coconut oil

What Does Coconut Oil Do for Your Skin?

What Does Coconut Oil Do for Your Skin?

Coconut oil is the latest must-have product to add to your beauty regimen. Even so, some believe the oil is overhyped and not worth buying into.

The truth is that coconut oil offers fantastic benefits to your skin, hair, and overall health. In this article, you'll discover coconut oil's benefits for your skin.

Related: Colloidal Oatmeal: Bringing Calm to Your Skin

What is Coconut Oil?

Coconut oil is extracted from the meat of the coconut plant, and contains a number of beneficial compounds:

Lauric acid, which has antimicrobial properties that kill bacteria and reduce inflammation. 

Linoleic acid, which is an unsaturated omega-6 fatty acid that helps soften and smooth skin.

Together, these two compounds help protect and moisturize skin.

How It's Made

The process of making oil depends on whether the makers are creating virgin or refined coconut oil. Extra virgin oil is made from the flesh of the coconut and can be pressed using hot or cold processes. 

However, many believe cold-pressed coconut oil is better than expelled, pressed oil due to its ability to hold more nutrient density. In the cold-pressed method, the temperature cannot rise above 122 F. As a result, the natural enzymes remain intact, and more beneficial nutrients remain to be absorbed by skin.

The dried flesh of the coconut (or copra) is used to make refined coconut oil. As a result of pressing and heating the copra, oil is produced. Next, it's filtered to remove bacteria and other debris. Sometimes during this method, additional chemicals are used to treat and remove the extraneous compounds from the coconut oil.


coconut oil

The Composition of Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is made from several components, which are great for the skin—two of the substances discussed above. Lauric acid is 49% composed of coconut oil and is the main ingredient that helps protects the skin when using coconut oil.

Linoleic acid composes of 2% in coconut oil and acts as a barrier when applied to the skin. It helps retain moisture and keep harmful irritants away. The other substances within coconut oil include the following:

  • Palmitic Acid: 8%
  • Myristic Acid: 8%
  • Capric Acid: 7%
  • Caprylic Acid: 8%
  • Oleic Acid: 6%
  • Stearic Acid: 2%

Related: How to Repair and Restore a Damaged Skin Barrier

Coconut Oil In Skincare

Now that you know all the amazing compounds coconut oil is composed of, you might be wondering how to incorporate it into your current skincare routine. Here are all the ways that this miraculous ingredient can help you achieve your skincare goals:

Removes Makeup

Coconut oil attracts build-up and dirt particles that have accumulated on your skin. This and its antifungal properties make coconut oil an excellent makeup remover that can remove the toughest products and leave your face fresh.


Coconut oil is an excellent exfoliator that will help remove dead skin and leave you with smooth, glowing skin.


The fatty acids within coconut oil help your skin retain moisture. This is why your skin feels silky smooth after applying the oil.


Lauric acid, an abundant compound in coconut oil, has strong antibacterial properties and helps kill the bacteria within skin and reduce inflammation. Because of this antibacterial property, coconut oil is excellent for treating eczema and wounds. 

Are you looking for an excellent product that’s great for eczema and won’t clog your pores? Soteri Skin makes skincare products for eczema-prone skin types. Check it out for yourself! 


The natural moisturizing properties of coconut oil help to plump skin. This gives a lovely youthful appearance and supports overall skin health. 


A recent study found that extra virgin coconut oil is an excellent anti-inflammatory because of its high concentrations of lauric acid, which help to reduce redness and swelling of skin.


One of the main reasons people use coconut oil is because it is such an effective moisturizer. Specifically, coconut oil increases the lipid content of the skin surface, which reduces transepidermal water loss.



Side Effects of Coconut Oil


Even though coconut oil provides impressive benefits, there is a potential negative side effect. Coconut oil is known to be comedogenic. This means it can potentially clog pores and worsen pimples on acneic skin.

So, if you have acne-prone or oily skin, avoiding using coconut oil on the face may be best. However, you can still use coconut oil on the body without any side effects. 

How Coconut Oil Affects Different Skin Types

As coconut oil reduces inflammation and redness, it benefits people with sensitive skin the most. Also, anyone suffering from dry skin will enjoy coconut oil's benefits. Lastly, those with mature skin may see reduced fine lines and a youthful appearance when they start using products containing coconut oil in their beauty regimen.

Related: What is My Skin Type? How to Tell if My Skin is Dry or Oily

Enjoy the Benefits of Coconut Oil

Coconut oil helps reduce inflammation, redness, and fine lines. People who struggle with dry skin, chronic skin conditions, or wrinkles will reap the most benefits from using the oil. However, even though coconut oil is versatile and generally viewed as safe, those with oily, acne-prone skin may want to avoid using coconut oil on their face.

However, no matter your skin type, coconut oil is great on the body! Anyone can and should consider making coconut oil or products containing coconut oil as an ingredient a part of their beauty regimen.