Shea butter is a fat extracted from the nuts of the shea tree (Vitellaria paradoxa, formerly Butyrospermum parkii). It contains the fatty acids: oleic acid (40 to 60%), stearic acid (20 to 50%), linoleic acid (3 to 11%), palmitic acid (2 to 9%) and arachidic acid (less than 1%).
Functions in cosmetics
- Shea butter melts at body temperature, it is able to coat the skin and form an occlusive film, prevents transepidermal water loss (TEWL) and harmful factors from the environment.
- Anti-inflammatory, recover skin’s softness, increases the hydration and improves dry or irritated skin.
- High levels of triglycerides and fatty acids replenishes and strengthens the natural protective barrier.
- The nonsaponifiable components stimulate the synthesis of collagen and elastin fibers, which reverses the degenerative skin changes seen with aging, leading to a more youthful complexion.