Shea Butter Benefits: The Complete Guide to This Superstar Hair Ingredient
Shea butter for skin? Sure. But did you know that shea butter benefits extend to your hair? Find out how this fatty-acid-laden product can help your hair from root to tip.
Shea butter is no stranger to skin care. If you didn’t quite catch it by its name, this champion moisturizer butters up your skin, hydrating and softening it. But shea butter benefits go beyond balms and lotions. Did you know that you can use it for your hair, too?
What Is Shea Butter?
Shea butter is the fat extracted from the nut of the Africa Shea tree (Vitellaria paradoxa). According to the study “Effects of Topical and Dietary Use of Shea Butter on Animals” published in the American Journal of Life Sciences, it’s solid at room temperature but melts at body temperature. Its makeup comprises fatty acids – stearic and oleic, with trace amounts of palmitic, linoleic, and arachidic – that are used as emollients to help retain moisture.
Shea butter also has , zinc, iron, calcium, and magnesium. Learning its composition makes it clear why shea butter has a regular space in cosmetic and . However, these very same ingredients make it so useful for hair care.
What Can Shea Butter Do for Your Hair?
Shea butter benefits are plenty. However, not every hair type can enjoy them. It’s pretty powerful stuff so those with thin hair might find it heavy. Shea butter works best on thick, coarse, .
It moisturizes your hair.
Shea butter can make your hair not just well-behaved but also . How shea butter protects the skin barrier and draws water to the skin can apply to hair as well. It works the moisture in and locks it onto the strands, keeping your locks nourished, soft, and hydrated.
It protects your hair from the elements.
The American Journal of Life Sciences study also mentions that shea butter has sun-screening properties that can block photodamage on your tresses and scalp. Since it has an SPF of about 10, hair products with shea butter will likely be enough to protect your hair. However, if you expect prolonged sun exposure, such as going to the beach or swimming in a pool, you can make a shea butter balm that you can reapply throughout the day.
It restores your hair from damage.
Shea butter benefits not only shield your hair from harm but can also help reverse damage that’s been done.
happens when the cuticles on the strand become raised, freeing the nutrients underneath and exposing the cortex to chemicals and other aggressors. As a natural “sealant,” shea butter helps coat your unprotected hair, giving it a blanket of defense. The high fatty acid content in shea butter also helps reduce friction, another primary cause of breakage.
A Korea-based study in the Journal of Convergence for Information Technology analyzed the restorative potential of shea butter on bleached hair. The researchers developed hair treatments with 0%, 1%, 3%, and 5% shea butter. The treatment with the most amount showed the most promise – increasing hair thickness, smoothening hair surface, and even retaining color vibrance.
It promotes hair growth.
Less breakage means stronger hair that can grow longer. But apart from that, shea butter also has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. Two things: first, reduced inflammation in the hair follicles and scalp can also alleviate hair loss; second, keeping your scalp clean and debris-free means unclogged hair follicles that won’t get in the way of growing hair.
It soothes your scalp.
Shea butter works wonders on the skin, right? And the scalp is skin. So, by transitivity, shea butter can improve your scalp health. Not only does it ease inflammation and nourish and clean your scalp, but it also lodges itself into your skin quickly, thus not adding to any buildup that can cause so many issues.
It can also moisturize dry scalp and manage common irritations like flaking and itchiness.
Shea butter can be perilous. The numerous shea butter benefits can tempt you to put a lot of the stuff on, but it could just lead to a greasy head. Instead, use a shampoo or conditioner as a vehicle to receive its many perks. You get the rewards and can rinse off the excess.
Cream Silk Organic Powerfusion Rich Lustre Ultra Conditioner has shea butter balm and sweet almond nut oil to repair and strengthen hair as well as boost shine. Reinforcing these benefits further are cinnamon cassia leaf oil and sunflower seed oil which also help moisturize and promote hair health.
You can also find shea butter in TRESemmé Ultimate Straight & Shine Conditioner, which is ideal for . Vitamin H and shea butter work together to tame unruly locks and deliver intense moisturization.
Ready to make your hair smooth like shea butter? Don’t miss out on these shea butter benefits for your hair!