Coco(nut) Culture

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Hailed as the wonder oil of the decade, every. blinking. magazine. (and blog) suggests you not only eat, drink, and cook with cup-fulls of coconut oil, but they aggressively advise you cover your head in it, baptize your children in it, and roll around on the floor in it, screaming “HEALTH! HEALTH!”

The real question is: (as it always should be) Is coconut oil beneficial for my hair type? Recently, while dancing (yep, I get hair questions while cuttin' a rug), a newly acquired fabulous friend asked me my opinion on coconut oil. Is it really the wonder oil it's built up to be? Should we slather every inch of our hair in it, you know, with resurrection-from-the-dead type miracles to follow? I gave her the quick and dirty, but I think we should discuss--without screaming over bass and twerking involved.

(Aside: Mom and Dad, there was no twerking.)

Tousled settles the issue and deconstructs coconut oil, who should use it, and how.

Hair type diagnosis

Protein sensitivity is the key to determining if your hair is meant for coconut oil or not. Don't get me wrong, you can use it in doses, but if you are protein sensitive it may not be your go-to oil and certainly not used by itself.

Protein sensitivity is the diagnosis of hair that actually has ENOUGH protein. Remember, hair is made of a protein called keratin. Coconut oil helps prevent the loss of protein in your hair.  If your hair feels limp or weak (due to processing, sun exposure) it may need a protein treatment. BUT if you notice that after you apply coconut oil your hair feels dry and/or brittle, then lay off. Your protein levels are just fine.

So is coconut oil the auto repair that you were hoping for? Maybe and maybe not!

If you are going to try a coconut treatment, I would attempt a protein pack like Palmer's Coconut Oil Formula Deep Conditioning Protein Pack, ideally, once every 4-8 weeks depending on how your hair feels.

Want a DIY solution?

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoons of raw liquid honey

  • 1/2 tablespoons of virgin coconut oil (melted)

Method:

  1. Mix the two ingredients well in a bowl.

  2. Heat for 20 seconds in the microwave.

  3. Apply to the hair beginning from the hair ends to the scalp, using your fingers to massage, comb through the hair.

  4. Put on a processing cap on and go about your business for one hour.

  5. Shampoo and wash.

Use this treatment every 2 weeks to start. Back it off to three if you feel your hair getting brittle.

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