Growing up, my folks used fresh coconuts to make deserts, drinks and add flavor to traditional Pinoy dishes. In the Philippines, the oil, from frying the flesh (used as a topping on sapin-sapin) would be used for conditioning hair, the ground up bits of husk and oil used to exfoliate skin pre-shower, and the milk/water used to make refreshments and jelly treats by boiling with agar from seaweed and added to halo halo and sago gulaman.
Here's a short cut to making a fresh delicious smelling and ultra conditioning hair mask from coconut cream (found at the grocery story and your friendly Asian supermarket). The natural fatty acids and lipids in the cream turn parched locks into soft, smooth and tropical smelling strands. Unlike pure coconut oil, the cream has an almost-like mask/thick conditioner aesthetic that's easier to apply and wash out.
*Tinned coconut cream
*Sterilized glass jar/bottle
*Transfer the coconut cream into a clean sterilized jar (boil then bake in oven for 10 mins). Mix until cream and oil are uniformly combined.
*Comb through hair from root to tip, wrap with cling film and a warm towel, and leave for 30 - 60 mins.
*Wash hair with a mild shampoo until the water runs clear.
*Coconut oil bought from the grocery store can be applied to hair and scalp directly.
*Chill the coconut cream to solidify it and massage into hair and scalp (less messy this way).
*Scent the cream with crushed tiare/gardenia flowers or jasmine.
*Tint, scent and boost the antioxidants in the cream with 2 tablespoons of dark cocoa.