Clarification on Coconut Oil
A few days ago, one of my favorite people asked a question about coconut oil. It made me realize how cryptic I’ve been about this… Sorry!
So, for those who need to know and those who didn’t realize they needed to know, here it is.
Coconut oil is a SUPER substance. The Medium Chain Triglycerides are good for the brain and body. The Lauric Acid is good for the gut. There are so many uses for this very versatile oil! In my household, it is eaten, used on skin, hair, makeup remover, as a base for muscle rub, put on greasy stains to help them wash out easier and to clean. Yes, if you have a place where oily buildup occurs (the hood in my kitchen!), rub it down with coconut oil and let it sit for a bit. The oil absorbs into the stain/buildup and is much easier to wash/scrub away.
Coconut oil has Lauric Acid in it. When coconut oil is combined with NaOH (sodium hydroxide or Lye) and made into soap, Sodium Laurate is formed. Sodium Laurate is a very STRINGENT CLEANSER. That’s not a bad thing. However, if one has very sensitive skin or prone to dry skin, a soap that contains a lot of Sodium Laurate can compound the dry skin problem. Many soap makers use a lot of coconut in their soaps then try to off set this by adding a lot of goat milk or other sources of fatty acids. Others increase the ‘superfat’* ratio. These two methods create very nice soaps. Unfortunately, for many of us, it’s just not enough.
That is why I started formulating soaps that have a very low amount of coconut oil in them and soaps that have zero coconut oil. I love coconut oil! Just not in the soap I use on my skin daily.
I sincerely hope this helps clarify one of the missions here at Intrinsic Alchemist – to make your skin happy.
* Superfat – when the amount of oil exceeds the lye molecules present – when saponification occurs, there is an excess of oils and the soap is superfatted.