The Science Behind Raw Shea Butter

Via The Beauty Brains

The number 6 best selling beauty product on this week is 100% Pure Unrefined Organic Raw SHEA BUTTER. (The one pound size for $7.00!) How pure is this stuff? Let’s look at the label.

Shea butter ingredients

Here’s the ingredient list for Pure Unrefined Shea Butter:

Shea (Butyrospermum parkii) butter

That’s it. (Apparently the Shea tree is now officially called Vitellaria paradoxa but the cosmetic ingredient name is still Butyrospermum parkii as far as we know.)

Not much of a label to look at, is there? That’s because this is a pure natural material (or as close as you’re going to get) and therefore it doesn’t have any of the standard extra ingredients you might find like solvents, preservatives, etc. Since there aren’t any other ingredients to review, let’s take a quick look at the components of shea butter.

It’s primarily made up of fatty acids including palmitic, stearic, oleic, linoleic and arachidic. The stearic and oleic acids make up about 85–90% of the total fatty acids and their relative proportion controls the butter’s consistency. Higher stearic acid means it will be more solid than liquid and the higher the oleic acid, the harder that solid is. Both of these vary depending on the growing season and location.

Uses for shea butter

You can use shea butter on your skin and hair as it is and it will make a fine moisturizer. However, it won’t necessarily replace all your lotions and conditioners because it’s not as spreadable and it doesn’t contain other ingredients you would want in a skin lotion (like humectants) or in a conditioner (like anti-stat agents.) Still, if you want a natural product that will soften hair and skin, shea is a good way to go. And you can’t beat the price. Plus, it has a whole stadium named after it!

Ladies do you use raw shea butter? Why do you love it? If you don’t use it, why aren’t you feeling it?

Black Girl With Long Hair

Black Girl With Long Hair

Leila, founder of Black Girl with Long Hair (April 2008). Social media, pop culture and black beauty enthusiast.

70 thoughts on “The Science Behind Raw Shea Butter

  1. So how exactly is someone supposed to use shea butter? So far I know I ought to whip up raw shea and mix with the oils that I want. But do i apply this to my damp hair after moisturising or can I use it on my scalp too?? I’m confused. Please help!! You can respond or add more info via my email, I’m totally confused, with unhealthy natural African hair. :'(

  2. I have been natural for fours years almost five! I’ve developed a moisturizer which includes Shea Butter and a host of other essential oils. The product is simply called “restore”! Because that’s what it does! It restores the moisture to your hair! This brings back the balance between beauty and nature! There are lots of naturalists that started using my product because it works! It’s a very simple product with so many benefits! Not to mention many of my friends have the desire to customize their own moisturizers, but really had no time or money for the trial and error! My product runs $10.99, and can be ordered via email at If you want more information surrounding the product, feel free to use the same email address!

  3. ive been using the PURE SHEA BUTTER for about 6 months, and I can really see a HUGE difference in my hair. I buy it at thr festival international that we have in Louisiana yearly from the African ladies. I scoop a little ouf then melt it in the microwave, then I grease my scalp. yes my hair will b greasy but TRUST IT DOES length is taking off!!

  4. I have been selling raw Shea butter imported from Ghana for over 10yrs. now. I carry amazing raw shea butter skin and hair products. If you would like to know more about my products simply look me up on Facebook @ Aishah Organics or email me @

  5. The 100% pure shea butter I use is like a pasty form initially and is kind of hard to extract from the jar if you have nails, otherwise, no problem. I just rub it together in my hands and it becomes like an oil. From there I just apply from roots to my ends. I personally don’t have any issues with it being extra greasy because I have dry hair. Makes my hair extra soft and super manageable. I’m also pregnant and it has been doing wonders for my stomach. Not a stretch mark in sight. :)

  6. I have to use raw, organic Shea butter which is more pricey since I only certified organic products since, I never had any reactions to certified organic products, but other products that claim to be organic Shea butter with no certification, can have contaminants and hurt my sensitive skin and hair.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *