I have noticed that Shea Butter is becoming increasingly popular in the natural body care and cosmetic industries both home and especially abroad for good reason.But am puzzled that we are still so dismissive about this wonderful butter Mother Nature gave us. History lets us know, it has been used for centuries in Africa for its moisturizing and healing properties, to rejuvenate the hair, skin and nails. It works as a medicine to heal wound burns, sores, scars, dermatitis, psoriasis, dandruff, stretch marks and skin rashes. Shea Butter naturally has a cream color and comes from the nut of the Shea tree that is indigenous to Africa. It has distinctive scent which may not appeal to some. However, after applying to the skin, the scent lessens in strength.
In Nigeria Shea butter is generally referred to as Ori. The benefits: Reasons why it is a must have especially in its unrefined state;
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 that helps in cell regeneration which assists with wrinkles and other signs of aging. 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 also provides moisture for dry, damaged or brittle hair from the roots to tips and restores the luster of your hair. It also penetrates rapidly and entirely into the scalp to rehydrate without blocking pores. The high fatty acid content makes it an excellent additive to cosmetics, soaps, anti-aging creams, lotions, hair care products and massage oils—its soft, butter-like texture melts readily into the skin .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 body care recipes and skin care regime. It is also wonderful to use during hot climate as a moisturizer before and after sun exposure to reduce the possibility of the skin peeling or becoming dried out especially during this Harmatan (dry) season. But beware not recommended by those with nut allergies.
Here are a few tips of how to use
- Apply as a moisturizer on your skin day and night especially dry flaky areas.
- Use on nails and cuticles, for stronger, shiny, healthy-looking nails
- Mix with your hair conditioner for a deep, nourishing hair treatment.
- Use as a lip balm
- If pregnant apply to belly to reduce and prevent stretch marks