If there’s one skincare ingredient that is truly versatile - it has got to be shea butter. You’re probably familiar with this common ingredient, as it’s found in many different types of consumer products. Not only is this ingredient used in skincare, but it is also commonly found in body care, hair care, and even baby care products. Some people even use it in cooking! We love shea butter because it has a variety of uses and has some pretty amazing benefits when used for skin care. Keep reading to learn more about shea butter and some of our favorite products that feature this superstar ingredient!
The History of Shea Butter
First, let’s start with the history of shea butter and where it comes from. Shea butter is a fat that is extracted from the nut of African shea tree, which grows natively in multiple countries across the African continent, including Ghana, Kenya, Ethiopia, Nigeria, and Uganda. It’s estimated that people began farming shea butter for global trade as far back as ancient Egypt, and it began being imported into Britain in the late 1800s. It’s also rumored that even Cleopatra herself used shea butter!
Today, shea butter can be found in nearly any grocery store, since the oil extracted from the seeds is edible and can be used in cooking. Not only is it used in cooking, but in soaps, skincare, hair care and many lotions and creams. It’s a popular, affordable ingredient that has lots of benefits for the skin and hair, which we will get into later on.
7 Skincare Benefits of Shea Butter
1. It’s a great moisturizer
Shea butter is incredibly moisturizing. Its high fat content makes it a natural emollient and humectant that locks moisture into the skin. It works by forming a protective barrier on the skin that keeps the moisture in. It can also be used to moisturize the skin on your scalp, preventing dandruff and strengthening the hair to prevent future breakage. Shea butter is amazing at treating dry skin patches anywhere on the body, including elbows, knees, and heels.
2. It can help treat chronic skin conditions by reducing inflammation
Struggling with chronic skin conditions like rosacea, eczema, or psoriasis? Shea butter has anti-inflammatory properties thanks to the anti-inflammatory compounds it’s made up of that can help soothe irritated, inflamed skin. Some studies have shown shea butter slows the production of inflammatory cells, which in turn will help with the feeling and appearance of chronic skin conditions.
3. It has healing properties
Not only does shea butter help soothe inflammation, but it also has many healing properties that make it ideal for treating cuts, burns, scrapes, etc. The fatty acids in shea butter can help reduce scarring by softening scar tissue and helping speed up the healing process.
4. It can help with the appearance of stretch marks
Shea butter is a natural emollient that has been known to help boost collagen production and increase elasticity in the skin, making it a great natural treatment for stretch marks. By massaging shea butter into stretch marks daily, it can help lighten and reduce the appearance of stretch marks. It’s a common ingredient in many stretch marks and anti-cellulite creams for a reason.
5. It soothes irritated skin and is good for sensitive skin
Shea butter is extremely gentle on the skin, which is why it’s commonly found in baby products like diaper rash creams. It can also help soothe razor burn and any irritation or bumps caused by shaving. Plus, it can help soothe dry and itchy skin, making it ideal for sensitive skin types.
6. It has anti-aging properties
Thanks to its Vitamin A and Vitamin E antioxidant content, shea butter may also have anti-aging properties when used in skincare. It stimulates the production of collagen and can help reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles while also preventing damage caused by free radicals and environmental pollution.
7. It can help treat acne
By keeping the skin moisturized, shea butter can help prevent breakouts caused by excessive sebum production. It also helps heal and soothe any irritation or inflammation and redness caused by breakouts.
Our Favorite Shea Butter Products
Now that you know the benefits of shea butter, we wanted to share our favorite products that are formulated with this must-have ingredient. These products are all great ways to start using shea butter in your routine and experience its benefits for yourself.
Luxurious Body Butter
Looking for a buttery soft moisturizer to use in your daily body care routine? We love this body butter that comes in yummy vanilla and brown sugar scents. Rosehip oil, avocado oil and shea butter come together to hydrate, nourish and make your skin smooth and supple to the touch. Daily massaging with this butter may help soften the appearence of stretch marks and cellulite thanks to the collagen-stimulating benefits of shea butter.
Firming Eye Cream
Tired of tired-looking eyes, puffiness, and dark circles? This eye cream combines a powerhouse of active ingredients like vitamin A, glycerin, Coffea arabica seed extract, and shea butter to moisturize, firm and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles around the eye area. We like to keep ours in the fridge so it feels extra soothing after a long night.
Moisturizer With Anti-Aging Benefits
Since shea butter has amazing hydrating and anti-aging properties, it makes sense to use a moisturizer with this ingredient. We love this anti-aging cream because it is deeply moisturizing while also targeting deep wrinkles, fine lines, and reducing the appearance of sun damage. It’s a must-have in any anti-aging skincare routine, and the blend of date seed extract, sunflower seed oil, coffea arabica extract, and shea butter really packs a punch. You’ll be saying hello to younger and plumper skin in no time!
Are you a fan of shea butter? Let us know how you’ll incorporate it into your skincare or haircare routine in 2022 below!