It pains me to admit when I'm wrong. It tastes like swishing around a spoonful of coconut oil in your mouth might: unpleasant, unnecessary, and, well, just plain wrong.
But I know too much now. I've learned too many things to keep quiet, and it needs to be said: coconut oil is horrible for your hair and skin.
Listen, I am not perfect; I jumped on the coco bandwagon. I reposted the memes. ("Bad hair day? Coconut oil. Dry skin? Coconut oil. Boyfriend acting up? Coconut oil.") I even produced a video several years ago discussing all the ways you can use it: on your hair, skin, and nails; in your daily life for things like getting rings off your finger. It was an instant hit, amassing seven million views on Facebook within a few days. And now it's been reported that cooking with coconut oil isn't that great for you, either. Seems like nothing is coming up coconuts lately.
But the truth is, coconut oil does soften your hair and removes makeup well. I've learned through more research (and personal horror stories), though, that it can also ruin your hair color and cause breakouts. One thing the aforementioned video made clear? That people are genuinely curious about coconut oil, and it's worth discussing what type is actually beneficial to use on your skin and hair. But first: the hard truths you need to learn, ahead.