Topical Products - Coconut Oil


  1. Kumar PS (2020). The influence of Azadirachta indica, Melaleuca alternifolia, and Cocos nucifera on Candida albicans strain in tissue conditioner at varying time intervals, 20: 171-179. J Indian Prosthodont Soc.

    Summary: An important finding of the study was that the antifungal activity of the three oils including coconut oil continued unabated even at the end of 7 days.

    Abstract: Aim: The search for alternative therapies for oral candidiasis is a necessity and the use of medicinal plants seems to be one such promising solutions. Incorporation of phytotherapeutic agents, Azadirachta indica (neem oil), Melaleuca alternifolia oil (tea tree oil), and Cocos nucifera oil (coconut oil), were tested for their efficacy as antifungal agents against Candida albicans. Next, the efficacy of these three antifungal agents when incorporated in a soft relining material at minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) was evaluated.

    Settings and design: Evaluative - In-vitro study design.

    Materials and methods: The MIC against C. albicans ATCC 24433 was calculated for M. alternifolia oil, A. indica oil, and C. nucifera oil using the broth microdilution method. Based on the preliminary screening results for MIC, tissue conditioner samples were prepared to evaluate the zone of inhibition (ZOI) and MIC. Antifungal activity of the MIC of the three oils was assessed and compared by measuring the mean ZOI. Antifungal activity of the three oils was assessed using one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) and post hoc test.

    Statistical analysis used: Oneway ANOVA and post hoc Tukey honestly significant difference test.

    Results: Inhibition against C. albicans was exhibited when 20% v/v, 25% v/v, and 15% v/v of C. nucifera oil, M. alternifolia oil, and A. indica oil were used, respectively. The results of ANOVA and post hoc test at the end of 48 h and 7 days suggested that all three oils were significantly different from each other (P = 0.000) and A. indica/neem oil with 15% concentration had the best antifungal activity at the end of 48 h and 7 days.

    Conclusion: The antimycotic activity of M. alternifolia, C. nucifera, and A. indica mixed with the Visco-gel tissue conditioner can be used as an alternative therapy for denture stomatitis.

  1. Poljsak N et al (2020). Vegetable butters and oils in skin wound healing: Scientific evidence for new opportunities in dermatology, 34: 254-269. Phytother Res.

    Summary: Phytotherapy in dermatology has been proven that therapies using vegetable butters or oils are effective, with few side effects. The fatty acids of triglycerides are assumed to play an important role in the skin wound healing process, whereas the compounds of unsaponifiable matter may significantly contribute to antimicrobial, antioxidative, and anti-inflammatory activities. Coconut oil mainly consists of lauric (48%) and myristic (18%) and other acids in saturated fatty acids (78% in total) although this may vary. A study of the effects of coconut oil on an animal model showed an acceleration of the healing process. Additional research will provide us important knowledge of the effects of vegetable oils and their use for wound healing and they seem to support by sound scientific rationale.

    Abstract: The use of vegetable butters and oils shows promising results in the treatment of skin wounds, as they have an effective impact on the phases of the wound-healing process through their antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidative activities and by promoting cell proliferation, increasing collagen synthesis, stimulating dermal reconstruction, and repairing the skin's lipid barrier function. In this article, in vitro and in vivo studies of argan (Argania spinosa), avocado (Persea americana), black cumin (Nigella sativa), calophyllum (Calophyllum inophyllum), coconut (Cocos nucifera), cranberry (Vaccinium macrocarpon), grape (Vitis vinifera), green coffee (Coffea arabica), lentisk (Pistacia lentiscus), linseed (Linum usitatissimum), lucuma (Pouteria lucuma), mango (Mangifera indica), olive (Olea europaea), pomegranate (Punica granatum), pumpkin (Cucurbita pepo), rapeseed (Brassica napus), sea buckthorn (Hippophae rhamnoides), and sunflower (Helianthus annuus) oils were reviewed. In many cases, vegetable oils proved to be more effective than synthetic wound-healing compounds used as controls. The fatty-acid components of vegetable oils are assumed to play a major role in the wound-healing process, in particular polyunsaturated fatty acids such as linoleic acid. Evidence shows that oils with a higher linoleic to oleic acid ratio are more effective for lipid barrier repair. However, in depth studies are needed to gain knowledge about vegetable oils' effects on the skin and vice versa.

  1. Krishnamoorthy G et al (2019). To study the effect of Cocos nucifera oil when incorporated into tissue conditioner on its tensile strength and antifungal activity: An in vitro study, 19: 225-232, J Indian Prosthodont Soc.

    Summary: Ten percent coconut oil was effective in producing significant antifungal activity on C. albicans, and the antifungal activity improved gradually from 24 h to day 5. Simultaneously, its incorporation increased the tensile strength of Viscogel tissue conditioner when tested, after 7 days. Thus, it suggests that coconut oil when mixed with Viscogel tissue conditioner can be used against C. albicans resistant to conventional therapies and also that this association showed an increase in tensile strength of Viscogel

    Abstract: Aim: This study aims to test the tensile strength and growth of Candida albicans on Viscogel tissue conditioner when incorporated with coconut oil (CCO) and to compare its efficacy with other antifungal agents.

    Settings and Design: Evaluative - In-vitro study design.

    Materials and Methods: Fifty dumbbell-shaped samples (n = 10) of Viscogel tissue conditioner were fabricated according to ASTM standard and were classified into 5 groups (10% CCO, 30% w/w tea tree oil, 5% w/w fluconazole, 0.03% w/w silver nanoparticles, and plain tissue conditioner). These samples were compared and evaluated for their tensile strength. Further to test the antifungal activity, a total of 60 samples (n = 15) were fabricated, each group (n = 15) was further divided into three subgroups (n = 5), namely 24-h, 3-day, and 5-day period, which were inoculated in sabouraud dextrose agar plate to test for the growth of C. albicans.

    Statistical analysis used: Oneway ANOVA and post hoc Tukey honestly significant difference test.

    Results: 10% w/w CCO yielded a mean tensile strength of 20.06 as compared to the plain tissue conditioner which showed a mean tensile strength of 17.81. Similarly, 10% w/w CCO incorporated into Viscogel tissue conditioner showed a significant reduction in the colonization of C. albicans on the 5th day.

    Conclusion: 10% w/w of CCO when mixed with Viscogel tissue conditioner showed a significant reduction in the growth of C. albicans, and addition of the same increased the tensile strength of the tissue conditioner.

  1. Lin T-K et al (2018). Review: Anti-Inflammatory and Skin Barrier Repair Effects of Topical Application of Some Plant Oils, 19: 70-91. Int J Mol Sci.

    Summary: Topical applications of plant oils including sunflower and coconut oils and shea butter may have different effect on the skin according to their composition and the pathophysiological context of the skin. The composition varies by different extraction methods. When applied topically, constituents of plant oils (triglycerides, phospholipids, FFAs, phenolic compounds and antioxidants) may act synergistically by several mechanisms: (i) promoting skin barrier homeostasis; (ii) antioxidative activities; (iii) anti-inflammatory properties; (iv) direct and indirect (upregulation of antimicrobial peptides) anti-microbial properties; (v) promoting wound healing; and (vi) anti-carcinogenic properties. Future studies can add to current findings.

    Abstract: Plant oils have been utilized for a variety of purposes throughout history, with their integration into foods, cosmetics, and pharmaceutical products. They are now being increasingly recognized for their effects on both skin diseases and the restoration of cutaneous homeostasis. This article briefly reviews the available data on biological influences of topical skin applications of some plant oils (olive oil, olive pomace oil, sunflower seed oil, coconut oil, safflower seed oil, argan oil, soybean oil, peanut oil, sesame oil, avocado oil, borage oil, jojoba oil, oat oil, pomegranate seed oil, almond oil, bitter apricot oil, rose hip oil, German chamomile oil, and shea butter). Thus, it focuses on the therapeutic benefits of these plant oils according to their anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects on the skin, promotion of wound healing and repair of skin barrier.

  1. Vaughn AR et al (2018). Natural Oils for Skin-Barrier Repair: Ancient Compounds Now Backed by Modern Science, 19: 103-117. Am J Clin Dermatol.

    Summary: Overall, natural oils have also been shown to possess anti-inflammatory as well as antimicrobial properties (coconut oil). Coconut oil improved hydration and increased skin surface lipids.

    Abstract: Natural plant oils are commonly used as topical therapy worldwide. They are usually easily accessible and are relatively inexpensive options for skin care. Many natural oils possess specific compounds with antimicrobial, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-itch properties, making them attractive alternative and complementary treatments for xerotic and inflammatory dermatoses associated with skin-barrier disruption. Unique characteristics of various oils are important when considering their use for topical skin care. Differing ratios of essential fatty acids are major determinants of the barrier repair benefits of natural oils. Oils with a higher linoleic acid to oleic acid ratio have better barrier repair potential, whereas oils with higher amounts of irritating oleic acid may be detrimental to skin-barrier function. Various extraction methods for oils exist, including cold pressing to make unrefined oils, heat and chemical distillation to make essential oils, and the addition of various chemicals to simulate a specific scent to make fragranced oils. The method of oil processing and refinement is an important component of selecting oil for skin care, and cold pressing is the preferred method of oil extraction as the heat- and chemical-free process preserves beneficial lipids and limits irritating byproducts. This review summarizes evidence on utility of natural plant-based oils in dermatology, particularly in repairing the natural skin-barrier function, with the focus on natural oils, including Olea europaea (olive oil), Helianthus annus (sunflower seed oil), Cocos nucifera (coconut oil), Simmondsia chinesis (jojoba oil), Avena sativa (oat oil), and Argania spinosa (argan oil).

  1. Li Y et al (2018). Antioxidant Activity of Coconut (Cocos nucifera L.) Protein Fractions, 23: 707. Molecules.

    Summary: The protein fractions, found in coconut: albumin, globulin, prolamine, glutelin-1 and glutelin-2 were successfully obtained by the sequential extraction method. All these fractions except albumin exhibited higher radical-scavenging activity and ion chelating ability. These fractions except glutelin-2 can also protect DNA from oxidative damage. These results indicate that these fractions can be used as natural antioxidant or food ingredient for some food such as meat patties to prolong shelf life of product. However, whether these fractions have antioxidant properties in vivo will need to be determined through further work.

    Abstract: Coconut cake is an abundant and good potential edible protein source. However, until now it has not been extensively used in the food industry. To promote its usage, the characterization, nutrition value and antioxidant activity of coconut cake protein fractions (albumin, globulin, prolamine, glutelin-1 and glutelin-2) were studied. Results revealed that all the albumin, globulin, glutelin-1 and glutelin-2 fractions showed a high nutrition value. The prolamine, glutelin-1 and glutelin-2 all exhibited good radical scavenging activity and reducing power, and the globulin and prolamine showed high ion chelating ability (89.14-80.38%). Moreover, all the fractions except glutelin-2 could effectively protect DNA against oxidative damage. Several peptides containing five to eight amino acids with antioxidant activity were also identified by LC-MS/MS from the globulin and glutelin-2 fractions. The results demonstrated that the coconut cake protein fractions have potential usages in functional foods

  1. Venugopal A et al (2017). Cocos Nucifera: It’s Pharmacological Activities, 5: 195-200, World J Pharmac Sci.

    Summary: Recently, modern medicinal research has confirmed many health benefits of the multiple coconut products in various forms. It has been shown to have several pharmacological activities including anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, etc. A drug development program should be undertaken to develop modern drugs with the compounds isolated from coconut.

    Abstract: Coconut, Cocos nucifera L., is a tree that is cultivated for its multiple utilities, mainly for its nutritional and medicinal values. Coconuts are exotic, edible fruits produced in coconut trees. The coconut tree is a kind of palm tree with a single straight trunk and has been used for many purposes since prehistoric times. Every part has a use, including the fruits, wood, and leaves. Because of this, the trees are widely cultivated in many places in South India for both commercial and home use. From the coconut tree several products are obtained including coconut, tender coconut water, coconut toddy, coconut shell and so on. It’s all parts are used. It is a unique source of various nutrients, and so it has many pharmacological activities including anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, anti- neoplastic, anti- diabetic etc. The coconut water and coconut kernel contain various micronutrients which is used for disease prevention and for maintain good health. And this current review describes about the nutrient facts and several pharmacological activities of Cocos nucifera.

  1. Kim S et al (2017). Enhanced barrier functions and anti-inflammatory effect of cultured coconut extract on human skin, 106(Pt A): 267-375, Food Chem Toxicol.

    Summary: Cultured coconut extract (CCE) showed barrier-enhancing and anti-inflammatory effects against ex vivo UVB radiation-induced changes. This is experimental study demonstrated the efficacy of CCE in human skin. The promising anti-inflammatory activity of CCE may be attributed to its increased levels of polyphenols and fatty acids. Due to its beneficial in vitro molecular profile, one can expect positive clinical implications of CCE in both diseased and healthy skin.

    Abstract: Natural plant oils have been used as a translational alternative to modern medicine. Particularly, virgin coconut oil (VCO) has gained popularity because of its potential benefits in pharmaceutical, nutritional, and cosmetic applications. Cultured coconut extract (CCE) is an alternative end product of VCO, which undergoes a further bacterial fermentation process. This study aimed to investigate the effects of CCE on human skin. We analyzed the expression of skin barrier molecules and collagens after applying CCE on human explanted skin. To evaluate the anti-inflammatory properties of CCE, the expression of inflammatory markers was analyzed after ultraviolet B (UVB) irradiation. The CCE-treated group showed increased expression of cornified cell envelope components, which contribute to protective barrier functions of the stratum corneum. Further, the expression of inflammatory markers was lower in the CCE-treated group after exposure to UVB radiation. These results suggest an anti-inflammatory effect of CCE against UVB irradiation-induced inflammation. Additionally, the CCE-treated group showed increased collagen and hyaluronan synthase-3 expression. In our study, CCE showed a barrier-enhancing effect and anti-inflammatory properties against ex vivo UVB irradiation-induced inflammation. The promising effect of CCE may be attributed to its high levels of polyphenols and fatty acid components

  1. Lima EBC et al (2015). Cocos nucifera (L.) (Arecaceae): A phytochemical and pharmacological review, 48: 953-964. Braz J Med Biol Res.

    Summary: The pharmacological effects of the plant differ according to the part of the plant or fruit used. Antioxidant activity predominated in the constituents of the endocarp and coconut water. In addition, the fiber showed antibacterial, antiparasitic, and anti-inflammatory activities. Only the ethanolic extract of the root had depressant and anticonvulsant action on the central nervous system. Coconut water seems to have protective effects, e.g., on the kidney and heart, and antioxidant activity, as well as a hypoglycemic effect. Considering the diversity of pharmacological properties, future research into C. nucifera should be encouraged.

    Abstract: Cocos nucifera (L.) (Arecaceae) is commonly called the “coconut tree” and is the most naturally widespread fruit plant on Earth. Throughout history, humans have used medicinal plants therapeutically, and minerals, plants, and animals have traditionally been the main sources of drugs. The constituents of C. nucifera have some biological effects, such as antihelminthic, anti-inflammatory, antinociceptive, antioxidant, antifungal, antimicrobial, and antitumor activities. Our objective in the present study was to review the phytochemical profile, pharmacological activities, and toxicology of C. nucifera to guide future preclinical and clinical studies using this plant. This systematic review consisted of searches performed using scientific databases such as Scopus, Science Direct, PubMed, SciVerse, and Scientific Electronic Library Online. Some uses of the plant were partially confirmed by previous studies demonstrating analgesic, antiarthritic, antibacterial, antipyretic, antihelminthic, antidiarrheal, and hypoglycemic activities. In addition, other properties such as antihypertensive, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antioxidant, cardioprotective, antiseizure, cytotoxicity, hepatoprotective, vasodilation, nephroprotective, and anti-osteoporosis effects were also reported. Because each part of C. nucifera has different constituents, the pharmacological effects of the plant vary according to the part of the plant evaluated.

  1. Sheshala R et al (2013). Development and anti-microbial potential of topical formulations containing Cocos nucifera Linn, 12: 253-264. Antiinflamm Antiallergy Agents Med Chem.

    Summary: The study of various topical formulations of coconut oil that had been developed showed positive results suggesting their great potential for treating wounds and local bacterial infections.

    Abstract: In order to achieve better treatment for local wounds and bacterial infections, topical formulations containing Cocos nucifera Linn. were developed. These formulations were evaluated for their physicochemical properties and antimicrobial efficacy against various strains of microorganisms. Semisolid formulations containing 5% w/w of Cocos nucifera Linn. were prepared by employing different dermatological bases and were evaluated for their physical appearance, pH, rheological properties, FTIR-spectroscopic analysis, thermodynamic stability and stability studies. The antimicrobial activity of each prepared formulation was determined using disk-diffusion method against various strains of microorganisms. All the prepared formulations were found to be stable and exhibited suitable physicochemical characteristics including pH, viscosity and spreadability which are necessary for an ideal topical preparation, in addition to strong antimicrobial activity. Carbopol gel base was found to be the most suitable dermatological base for Cocos nucifera Linn. in comparsion to other bases. Cocos nucifera Linn. formulations showed great potential for wounds and local bacterial infections. Moreover, carbopol gel base with its aesthetic appeal was found to be a suitable dermatological base for Cocos nucifera Linn. semisolid formulation as it had demonstrated significant physicochemical properties and greater diffusion when assessed using disk- diffusion method

  1. Burnett CL et al (2011). Final Report on the Safety Assessment of Cocos nucifera (Coconut) Oil and Related Ingredients, 30 (3 Suppl): 5S-16S. Int J Toxicol.

    Summary: The CIR Expert Panel concludes that all the various ingredients that can be found in coconut are safe for use as cosmetic ingredients.

    Abstract: Cocos nucifera (coconut) oil, oil from the dried coconut fruit, is composed of 90% saturated triglycerides. It may function as a fragrance ingredient, hair conditioning agent, or skin-conditioning agent and is reported in 626 cosmetics at concentrations from 0.0001% to 70%. The related ingredients covered in this assessment are fatty acids, and their hydrogenated forms, corresponding fatty alcohols, simple esters, and inorganic and sulfated salts of coconut oil. The salts and esters are expected to have similar toxicological profiles as the oil, its hydrogenated forms, and its constituent fatty acids. Coconut oil and related ingredients are safe as cosmetic ingredients in the practices of use and concentration described in this safety assessment

  1. Srivastava P, Durgaprasad S (2008). Burn wound healing property of Cocos nucifera: An appraisal, 40: 144-146. Indian J Pharmacol.

    Summary: This study showed a significant improvement in burn wound contraction in rats treated with coconut oil (CN) and the combination of CN and silver sulphadiazine (SSD). Since the combination of CN and SSD significantly influenced the process of burn wound healing, it can be concluded CN is an effective adjuvant to other topical agents, for attaining faster healing of wounds, without complications. Although the present study did not explore the exact mechanism of the positive nature of CN, it could be attributed to both its anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties.

    Abstract: Objectives: The study was undertaken to evaluate the burn wound healing property of oil of Cocos nucifera and to compare the effect of the combination of oil of Cocos nucifera and silver sulphadiazine with silver sulphadiazine alone.

    Materials and methods: Partial thickness burn wounds were inflicted upon four groups of six rats each. Group I was assigned as control, Group II received the standard silver sulphadiazine. Group III was given pure oil of Cocos nucifera , and Group IV received the combination of the oil and the standard. The parameters observed were epithelialization period and percentage of wound contraction.

    Results: It was noted that there was significant improvement in burn wound contraction in the group treated with the combination of Cocos nucifera and silver sulphadiazine. The period of epithelialization also decreased significantly in groups III and IV.

    Conclusion: It is concluded that oil of Cocos nucifera is an effective burn wound healing agent.

  1. Verallo-Rowell VM et al (2008). Novel antibacterial and emollient effects of coconut and virgin olive oils in adult atopic dermatitis, 19: 308-315. Dermatitis. .

    Summary: A history of safe topical use and no known or reported cases of contact dermatitis, along with its dual effects as moisturizer and antiseptic, opens up more research and clinical possibilities for virgin coconut oil (VCO) and monolaurin. In the laboratory, VCO and monolaurin have showed antimicrobial effects on fungi and enveloped viruses that (like Staphylococcus aureus) may infect or colonize sites of atopic dermatitis.

    Abstract: Background: Atopic dermatitis (AD) skin is dry and readily colonized by Staphylococcus aureus (SA). Coconut and olive oils are traditionally used to moisturize and treat skin infections.

    Objective: To compare virgin coconut oil (VCO) and virgin olive oil (VOO) in moisturizing dryness and removing SA from colonized AD skin.

    Methods: This was a double-blind controlled trial in two outpatient dermatology clinics with adult AD patients who were diagnosed by history, pattern, evolution, and skin lesions and who were randomized to apply VCO or VOO twice daily at two noninfected sites. SA cultures, photography, and objective-SCORAD severity index (O-SSI) scoring were done at baseline and after 4 weeks.

    Results: Twenty-six subjects each received VCO or VOO. Of those on VCO, 20 were positive for SA colonies at baseline versus 12 on VOO. Post intervention, only 1 (5%) VCO subject remained positive versus 6 (50%) of those on VOO. Relative risk for VCO was 0.10, significantly superior to that for VOO (10:1, p = .0028; 95% CI, 0.01-0.73); thus, the number needed to treat was 2.2. For the O-SSI, the difference was not significant at baseline (p = .15) but was significantly different post treatment (p = .004); this was reduced for both oils (p < .005) but was greater with VCO.

    Conclusion: VCO and monolaurin's O-SSI reduction and in vitro broad-spectrum activity against SA (given clinical validity here), fungi, and viruses may be useful in the proactive treatment of AD colonization.