Coconut oil for baby massage – Is It OK to Use?

Coconut oil – an edible oil extracted from the kernel of coconut has history as old as 4000 years.

Even ancient literature of Ayurveda has documented several uses of coconut oil for its healing properties.

Today, coconut oil is termed as super food and is well known for its health benefits towards the skin & hairs. In India, it is widely used for cooking, as topical application over skin, to remove make up and as an hair oil.

The use of coconut oil for baby massage in India is well known and Indian mom swear by its benefits.

Apart from the using extra-virgin coconut oils for baby massage, parents found to use it for other baby care rituals like rubbing the oil over feet of baby before it goes to sleep or using it to prevent chapped lips during winter.

5 Best Coconut Oil Brands in India

Coconut Oil Brands User Rating Best Buy Link
1. Maxcare Coconut Oil 4.5/5 Buy on Amazon
2. Coco Soul Coconut Oil 4.4/5 Buy on Amazon
3. Hathmic Coconut Oil 4.2/5 Buy on Amazon
4. Merit Coconut Oil 4.4/5 Buy on Amazon
5. Disano Coconut Oil 4.4/5 Buy on Amazon

Is coconut oil safe for babies?

Yes, coconut oil, especially extra-virgin (or virgin) coconut oil is considered as generally safe when used topically in babies.

It helps to improve the health of hairs, skin and act as moisturizer for baby skin.

Before using it for the first over the skin of infant, do a patch test.

Apply few drops of coconut oil over the elbow of baby and wait for 20 to 30 minutes and observe the area for possible allergic reaction like redness, rashes and itching etc.

If your baby shows such symptoms then avoid using the coconut oil and consult the pediatrician.

Usually, in most of the cases, babies does not shows such symptoms and tolerate it well. Avoid using it in large quantity, instead take few drops, rub on your palm then massage your baby.

Also, use cold-pressed, edible, extra-virgin oil for the baby massage.

Why coconut oil?

Coconut oil has several health benefits. It may help to moisturize skin, reduce inflammation, and may treat acne in babies.

This oil is a rich source of fatty acids, primarily lauric acid, which is proven to be effective against the acne and good for maintaining skin health.[01, 02]

Lauric acid is effective antimicrobial fatty acid & can effectively kill fungi and bacteria.

One study conducted to test efficacy of 30 different fatty acids against the 20 different bacteria showed that the lauric acid effectively blocks the growth of bacteria’s. [03]

Coconut oil has great potential to work as anti-oxidant and may help reduce the skin inflammation.

Though more research need to confirm this finding on humans, one clinical study performed on animals showed great results relieving inflammation by working as a potent anti-oxidant. [04]

The antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties of coconut oil helps baby’s skin immensely and help fight oxidative damage while keeping the bacteria and fungi at bay.

What is coconut oil?

Coconut oil is plant based, natural oil extracted from the meat of coconut and is a highly saturated oil that has abundance of medium-chain fatty acids.

Coconut oil is extracted either using fresh coconut meat or dried copra.

Various methods and fresh or dried copra used for oil extraction decides the type of coconut oil. The dried copra of coconut used to extract the refined coconut oil.

While fresh copra is used to extract an unrefined coconut oil. Coconut oil extracted using this method, often maintain the aroma and taste of coconut.

Usually, coconut oil is divided into the several types as follow:

  • Refined coconut oil
  • Unrefined coconut oil
  • Virgin coconut oil
  • Extra-virgin coconut oil

Which Type of Coconut Oil Is Best for Baby?

Virgin coconut oil that extracted from the fresh coconut milk is termed as a high quality coconut oil and is most suitable as a massage oil for babies.

Benefits of using coconut oil for baby

Whether you use coconut oil for cooking the baby food or applying it externally for massage, it brings several health benefits.

1. Hydrate Skin – Coconut oil can enhance the skin hydration by increasing the moisture of protective layer of skin.

2. Moisturize skin – With abundance of healthy fats, coconut oil act as natural moisturizer for baby’s skin.

3. Skin protective – Apart from hydration, and moisturizing the skin, coconut oil can help to protect the skin from sun’s UV rays. Studies found that it act as weak sunscreen can block 20% sun UV rays. [05]

4. Work against diaper rash – With the anti-inflammatory properties and its action against microbes and fungi, coconut oil may help reducing the diaper rash in the baby’s.

5. Can treat acne – With anti-inflammatory properties, coconut oil reduce the inflammation helping to reduce the acne. It also kill the acne causing bacteria. Hence it is a great choice to begin with when it comes to baby acne.

6. Help gain weight in premature – An open randomized controlled study conducted in 2004 shows that the premature babies that received massage with coconut oil has significant weight gain as compared with the babies that got mineral oil massage. [06]

Yes, coconut oil is good for babies hair. Coconut oil is a rich source of lauric acid which work as anti-microbial and anti-fungal agent. Also, when applied before bath, coconut oil can gets easily absorbed in the scalp & reduce the protein loss.

When to avoid coconut oil for baby?

If the baby has oily skin, avoid using the coconut oil for massage. Coconut oil can block the pores of skin and may cause the blackheads.

Also, for babies with sensitive skin, you can begin applying it to a small portion of skin and if it doesn’t cause any irritation or block the pores, you can increase the quantity.

Before using any skin care product or massaging oil, you should perform the skin patch test to see if baby is allergic to the ingredients or not.

Performing skin patch test at home is easy and you can read the more details at this guide.

Top 5 Best Coconut Oil for Baby Massage in India

Here are the best coconut oil in India that you can use for baby-

1 Maxcare Virgin Coconut Oil

Natural, cold pressed & unrefined oil, best for the baby care.

Maxcare is one of the leading brand that deals in 100% natural and unrefined virgin coconut oil which can bring numerous benefits to the baby’s skin.

Apart from its dietary use, this coconut oil can make great choice for baby massage.

It nurture, moisturize and boost the health of skin. Extracted from the fresh coconut milk, it is free from the harsh chemicals.

Apart from the massage, it can also be used to treat the cradle cap. Take few drops of this oil and gently massage it over the scalp. It will moisturize and remove the cradle cap flakes.

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2 Coco Soul Cold Pressed Virgin Coconut Oil

Cold pressed, unrefined virgin oil. Free from GMO & preservatives.

Coco soul cold pressed virgin coconut oil makes the second best choice when it comes to using the coconut oil for baby massage.

It is unrefined, natural oil that extracted without using heat. Free from any preservatives, GMO and gluten-free oil goes easy on the skin of baby.

It helps to keep the skin moisture intact and brings all goodness of coconut to the baby’s skin.

As the oil is cold pressed, it maintain its aroma of fresh coconut.

Overall, at the fair price, this coconut oil is a good choice for the baby’s massage and can be used on daily basis if your baby’s skin tolerate it well and does not produce any allergic reaction.

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3 Hathmic Raw Extra Virgin Coconut Oil

Organic, chemical free oil. Suitable for cooking, eating and skin care.

Another cold-pressed, extra virgin oil on our list. It comes in BPA free container and is unrefined and unbleached coconut oil.

It can make a good replacement for the processed oils in kitchen and useful for the skin, hair and beauty care at the same time.

Being the cold-pressed and devoid of chemicals, it can be used for the baby massage on regular basis. It will help to keep the dryness of baby’s skin at the bay.

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4 Merit Vco Extra Virgin Coconut Oil

Good for skin, hair and to consume internally. Can be used for baby massage.

Extra virgin coconut oil, free from additives and harsh chemicals. Usually, used for internal use but can also be used for external application.

A patch test is recommended before applying it on regular basis.

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5 Disano Cold Press Virgin Coconut Oil

Preservative free, unrefined oil best for cooking, dietary, skin and hair.

DiSano is one of famous brand in India that deals edible oils. Along with the coconut oil they also have range of products in the market like olive oil, canola oil etc.

DiSano oil is a cold pressed, virgin oil primarily meant for the cooking and dietary purposes.

With the 63% MCFA and keeping the all goodness of oil intact this oil can make a good choice for skin, hair and baby care.

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Is parachute coconut oil good for baby massage?

Yes, parachute coconut oil is a natural coconut oil and can be used for baby massage. Before appying it first time, do perform a patch test on baby’s skin to rule out any allergic reactions.

Bottom line

Virgin coconut oil can make a perfect baby massage oil due to its rich content of MCFA and other ingredients that helps skin to maintain moisture.

It may benefits as anti-microbial agent and help to reduce baby acne and can also prove useful for diaper rash.