Veronika Honestly coconutsHi, it's Veronika here!

I have to say, I feel very lucky that I have no allergies - touch wood* - so I can freely enjoy nuts. Especially coconuts.

This has been on my mind for a while: Everywhere I look I'm shocked by the amount of chemical cosmetic stuff people (ladies especially, I'd say) put on their skin, and mostly what you need is simply just coconut oil! =) It saves me so much money (ok, extra virgin cold pressed ultra-posh coconut oil costs something but I still spend less than using loads of cosmetics) and it saves you from unnecessary chemicals. That's a good deal, isn't it? Plus it's environmentally friendlier than all the manufactured stuff with loads of additives. Simply all positives.

Let me tell you about my experiences and give you some tips when using coconut oil...

Firstly - always get the freshest product you can. Initially, I wasn't sure about the smell of coconuts, but I got used to it. Buying deodourised/unscented coconut oil is not good. The process isn't very natural. Same with hydrogenation. Don't use hydrogenated coconut oil. It may be convenient as it doesn't liquify at room temperature, but it's sooo broken. Literally. I'm not going to dive deep into the chemistry, it wasn't my favourite subject in school anyway (although I could, I've done a decent amount of chemistry). Regardless - hydrogenated or any other deviation from fresh virgin coconut oil is not good. Nothing bleached. Or with added anything. Just NO.

Extra. Virgin. RAW. Cold pressed. You want the natural thing. For example, I get this - always from Amazon (it has the best price there). It comes in glass (not plastic), all natural, smells great, virgin and all the good stuff - but the main reason I chose this brand was the great price, and as you can see, I stayed loyal from the first litre (I have even more jars, they just wouldn't fit in the photo.)

Good tip - reuse or recycle these jars once empty! Mine are 1L size, so work great for food storage (I still much prefer glass over plastic for this where possible).

Veronika Honestly coconuts

Featuring Ceylon cinnamon and Himalayan salt, plus original coconut oil, one jar is currently empty

So, what do I use coconut oil for?

Lip balm! I've struggled to get vegan lip balms. I went into veganism head over heels, literally overnight, so I had to find vegan alternatives pretty quickly. Before veganism, I used always LOADS of lip balm, but I've found I don't need so much "balming" with coconut oil. When I use coconut oil on my lips I found out I need to re-apply much less often than with classic balms. When there's no coconut oil around, many other unadulterated plant oils will help keep you moisturised (olive oil helped me recently when visiting family who don't use coconut oil, while I didn't have any on me).

PRO tip: Get yourself a tiny glass/metal container with a good lid - screw top ideally (so liquidised oil in warmer temperatures won't leak =) and carry it with you. I have mine for very long time as you can see, but still works great, refill and go:

This mini jar is 30ml, easy to carry, refills great and originally contained coconut oil! Happy coincidence =)

Face cream! Coconut oil is the only thing I use on my face. Wash with water and put oil where it feels dry. That's all my face needs. Try it too, instead of tons of chemicals. (Yep, I don't use make-up, that's another story...)

Dry hands - coconut oil! Again =)

All-over-body experience - great for massages (absorbs well, smells great) - my back gets to be a "coconut-back" very often - a big thank you to my partner! He proofreads my articles, so yeah, thank you for that as well!)

Deodorant - you bet, coconut oil! =) Although in really hot weather (which is not so much of a problem in England), I use a mixture of coconut oil and few other ingredients (I'll spill the recipe in a future blog). Sometimes I also use a brand called Salt of the Earth (I accidentally inherited one of their salt crystals - but it's good too, an all natural one-ingredient product, happy Veronika).

The only funny thing is that coconut oil turns to liquid in warmer temperatures (around 76F or 24 C) and goes rock-hard in cold temperatures, so may feel strange in hair, beards etc if it doesn't absorb completely and goes hard. It's not a problem, it might just feel weird.

Coconut for cooking - I must not forget that. Coconut oil, sure thing. Coconut milk - great for sauces, curries,... Dry coconut in porridge or salads - YUM! I tried coconut flour once too - it makes interesting things, although I mainly just stick to the previously mentioned ingredients, I simply use them more often so I know more what to do with them =)

Crafts - coconuts shells, they made great homes for our hamsters =) They also are simply nice decorations - I hope I will finally get around to mini-landscaping one day, then coconut shells would be great for beach miniatures (beach style is a big thing for me - I even run a beach eshop - check it out, if you're interested in marine conservation, you can get yourself something nice and I'll donate 50% of the profits to a marine charity, it's win-win!).

I'm also hoping to get some coconut shell bowls for dining. They are simply amazing!

One final use of coconuts, although I don't have any personal experience with it yet, is coconut fiber aka Coir. Just like many other plants byproducts - like pineapple leaves or banana flowers for example) it makes great fabrics. Let's forget leather and fur, lets cut the production of new plastic materials (we can just reuse what we already have or have thrown away) and let's be inspired by new natural, eco-friendly and biodegradable plant-based fabrics. Coconut is one of those new stars in the design industry. There will be more about this topic coming in Magicful Home's blog - if interested, keep an eye on my news there.

*Do you know why do we 'touch', or 'knock on wood'? Our ancestors believed that there were good fairies living in trees (so you should knock on real wood) and by knocking on the tree and saying your wish the fairy could help you... I'm definitely no artist, but for "evidence purposes" =) I created the coconut fairy illustration. Because I've been working all day and it's almost midnight. So there are probably some fairies around my head at this moment.

Veronika Honestly coconut fairy

Enjoy my coconut fairy (I said I'm no artist) and enjoy coconuts!

Hi, it's Veronika, your vegan friend and content creator of Veronika Honestly (no, not my surname).
I'm mathemagician (making money as maths tutor! ?), a bit of an artist (well, trying to get back to art) and also animal and adventure lover.
Get to know me on my About page and make sure you sign up for my newsletter to get my free printable greeting cards for vegans I made for everyone to use and spread the vegan word!

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Thank you for reading this whole article =) I have a few things to mention here:

Firstly, if not already mentioned in the article, I would like you to know about my Honest Language Disclaimer (no, it's not about profanity) - in case you were wondering why my English is so weird and not Oxford-dictionary perfect (whose English is, anyway...)

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