Category Archives: natural beauty

The health benefits of coconut oil

Coconut oil has recently become increasingly prevalent both in the media and in current research which has found that many of its contents can be extremely beneficial to health.  For example, one recent study (1) published in the Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Medicine this year reported on its vast medicinal aspects, as it has been found to be antibacterial, anti-fungal, antiviral, antioxidant, immunostimulant (supports the immune system), and the list goes on.

The health benefits of coconut oil
Current research has found that coconut oil can be extremely beneficial to health. (8)

Additionally, another study (2) comments on previous research reporting on the many health benefits of coconut oil. These include preventing illnesses and diseases, such as reducing the risk of heart disease, aiding digestion and helping to keep skin elastic and silky, keeping wrinkles at bay.  This can be attributed to its numerous nutrient contents including being rich in medium chain fatty acids, such as lauric acid which has shown to inhibit harmful elements (pathogens) within the body which can help to slow the effects of ageing (3).  This study (3) also found that virgin coconut oil had greater antioxidant activity than the refined oil and another study (4) suggested that coconut oil intake is associated with beneficial lipid profiles which promotes healthy cholesterol levels due to its high density lipoprotein content.  An all round health booster!

Also, you may have seen the recent article in the Daily Mail (5) that reports on the use of coconut oil by supermodel Miranda Kerr (wife of actor Orlando Bloom), where she is quoted as saying that she credited her glowing clear skin and shiny hair to the oil.  One study (6) also reported on the oils beneficial effects to the skin saying that it had shown to have antimicrobial effects on fungi and viruses which can inhabit atopic dermatitis.  In this study, published in 2008 by the American Contact Dermatitis Society, patients topically treated with virgin coconut oil (by rubbing the oil into their skin) reported significantly reduced scores for dryness and related conditions.  Therefore you may find some relief from rubbing this oil into your dry spots on your elbows, knees and ankles or even see if this helps with sunburn or any other problem skin areas.

Also, another study (7) identified the superior effects of coconut oil when applied (topically) to hair before conditioning compared to mineral oil and other vegetable oils such as sunflower oil. They reported protective effects to both undamaged and chemically treated hair.  They attributed this effect to the ability of coconut oil to access the hair cuticle and lubricate it, which reduces water retention and swelling.  You may also find that coconut oil can help with split ends.

So as well as being a healthy oil when consumed on salads, used as a cooking oil or even a spoonful in your green tea just like Miranda Kerr, you can also benefit from using this oil topically on skin and hair.

P.S.  A top tip may be to rub some into your shoes to soften them which may prevent any irritation they may cause you, as well as making your feet smell like coconuts!

Written by Lauren Foster

 

References

(1) DebMandal, M. & Mandal, S. (2011) Coconut (Cocos nucifera L.: Arecaceae): In health promotion and disease prevention. Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Medicine, 241-247.

 (2) Arenillo, S.A (2008) Yield and Quality of Virgin Coconut Oil Using Varieties of Coconuts. Liceo Journal of Higher Education Research, Vol. 5, No. 2, 190-198.

 (3) Marina, A.M., Che Man, Y.B. & Amin, I.(2009) Virgin coconut oil: emerging functional food oil. Trends in Food Science & Technology, 20, 481-487.

 (4) Feranil, A.B., Duazo, P.L., Kuzawa, C.W., Adair, L.S. (2011) Coconut oil is associated with a beneficial lipid profile in pre-menopausal women in the Philippines. Asian Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 20, (2):190-195.

 (5) Daily Mail (2011) Victoria’s Secret? Coconut oil… Sales boom as model Miranda Kerr reveals daily dose of ‘healthy fat’ is key to her beauty. Mail Online. (Online):   (Accessed 5/9/2011).

 (6) Verallo-Rowell, V.M., Dillague, K.M., Syah-Tjundawan, B.S. (2008) Novel Antibacterial and Emollient Effects of Coconut and Virgin Olive Oils: Methods, Dermatitis, 19(6):308-15.

 (7) Rele, A.S. & Mohile, R.B. (2003) Effect of mineral oil, sunflower oil, and coconut oil on prevention of hair damage. Journal of Cosmetic Science, 54(2):175-92.

(8) Image courtesy of pixomar.

 

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Natural sun protection from lavera

Whether you are off to a sunnier climate for a much deserved summer holiday or simply taking advantage of the good weather with time in the garden, a bbq or trip to the coast, it is vital to protect your self from the sun.  Many of us have fallen into the habit of reaching for the mainstream sun care brands we know and trust when we are in the supermarket or shopping for our holiday necessities. However, as discussed previously in the bodykind blog, many of these products are packed full of nasty chemicals and synthetic ingredients that may do us more harm than good.  There is a light at the end of the tunnel though with an array of quality natural sun care products on the market to choose from.

Lavera Natural Sun Care
lavera, is a brand committed to ethics, organic and natural ingredients and quality products for a variety of skin types

Our latest beauty arrival at bodykind, lavera, is a brand committed to ethics, organic and natural ingredients and quality products for a variety of skin types.  Their range of sun protection includes products for all the family in factors 10 – 20.  Sun sprays, milks, lip balms, after suns and self tanning products that are packed full of natural and organic ingredients to give your skin the support it needs.  This award winning chemical free sun range contains no harsh ingredients and provides high-level sun care and protection for every situation.

Waterproof and 100% natural it is perfect for holidays when nipping in and out of the pool or the sea. The minerals reflect penetrating sunlight as soon as the product is applied, so it is instantly effective and doesn’t require time to develop. UVA and UVB sun rays are reflected which helps to protect the skin against sunburn and skin damage.

lavera Sun Sensitive Organic Mineral After Sun Lotion soothes and protects your skin should you have stayed out in the sun that little bit too long.  Containing naturally soothing ingredients such as aloe vera, lavera after suns use the power of shea butter and jojoba oil to moisturise and Organic rose, lavender and green tea essences to cool the skin after sun bathing.

If you want to give your skin the attractive glow that comes with sunbathing but without any of the harmful effects of the sun’s powerful rays, why not try lavera Sun Sensitive Organic Mineral Self Tanning Lotion.  Developed from organic macadamia nut oil and organic jojoba oil, it’s easy to apply to the face and the body and provides a gradual tan to the skin.

Why natural is best…

Natural sun creams work by reflecting UV radiation off the skin like a mirror.  They protect your skin from the sun’s harmful rays, without the risk of your body absorbing chemicals which are often present in many mainstream products.  Keep an eye open for the most popular natural certifications such as Soil Association, NaTrue, BDIH and EcoCert.  These certifications require a product to meet certain minimum organic and natural standards.

Natural sun care products often contain an array of natural extracts like hemp and coconut oil, shea butter, carrot seed oil and aloe vera, all of which have natural sun protection.  Natural antioxidants from extracts of acai, grape seed and green tea help to protect skin from sunburn and reduce harmful free radical damage and many incorporate gentle, natural botanicals to soothe and moisturise.  Natural materials also help with cell repair – and don’t interfere with the body’s absorption of vitamin D.

Written by Mike Pye

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A little taster about our new beauty brand lavera

lavera is one of the leading natural and organic cosmetics brands in the UK and Germany, and we’re proud to be able to supply their products here at bodykind. They have core values on the naturalness of products, skin compatibility and effectiveness and they’re at the forefront of innovations in the natural and organic market. We thought we’d give you a little insight as to who lavera are and where they have come from, along with their guarantee’s to ensure you know you are using a quality product.

The problem of sensitive skin is not uncommon, we all know someone who is constantly changing and checking their cosmetic range because a product “just doesn’t agree” with them.  Fed up with suffering from the pain of sensitive skin and being unable to find a conventional product to relieve this condition, Thomas Haase decided to find his own solution.

Lavera Natural Beauty
lavera is latin for 'the truth' and the company truly believes in the advantages of organic skincare.

Frustrated with many mainstream cosmetics containing synthetic ingredients, in 1987 in Germany, Thomas Haase founded lavera, a 100% natural and organic skincare range that was allergy tested and for sensitive skin types. 25 years later and the company have maintained an untouchable reputation as a trusted brand around the globe.

From make-up to moisturisers the lavera brand stays true to producing products that do not contain harmful synthetic ingredients such as parabens, petroleum ingredients or synthetic colours and fragrances.

lavera guarantee their products are:

– 100% free from synthetic colourants, perfumes, preservatives and mineral oil products

– 100% pure vegetable oils, active plant agents and essences

– 100% skin mild emulsifiers and surfactants

– Produced according to either BDIH or NaTrue guidelines for natural cosmetics

– Against animal testing

The truly natural range has numerous product certifications, including the NaTrue Certification for organic, ecological and natural properties.  This certificate is aimed to safeguard the highest possible standards for natural cosmetics and their ingredients; a sentiment lavera is dedicated to.  The NaTrue label is your guarantee that the product you are buying is as natural as it can be.

lavera is latin for “the truth” and the company truly believes in the advantages of organic skincare.  lavera’s high quality products have been tested independently over the last 20 years in Germany and have won more than 150 awards in the highest category from the OKEO-Test magazine, (A German Consumer Magazine, similar to Which? Magazine in the UK) – more than any other natural manufacturer.  If you love your skin, you will love lavera!

The lavera range is all encompassing, containing beautiful natural beauty products in a range of categories including the luxury male grooming ‘Men Care’ range, the ‘Organic Basis‘ range specifically designed for those with sensitive skin types and ‘Baby and Child’ especially formulated to be gentle to your little ones’ sensitive skin.  The range also includes organic ‘Trend’ make-up, ‘Sun Sensitive‘ sun care products, ‘Neutral‘ unscented, frangrance-free skin protection for easily irritated skin and the organic ‘Faces’ natural face care range for each skin type.

Here are some comments we’ve received about lavera:

“lavera is great brand, it’s great quality and at an affordable price”

“The After Sun Shimmer makes my skin look glowing and in great condition”

“I wouldn’t use anything else on my baby’s delicate skin”

“lavera beauty products, with their natural ingredients are the perfect choice for those with sensitive skin, it’s fantastic to finally find a range that is both gentle to my skin and organic”


Written by Emma at lavera and Haseena at bodykind

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