Shea butter (Butyrospermum Parkii) is the fat extracted from the nut of Africa Shea tree (Vitellaria Paradoxa). It is often used in cooking and believed to help lower LDL (bad) cholesterol levels.
The Skin Benefits of Shea Butter
Widely used in cosmetic and skincare products, shea butter is an excellent moisturiser especially for dry, sensitive and ageing skin. Numerous studies highlighted the benefits of shea butter for skin such as:
1. Shea Butter Helps Protect Skin Against Sun Damage
It contains a substance called cinnamic acidin, which helps protect your skin against UV damage. Premature signs of ageing such as wrinkles and hyperpigmentation, are often associated with UV-induced skin damage. It has been reported that the uv protection level of shea butter is between SPF 3 and 4.
2. Shea Butter Strengthens Skin's Barrier Function
Rich in fatty acids, shea butter has an excellent moisturising properties. A study showed that it is superior to mineral oil at preventing transepidermal water loss (TEWL). Another study reported that shea butter is better than vaseline for the treatment of dry skin.
3. Shea Butter Helps Protect Skin from Environmental Stress and Irritation
Shea butter contains vitamin E and other antioxidants that help soothe and protect your skin from pollution and irritation. A study showed that it is beneficial for eczema sufferers too.
Due to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, shea butter helps slow down the appearance of signs of ageing. Several studies highlighted the skin regenerating and softening effects of shea butter.
The Cosmetic and Skincare Uses of Shea Butter
I like to use shea butter as one of the moisturising ingredients especially for dry or ageing skin. It is one of the favourite ingredients for replenishing face cream.
If you have dry sensitive skin, you will love the fragrance-free moisturiser from Nano Gold Nourishing Cream. Formulated with 24-karat nano gold particles, shea butter, rosehip and rice bran oil to instantly soothe dry sensitive skin while also plump up and protect from premature signs of ageing.
For those with prominent signs of ageing, try Bio-Collagen Ageless Cream. Formulated with 10 cutting edge ingredients including Ultra-Low-Molecular-Weight Hyaluronic Acid with a less than 0.0000000000000000001 gram particle size to deeply penetrate the skin and plump up the look of wrinkles, lines and sagging skin. It also contains a youthful-boosting cocktails including Coenzyme Q10, Vitamin E, Niacinamide, N-Acetyl Glucosamine, Nano Gold Particles and Gotu Kola to firm, lift and restore skin's radiance and elasticity. Further infused with Bulgarian Rose flower extract, known as the best rose extract, to soothe and calm sensitive, tired and environmentally-stressed skin.
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Flower Essence Hydra-Calming Toner with a synergistic blend of nine flower extracts to gently awaken the sense and instantly freshen tired skin.
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Sources: Anti-Inflammatory and Skin Barrier Repair Effects of Topical Application of Some Plant Oils, International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 2018 Jan: 19(1): 70; Influence of climate on the tocopherol content of shea butter, Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 2004 May 19: 52(10): 2934-7.