An Insight into Natural Cosmetic Butter Composition and Qualities of Ubiquitous Shea Butter!
World of personal care products is incomplete without use of natural cosmetic butter. Natural cosmetic butter is obtained from the kernels, beans, and nuts of multiple trees. Some of the known names include Shea butter, Cocoa butter, Avocado butter, Mango butter, and Kokum butter. The butter is basically fatty acids extracted through an expeller method and is in solid form. They can be applied directly on the skin or used as an ingredient in cosmetics and spa, or massage formulations for different purposes. Each natural cosmetic butter possesses a unique texture, colour, odour, and properties.
Common constituents and their functions
All kinds of natural cosmetic butter share common constituents in their composition. The constituents have distinct functionalities and are useful in different ways. The following are the common constituents and their functions.
- Essential fatty acids – It is a basic fat component that hydrates and nourishes by forming a protective layer and holding moisture.
- Vitamins – They work as anti-aging elements
- Proteins – These compounds restore tissues and cells
- Polyphenols – They prevent degeneration of collagen and restore skin elasticity
- Phytosterols – These are the natural plant compounds that improve blood flow to the skin that act as an anti-aging element and protect against harmful UV rays.
- Minerals – The compounds promote exfoliation and safeguard against environmental harms.
- Antioxidants -They improve blood circulation and cell metabolism.
- Tocopherols – The compounds exhibit preservative properties in skin care products.
The mentioned constituents are in varying proportions in different natural butter. And each constituent offers different benefits making the task of picking a natural cosmetic butter more complex. However, if you know what you exactly want in a particular product in terms of constituents and properties, the choice would be easier. Shea butter has been the choice of many personal care products manufacturers worldwide.
What makes shea butter the first choice for making personal care products?
Shea butter is fat content extracted from nuts of African shea tree through an expeller press method. It is available in light yellow color and stays solid at room or warm temperature. It is grainy in texture and has a soft nutty aroma. It is an edible or medicinal ingredient in African countries and a cosmetic content in Western countries. It is a 100% natural cosmetic butter, widely used in skin care products for centuries. It nicely penetrates the skin and makes it soft and supple. It offers various benefits to the skin and hair.
Shea butter is extensively utilized in making personal care products such as lip gloss, skin moisturizer creams, scrubs, soaps, emulsions, lotions, and hair conditioners to bring viscosity, hardness, stability, and wellness benefits to the products. The components of shea butter are essentially skin-cell building fatty acids that keep cell membranes healthy and flexible. They prevent cellular water loss effectively. Let’s have a look at the chemical composition of shea butter.
- Oleic fatty acids, Palmitic, Stearic, and Linoleic Compounds – They balance oils secretion on the skin.
- Triglycerides – These fatty compounds nourish and condition the skin.
- Vitamins A, E, and F – These vitamins act as antioxidants and promote blood circulation & skin cell growth.
- Cetyl esters – It is the waxy part that locks moisture in skin and conditions skin. However, shea butter is different from beeswax or wax as it contains other compounds besides cetyl esters.
The chemical composition may vary as per the place of harvest to some extent. Shea trees are mostly cultivated or found in West Africa.
Which qualities of shea butter propel its extensive use in Personal Care products?
It is safe for use.
Shea butter is least likely to cause any allergies or harm as it does not contain such proteins. It does not dry the skin or clog the pores but makes the skin supple. To date, no criticism of its adverse effect on the skin has come to the notice, but its benefits have been widely recognized. Many users have even claimed that it is beneficial in eczema.
It whips well
Among all kinds of butter, shea butter whips well, yielding a bigger volume of the final product with its small content as an ingredient. Thus, it saves money.
It goes well with other SPFs.
Shea butter contains 3 to 4 SPF naturally, which is added to the aggregate SPFs supplied from other ingredients in the final skin care product.
It contains High Amount of Unsaponifiables.
The use of 6-7% shea butter in the soap is sufficient to make soap soft as it is rich in unsaponifiables (potassium hydroxide).
It moisturizes without greasiness.
Shea butter is full of fatty acids that make it an excellent moisturizer for the skin. It is well absorbed by the skin and is effective in restoring lipids, making skin smooth and silky. It locks moisture in the skin (while not making it greasy) and does not let it dry for a long time after its application.
It is Anti-Inflammatory, Anti-fungal, Anti-bacterial
The anti-inflammatory properties of shea butter subside cytokines and other inflammatory cells and heal irritation on the skin. It also prevents infections and harmful bacteria, making it an apt ingredient for ointment.
It contains Anti-aging elements.
The multiple vitamins present in shea butter act as antioxidants. They reduce signs of aging and protect skin against environmental damages.
It is good for skin cells and collagen.
The antioxidants and moisture of butter promote new cell growth and the triterpenes in shea butter encourage collagen production.
It is effective on skin stretch marks and scars.
Shea butter stops the generation of keloid fibroblasts (i.e., scar tissue) while encouraging healthy cell growth. Thus, it reduces the appearance of stretch and scars. It helps soothe eczema, psoriasis, insect bites, skin burns, or sunburns.
It is effective for hair care.
Shea butter is rich in vitamins A and E that are beneficial for the health of hair. Its non-greasy application rejuvenates hair follicles, reduces hair breakage & split ends, and makes hair shiny.
The above-mentioned qualities make shea butter the chosen ingredient in skin and hair care formulations. There has been a debate on whether it clogs skin pores or heals acne. However, it is sure that it nourishes, moisturizes, soothes, and hydrates skin without any harm, irrespective of acne or clogging. This natural cosmetic butter has a shelf-life of 2 years, making it a suitable ingredient for personal care products.
How to Pick Right Shea Butter ?
The hue of the natural and raw shea butter varies from yellow or ivory to light grey as per the harvested plants. Its original properties are intact in the unrefined or raw shea butter and therefore, it delivers all its wellness benefits as an ingredient in final products or in topical application. We deliver 100% natural shea butter with no added colour, preservatives, or odour for any application.
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