Lindsay Girl asks: I have used extra virgin coconut oil in my hair as a deep conditioning treatment once a week for several years now. I melt the oil in the microwave. This morning I was reading in an article on the naturallycurly.com website that the author of the article “heard” that you shouldn’t warm coconut oil in the microwave because that will “alter the bonds” in the oil. What say the Brains? Can I safely put the coconut oil in the microwave to melt it? Or is there a better way?
The Beauty Brains responds:
When LG raised this question in our Forum we said “no problem.” But after further consideration we realized that there is some risk involved with heating coconut oil in a microwave oven.
The danger of microwaving coconut oil
Coconut oil penetrates hair because of its size and the configuration of its carbon chain. Unless you’re heating it above the point where it will decompose, microwaving it should cause no problems. In other words, “melting” it is just fine. BUT you need to be very careful when using this approach. Here’s why:
The Beauty Brains bottom line
Melting coconut oil in the microwave is unlikely to hurt the oil but you could accidentally over heat it and give yourself a nasty burn. To be safe you might want to melt the oil in a bowl of hot water instead.
For those still 'noid that microwaving the oil will harm its beautifying powers (I'm not a fan of the microwave in general... ironic, seeing as how I don't cook), heating it up in a bowl of warm water truly is the answer. It's how I warm my oils... hell, it's how I heated Gia's refrigerated breast milk. You'll get good, even heat!