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Thursday, 7 March 2019

What Is Fractionated Coconut Oil? Which To Use In Skincare?


Hi good morning all. Today ill be talking about fractionated coconut oil. Every now and then we get a question from our clients wether SoapLab's Coconut oil is fractionated or what? Is it 92 degrees fractionated of 76? 

Well heres something i would like to share; soaplab's is none of those. Ours is pure unrefined coconut oil!

Now if you don't know already; there are few different kind of coconut oil; Virgin coconut oil, pure unrefined coconut oil, refined coconut oil, fractionated coconut oil.

Virgin:

Virgin coconut oil is made using cold pressed method and its usually smells like coconut oil. although there is no industry standard on labelling ( and company can simply label any coconut oil thats cold pressed as virgin); this is probably one of the coconut oil that retains its 'taste'. Now having said that; we usually don't use virgin coconut oil in skincare because of its shorter shelf life; and because it kind of has no additional benefit as compared to the other form of coconut oil. It still has the same 'fatty acids' which translates to the same 'property'. Since you are not going to 'taste' your skincare; it doesn't justify the reason for you to use this since the price is probably 3-5x more expensive. 


Pure Unrefined Coconut Oil. 

This is the type of oil SoapLab carries. It comes from the 'meat' of coconut and it goes through hot press to be extracted out. Besides removing the 'particles' and 'dirt' from the coconut oil (usually by sieve), unrefined coconut oil is exactly as what you would get if you DIY coconut oil from santan. It's not treated by any chemical and you get as is. Since it's easier to produce this; the price is 3-5 times cheaper than virgin coconut oil.


Refined Coconut Oil:

Refined coconut oil is produced the same way as unrefined coconut oil; only it goes through a 'series' of purification where the unrefined coconut oil are chemically treated to produce a cleaner (almost transparent white), and more longer shelf life oil. Refined coconut oil usually don't have the scent and taste of coconut oil anymore.


Fractionated Coconut Oil.

Fractionated coconut oil is basically a fraction of coconut oil and not the 'full coconut oil'. Ok im going to get a bit science-y so bare with me ok. Coconut oil comes in a number of fatty acids like lauric acid, myristic acid, stearic acid, oleic acid, capric acid, caprylic acid and more. These fatty acids when combine together; forms a 'pure' coconut oil.

When coconut oil is used in industry; its usually made so that all these fatty acids will 'break up' and becomes individual fatty acids. Thats when you have ingredients like stearic acid, lauric acid, myristic acid and so on. Example; like lauric acid is further treated to become sodium laureth sulphate (SLES) and more. 

So since the fractions of these coconut oil are used; there are also some 'part' of the coconut oils that is not used. So usually; they are 'patched' back together; and came up with another term called the 'fractionated coconut oil'. Since the 'patch back' is filled with capric and capylic acid that doesn't have double bonds (mostly hydrogenated); thats when you get solid fractionated coconut oil. So when you see a 92 degrees fractionated; it means that the coconut oil will be solid up to 92 (32 degrees celcius) degrees and if more; will be liquid. If 76 degrees fractionated; then it's solid up to 76 degrees (24 degrees celcius), and liquid at above 76 degrees. 
Normal pure coconut oil and virgin cococnut oil melts at 24 degrees celcius (just like the 76 degrees fractionated).


So when to use what?

If you are cooking; or making a skincare that you will 'taste' like lip balm; then use virgin coconut oil. If you are making skincare or soap; you can use either refined or unrefined. Usually refined is better because its scentless but using unrefined will be better fro those who have sensitive skin and problematic skin as it still has the inflammatory properties and is not chemically treated.

If you are making something solid like balms or salves (not soap!); then 92 degrees fractionated coconut oil will be better as it doenst 'melt' in our malaysian weather. But i personally prefer to use shea butter or cocoa butter for this since its not really 'coconut oil' and im not sure what 'properties' are left.

So here you are; the whole description of coconut oil. Let me know if you have any further question below.

Nisha


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