Pinterest and the Internet have given us more hacks and neat things to try than we can possibly attempt in our lifetimes. I do like to try though. A lot of things flop, but somethings turn out to be even better than I imagined. Coconut oil and baking soda is one of those things.
I saw the idea originally toted as a facial scrub. I have very dry and VERY picky skin all over, but in the winter, even washing my face with water will give me dandruff of the face. So, an oil wash sounded like it might be helpful. Added bonus: coconut oil has both antibacterial (see this skin study) and anti-fungal (or this specimen study) properties, and as pimples are caused by a bacteria feast blocking up a pore, I thought it could help with that too.
The instructions were equal parts oil and baking soda. Simple enough. Then, for the testing; I lightly rubbed said concoction over my sensitive cheeks but scrubbed my nose, chin, and forehead where I get blackheads. I used a rag to rinse it off.
The results? Not only did it take off make-up beautifully, but my skin LOVED it. I had no facial dandruff and slightly less blemishes! I added a jar to my shower and thought that was the end of the story.
But it wasn’t.
Use equal parts coconut oil and baking soda. I warm mine slightly to make it liquid when mixing. In the winter, my concoction turns solid, in the summer, it’s liquid. That’s due to coconut oil’s low melting point, but it doesn’t change its efficacy.
A year or so later, I noticed an itchy spot on my ankle that definitely wasn’t eczema. Humph. Fungus. I treated it, but then it came back. About the time I started to treat it again, my hubs comes to me. He’s got this spot that’s been itching for about a month. A MONTH! *Sigh* I guess, his form of manliness comes with not complaining until the issue has blossomed out of control, and of course, that was where I had picked up my ankle fungus.
I showed him how to treat it and told him that it was important to wash the area to remove the dead infected skin and expose the fresh skin to the medicine. This triggered a memory. Didn’t that stuff I keep in the shower have anti-fungal properties? We should use that to wash the affected area! …It’s got antibacterial properties too. I wonder if that would be good for my feet in general??
So, I decided to try it out on my whole foot. And drum-roll Please!
It helped clear up the fungus quicker than before, and not only are my feet way less stinky in the summer, but my heels don’t have the deep cracks that they used to have!
But that’s not all folks!
As I said, I have super sensitive skin. I have to buy pricier soaps and lotions, and even then my skin will freak out with eczema. What did I have to lose? I decided to try it everywhere. I used the same method as I did on my face: scrub the tough parts, smooth over the sensitive bits.
Well, my eczema has healed up, and it cleans really well too. It gets oil, dirt, and all manner of stuff off easily. Also, I was concerned that it would leave oil spots on my towel, but it doesn’t. My skin is healthy and happy. In the height of summer I will still use body wash (‘cuz my skin doesn’t care as much then, and it’s a little quicker), but this experiment was a WIN!
P.S. If you have sensitive skin, and don’t feel like going down the hippie rabbit hole that I went down (and it’s amazing!), I recommend Zum Wash. It was the first body wash I could use that didn’t feel like I was washing with lotion. It smells great and my skin does better with it than any other soap I’ve tried.