Can You Use Cooking Coconut Oil On Your Hair? [Pros & Cons]

You can easily read the label “cooked in coconut oil” on packaged products. The trend of using this oil in cooking is becoming more and more popular. The reason is that it contains fewer calories and is safe for cooking.


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Does this make it safe for hair or skin? Have you ever tried virgin oil on your hair? Can you use it? Is it safe to use on hair? If it’s safe, can you use it regularly?

Read this post and know the answer to all of the above queries.

Can you use coconut oil on your hair?

Yes, you can, but it’s a refined form of oil and not good for regular use. Its unrefined form or natural coconut oil is 100% safe for regular application on hair. This oil has additives, flavor and is specially manufactured for cooking. It has the same nutritional value as unrefined oil. If you increase its quantity on hair, it can make your hair greasy and oily.

If you read the manufacturing details of this product, you can better understand the reasons for not using it regularly. But it’s OK if you’ve used it accidentally or deliberately once or twice in a month.

Is Coconut Cooking Oil The Same As Coconut Oil

No, both are slightly different products. Coconut oil is naturally extracted through coconut. While coconut cooking oil is a refined form of oil. It is mainly processed for cooking and baking purposes. It contains additives and artificial flavors. Moreover, it has a high smoke point.

On the other hand, coconut oil is the least processed product. It is extracted from dried fruit pieces of coconut naturally. It has no dietary preference. It is used in cosmetic products. It is effective in moisturizing skin, scalp, and hair.

Manufacturing Process Of Cooking Coconut Oil

Before going through its uses, it is important to understand how it is manufactured.

Cooking coconut oil has to undergo additional processing to make it fit for cooking and baking.

Step-1 Extraction

The first process of extracting oil from copra is the same as that of unrefined coconut oil. In this step, copra is pressed and oil is extracted naturally. It does not undergo any additional processing. The next steps include following procedures.

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Step-2 Degumming

In this step crude oil is passed through agents to remove gums. It is then washed with water to separate all gums from oil. This changes the texture and thickness of the oil. Moreover, the quality of oil also changes.

Step-3 Neutralizing

In this step, sodium hydroxide is added to degummed oil. The function of sodium hydroxide is to form a soap with free fatty acids of oil. This oil is again washed in water to separate the soap and fatty acids. This step is essential to stop the oxidation of free molecules of fatty acid

Step-4 Bleaching

After neutralizing, the oil is free from fatty acids. It is then passed through filters of activated clay filters. This step is named bleaching. However, no bleach is used in this step during filtering.

Step-5 Deodorizing

Lastly, oil is heated until it has no scent or taste of coconut. If necessary additives or flavors are added to enhance the taste of oil for cooking purposes.

After passing through the above procedure the cooking coconut oil is manufactured. It has a higher smoke point of 400 to 450 F. This makes it suitable for cooking at higher temperatures.

The nutrients of both refined and unrefined coconut oil are the same. So, you can use both for hair. For better results, unrefined natural coconut oil is the best option.

Using Cooking Coconut Oil For Hair: Pros & Cons

Now it’s clear that you can use both cooking coconut oil and coconut oil for hair. But for regular usage unrefined coconut oil is a good option. It does not undergo the chemical procedure of bleaching, neutralizing, and degumming. So, later is more natural and preferable for all time use.

Let’s discuss the pros and cons of using cooking coconut oil for hair:

Pros Of Using Cooking Coconut Oil For Hair

There are many benefits of massaging this oil on hair. It nourishes the follicles of hair and protects the scalp from dryness.

Below are some more benefits:

  • Using it is less sticky
  • Less smelly
  • Washes easily
  • Low grease factor
  • Moisturizes hair
  • Moisturizes scalp
  • Protect hair strand
  • Effective in reducing the protein loss of hair
  • Effective to recover hair moisture after dye

Cons Of Using Cooking Coconut Oil For Hair

It is indeed full of nutrients that strengthen hair follicles. But the way it is manufactured makes it less safe for hair. We can’t say processed products are 100% natural. Let’s read out its drawbacks:

  • It can make the oily hair greasy
  • Refined oil is passed through sodium hydroxide which is not good for hair
  • It has additives and artificial flavors
  • Its smell is not good when you use it on hair
  • Because of the high smoke point, it is not weather friendly

It’s easy to extract oil from dried pieces of copra at home. If you don’t have natural coconut oil, try to buy coconut. Dry its pieces and press them to extract oil. This oil is more natural and much better than cooking coconut oil or virgin oil.

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What is the difference, if any, between coconut oil for cooking and hair

The first main difference is that coconut oil for hair is unrefined, while for cooking it is processed. Secondly, there is a difference between packaging. Cooking coconut oil has guidelines according to dietary uses. Finally, the main difference is oil for hair is free from flavor and additives than oil for cooking.

Both are manufactured to serve two different purposes. The first one is more natural and is good to apply on the scalp and skin. The second one has taste and flavor and is good to use in cooking. But if we see the nutritional values of both, it is the same:

Nutritional Value Of One tablespoon Of Coconut Oil

NutrientsAmount in grams
Calorie121 calories
Protein0g of protein
Fat13-5g of fat, 11.2g saturated fat
VitaminVitamin E
FiberNo

5 Best Coconut Oils For Hair

Best coconut oils for hair are 100 % natural, and preservatives-free. Indian coconut oil is world-famous. Moreover, you can also make the oil at home.

It’s super easy. If you want one for yourself, we’ve separated a list of the 5 best coconut oils for hair. Let’s see:

  1. Viva Naturals Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil
  2. Okay Pure Coconut Oil for All Hair Textures and Skin Types
  3. COCO & CO. Organic Pure Extra Virgin Coconut Oil for Hair & Skin
  4. Handcraft Blends Fractionated Coconut Oil for Hair and Skin
  5. OKAY | 100% Pure Coconut Oil | For All Hair Textures

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you use cooking oil on your hair?

Yes, you can, but not all types of cooking oil. Only cooking sunflower and coconut oils are effective for hair. The reason is that unsaturated fat and antioxidants in it make it ideal to use on the hair. Moreover, they work well to treat damaged hair.

Can you use cooking coconut oil on your skin?

Yes, you can. The reason is that it is rich in saturated fats. This gives extra shine and strength to hair and skin. It also contains lauric acid which is good to protect skin from UV rays.

Can coconut ruin your hair?

No, it can’t, it’s a 100 % natural oil for hair without any side effects.  It fights effectively against dandruff and the dryness of hair. Its regular massage on hair protects hair from damage and split ends. However, if used in excess amounts for fine hair m, it causes dryness and sometimes greasy hair.

Final Lines

It’s Ok to use coconut oil for hair. But it’s not advisable for regular use. The reason is that when coconut oil is processed for cooking, it has to undergo many chemical procedures. Additionally, preservatives and flavors are added. this makes it unsafe for regular application on hair

If you can buy natural coconut oil easily, why go for virgin oil then? Love your hair and avoid using refined products.