We, along with the rest of the world, are absolutely crazy about avocados: they’re delicious, nutritious, packed with healthy fats, and can even be used to moisturize our skin and hair. We’ve used avocado as a hair mask, we’ve used it as a face mask, and now, we’re itching to see what other ways we can try to get the very most out of our avocados (besides eating them, of course). We think these five unusual avocado beauty uses are a pretty good place to start.
Revitalize your hair and scalp.
Lest you think that the only health and beauty benefits lie in the avocado itself, let us introduce you to the magic of avocado oil. Many of avocado’s beauty uses take advantage of its rich nourishing properties and healthy fats, so it makes sense that the lightweight oil derived from the fruit (yup) can help to soothe and moisturize a dry or dandruff-prone scalp. Dispense a few drops of oil in your hand and massage it into your scalp, then work it through the lengths and ends of your hair as well. It’s easily absorbed, which means it shampoos out clean, rather than lingering in the hair like some other oils we know (ahem, coconut).
Freshen your breath.
Weird but effective: avocado is, in fact, the best natural way to fight even chronic bad breath. The thick, creamy texture actually cleanses your mouth when chewed, and beyond that, the nutritious enzymes in avocado soothe the stomach and small intestines as they go down. Oftentimes chronic bad breath is caused by inflammation in the gastrointestinal system rather than something you just ate, so the fact that avocado addresses the issue at the source makes it a bonafide miracle cure. Kind of.
Fatty, creamy, and best served at room temperature, applying a paste of avocado to a gnarly sunburn helps to rehydrate the compromised skin and speed along the healing process, thanks to its incredibly nutrient-rich value. Your skin is at its most sensitive when you’re suffering from a sunburn, so it’s important to use gentle healing treatments, and avocado is the most gentle of them all. Furthermore, relatively new research has shown that fats and oils derived from avocados can actually help reduce sunburned cells and inflammation—so it isn’t just a placebo effect.
Ditch your shaving cream.
We can’t exactly picture a situation during which we’d have avocados on hand but not shaving cream, but hey, you never know. If you ever find yourself caught in that predicament—or, more likely, you’re just trying to go more natural with your beauty routine—both avocado flesh and avocado oil make the perfect lubricants for shaving. We don’t suggest that you run to the fridge and slather guacamole on your legs, but the smooth, rich texture of the avocado really works as a gentle, irritant-free shaving cream.
Psoriasis, a chronic skin condition that causes skin cells to grow too rapidly and form sore, itchy patches on the skin, is both a nightmare to have and a nightmare to get rid of. (If you’ve seen that episode of “Keeping Up with the Kardashians,” you’ll know that breast milk will not get the job done.) Rather than opt for a steroid cream or go to the ends of the earth in search of a cure, try applying avocado or avocado oil directly to affected patches of skin. Studies suggest that many people experience positive results after using avocado to treat their psoriasis, and its moisturizing properties also help to prevent the painful scaly, cracking effects of psoriasis.
Read more from Daily Makeover: The 5 Best Ways to Maintain a Healthy Scalp