This fruit tree grows mainly in African countries, such as Côte d’Ivoire, Mali and Sudan. Its much-loved butter is extracted from the dried shea nut.
The tree is believed to be sacred and only fruits that have fallen to the ground are used. According to local tradition, these fruits can only be collected by women.
Now for the interesting stuff, using it on your skin!
This butter is a powerful cell regenerator and contains vitamin F, which, although not actually a vitamin, is what we call unsaturated fatty acids: omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids, which are very important for the functioning of the body and skin maintenance.
Our bodies can’t produce these fatty acids, so they must be ingested through your diet and applied in the form of cosmetics. Once in contact with your skin, these fatty acids become part of the cell membrane as structural elements.
Signs of a lack of these fatty acids include dry skin, nails and hair. They can be repaired using shea butter, which provides extreme hydration, nutrition and elasticity.
Shea butter also protects from external threats such as wind, sun, cold, sea water or pool water (chlorine). It is a barrier against UVA and UVB rays, forming a kind of natural shield on your skin, and is a great ally both in the intense summer months and in the winter months and in dry climates.
If applied after exposure to the sun, it can extend the life of your tan. And who doesn’t want a long-lasting tan?
It also prevents and improves dermatitis in adults, children and babies. It is an ideal preventive treatment for stretch marks and helps decrease signs of aging, leaving your skin soft, even in problematic areas such as elbows, knees and ankles.
It can be used after shaving or waxing, as its anti-inflammatory and healing properties help soothe your skin.
You can also apply it directly by massaging it on your nails to keep them hydrated and strong, also on your lips to prevent and cure dryness.
It is used in its pure form, and provides deep moisture to the skin, but only very dry skin completely absorbs pure shea butter. In normal skin, for best results, use creams or lotions that contain it in its formula.
It restores the shine, softness and flexibility of your hair, and if it is damaged by dyes or chemicals, it also acts as a thermal shield. It should be used pure and in small quantities on your hair instead of silicones.
Here’s a simple intense hydration treatment you can do at home: massage shea butter on the ends of your hair before washing it. Wrap it in a warm wet towel for half an hour and then wash it as usual (to make sure your hair is clean, wash it twice in a row). This treatment can be done once a week.
Another option is to add a little shea butter in your body moisturizer or hair mask. To do this, it must be in a liquid state.
Warning: do not melt shea butter in the microwave as the temperature gets too hot and the butter loses its properties. Always melt on low heat and do not boil.
Although pure shea butter is ideal to reap all its benefits, there are many cosmetics on the market that use this raw material as a base. Do not rely only on product packaging, even if the label reads 100% shea butter, look at the ingredient list to make sure it does not contain a low percentage in the formula.
Important fact! The first 6 ingredients listed on a label are usually those that are present in the highest quantity. The nomenclature you should look for is “Butyrospermum parkii”.
Per Purr has some soaps that carry this preciousness in its formula. Try: Calm Soap, Antiox Soap, Awake Soap and Silky Soap. All of them cleanse without drying the skin and lather very nicely, leaving hydrated and fragrant skin.