Shea Butter: Amazing Benefits and Uses
Shea butter is essential for natural beauty. It moisturizes, protects, and regenerates. It is used daily for the beauty and vitality of the skin and hair.
Shea butter comes from an African tree, Butyrospermum parkii. It is a naturally fatty almond present in fruits and processed that gives this product, whose many cosmetic virtues are very well known. Shea butter is popular for its moisturizing, repairing, smoothening, and softening properties. It is particularly rich in oleic acid and stearic acid. It also contains natural antioxidants (vitamins A and E), latex, and phytosterols.
Hard Shea Butter vs Whipped Shea Butter
What is Hard (Raw) Shea Butter?
Hard shea butter—also called unrefined or raw shea butter—is the kind that’s extracted straight with no further processing. Here is the color, smell, texture, and composition of raw unrefined shea butter:Color: Yellow.
- Smell: Light but characteristic, which evaporates about 5 minutes after application.
- Texture: It is solid but smooth and soaks up well in the skin and instantly softens it.
- Composition: An acidity rate of less than 2%, a peroxide index of less than 5%, and a rate of unsaponifiable greater than 17%.
We love shea butter for its multiple properties. It is softening, accelerates healing, nourishes the hair, bellies of pregnant women and irritated breasts of babies, fights against the harmful effects of the sun, is perfect as a lip balm, etc.
However, the rather thick texture of raw shea butter makes the application a bit difficult, which is why we always recommend mixing it with thinner oils. We suggest you transform your shea butter into an all-purpose whipped meringue, with a lush texture, and easy to apply.
This butter, in addition to offering you the fantastic properties of shea, also combines the benefits of vegetable oils. It can be used on the body, face ends of the hair, and more.
The addition of essential oils is optional. If you are pregnant, breastfeeding, or planning to use whipped butter on a child, check with an aromatherapy specialist, or skip them altogether. If you plan to be in the sun, it is important to avoid photosensitizing essential oils, which are the essential oils in all citrus fruits.
How to use Shea butter when it is too hard?
Shea butter naturally has a solid and hard texture at room temperature. It is possible to use shea butter by taking a small amount, using a spoon for example, and melting it in the palm of your hand before application.
You can also combine it with other kinds of butter and oils by melting it to compose a balm or to introduce it into an emulsion as a fatty substance.
For example, if you want to prepare a butter with a soft texture to use in massage on wet skin, we recommend a mixture of 50% shea butter and 50% liquid vegetable oil of your choice. To do this, melt these 2 ingredients in a double boiler, then pour the mixture into a pot.
Or you can go for whipped shea butter.
What is Whipped Shea Butter?
Whipped Shea Butter makes raw shea butter easier to use. Getting it out of the container and applying it becomes as easy as using body lotion. Shea butter is whipped by adding essential oils like coconut oil and prepared in a way that prevents re-hardening.
Whipped shea butter is shea butter with more benefits from natural products, ultra-moisturizing texture, and easy to apply.
How to prepare Whipped Shea Butter
- 3/4 cup of shea butter – softening, healing
- 1/8 cup of coconut oil – soothing
- 1/8 cup of liquid vegetable oil of your choice (olive oil, sweet almond, jojoba, avocado, hemp, sunflower)
- 1/2 tsp. at t. of vitamin E (optional) – slow rancidity of oils and butters
- 1 C. to s. arrowroot starch (optional) – gives a drier finish and a slight sparkle effect. Warning: risk of radiant legs!
- 20-30 drops of essential oil from Indian verbena (Cymbopogon flexuosus)
- 5 drops of essential oil of rose geranium (Pelargonium asperum)
- Melt the raw shea butter and coconut oil in a double boiler. Once melted, remove from heat.
- In a separate bowl, mix the liquid vegetable oils, vitamin E, essential oils, and arrowroot starch well. Then add to the melted shea butter and coconut oil.
- Cool the mixture in the freezer for about 20 minutes, until it begins to harden, but not completely.
- Whisk mixture using a stand mixer or hand mixer, about 10 minutes, until the texture is similar to whipped cream.
- Transfer to a glass jar with a lid and refrigerate for 10-15 minutes to stabilize the whipped butter.
Shea Butter: Amazing Benefits and Uses
Shea butter deeply hydrates and nourishes the skin, but also the hair fibers. It also has a big advantage: it does not leave a greasy film during its application.
Protector against UV, shea butter is particularly essential in summer since it also soothes skin irritations, due to sunburn for instance. It also allows to prolong the tan and to help the skin to keep all its elasticity.
Shea butter shows daily benefits, especially for the care of hands, lips, and hair.
Benefits of shea butter for hair
Nourishing for all hair types, shea butter is particularly recommended for people who have dull hair, to which it restores shine, and dry. Used as a conditioner on frizzy hair, it will nourish curls and fight frizz. Shea butter also helps maintain color. A hair mask is the most common way to benefit from its benefits.
- Argan oil: nourishes the hair
- Buriti vegetable oil, tucuma butter: maintains hair color
- Essential oil ylang-ylang, castor oil: restores the shine
- Chamomile, turmeric powder: maintains blond hair
- Walnut stain: maintains brown hair
Benefits of shea butter for the face
Calming and soothing, shea butter helps fight irritation and nourishes dry areas of the face. It also helps to heal chapped skin with its regenerative powers. It is also used as a protective lip balm and can help you prolong your tan.
When winter comes, shea butter moisturizes and protects the skin from bad weather. It also helps to maintain its elasticity. Shea butter is therefore precious in all seasons.
- Roman chamomile hydrosol, yarrow hydrosol: prevents irritation
- Oily macerate of calendula: nourishes sensitive skin
Benefits of shea butter for the skin
On a daily basis, shea butter can be used in many circumstances. It moisturizes the skin deeply and can be applied as a balm, particularly in dry areas. It also has a regenerative action, especially on calluses on the elbows and heels.
You can also use shea butter to soothe your skin after waxing or to reduce (or even prevent) stretch marks. Just massage a small amount between your fingers to melt the butter, then massage.
Another tip for silky skin: pour a spoonful of shea butter into boiling bath water and allow it to melt in the water before immersing yourself in it.
- Essential oil of cypress, Roman chamomile, or aspic lavender: treats irritations
- Oily macerate of calendula: nourish sensitive skin
How to preserve Shea butter
Pure and unrefined, shea butter can be stored for more than 6 months in the dark, not necessarily in the fridge. Its container must always be hermetically closed.
How to choose shea butter?
Always prefer 100% pure and natural shea butter, if possible labeled organic even richer in vitamins and unsaponifiables.
- Where to buy shea butter?
Buy the best quality shea butter in bulk from GreenBody Wellness. CONTACT FOR A QUOTE
Risks, precautions, and contraindications of shea butter
Shea butter should not be used by people allergic to latex since it contains it in its natural state. Be careful, at the beach or elsewhere in the sun, it protects against UV rays but does not replace a good sunscreen.