What happens when you wash your face with baking soda and coconut oil?

Dear Niki,

Are you a part of the coconut oil craze? I wouldn’t say I’m a fanatic, but I’m definitely on the train. For the past three years, I’ve been using coconut oil as a makeup remover. I also used it to make my own deodourant for about two years and I tried oil pulling twice. I want to try oil pulling again, but I’m waiting until my Invisalign treatment is done because there are attachments on my teeth and I don’t want to end up wit two-toned teeth if oil pulling really does whiten teeth 😐

I saw a few pins on Pinterest about using baking soda and coconut oil to exfoliate the face. There are a ton of ‘how to’ videos on YouTube as well. Most include a demonstration or first impression but I haven’t seen anything showing a before and after. So I decided I would try this out for three weeks and see what (if anything) happens.

Here are some of the purported results of using this (apart from exfoliating):

  • Look 3-5 years younger (in some cases 10 years younger)
  • Minimise lines and wrinkles
  • Reduce the appearance of pores
  • Eliminate acne and blackheads
  • Tighten, smooth and soften skin
  • Soothe redness

Firstly, I’m comfortable with both ingredients so I wasn’t afraid to try this at all. I wasn’t sure if there would be amazing results as claimed in the various tutorials and videos, but I was fairly certain there would be no negative effects.

Having said that, I was surprised I experienced some burning the first time I tried this. I think I may have rubbed a little too vigorously especially in the areas where I know I have some dry patches. Most of the tutorials recommend leaving the mixture on for about 5 minutes after massaging the face and neck. It was during that time that I felt the burning so I rinsed everything off right away and didn’t have any more problems.

The general rule for exfoliating is once or twice a week so I decided to do this “masque” twice a week – Sundays and Wednesdays. I’m not sure if to call this a masque or a scrub…I guess it’s a scrub that you leave on the face for a bit after scrubbing…so let’s call it a scrub.

The second time I made the scrub, I added a bit more coconut oil to make the mixture a bit more runny and less like the texture of a body scrub. I also didn’t scrub as hard, but gently massaged the scrub into my face and neck.

I try to change my mentality when doing this. I think of it less as a chore or cleansing routine and more as a part of a self care routine 🙂 So it’s a little time to give myself some love and treat myself the way I would treat a friend. Have you ever noticed that your self-talk is hardly an appropriate way to speak to a friend? I’m trying to consciously change my self-talk to better reflect the way I would speak to someone I love.

One teaspoon of baking soda gives enough to take this scrub down to the chest with a little extra. I use the extra on my hands and feet. The feet could always use some exfoliation and both my hands and feet tend to be pretty dry so I figure this should help with that. Plus, hands, feet and necks can give away your age if you take care of the face and neglect these areas, so it’s a good idea to include them in your routine.

There is an obvious sheen on the skin when you rinse off the scrub. Generally, I did this before bed to allow the oil to soak into the skin, but I did it before going out to run some errands one day and it was not terrible! My skin looked bright and healthy! I put concealer under the eyes, powder and blush and strangely enough, nothing slipped or seemed to have less longevity. I probably wouldn’t try this before an important event where you’re wearing heavier makeup, but for a few errands with light/no makeup, it works.

I will say that with the skin looking so bright, my dark circles seemed really stark. It made me feel like I needed some concealer and from there I just went ahead and did powder and blush. But if those dark circles weren’t there, I would have had a fresh, naturally highlighted, healthy-looking face.

Immediately after doing the scrub, you can see an obviously brighter complexion. The skin feels smoother, having been exfoliated, and there is a layer of oil on the skin, but the skin does feel soft and moisturised.

After week one (two applications), I still saw noticeable pores on the cheeks and some blackheads at the sides of the nose. The little dry areas near my eyebrows were still there, maybe slightly less noticeable. But the skin around my nose was smooth and looked much nicer under foundation (there was no product building up or catching on anything in that area).

After three applications I saw slightly less blackheads, but pores were still noticeable. Eyebrow patches were less noticeable. And at the end of week two (four applications), blackheads and dry patches were further reduced.

I have a few wrinkles around the eyes. They’re not too deep, but I can see them when I smile and after two weeks (four applications), I didn’t notice any difference with those. The pores were still very noticeable as well.

My skin was very dry and tight at the start of week three. You could actually see the skin kind of pulling at my cheeks. I need to drink more water! Needless to say, the moisturised effect was less pronounced after applying the scrub in week three. There was still an obvious brightness to the complexion, but the skin still looked a bit taut and dry.

At the end of week three (six applications), dry eyebrow patches were gone. I could still see some pores and wrinkles. I’m not sure how, but my nose wasn’t as smooth as it was last week and I could see quite a few blackheads at the sides of the nose. I think a monthly pore-strip will have to be a part of my routine to get those.

Overall, there are some benefits to be had from this scrub. Although that glow and brightness doesn’t last more than a day, it’s nice while it lasts. If you have any dry patches, this will take care of those.

So is it worth it? Does it work? It helps…it’s not a miracle cure, but it helps with some issues and is a nice treat you can give yourself once or twice a week. Of course, any other masque or weekly scrub can be just as relaxing, and possibly more effective, but this one is ridiculously cheap and doesn’t have plastic beads to negatively impact the environment. Win, win!

Here’s to youthful, healthy skin!

Do you have a go-to face masque? Is it store-bought or homemade?







6 thoughts on “What happens when you wash your face with baking soda and coconut oil?

  1. I’ve heard that coconut oil is a big thing in beauty right now. Never heard of a coconut oil and baking soda facial mask or scrub though. I have dark circles under the eyes too (not enough sleep!) and I definitely don’t need those highlighted LOL. Thanks for sharing your results.


    1. Ha! Tell me about it! I’ve seen posts saying baking soda in warm water can get rid of the dark circles. I’ll try that one next and let you know how it goes. Thanks for stopping by 🙂


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