by Kira Walton
People often ask me what my favourite ingredients are in our skincare products. It’s a tricky one to answer, because I love them all, but for different reasons. Some for their scent alone and the memories these smells remind me of, others for their textures – spiney bamboo, ground almond – but if I really have to answer it would probably be Shea Butter purely for its functionality and many, many uses!
A few interesting facts about Shea Butter…
~ Shea grows on African Shea Trees, the nut of which is processed into a multipurpose butter.
~ Tough and drought-tolerant, the shea tree is indigenous to about 20 African countries, with Mali and Burkina Faso leading shea-butter production in the west.
~ Although it takes from 20 – 30 years for a tree to reach maturity, it starts producing fruit at the 10-year mark.
~ It is anti-inflammatory and leaves the skin more supple, less flaccid, less wrinkled and soft .
~ It is an ideal treatment for dry or ageing skin with its high content of fatty acids to moisturize and retain the elasticity of skin.
~ It is mildly anti-bacterial and has extraordinary healing qualities, stimulating the formation and growth of new cells .
~ The scientific term for Shea butter is Butyrospermum Parkii Butter.
1. Combat dry or cracked skin
Washing, drying and doing the dishes or the laundry can all have a drying effect on our hands. Shea Butter works wonders on dry, cracked or aggravated hands. That’s why I always carry a little Handy To Have Hand Crème in my hand bag as it contains Shea Butter. It comes with me everywhere I go making sure I never have to worry about chapped hands. The difference in my skin texture after treating my hands for two days with Handy To Have is amazing! Results will vary from person to person, but in one day, you should already feel relief and see some improvement.
2. Build up a resistance
Living in the West of Ireland on the wild Atlantic coast, I am never too far from wind or rain! Shea Butter is my skin saviour since moving to the West! Shea Butter has helped my skin to build up a tolerance for cold weather, wind and rain. If I regularly use products containing Shea Butter I rarely have problems with dry or flaky skin. During colder months I religiously apply Dream Cream Night Crème after cleansing my face as it also contains this wonder ingredient. That way I’m ready for whatever weather the West throws at me the following morning!
Raw Shea butter is fast becoming the finest makeup remover out there, especially for waterproof mascara and lipstick. This means our Cleanse & Mend Cleanser also doubles up as a wonderful make-up remover as it too contains Shea Butter! By using it, I can also benefit from the natural raw Shea butter’s properties to soften my skin!
Here’s how I use it:
~ I place 1-2 pumps of Cleanse & Mend onto my fingertips.
~ I used my finger tips to gently massage the affected makeup area with the cleanser and then proceed to remove it with a cotton pad or damp muslin cloth.
~ This is a great way to remove makeup and at same time, deeply moisturize my skin.
I hope you too can discover the benefits of using Shea butter. When shopping, don’t forget to check for it under the list of ingredients under Butyrospermum Parkii Butter. Share your own tips with us on Twitter @VOYA beauty and Facebook/VOYA Organic beauty from the sea.