Shea butter comes from the nut of the karite shea tree that is indigenous to Africa. Raw, unrefined shea butter contains vitamins and minerals such as vitamins A and E, as well as essential fatty acids. It has a creamy color and a very distinct smell. It has been used for centuries for its moisturizing, anti-inflammatory and antiaging properties.
SHEA BUTTER SKIN CARE: “Shea Butter is the Skin’s Best Friend”
“100 % PURE NATURAL SHEA BUTTER” is an all-natural vitamin A cream. Shea Butter has shown to be a superb moisturizer, with exceptional healing properties for the skin. We now have a growing list of skin conditions where 100% Premium Shea Butter has shown to be effective. (See the list of 21 reasons to use Shea Butter below)
Vitamin A in Shea Butter is important for improving a number of skins conditions, including blemishes wrinkles, eczema, and dermatitis. Additionally, Premium Shea Butter cream has properties to treat skin allergies, insect bites, sunburns, frostbites, and a number of other conditions of the skin. Shea Butter’s unparalleled moisturizing property is due to several natural moisturizers present in the cream. The moisturizers in Shea Butter are the same moisturizers produced by the sebaceous glands in the skin. If you buy the concept that the skin sebaceous glands produce moisturizers for the skin, then it’s no wonder that Shea Butter is such a superior moisturizer. The positive biochemical and physiological effect Shea Butter has on skin injuries makes this cream ideal for wound healing. Many users of Shea Butter have reported that Shea Butter promotes and accelerates wound healing.
The exact benefit of the Vitamin E in Shea Butter is less clear. Vitamin E is a vitamin whose exact function in human being is not entirely clear, although it has been described as effective in a number of conditions or circumstances. Among these include anti-aging, anti-free radical agent, and exerting a positive effect on increasing the micro-circulation. If the vitamin E in Shea Butter is helpful for the skin, such benefits could be accomplished by at least two methods. First, by increasing the micro-circulation to the skin, which results in increased blood supply to and from the skin. Second, vitamin E may serve by as an anti-free radical agent thereby aiding in preventing the deleterious effects of sun and environmental exposure.
Shea butter has the ability to soothe, hydrate and balance your skin. It is used as a moisturizer for dry skin and eczema, as a dry scalp treatment, for chapped lips and to help soften cracked dry skin on heels, elbows and knees. It is important, according to the American Shea Butter Institute, to make sure unrefined shea butter is used. Raw shea butter maintains its therapeutic qualities and will keep your skin moist and supple, whereas refined, processed shea butter loses almost all of its healing properties. Dr. Robyn Tisdale Scott, a clinical pharmacist, concurs with the American Shea Butter Institute, supporting the claim that unrefined shea butter reverses dry skin in about three days.
Shea butter has natural anti-inflammatory properties that have been known to heal scrapes, cuts and burns; relieve sunburn and rashes; take the sting out of insect bites; and ease the pain from muscle fatigue and arthritis. A study published in a 2010 issue of the “Journal of Oleo Science” by Toshihiro Akihisa and colleagues found that shea fat has significant anti-inflammatory properties. The study showed a remarkable reduction of inflammation in mice suffering from edema. After being given shea fat compounds, the inflammation was reduced by over 45 percent. Another study published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology by the Department of Pharmacology at the College of Medicine of the University of Lagos concluded that shea butter is an effective nasal decongestant. Participants were given two to four applications of shea butter in the nasal cavity, and within just 12 to 24 hours they showed no signs of inflammation, congestion or nasal damage.
Shea butter has been used for centuries as a wrinkle reducer. Shea butter contains essential fatty acids, along with vitamins A and E, which are imperative to maintaining your skin’s elasticity and suppleness. In a clinical study done by Frank Renard, Ph.D., shea butter was found to have significant antiaging properties and was proven to help rebuild and rejuvenate collagen. Participants in this study were given shea butter to use as a balm to massage on their skin for four to eight months. The results showed clearer, brighter skin; less wrinkles; and even less sun damage.
21 REASONS TO USE SHEA BUTTER:
Shea Butter will provide improvement in all the conditions listed below. As you use this multi-purpose cream you are likely to discover additional uses. The amount of time required for optimum results with various conditions may vary with each condition. Wrinkles, for example, require 4 to 6 weeks of daily use. Itching is relieved immediately.
- Blemishes and wrinkles
- Dry skin
- Skin rashes
- Skin allergies such as poison ivy or poison oak
- Itching skin
- Shaving cream for a smooth silky shave
- Small skin wounds
- Skin cracks
- Skin peeling, after tanning
- Tough or rough skin (on feet)
- Cold weather
- Frost bites
- Stretch mark prevention during pregnancy
- Insect bites
- Healthy skin
- Muscle fatigue, aches and tension
- For before and after strenuous exercise
- Skin damage from heat (hot grease while cooking, radiation treatment for certain medical problems, etc.)
The information provided here or elsewhere on this site is not intended to constitute professional medical advice for treatment. We encourage you to consult your personal physician with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
WHO SHOULD USE SHEA BUTTER:
Everyone! Every household should have a jar of Shea Butter, either among the beauty supplies for soft smooth better looking skin, or in the medicine cabinet for minor skin injuries around the house. SHEA BUTTER IS THE SKIN’S BEST FRIEND!
ALL SHEA BUTTERS ARE NOT EQUALLY EFFECTIVE:
Only high quality Premium Shea Butter can offer the health benefits mentioned above. Once Shea Butter is aged or loses its natural integrity, many of these wonderful benefits are also lost. For example Shea Butter contains the ingredient cinnamic acid, a substance very closely related to cinnamon in the kitchen cabinet. The Cinnamic acid in Premium Shea Butter is mainly bound to other ingredients. As Shea Butter loses its natural integrity the amount of bounded cinnamic acid decreases, and the amount of free or unbounded cinnamic acid increases. At The O’LaLa, we have learned that the reduction in bound cinnamic acid correlates well with the loss of clinical effectiveness for healing. However, Shea butter that has lost its natural integrity, (degraded Shea Butter), retains its moisturizing effectiveness. We now know that poor quality Shea Butter is ineffective in healing many of the skin conditions listed BELOW IN THE SECTION 21 reasons to use SHEA BUTTER. This is a new finding and perhaps the single most important finding in the past 10 years in understanding why all Shea Butters were not equally effective.
Armed with the new finding on the clinical importance of bound cinnamic acid, it is now possible to avoid poor quality Shea Butter. Determination of free and bound cinnamic acid content will provide the needed information on the quality of a given batch of Shea Butter for treating various skin conditions. The most significant factors responsible for variations in Shea Butter quality are the multitude of methods used to prepare Shea Butter (lack of a uniform procedure for preparation), and the environmental conditions the butter is exposed to after preparation.
In conclusion, the quality of Shea Butter may range from excellent to very poor. Shea Butter of excellent quality may be used to treat a number of skin conditions, and serve as an excellent moisturizer as well. On the other hand, poor quality Shea Butter is good only for moisturizing purposes, and should be compared with products such as cocoa butter and mango butter.
SHEA BUTTER CLASSIFICATION:
At the institute we classify various Shea Butters imported from Africa as one of the following classes. Class A, Class B, Class C, or Class F. Where class A is Premium Shea Butter, while class F is poor quality Shea Moisturizer. It is important to note that Class A is ideally suited for the 21 reasons listed below, as a well as a number of other healing properties not mention here. While Class F has little or no healing properties and should be used as a moisturizer or mixed in cosmetic products like lotions and soaps for improved moisturizing. If you are in need of only moisturizing properties, you should consider less expensive natural products such as cocoa butter or mango butter. These two products are as effective as Shea Butter for pure moisturizing. At the Institute we encourage consumers to look for the Seal of the O’LaLa on the container before they buy the product. The Institute’s Seal will assure you are buying High Quality Premium Shea Butter.
In the US, some alter their Shea Butter in an attempt to give it a better fragrance and texture. Others alter Shea Butter for economic reasons. These alterations may disturb or in some cases destroy the natural integrity of the product. While altered Shea Butter may smell nicely, or when mixed with less expensive ingredients may cost much less, in many of such cases the altered Shea Butter has lost significant properties. Another problem the buyer must watch for is the age of the product. Shea Butter could be as much as two to three years old or older by the time it reaches the buyers hand. At the Institute we know that as Shea Butter ages the original clinical potency and healing power are also lost. We recommended that Shea Butter is used within 18 months from the date of extraction from the seed. To avoid these problems be sure to look for The logo of O’LaLa Body Butter on the container before you buy. At The O’LaLa, we do not endorse, promote or recommend Shea Butter that contains fillers, chemical preservatives, added chemicals or Shea Butter has been improperly stored. Our goal is to recommend Shea Butter that has retained its natural healing powers.
WHAT SETS SHEA BUTTER APART FROM OTHER NATURAL OILS:
Most seed oils can be divided into two important fractions. The first fraction is the called the saponifiable fraction, which contains most of the moisturizing properties,(moisturizing fraction). The second fraction is called the nonsaponifiable fraction, which contains most of the healing properties, (healing fraction). What sets Shea Butter apart from other seed oils is its exceptionally large healing fraction. The healing fraction, contains important nutrients, vitamins, and other valuable phytonutrients required for healing. Depending on the source, the size of the healing fraction may range from 5% and upward. Some report the healing fraction as high as 17%. The larger the healing fraction the better the chances are for a good quality Shea Butter. In other seed oils, the healing fraction is very small, often in the range of 1% or less. While other seed oils may have a good to excellent moisturizing fraction, these oils contain little or no healing fraction. Because Shea Butter has such a large healing fraction, in addition to moisturizing fraction, regular use of this natural cream can treat many skin problems, including blemishes, wrinkles, itching, sunburns, small skin wounds, eczema, skin allergies, insect bites, frost bite, and other skin conditions. It is because of these unique healing properties that the shea tree got its name, the karite tree, which means the TREE OF LIFE.
WHAT IS THE SOURCE OF SHEA BUTTER:
Shea Butter, the multi-purpose all natural vitamin A skin cream, is derived from the seed of the Shea tree. The cream is extracted and prepared without the use of chemicals. The best Shea Butter for skin use is prepared by cold press methods without use of added chemicals or preservative.
CHARACTERISTICS AND AVAILABILITY:
Shea butter substitutes are not likely to give you the results mention in this document. At room temperature, Premium Shea Butter is a soft uniformly beige colored creamy solid that readily melts in the hands and is quickly absorbed by the skin.. When left in a hot room or near a heat source, Shea Butter will readily melt just as any other butter. At room temperature, using a butter knife, Premium Shea Butter spreads very nicely as soft butter or margarine does. Shea Butter is not yellow, green, gray, dark brown, or white. Shea products with these colors are modified substitutes sometimes bearing the name 100% Shea Butter. Furthermore, pure natural Shea Butter has a characteristic smell. Once you smell pure natural Shea Butter, you will always know the smell. In fact, some first time users of Shea Butter occasionally say the smell of Shea Butter is not the most attractive smell. However, after 10 or 20 minutes on the body the butter has no smell. Unaltered Shea Butter does not have a cologne or perfume fragrance. If your Shea Butter does not have the characteristic smell, color and does not spread like butter, it is probably not a good quality Shea Butter. BEAWARE!
The worldwide availability of Shea Butter Cream may depends at times on the needs of the chocolate industry. The chocolate manufacturers to make chocolate use most Shea exported from producing countries. Shea Butter use in the cosmetic industry is a very small fraction of the annual shea harvest.
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