite different labeling, there is also no measurable difference between “virgin” coconut oil and “extra virgin” coconut oil. The extraction process that olive oil goes through that differentiates between virgin and extra virgin does not apply to coconut oil.

Virgin coconut oil can also be extracted by a method called “cold pressing” which keeps more of the original nutritional compounds intact. Cold pressing isn’t really that cold, and the coconut is still heated to extract the oil, but at much lower temperatures than traditional extraction methods.

Virgin coconut oil is extracted from the fresh milk and fresh raw meat of the coconut soon after it’s picked. The process of selecting ripe coconuts and the timely oil production means that virgin coconut oil tends to be of a higher quality and more expensive than refined coconut oil.

Bottom line

There are lots of different uses for coconut oil – whether you want to spice up your beauty routine or add some extra health benefits to your home-baked goodies. Be sure to choose a product that’s meant for whatever purpose you’ll be using yours for.

Frequently asked questions

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