From cooking delicious, healthy breakfasts to fixing the boils on calloused feet, everyone is saying coconut oil can do anything. So when my editor asked me to wash my face with coconut oil for a week to see if it helps with acne, my typical cynical self was less than enthused to join the rest of the population that bought the giant, not-exactly-cheap jar from the baking isle. I will be the first to tell you that I did not believe in the powers of the coconut. But after seven days, I can't help but share the mainstream opinion.
The next week of my life was spent trying to remember to wash my face with the oil every night. And, of course, after the first night, I had to dip my finger in the oil to see if it even tasted as great as everyone was saying (apparently it's used as a substitute for butter? Those are some pretty big shoes to fill).
By the end of the week, I found that I still had my unfortunate zits, but they were far less noticeable. While the coconut oil did not eradicate my acne completely, it helped the dryness that usually makes my zits more noticeable than I'd like. Take a look at my transformation!
If you look closely, you'll see the dry spots around the edges of my nose that I warned you about. The coconut oil went on my face smoothly. I was afraid of my face feeling oily and unclean after washing it, but I actually just felt super hydrated. I didn't use my typical moisturizer after my first day using coconut oil because my face did not have that tight, too clean, dry feeling.
I woke up on day two with a large zit about the size of China next to my right eyebrow. The zits were there, but the dryness had kind of vanished. I definitely felt better about the skin on my face — it felt way less stretched out — and I was still feeling about the oil being able to cure my acne. I did begin using my daily moisturizer today as well.
Side note: Directly after this picture was taken, I put the coconut oil on a piece of toast. It wasn't butter, but it was good!
All of the pressure was on this day! My boyfriend was graduating from college and I was getting ready to see a ton of his family members and a few friends I hadn't seen since I graduated four months ago. I wanted to make sure I looked like I had a semblance of my life together. My unfortunate continent-sized zit was still on my forehead (because life is never fair) but it was far less noticeable than it was on Day 1, thanks to the lack of peeling skin that tends to pop up when I'm spot treating.
The morning of Day 4, I looked in the mirror and was super impressed with how my soft my skin looked. I decided to apply only a light brush of powder on my face and still felt confident about the zits that were still on my face. Although the coconut oil was not eradicating them, the redness surrounding my dry face was definitely gone, which helped make them less noticeable.
OK, but how soft does my skin look? That's not even thanks to awesome contouring skills (because although I have the brushes, I don't quite have that art down yet). It's all thanks to the powers of the coconut! I had woken up with three new zits on my cheek (because one is just not enough, ya know?) but was able to cover them well with cover up and because there was no dryness around the zits that would cause the makeup flake off.
To show you how the experiment is really going, here is my #nomakeupselfie. It didn't get as many likes as Demi Lovato's #nomakeupselfie, but my eyebrows looked great so I'm all right. My skin looked so soft and even! I actually smiled at myself in the mirror — cheesy, I know — but could not contain it with how soft, hydrated and even my skin felt.
I wanted to give a super duper close up of how well the coconut oil actually worked on the last day. Again, my zits are unfortunately still there (I imagine, like cockroaches, my zits will outlive anything. Le sigh) but they were far less red and dry because the coconut oil hydrated my skin so well! It's been two weeks since this last day, and I am still using coconut oil to wash my face every night.
Images: Hayli Goode