Shea butter is a slightly yellowish or ivory-colored fat extracted from the nut of the African shea tree. It is widely used in cosmetics as a moisturizer, salve or lotion. Shea butter is edible and may be used in food preparation. Occasionally the chocolate industry uses shea butter as a substitute for cocoa butter, although the taste is different.
Shea butter is a particularly effective moisturizer because contains so many fatty acids, which are needed to retain skin moisture and elasticity. The high fatty acid content of shea butter also makes it an excellent additive to soap, shampoos, anti-aging creams, cosmetics, lotions, and massage oils, butter-like texture melts readily into the skin.
- Shea butter protects the skin from both environmental and free-radical damage. It contains vitamins A and E, and has demonstrated both antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties.
- Shea Butter is naturally rich in Vitamins A, E, and F, as well as a number of other vitamins and minerals. Vitamins A and E help to soothe, hydrate, and balance the skin. They also provide skin collagen which assists with wrinkles and other signs of ageing. Vitamin F contains essential fatty acids, and helps protect and revitalize damaged skin and hair. Shea Butter is an intense moisturizer for dry skin, and is a wonderful product for revitalizing dull or dry skin on the body or scalp. It promotes skin renewal, increases the circulation, and accelerates wound healing. It is also beneficial for the treatment of many different conditions, such as: Dry skin; Stretch marks; Itchy skin, skin rashes, Eczema, and Dermatitis; Sunburn ;Small skin wounds ;Damaged skin ;Rough skin (such as on feet); Insect bites; Muscle aches, fatigue, and tension; Wrinkles and signs of ageing; Chapped skin from cold weather; Dry or over processed hair; Diaper rash; Skin allergies; Frost bite
- In addition, Shea Butter offers a low level of UV protection (approximately SPF-6), and may be incorporated into natural sunscreen recipes. Because of its soothing nature, anti-inflammatory and rejuvenating effects, it is a perfect ingredient to incorporate into your bodycare recipes and skin care regime. It is also wonderful to use in the summer as a moisturizer before and after sun exposure to reduce possibility of the skin peeling or becoming dried out.
- Those with serious or persistent skin problems, such as eczema, should consult a physician before using Shea Butter.
- Not recommended by those with nut allergies.