Coconut Oil as a Natural Face Moisturizer

The green transformation gets greener, and I’m now up to my eyeballs in organic, homemade products in my house as I’ve got an easy, all-natural and organic face moisturizer that I don’t even have to make! Sometimes I feel like I work in an old-fashioned apothecary or pharmacy as my kitchen smells like lavender, tea tree oil and coconut. Such a treat for the nostrils!

I started going green in 2011 by making my own shampoo and conditioner, then it grew into cleaning products, laundry detergent, dishwasher detergent and has now expanded into cosmetics! I  saw on the forums of that many use Coconut Oil as a face moisturizer – all by itself! So easy, I couldn’t turn that down, and I bought a pound of it from Amazon for only $8.49 (pure, unrefined, extra virgin and organic is the most healthy for your skin) and used it first as an ingredient in my homemade deodorant and body butter. It’s also sold by a really cool company called Tropical Traditions*, that makes their coconut oil by hand!

Now I apply it to my face after every wash with my baking soda body scrub and really like how soft my skin feels. I apply just a tad on the tip of my finger and it’s plenty, so this pound will last forever! Coconut oil has a high melting point, so it is usually solid (but soft) in my house, unless it gets hot outside and our windows are open. It is on the oily side, and I find that if I wear my glasses after putting it on, my eyelashes rub the oil all over my lenses, so it is a bit annoying.

UPDATE Nov. 2012: Since getting pregnant, I have not been able to use coconut oil on my face anymore because it has made my skin break out in acne. It is a known comedogenic. I instead use Castor Oil or other carrier oils and just a dab goes a long way! However, the rest of the skin on my body has gotten incredibly dry, so I’ve been slathering my arms, legs, chest, belly and even hands with it and have been very happy.

Besides being antimicrobial, antioxidant, antifungal, and antibacterial, coconut oil is effective in reducing wrinkles and is loaded with vitamins. It can also be rubbed on the scalp to treat dandruff and dry scalp. It is also effective in treating psoriasis, dermatitis, eczema and other skin infections (source – and is an excellent butter alternative in the kitchen (great for vegans!).

You can also use it as a conditioner where you actually apply it BEFORE washing, unless you use baking soda shampoo, like me, then you could apply it afterwards as a hair gel of sorts. However, with my thick, curly, dry hair, I did not like it as a frizz reducer or gel. My hair was frizzy and oily when I used it.

For a list of more oils you can use as face moisturizers, visit Our Homemade Happiness, which has many posts similar to mine and is a great site!

See my Green Living posts for more green diy, tips and recipes for homemade green products!

*If you order by clicking on any of my links and have never ordered from Tropical Traditions in the past, you will receive a free book on Virgin Coconut Oil, and I will receive a discount coupon for referring you.

This post is linking up at:
Simple Lives Thursday
Get Schooled Saturdays at Too Much Time On My Hands

About Sara McFall

Sara is the owner and founder of My Merry Messy Life, which started in 2011 as a way to chronicle her journey to a natural, chemical-free lifestyle and to share her passions of mothering, real food, homeschooling and crochet. She is a mama to three precious and energetic little boys and wife to a university professor who loves to sing, dance ballet and ballroom, and live simply and naturally.


  1. I love coconut oil too! I really like using it on my arms and legs. Thanks for linking to my site! We’re two peas in a pod!

  2. thank you for your post! My sister turned me on to coconut oil as a moisterizer, but I have yet to take the plunge. I thank you for your information and am going to get some as soon as I can!

  3. We finally bought some coconut oil! Yay!
    I LOVE it as a facial/skin moisturizer!
    I used it in my hair today… just a tad after shampooing & towel drying… I think I am going to follow your advice and apply it BEFORE shampooing next time. I’m not a fan of how greasy it is making my hair look. lol

  4. I’ve been loving having a jar of coconut oil on my bathroom counter for about a year now. I use it for my neck, arms & legs mostly since I tend to break out around my mouth if I use it there, AND if I’m not careful I can get it into my eyes (no problem, just fuzzy sight till I dab it out) when I perspire during dog walks or exercise. I use Argon oil around my eyes and mouth now and it’s wonderful too.
    After years of agonizing over the price of the high quality facial creams I’ve been buying which are as natural as I could find I feel almost silly rubbing coconut oil on myself, but it’s great to see the wonderul results on my aging face and body. I can definitely see a difference and I love it!!!

  5. Coco nut oil is my favorite new discovery! I started using it because of my pregnancy. I naturally have very dry skin, and I have found that Coconut oil is the best moisturizer for me. Not to mention it has prevented any stretch marks (and my midwife compliments my skin at every check up).

    Since using it on my face, I have actually stopped breaking out! For the first time since I was 13 I have a smooth forehead!! Even Proactive didn’t work for me.

    I have also started doing oil pulling in the morning with it. The effects have been so apparent that now my husband (who has NEVER been into holistic remedies) oil pulls every morning and has started using coconut oil on a regular basis. However, he does joke that our baby will come out a coconut!

    I highly recommend coconut oil and its MANY uses.


  6. Hi there! Thanks so much for this post. I have to agree with Jill, however, in that I have started using pure, deodorized coconut oil on my face and my skin feels better than ever. Granted it’s only been a week of trying it on my face (I’ve been using it on my feet for a year), but if my face didn’t agree with it I would’ve known in 24 hours. I’m in my 40’s, but during my 20’s my acne was so bad I had to take birth control pills just to treat it. My acne was associated with the hormonal changes with my period. Even then it didn’t clear completely, it was just tamed. Nowadays I’m long off the pill and I get only a couple of pimples each month, but my skin is still dry and very sensitive and can break out easily with the wrong product.

    When I apply the coconut oil, my face feels like it’s got a thin layer of its own oil on it. It’s not heavy, and doesn’t feel coated. My skin doesn’t feel tight. It just feels, well, natural! I use powder which takes care of the shine. My period has come and gone and I’ve had no breakout. It has not been comedogenic for me. I’ve been using it day and night, after washing my face. When you’ve been battling acne for almost half a lifetime like me, finally having smooth skin is a big deal! So glad to kiss $40 face cream good bye!

  7. can someone recommend a good cleanser that isn’t harsh…? I love using coconut oil on my skin also.

  8. Hi Sara,
    I love your site! I’ve been making my own body lotions for a while now & wanting to go more natural in other areas too, & your posts have really inspired me. I’ve now gone no-poo & my hair is the best it’s ever been, & I’ve started making my own toothpaste & bodywash. Next stop is having a go at your deodorant recipe which looks fab!
    I’m a recent convert to coconut oil & I can’t praise it enough! I use it as a facial cleanser & moisturiser & I’m so pleased with the results. My skin is much softer & smoother & more evenly toned, I think it might already be lightening my acne scars. I’m also pregnant & my skin is usually pretty oily, but since hitting my second trimester it’s been a lot drier, & this is the only thing I’ve tried that seems to help it stay in balance. It’s a shame it caused you to break out, I’d read that processed coconut oil was comodogenic but that virgin was fine because of its lower melting point.
    Oil pulling is basically swishing oil around your mouth to remove toxins & bacteria which regular brushing can’t remove. It’s based on an ancient Ayurvedic technique & is believed to detox the whole body. You can find out more here:
    I tried it yesterday morning for the first time & I have to say my mouth felt incredibly clean all day. You’re supposed to do it for 20 minutes every morning on an empty stomach which for me is the only off-putting bit as it means being up for a while before my early-rising three year old!

    • Thanks for sharing, Niki! I’ve heard of oil pulling but didn’t really know anything about it until you filled me in. I used virgin organic coconut oil on my face and it still made me break out, but I do LOVE using coconut all over the rest of my body.

  9. Is coconut oil good for pregnancy on the tummy? I am trying to prevent stretch marks and use something more natural.



  10. Sara,
    When I first discovered coconut oil I bought a jar of organic coconut oil. Of course I then learned that the best is extra virgin organic unrefined coconut oil. (At least for cooking anyway) The jar I bought is unopened and I was wondering if it is ok to use it for some of the recipes you have on your site or for body/face use or should those be made with the extra virgin organic unrefined type. I love using it for popping pop corn in. Very good. Couldn’t find an answer when googled so I thought maybe you would know. Thanks, Kim

    • Hi Kim! Yes, I think that coconut oil would just fine to use in beauty products. No need to let it go to waste. It’ll still work the same, just won’t be as pure, but still way better than store-bought lotions and products. I love your comment and am gonna share it on my Facebook page!

  11. Sara,
    can coconut oil remove stretch mark on my tomy?

    • Hi there! Probably not, it’ll help smooth your skin, but I don’t think it’ll remove stretch marks. There are essential oils that can help smooth the appearance of skin – like Frankincense. I’d try that!

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