Every Sheaelegance handmade soap contains at least 6% of Shea Butter, making our soaps the perfect gift that wont break the bank! Find out why Shea Butter is an important element of our brand below.
Shea butter is a fat extracted from the nut of the African shea tree (Vitellaria paradoxa). It is usually yellow in color when raw, with more processed versions being ivory or white in color.
- Shea butter is a triglyceride (fat) derived mainly from stearic acid and oleic acid. It is widely used in cosmetics as a moisturizer, salve or lotion. Shea butter is edible and is used in food preparation in some African countries.
- Occasionally, shea butter is mixed with other oils as a substitute for cocoa butter, although the taste is noticeably different.
Shea butter is mainly used in the cosmetics industry for skin- and hair-related products (lip gloss, skin moisturizer creams and emulsions, and hair conditioners for dry and brittle hair). It is also used by soap makers and massage oil creators, typically in small amounts, because it has plenty of unsaponifiables, and higher amounts result in softer soaps that have less cleaning abilities. Some artisan soap makers use shea butter in amounts to 25% – with the European Union regulating the maximum use around 28%, but it is rarely the case in commercially produced soap due to its high cost compared to oils like palm oil or pomace (olive oil). It is an excellent emollient for dry skin. No evidence shows it is a cure, but it alleviates the pain associated with tightness and itching.