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Shea Nut Butter

Shea Nut Butter

Shea nut butter originates from the Karité tree which is native to the dry savannah belt of West Africa, from Senegal in the west to Sudan in the east.  Karité tree, which can live for 300 years, is often dubbed the “tree of life” by African women. Karité trees, or shea trees, are not cultivated and grow only in the wild.  The tree will produce its first fruit (which resemble large plums) when it is about 20 years old and will reach its full production when the tree is 45-50 years old. It will produce nuts for up to 300 years after reaching maturity.

While Western women discover the endless beautifying qualities of shea butter, the women of Ghana, Mali, Nigeria, Burkina Faso and elsewhere who make this product by hand, also benefit.

Across West Africa the destruction of shea trees is prohibited by law because the mature nuts provide a valuable source of food, medicine, and income for the population. So many women are employed in the production of shea nut butter that it is also referred to as ‘Woman’s Gold’ and is a valuable natural resource strengthening and building women’s economic security. Each year approximately 100,000 tons of shea nut butter and shea nut oil are exported from a few African nations. By purchasing shea nut butter products, we are able to dramatically change the lives of entire rural communities in West Africa with better housing, medical care, food and fresh water. Most importantly, this extra income allows African women to give their children, particularly their daughters, the chance to go to school.

African women have been gathering, drying, kneading and using shea butter for hundreds of years. The ancestral art of shea butter making is an intensive process of sorting the nuts, cracking, roasting, grinding, kneading, boiling, filtering and stirring, then bulk packaging the butter. 

Shea nut butter is nature's great moisturiser. It’s a barrier, it’s soothing and it’s hydrating. Because of its very high fat content, it is slowly absorbed which means that its effects are long lasting. The A and E vitamins enhance the body’s ability to stimulate collagen, tightening skin and helping prevent premature facial lines. Vitamin A has hydrating properties and vitamin F soothes rough, dry and chapped skin. Vitamin F contains three essential fatty acids - linoleic, alpha-linoleic and arachidonic acids.  Shea nut butter also contains insaponifiables, to boost cell renewal and repair the hydrolipid film for softer, more elastic skin. It acts as a barrier, limiting moisture loss. These moisturizers are the same moisturizers produced by the skin’s sebaceous glands. It could not be more natural or conducive to the human complexion.

The positive biochemical and physiological effect shea nut butter has on skin injuries makes this cream ideal for wound healing and also as a general skin care cream. It is anti-ageing and an anti-free radical agent.  This process leads to skin rejuvenation.