Nilotica shea butter - a little known secret
We are barely a couple of weeks into a crisp new year, and like walking in newly fallen virgin snow, it is uplifting, fresh and pure, naturally bringing renewed enthusiasm, inspiration and hope for the time ahead.
However the days are still cold and dark and the wind biting and harsh so in this newsletter I will be writing a bit about one of my favourite raw ingredients originating from under much sunnier skies hoping that the warmth and light inherent in the words will carry through.
Shea butter - one of my all time favourites and much used raw ingredients.
We’ve all at some point heard mention of shea butter - it sounds pleasantly exotic, wholesome and natural - and you can find it on the ingredient list on lots of natural cosmetics and food products.
But what exactly is shea butter and why is it so good?
Shea butter is a 100% plant based product.
It is an off-white solid fatty substance obtained from the nuts of the wild growing shea tree (or Karite tree) from West Africa.
Good quality raw unrefined shea butter is smooth in texture and does not liquify at room temperatures; however, it melts on skin contact and easily softens in your hands, making it easy to apply.
Particularly rich in oleic and stearic fatty acids, sheabutter is extremely moisturising and very hydrating, and African woman have used shea butter for centuries in their cooking and in their skin-and hair care regimen.
Full of all-natural vitamin A and E, 100 % pure, unrefined, raw shea butter is very soothing, nourishing and rich in antioxidants.
It aids in soothing and relieving numerous skin conditions such as red, irritated and itchy skin conditions including sunburns. It is ideal to use in stretch mark prevention during pregnancy and weight loss.
By far, the most common and well-known shea butter comes from West Africa, typically Ghana, and is a product of the shea tree (Vittelaria paradoxa).
HOWEVER...not all shea butter is the same!
There is another more rare and little known variety of shea butter from East Africa called Nilotica shea butter which is produced from the nuts of the Vittelaria nilotica shea tree, a sub-species of the much more common and afore-mentioned West african variety.
I love all shea butter but the delicate East African Nilotica shea butter is truly exquisite and in my opinion, far superior to the West African variety.
It is much more creamy, soft and luxurious with a milder, slightly nutty aroma.
I source my Nilotica shea butter from a family owned mill in Northern Uganda The nuts are collected by local farmers (typically woman) from Nilotica Shea trees growing in the wild and then processed and cold pressed, without the use of harsh chemicals or solvents. This ensures that the butter retains its unique fatty acid profile and all its wonderful vitamins and nutrients Furthermore, this high quality sheabutter is 100% certified organic by USDA.
Because of its smooth and naturally creamy texture Nilotica shea butter is great as a stand alone product, especially on babies skin, very dry or damaged skin or on skin that is very sensitive and doesn’t tolerate more ‘complicated’ skin care products and it has a
mild SPF of 3 - 5.
Shea butter is one of my main ingredients and I use it in most of my formulations.
I only ever use certified organic Nilotica shea butter and it is the wonderful properties and velvety smooth texture of this exceptional shea butter that helps to give Tree & Earth Creams' products their silky smooth feel and rich nourishing goodness.
Happy nourishing New Year!
---------- REMINDER ----------
From the 31st January - 3. February I'm attending Formland Spring 2019 in Herning Messe Centre (HMC). Find me on stand: E4232 in Creator's Community in Hall E from 10am - 6pm. You get the opportunity to try, test, smell all my products and some of my raw ingredients too (incl. Nilotica shea butter). You can read more about FORMLAND SPRING 2019 and buy tickets HERE
Use invitation code: p12324 to get 75% off the ticket price
Hope to see you there!