Hi girls! Today we are going to talk about an exciting subject: Shea butter! I’m sure many of you have heard or even used it. But do you know the benefits this butter brings to our skin and hair?
Many women have certainly used, or at least seen for sale, some products that contain Shea butter for skin and hair. A shampoo, conditioner, body, or face cream, among other body care products.
This is because due to the proven benefits it can offer to skin and hair, Shea butter is present in the formulas of various skin and hair cosmetics sold worldwide.
Do you want to know a little more about this type of natural fat that can be very helpful in your daily beauty care?
What Is Shea Butter?
Shea butter is extracted from the seeds of an African tree of the same name. The fruit is not harvested, and not even the tree is shaken or cut. The ripe fruit is collected when it falls to the ground, as the hanging ones are not yet mature enough for butter production. For this, the tree needs to reach about 15 years of age, which is when it begins to bear fruit.
Once harvested, the seed is transformed into Shea butter. It is one of the most valuable vegetable fats in the world, of very high quality. It is also, present in the most varied cosmetic formulas sold worldwide.
To enjoy all its properties, Shea butter must be pure and natural.
Shea Butter Composition
The characteristics of Shea butter are mainly given by 4 fatty acids in their composition. These are Stearic and Oleic acids (85–90% of their composition), Linoleic acid, and Arachidonic acid. This composition may vary by species and area geographical origin.
The Shea butter contains Vitamin A and Vitamin E. They act as a natural antioxidant with anti-inflammatory properties.
It is an emollient agent with excellent sensory properties due to the unique combination of triglycerides and fatty acids;
Cinnamic acid helps protect the skin from UV rays.
This all makes Shea butter quite rich and nourishing for the skin and hair, but it is very oily. Therefore, those who have a lot of problems with greasiness should perhaps avoid it.
Using Shea Butter On The Skin
The vitamins in this butter are very beneficial to the skin. It increases collagen production, moisturizes the skin, and prevents premature aging. It has vegetable fats that improve cell regeneration. The Cinnamic acid protects your skin from the sun. Ingredients called Unsaponifiable give hydration and cure effects to it. It has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties that address the root of acne problem, namely bacterial growth and inflammation in your skin.
Regular use of Shea butter will improve the elasticity of your skin. It helps in preventing fine lines and wrinkles under the eyes. The Shea butter also prevents stretch marks, scars, eczema, and sores. It also minimizes acne blemishes and treats skin conditions like eczema. It helps in moisturizing the lips and can also be used to soothe the skin after shaving.
For your body
To moisturize and soothe the skin, place some Shea butter on the palm of your hand. Rub it with your fingers, and apply directly to the skin by gently massaging the body. You can also add Shea butter in your favorite moisturizer. In the case of pregnancy, use Shea butter daily to prevent the appearance of stretch marks on the belly, breasts, and thighs.
For you face
Rub pure butter on the face before bed, giving gentle, circular massages. In the morning, wash your face as usual. Repeat the treatment three times a week. Because of its moisturizing action and protection against UV rays, it can be used both day and night.
You can also prepare a blend with essential oils to improve acne. Melt a tablespoon of Shea butter. When it cools, drip 5 drops of lavender essential oil and 5 drops of tea tree essential oil. Mix and place in a small clean container.
Who has oily skin, however, should be careful when applying Shea butter directly on the face. The best way is always to follow the dermatologist’s advice.
Using Shea Butter On Your Hair
One of the oldest and most widely used assets to nourish and deeply treat the hair is the extremely emollient Shea butter that ensures shine, control, and strength. Products containing this active ingredient in adequate concentration can protect the moisture of the hair strand, providing hydration.
There are scientific studies that prove the action of Shea butter on hair. The lipid (fat) components of the Shea butter give the hair fiber shine, smoothness, and silkiness, as they return to the hair fiber lipid lost during the daily hair treatment.
This compound also works as an excellent source of nutrition. When the hair is going through a bad phase is very good to have a little help of this butter. This is a simple and quick way to help your hair rebuild. Shea butter ensures that the strands are silky, soft, aligned, with sealed cuticles and reduced porosity.
For extremely dry and brittle hair
After washing your hair normally, remove excess water and apply the Shea butter all the way to the ends, avoiding the scalp. Attention: be careful with the amount because in excess can weigh the hair. Let it act for 30 minutes. Then just rinse the hair with plenty of warm water.
For normal to dry hair
After washing your hair normally, remove excess water. Add a little Shea butter to your favorite mask and apply it to the hair all the way to the ends, avoiding the scalp. Let it act according to your hair mask instructions. Then just rinse it with plenty of warm water.
Can I Use Shea Butter During Pregnancy?
Being a natural product, Shea butter on skin and hair can be used by pregnant women. You only have to be careful with the other components in the case of Shea-based creams and lotions. So it is always best to choose pure Shea butter.
The super positive side of using Shea butter during pregnancy is that moisturizing and softening properties allow the skin to have greater elasticity, avoiding stretch marks.
It is worth remembering that it is always advisable to consult the opinion of the doctor who is following your pregnancy.
Homemade Shea Butter Recipes
Some people buy pure Shea butter and mixing it with other products, thus making “homemade recipes.”
Check out some recipes below:
Face Treatment Cream
1 teaspoon Shea butter
2 tbsp of cornstarch
1 cup of whole milk
1 tbsp of olive oil
2 tbsp of cream treatment
1 tbsp of honey
Bring the starch and milk to the heat until thickened. Add the Shea butter and let it dissolve completely. Remove from heat and add olive oil, honey, and the cream.
Shea Butter Hair Cream
1 cup of coconut oil
½ cup Shea butter
½ cup grapeseed oil
In a bowl, mix the ingredients. Place the mixture in the microwave for 30 seconds until well melted. Place the bowl in a larger container with water and ice cubes and beat until the texture changes to creamier.
Shea Butter Body Cream
1 cup Shea butter
1 cup of cocoa butter
1/2 cup coconut oil
1 tbsp orange essential oil
Melt the Shea butter, cocoa butter, and coconut oil. Mix these ingredients well and place the mixture in the refrigerator until it begins to retake shape. Add the essential oil, beating (with an electric mixer), and then put in a closed glass container. Store at room temperature.
Shea Butter Products
In the list below, you can find some suggestions on where to buy pure Shea butter and cosmetics that have Shea butter in their formula.
There are no contraindications. However, the contraindication may come in products where the composition is not just Shea butter.
Here is some basic care:
Do not eat Shea butter
Never apply to the eyes
Avoid use on injured skin.
Now that you know the benefits of this preciousness of nature how about including this fantastic product in your daily beauty routine?! But remember: if in doubt, always talk to your dermatologist.