Shea butter is a staple ingredient in many cosmetic products, from the skin and body care to hair care products. It is known for its hydrating and restorative properties. Shea butter is a fat extracted from the nut of the shea tree found across Central and West Africa. Shea butter is solid in warm temperatures and has an off-white, ivory colour when raw.
Shea butter is primarily used for cosmetic purposes, but across some African countries, shea butter is used for cooking oil, in medical ointments, for percussion instruments, and a wide variety of other purposes.
What are the benefits of Shea Butter?
Shea butter is a natural ingredient, extracted from the shea nut, and it is safe for virtually all skin types. As it is composed of fat molecules and is very low in proteins, so there is a low risk of allergies, and an added benefit is that it doesn’t clog pores.
It is very hydrating, due to the variety of fatty acids/oils in the butter. When shea butter is applied, these oils are rapidly absorbed in the skin, preventing an oily appearance. They act as a ‘refattening’ agent, restoring lipids and rapidly moisturising the skin. This helps to restore the skin barrier, holding moisture and reducing risk of dryness.
Shea butter acts as an anti-oxidant, containing vitamins A and E, strong anti-oxidants, key for protecting the skin and can reduce premature ageing.
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