Must-Haves of Travel: Coconut Oil

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Here’s my pie in the sky for weekend. And I promise I’m only a little bit crazy in recommending that you travel with a small measure of coconut oil.

Here’s why.

I have written about coconut oil before in how it relates to overall health, specifically with the practice of oil pulling, which I am happy to report I still practice religiously (today, in fact).

Benefits of coconut oil

Coconut oil does so many great and beneficial things – I basically want to turn into a coconut.

Here’s a short list of the health and beauty uses of coconut oil:

  • Make up remover
  • Moisturizer
  • Sunburn relief
  • Pre-shave and aftershave
  • Deep hair conditioner and split end treatment
  • Burn relief and scar reduction
  • Toothpaste (baking powder mixed with coconut oil)

Coconut oil is rich in antioxidants and helps enhance the lipid barrier on your skin to keep in as much moisture as possible. It’s a natural skin-softening moisturizer and contains emollient, which helps reduce wrinkles that have already developed. It’s also anti-bacterial and anti-fungal.

It soothes bug bites, speeds healing of burns, helps with rashes, gets rid of flaking skin, softens and shrinks wrinkles, protects against sun damage, keeps tans longer, etc. Seriously, Google it. You will be amazed by all you can do with it.

How to use coconut oil while traveling

  • Massage into your skin each night before bed to help reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles while you sleep. The recycled air on airplanes is dehydrating to your skin and body. Put the moisture back in
  • Ladies, use it as a makeup remover
  • Gentlemen, use it to shave with, or to soothe skin after shaving
  • Use a little dab to tame flyaways (cowlicks, I call them) and frizz
  • Put a little on your lips if they’re chapped, or to prevent chapping
  • Rub into your hands after handling your luggage all day
  • Use a little in the morning to smooth your skin before you head out – it’ll give you a nice glow and make you look healthy
Check out that healthy lipid layer

Check out that healthy lipid layer

Why pack this?

In a TSA, carry-on world, why devote your precious suitcase space to coconut oil?

Us bloggers write about travel a lot, but no one really talks about the toll that travel can have on your body.

Here’s why I pack coconut oil:

  • When going from a humid environment to a very dry one (think Atlanta to Phoenix), it helps to keep skin from rapidly losing moisture
  • In the vice-versa scenario, it helps to keep the good moisture in
  • I can’t always fit all of my toiletries. I find coconut oil can replace 2-3 things, and I can store it in a little container
  • You don’t need much. Just a dab is all you’ll normally need. If you’re away for 3-5 days, you will be fine with a small container
  • After a long day of moving stuff (and myself) around, I love taking the time to rub coconut oil into my feet and legs. Something about it has become a ritual for me in a new place and helps me to acclimate. Admittedly mostly psychological, but I also receive the skin-softening benefits as well

Also, when going from so many different environments (hot/cold/dry/humid/etc), I find that coconut oil has a use that I want for every new stage of travel. It stops my lips from chapping, keeps my skin moist, prevents skin from flaking/drying out, keeps my scalp balanced when switching between different shampoos/conditioners.

It’s basically the “running thread” that connects me between environments, places, and conditions. I’ve been using coconut oil for various things for a while now, and I love that it’s all-natural. Frying an egg in a little coconut oil is simply heaven. And I love using products that I can actually eat. Coconut oil smells good enough to eat – and you can!

Other resources

Don’t just take my word it. Here are some of my favorite articles about coconut oil:

21 Unexpected Beauty Uses for Coconut Oil –

Coconut Oil For Skin, Hair, Body: 6 Things To Know About The Super Ingredient – HuffPo

50 Ways to Use Coconut Oil to Better Your Life – Swanson Health Blog

I can say with conviction that using this stuff as a replacement for chemical-laden products has made a huge improvement in the condition of my skin, and has helped me tremendously in my travels by giving me the confidence to get out there and do my thing when I travel.

Whatever it takes, right?

You can get coconut oil from pretty much any health food store. For what it’s worth, I really like this one from

Bottom line

Who knew I had a quasi-motivational/sales-y type article about coconut oil in me? I guess I didn’t realize I was so passionate about it until I started typing.

But yes! I highly encourage this. I’ve been using it for a while and am hooked for life. I love, love, love it. It has made such a difference in the way I think about my skin, and actually, my overall health – and I wanted to share it here with my readers.

Travel is my biggest passion. But without my biggest asset – my health – I wouldn’t be able to go anywhere (as easily). This is why I feel like travel and health go hand-in-hand. And it’s also why I label these health articles as “Positivity.”

Does anyone else already use coconut oil? Would you consider packing it for a trip? Are there any other must-haves that you take along with you when you travel? Would love to hear about it via email or in the comments section!

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About Harlan

Just a dude living in Memphis, traveling, and working toward financial independence.

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