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Shea butter is very popular these days in the health and beauty industry. It is used in everything from moisturizers to shampoos and conditioners as well as make-up and even cooking! Right now, you may be wondering to yourself, “Shea butter is a type of moisturizer, is it good for the skin or does it clog the pores?”
Shea butter does not clog pores despite how rich and luxurious it is as a moisturizer. It registers at zero on the comedogenic scale and is a wonderful moisturizer for any and all skin types.
Now that you know shea butter is non-comedogenic and therefore will not clog pores, let’s explore this creamy wonder in more detail. We will discuss what shea butter is, how it is produced, what is good for, how it is used, and how it works in conjunction with other organic products, such as essential oils. So, if you are ready to learn all-you-need-to-know about shea butter, then please continue reading…
What is Shea Butter?
Shea Butter is essentially a ‘fat’ that is extracted from a nut that grows on the karite or African shea tree. In its raw form, it is a creamy or ivory color but after processing, it turns white. It can also appear yellow when the root is added to it. It is naturally rich in vitamins such as A, D, and E, F, and K and very nourishing to the skin, hair, and body.
How is Shea Butter Produced?
There are eight essential steps to producing shea butter. These include the following:
- The shell is cracked open by hand to expose the shea nut inside.
- The nut is then washed and left out to dry so any excess moisture can be released.
- After drying, the nut is pounded and crushed into smaller pieces.
- The pieces are then roasted which results in a paste with a dark brown color.
- Water is then added to this paste and it is whipped until it reaches a creamy consistency.
- The paste is then purified by rinsing it over and over again with clean, distilled water.
- After purifying, the paste is heated over a fire in which the fat rises to the top, and oil sinks to the bottom.
- The fat is then skimmed off and the hardened oil is used and marketed as shea butter.
As you can see, this is quite an intense process! The result, however, is well worth it! You will come to realize just how amazing this organic product is as we continue to explore its many benefits and uses.
Why is Shea Butter Good for You?
Shea butter is a creamy and luxurious moisturizer for the skin and hair as well as a nourishing supplement for the body. It is rich in essential fatty acids as well as vitamins A, D, E, F, and K. These properties make it an excellent emollient for the skin and hair.
Shea butter also contains anti-inflammatory agents that reduce skin redness and irritation. Its antioxidants properties fight free radical damage, which is the leading cause of premature aging. Best of all, it is non-comedogenic and will not clog pores or cause blemishes. It is suitable for any skin type including dry, oily, sensitive, and mature.
How is Shea Butter Used?
There are at least twenty-eight known uses for shea butter! Amazing, isn’t it! For the purpose of this article, we will discuss its top-ten skin uses, which include:
- Moisturizing skin. Shea butter is rich in fatty acids which makes it a great moisturizer as stated in this British Journal of Dermatology, especially for those with dry skin. Its emollient properties hydrate the skin with a non-greasy feel and without clogging the pores.
- Nourishing skin. Shea butter is packed with skin-loving vitamins such as A and E. These penetrate deep into the epidermis, ‘feeding’ the skin. As a result, the skin appears soft, smooth, and healthy-looking.
- Soothing skin irritation. Shea butter reduces inflammation which makes skin look red and irritated. Its anti-inflammatory properties help soothe and heal sunburns, rashes, and swelling of the skin.
- Healing skin wounds. Shea butter is often used to treat and heal minor abrasions, cuts, and scrapes. It has exceptional healing properties (such as vitamins and phytonutrients) and is easily absorbed by the skin.
- Treating insect bites. Shea butter has anti-inflammatory agents that soothe and treat both insect bites and bee stings. These analgesic elements also reduce the pain and swelling associated with irritated skin.
- Treating blemishes and acne. Shea butter contains a plant sterol called linoleic acid which is oil-soluble. When applied topically to the skin, it helps treat and heal blemishes and acne without clogging the pores. The study shows that shea butter extract was effective in treating atopic dermatitis. Research has shown that it can be used as an emolliate for eczema.
- Treating chronic skin conditions. Shea butter is used to treat such chronic skin conditions as acne, eczema, rosacea, and psoriasis. Its soothing and healing properties help reduce skin redness and irritation.
- Providing UV protection. Shea butter has a naturally-occurring SPF factor of around 10 and can be used in conjunction with FDA approved sunscreens of 15 or (preferably) higher. It contains antioxidant agents like linoleic acid and phenolic components that fight free-radicals which cause skin damage.
- Reducing signs of skin aging. Shea butter is considered one of the best natural anti-aging products available today! It stimulates the production of collagen which is a protein found in youthful skin. It also contains elements that promote cell renewal and increase circulation.
- Reducing the appearance of stretch marks. Shea butter is often used by pregnant women as a stretch mark treatment. It is natural, safe, and can be applied liberally to any affected areas such as the stomach, hips, and thighs.
Here is a list of Shea Butter products that are getting very good reviews:
This product is an African 100% raw and unrefined shea butter. It will moisturize the face and body and last a long time. It is 100% vegan and cruelty-free.
Go check out the reviews that this product is getting online at Amazon.
This product contains vitamin A and E. This product is for your skin and also your hair. Is good for all skin types. It moisturizes and soothes irritation. When applied to your hair it adds shine and luster.
This product has over a thousand reviews and is highly rated. Go check out the reviews it’s getting at Amazon.
- This is a premium moisturizer that smooths dry cracked skin.
- Infused with safflower seed oil which conditions skin.
- Has fragrance of almond and honey.
- Paraben-free and made in the USA
This product has some very good reviews and has been reviewed by over four thousand people.
Go check it out Tree Hut Shea Butter at Amazon now.
There are many other high-quality Shea Butters to choose from online at Amazon.
How is Shea Butter Used with Essential Oils?
Shea Butter is good to use on its own and even better when combined with organic or essential oils. Adding these oils to shea butter is a great way to increase the aromatherapy experience as well. Let’s take a closer look at which oils work best with shea butter for each specific skin type below.
Dry skin is often rough, flaky, and tight. It requires intense hydration to look soft, smooth, and healthy. Combining shea butter with almond, argan, coconut, jojoba, or olive oil will deeply nourish and moisturize the skin. Add a drop of lavender or sandalwood oil for an added aromatherapy experience.
Oily or Acneic Skin
Oily skin needs special care, light-weight hydration that will not clog pores. The best oils to combine with shea butter for this skin type include aloe, argan, chamomile, jojoba, and olive. Adding a drop of tea tree or eucalyptus oil will boost the aromatherapy and antiseptic benefits.
Sensitive skin is prone to redness and irritation. It requires gentle, yet effective, hydration. Combining argan, avocado, coconut, jojoba, or olive oil with shea butter will create a rich, soothing emollient. Add a drop of lavender or rose oil for additional rash or redness relief.
Mature or Aging Skin
Mature skin is often dry with fine lines and wrinkles. Deep hydration with added antioxidant benefits is a must. The best oils to use with shea butter for aging skin include almond, coconut, grapeseed, jojoba, and olive oils. Adding a drop of frankincense or neroli oil will help tighten and tone the skin.
DIY Shea Butter Moisturizer
Try this do-it-yourself natural moisturizer at home. It is easy, affordable, and nourishing. The seven-step process includes the following:
- Melt 1 cup of organic raw shea butter in solid form. You can find this organic raw shea butter at Amazon.
- Remove from heat and let it cool for at least thirty minutes.
- Stir in a ½ cup of an organic oil of your choice, such as coconut, almond, olive, etc.
- Add a drop or two of your favorite essential oil including lavender, rose, frankincense, etc.
- Place this mixture into the freezer until well-chilled.
- When oils have partially solidified, whip them up with a hand mixer or in a blender until a rich, creamy texture is achieved.
- Place into a clean jar with a lid and seal tightly. Use sparingly whenever necessary, as a little goes a long way!
Just a word of caution. Before applying oils or any homemade skin formulas, it is important to perform a patch test on your skin. Even if you have never had a prior history of any skin irritation issues you may find that concentrations and different mixtures may cause slight irritation like rashes, swelling, itching or even burning. To learn how to perform a patch test on your skin CLICK HERE
In conclusion, shea butter is a fat that comes from the African shea or karite tree. It has many uses and benefits the body in many ways, both inside and out! It is most commonly used applied as a moisturizer, to soften and nourish the skin. Any and all skin types can use shea butter as it is nutrient-rich, deeply hydrating, and non-comedogenic, meaning it will not clog pores or cause breakouts.
Best of all, shea butter is naturally-organic and safe to use, even on pregnant women. So go ahead, treat yourself to this luxurious gift of creamy goodness and kiss your current (and future) skincare concerns good-bye!
So if you are thinking about purchasing shea butter to add to your skin routine. You can find a great selection of organic and unrefined shea butter at Amazon.
More Related Information on Shea Butter:
This article is about using shea butter and natural oil extracts as a daily moisturizer. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1365-2133.1996.tb07604.x