Shea butter is a fat that is from the nuts of a shea tree. Mostly it is solid at room temperatures. It is off-white or white ivory. These trees are native to Africa, and most unrefined shea butter still comes from here. Raw shea butter has been a cosmetic ingredient since centuries. It has high concentrations of many vitamins and fatty acids. When its composition combines to an easy-to-spread consistency, it becomes an excellent product for any skin treatment.
Curious to know what are the benefits? Here are the reasons to add it to your daily routine.
1. Shea butter's Nutritional facts give you the energy you need-
Raw shea butter contains absorbing triterpene esters, i.e. cinnamic acid and tocopherols. In addition to these, it also contains phytosterols, triterpenes, and hydrocarbons such as karate. Other nutrients that shea butter have are-
Fatty acids- It majorly consists of five essential fatty acids, namely palmitic, stearic, oleic, linoleic, and arachidic acids. It has a significant proportion of stearic and oleic acids that accounts for 85-90 percent of fatty acids. Stearic acid provides a substantial portion, whereas oleic acid provides either hardness or softness to shea butter.
Phenolic- It contains ten phenolic compounds out of which eight are catechins. Unrefined shea butter has much higher phenolic levels than the one extracted with hexane. These phenolic compounds are known for their antioxidant nature are the main constituents of raw shea butter.
Vitamin E- Vitamin-E or otherwise known as tocopherol, is found in different versions in shea butter. Their concentrations start fluctuating along with the change in climate and factors like butter extraction.
Vitamin A and F- Its naturally found in raw shea butter, which adds aid to the treatment of skin. The majority of its use is in the treatment of eczema, dermatitis, and premature aging.
2. Which one should you opt-
Uses of shea butter are in moisturizers, creams, lotions, and many types of emulsions for your skin or hair. Rich fat content in it makes it an excellent moisturizing agent for skin. Anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties in it reduce skin diseases and help in lessening the damage of your skin and hair. Vitamins present in shea butter provide a mild sun protection factor. These vitamins not only keep your skin in excellent condition but also protect it from UV rays.
There are many types and varieties of shea butter available in the market. Raw shea butter or pure shea butter is the best natural variety of it. These are usually yellow or green. The immature form may contain few impurities, but after refining in different ways, it becomes excellent to use.
3. Provides you with the best benefits for your skin-
It is an excellent moisturizer for your face and body. Fats present in it make your dry skin emollient and humectant. It locks in the moisture content in your skin and hydrates it for extended sessions too.
It provides relief to itchy feelings by moisturizing your skin. Dryness can hamper your skin, which may lead to peeling and becoming flaky. It is the best-proven treatment for both itches and peeling of the skin.
The non-saponifiable, Vitamin-F present in this butter helps in maintaining and restoring your skin's elasticity. The production of collagen in your skin improves with its application. Restored elasticity also reduces wrinkles and other blemishes.
Men while shaving their beard use razors this often leads to irritation and itching. Pure shea butter helps in reducing these as it moisturizes and soothes your irritated skin. As per recommendations, apply this butter a day before shaving to smoothen your skin.
Shea butter gives an excellent treatment for your lips during winter. It provides extra moisture and nutrients that the lips need during winter and dry weather conditions. It acts in the form of a barrier between your lips and retains the moisture in your skin.
4. Gives you the best treatment for hair-
Many chemical treatments like straighteners, perms, and curlers are significant reasons responsible for loosening natural moisture from your hair. The following steps tell you how to apply it to your skin for the best benefits.
First, take a tablespoon of raw shea butter and melt it for 30-60 seconds.
Add a few drops of lavender oil to it when it cools down slightly.
In the next step, make small parts of your hair and apply it to your scalp and entire hair. After that apply mild shampoo to your hair and wash it properly.
Shea butter helps in restoring the lost moisture. It protects both your hair and skin from many kinds of harsh weather and harmful pollutants in both air and water. Its low SPF contents protect your hair from exposure to UV radiation.
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