I’m sometimes asked to share my body care routine, and until recently, I had to fend off requests with a wave of my hand and a ton of secret shame. The truth is, usually my body routine is nothing special. I have had a couple of favorite body lotions, but other than that, I’ve generally been all about the “whatever body wash is cheapest” life. No particular attention to ingredients or even pH. GASP.
I’d been feeling the FOMO (and itchy dry patches) of my neglected body skin for a while when California-based Health+Harmony asked me to write about their Coconut and Lime body care products. Yeah, I jumped on that. Finally, no more excuses—I’d be using body care products that seem more thoughtfully formulated than my usual clearance shelf picks!
This is a paid post. All research and opinions are my own.
Coconut Oil 101
Health+Harmony’s products heavily emphasize organic, cold-pressed, extra virgin coconut oil. Coconut oil and its derivatives are a common sight in skincare, but I’ve never paid much attention to them until now, so let’s have a little refresher on coconut oil’s potential pros and cons.
In recent years, wild claims about coconut oil’s various health and skincare benefits have proliferated across the Internet. Research-backed claims are much thinner on the ground, but there are enough to make this ingredient an appealing one for skincare products.
Most importantly (and most reliably), virgin coconut oil is an excellent moisturizing ingredient. Its ability to prevent Trans Epidermal Water Loss (TEWL) has been shown to be on par with mineral oil. A study performed on premature babies suggested that it helps improve barrier function and reduces bacterial growth, particularly staphylococcal colonization. Less staph without antibiotics? That’s a good thing. There is also evidence that virgin coconut oil may improve wound healing and increase antioxidant activity when applied topically.
The clearest con of coconut oil in skincare is its comedogenicity risk. While coconut oil works out marvelously for many people’s skin, it’s also generally considered one of the more potentially comedogenic ingredients used. CosDNA rates it a 4 out of 5 as a possible acne trigger.
It’s important to note, however, that comedogenicity ratings are flawed. A high rating is not a guarantee that the ingredient will break everyone out, let alone you. Comedogenicity isn’t a regulated metric because there’s not really any way to regulate the measurement of something that can be so different from one person to the next.
(This is also why claims that products are “non-comedogenic” don’t mean much.)
If you’re in doubt, check the ingredients of some skincare you have used without problems in the past. If you find coconut oil, you’re most likely good to go! If you already know your skin likes coconut oil, then you’re definitely good to go. And if you’re still not sure, patch test on an inconspicuous area for a few days to a week to get a better sense of your skin’s feelings on the topic.
My skin doesn’t have any problems with coconut oil, so I jumped feet-first into a full month using Health+Harmony’s Coconut and Lime Moisturising Shower Gel and Coconut and Lime Deeply Moisturising Body Lotion as my daily body care routine.
About Health+Harmony Coconut and Lime Body Care
Given the amount of online hyperbole about coconut oil’s benefits, I found Health+Harmony’s approach refreshing. The Moisturising Shower Gel simply claims to keep skin soft and supple, something that a good cleansing product can certainly help with, and the Deeply Moisturising Body Lotion likewise claims only to absorb easily and moisturize well.
Happily for my body skin, both products do what they say they will. When lathered up with hands or shower pouf or cloth, the pH 7 Coconut and Lime Moisturising Shower Gel produces a moderate amount of creamy, mild-feeling lather. Since it doesn’t use SLS or SLES, it did feel like a lot less foam than I’m used to, but on the plus side, it got my skin clean without leaving it stripped and thirsty. That’s a problem I often have, thanks to my old penchant for random body washes full of strong surfactants. In fact, I skipped lotion a few times after using this shower gel and never felt dry or tight, the way I normally do if I don’t moisturize after a shower.
Naturally, my skin did feel better when I followed up with moisturizer, because like my face, my body skin is a demanding priss. The Coconut and Lime Deeply Moisturising Body Lotion is a smooth, medium-weight moisturizer that sinks right in to my skin and leaves it velvety and supple, without any greasy or sticky film. The quick absorption let me get dressed right after moisturizing without feeling slippery and slimy. I like the lack of residue a lot and think I’ll appreciate it even more as the temperatures heat up, since feeling greasy after a shower is one of my least favorite sensations.
Both products feature the sweet smell of coconut in a fragrance that’s overall light and beachy, like a more refined version of the smell of suntan lotion. Both products are paraben-free, if that’s something that you look for. And as a final bonus, both products come in absolutely ginormous 480ml bottles that will last ages.
Health+Harmony Coconut and Lime Moisturising Shower Gel ingredients: Water, caprylic/capric triglyceride, glycerin, cocos nucifera (coconut) oil, glyceryl stearate, PEG-100 stearate, petrolatum, cetyl alcohol, phenoxyethanol, ethylhexylglycerin, fragrance, camellia sinensis (green tea) leaf extract, aloe barbadensis leaf juice, coffea arabica (coffee) leaf/seed extract, morinda citrifolia (noni) fruit extract, garcinia magostana (mangosteen) fruit extract, euterpe oleracea (acai) fruit extract, lycium Chinese (goji berry) fruit extract, punica granatum (pomegranate) fruit extract, myrciaria dubia (camu camu) fruit extract, carya ovata bark extract, carbomer, caprylyl glycol, triethanolamine
CosDNA analysis (flagged triggers ranked from highest rating to lowest: coconut oil, cetyl alcohol, triethanolamine, PEG-100 stearate)
Health+Harmony Coconut and Lime Deeply Moisturising Body Lotion ingredients: Water, glycerin, caprylic/capric triglyceride, glyceryl stearate, PEG-100 stearate, petrolatum, cocos nucifera (coconut) oil, cetearyl alcohol, dimethicone, stearic acid, xanthan gum, camellia sinensis (green tea) leaf extract, aloe barbadenis leaf juice, coffea arabica (coffee) leaf/seed extract, morinda citrifolia (noni) fruit extract, garcinia mangostana (mangosteen) fruit extract, euterpe oleracea (acai) fruit extract, lycium Chinese (goji berry) fruit extract, punica granatum (pomegranate) fruit extract, myrciaria dubia (camu camu) fruit extract, carya ovata bark extract, fragrance, polyacrylate-13, polyisobutene, polysorbate 20, carbomer, phenoxyethanol, ethylhexylglycerin, triethanolamine
CosDNA analysis (flagged triggers, from highest rating to lowest: coconut oil, cetearyl alcohol, stearic acid, triethanolamine, PEG-100 stearate, dimethicone)
Are you nuts for coconut oil? If so, make sure to follow my Instagram account—I’ll be talking about coconut oil’s unique hair benefits and Health+Harmony’s coconut oil haircare there in coming days!