5 Reasons to Use Shea Butter and the Secret to Incorporating it into your Daily Hair Care Routine
Have you ever wondered why we care so much about our hair? Some researchers believe our fascination with lush hair is all about biology. We are attracted to soft, healthy hair because it indicates a healthy diet and overall good health, which makes that person an ideal mate.
In today's fast-paced world, many people struggle to obtain luscious, beautiful hair. With hundreds of hair products on the market, it can feel impossible to find the right one. Plus, many traditional hair care products contain ingredients that can cause or contribute to a host of health issues.
So, what is the answer? The solution might just be shea butter, an ingredient in many popular skin moisturizers.
Shea butter has long been incorporated into natural beauty products. This is primarily due to high concentrations of fatty acids, vitamins A, C, E, and antioxidants, which help improve the skin barrier, promote moisture retention, and help the skin heal.
But, did you know it can offer similar benefits to your hair? If you have dry, curly, or damaged hair, shea butter may be just what you need to get smooth, beautiful locks.
What Is Shea Butter?
Shea butter is creamy fat derived from the nut of the African shea tree, which grows naturally in the dry central regions of Africa including Ethiopia, North Uganda, and Southern Sudan.
Shea butter is extracted from shea seeds by crushing and roasting the seeds, then adding water to create a thick paste. The paste is then whipped and heated so the fats and the oil separate. The fats are skimmed off, and the oil portion is cooled, forming a firm, butter-like product we know as shea butter.
Shea butter is used in a variety of natural beauty products, including lip stain, moisturizers, and hair care products. Over the years, a variety of scientific and anecdotal evidence have demonstrated the benefits of shea butter.
Shea Butter Benefits For Your Hair
You may already use shea butter in your favorite natural makeup product or as a skin moisturizer. It is an ideal choice, as shea butter is a fantastic emollient that helps skin absorb moisture better. It can also promote healing and protect the skin from sun damage. But, can it offer the same benefits to your hair?
As it turns out, it can! There are actually several benefits to using shea butter on your hair. Here are five reasons you need to add shea butter to your hair care routine--and where to find it.
1) Soothe an Irritated Scalp to Promote Healthy Hair Growth
Healthy hair starts with a healthy scalp. Unfortunately, many traditional hair care products tend to focus on improving the hair shaft, instead of focusing on the scalp, where the hair actually starts.
Think of it this way: to grow a rose garden, you would start by making sure the soil the bushes are planted in is healthy and well nourished. Your scalp is the 'soil' your hair grows in and, similarly, needs to be healthy and well-nourished.
Shea butter can improve the overall health of your scalp, allowing healthy, strong hair to grow. According to a 2017 study, shea butter offers anti-inflammatory and antioxidant benefits, making it an ideal choice to soothe a scalp irritated by harsh chemicals, heat, or skin conditions such as psoriasis. A healthy scalp = healthier hair!
2) Protects Your Locks Against Heat and Styling Elements
Hair can withstand heat of up to 450 degrees before burning. However, over usage of heat styling tools at lower temperatures can cause split ends, breakage, and frizziness. This is why many people use a heat protectant before blow drying or curling their hair.
But what if you are looking for a more natural solution? The good news is, you don't have to toss your favorite curling wand! Shea butter can help protect your luscious locks from the evils of blow dryers and curling irons.
Shea butter is filled with good fats, vitamins, and antioxidants your hair needs to stay strong and smooth. It can protect your hair from the ravages of heat styling tools and help heal the damage you already have.
3) Protects Hair From UV Damage
Most of us would never head to the beach without slathering on sunscreen, right? We know the sun can promote sunspots, wrinkles, and even skin cancer. As it turns out, the sun may have a similar impact on your hair.
Just like your skin, your hair needs protection from the sun. UVA and UVB rays from the sun can cause the degradation of the protein that makes up hair and the breakdown of hair pigments. If your hair dry, coarse, and losing color, you may have already experienced UV damage!
Shea butter actually acts as a natural sunscreen, protecting your hair from the damage of UV rays. Plus, it can help soothe and promote healing in hair that has been damaged by the sun.
4) Natural Hair Softener
Dry, coarse hair can be caused by a number of factors. Some hair naturally retains less water, but coarse hair can also be caused by exposure to heat, chemicals in pool water, and ingredients in many hair products such as alcohol. In addition, curly hair simply needs more moisture than other types of hair.
Shea butter promotes soft, smooth hair by helping your hair absorb and retain more water. Plus, it helps repair damage caused by sun and styling tools.
5) Prevents Hair Breakage
Healthy hair includes an outer cuticle covered with overlapping 'scales' that are designed to protect the central portion of the hair shaft. When the cuticle gets damaged, those scales become rough, sometimes falling off and separating. This may result in broken hair strands, which can cause that lovely halo of frizz.
Other factors that may impact hair breakage include stress, dryness, and heat damage. While shea butter can't do much about the stress in your life, it can help promote moisture retention and heal damage caused by blow drying and other heat styling tools.
The results? Soft, smooth, strong hair that can withstand the elements. And, no frizzy halo!
Where Can You Buy Shea Butter Hair Products?
In today's digital world, you can buy shea butter nearly anywhere online or in person. However, shea butter is too thick for most people to apply directly to their hair. You'd likely end up with greasy hair! Plus, not all Shea butter is created equal. The method of processing and age can impact the effectiveness of shea butter, as certain ingredients break down over time.
The way the nuts are dried, the quality of the seeds, and roasting time, and the filtering process can all impact the quality of shea butter.
If you’re looking for an easy way to incorporate shea butter into your daily hair care routine, Art Naturals Shampoo and conditioner is the best solution.
Our natural Shea Butter, Avocado & Lychee Shampoo and Conditioner Duo combines the hydrating and healing benefits of Shea butter with nourishing Avocado Oil, and revitalizing Lychee Nut Extract to drench your locks in moisture.
Our all-natural shampoo and conditioner also contain Sea Buckthorn oil and natural Aloe Vera gel to promote bounce, moisturize the scalp, mend split ends, and tame flyaways.
Dry, course, and frizzy hair can be frustrating. Most of us take far better care of our skin that we do our hair. But, just like skin, our hair must be protected from the elements and needs a bit of help to retain moisture.
The good news is, adding shea butter to your hair care routine is as easy as switching your shampoo and condition to an all-natural option that maximizes the benefits of shea butter.
Tired of dull, dry, frizzy hair? Shea butter may be just what you need. Your hair will thank you!
Have You Tried Shea Butter in your hair care routine?