Coconut: Ten great ways to plunder the beauty bounty
As coconut fever cracks on, Lisa Haynes rounds up a lovely bunch of exotic treats for your body
You don't have to be stranded on a desert island to take full advantage of coconuts. They've fast become one of the most popular ingredients in beauty, buoyed by endorsements from supermodels like Gisele and Miranda Kerr, who swear by the tropical treasure's benefits.
Whether enjoyed as food or used on the skin or hair, coconut has multifunctional beauty perks, according to Alex Thompson, nutritionist at Holland & Barrett. "The small molecular structure of coconut oil allows for easy absorption," Thompson says. "This makes it an ideal ointment for the relief of dry skin, or conditioning hair, but equally it can be eaten on salads or used as cooking oil."
From skincare to scents, coconut fever is in full force. Tempted to get involved? Get cracking and shell out on some of these top picks...
THE SUMMER SCENT
Relive the scent of your summer getaway in less exotic places, with The Library of Fragrance's Fresh Coconut, £15 (thelibraryoffragrance.com). The cologne has that just-picked-off-the-beach freshness. Just try not to eat it...
THE WONDER OIL
Cold pressed isn't just for green juices. It's the process used to bottle Liha's Idan Oil, from £16 (lihabeauty.co.uk). Infused with a tuberose flower, this divine smelling coconut oil is a multi-use potion you can use from top-to-toe.
THE HAIR TONIC
Post-holiday hair needs some TLC. Treat dry, damaged ends to The Body Shop's Rainforest Coconut Hair Oil, £7 (thebodyshop.co.uk), which can be used to massage your scalp pre-wash, or left on as an overnight treatment.
THE EXOTIC ESCAPE
Transport yourself to the Caribbean and envelop skin with the warm, sweet smell of Lavera's Exotic Dream Body Lotion, £8.45 (naturisimo.com). Boost the feel-good factor by using the matching Body Wash first, to layer up the coconut and vanilla scent.
THE FARAWAY SCRUB
Missing the feel of sand on your skin? Get your exfoliation fix in the shower, with Treaclemoon's My Coconut Island Body Scrub, currently reduced to £2.49 from £2.99 (Tesco.com). It even comes complete with inspirational message on the bottle for some bathroom escapism.
THE MIRACLE MILK
Let parched summer hair drink up the OGX Nourishing Coconut Milk range, from £4.50 each (Boots.com). The creamy collection of shampoo, conditioner, serum and oil includes coconut milk to nourish and whipped egg white proteins to help give locks strength and elasticity.
THE SKIN SAVIOUR
If your complexion rather resembles the exterior of a coconut, adopt an intensive treatment into your skincare regime, with Dr Organic Virgin Coconut Oil Hydrating Radiance Elixir, £12.99 (hollandandbarrett.com). Apply to the face and neck before moisturising for a replenishing hit of virgin coconut oil and extract.
THE COCONUT NUT
First there were carrots, then cucumbers, tomatoes, blueberries and grapefruit, but current flavour of the month is the Yes To Coconut range, with items from £5.99 (Boots.com). Think head-to-toe coconut oil hydration, with lotions and potions to relieve dry skin and restore damaged hair.
THE RAW BEAUTY
Enjoy coconut in its purest form (other than straight out of the shell), with Neal's Yard Remedies Organic Virgin Coconut Oil, £9 (nealsyardremedies.com). Raw, unrefined and unbleached, warm between your palms and apply directly to skin for instant nourishment.
THE RECOVERY MASQUE
Say goodbye to post-beach bad hair days with Superdrug's Coconut Water & Coconut Oil Masque, currently reduced to £2.66 (Superdrug.com). Substitute your conditioner and leave this to work for two-three minutes before rinsing. To up the intensity, wrap hair in a warm towel and wait for 10 minutes.