Home SHEA BUTTER
This is made from Karite Nut tree which grows in West Africa. It contains butter from the Shea Nut as well as the palm oil.
There are two major methods of processing Shea: Refined and Raw.
REFINED – Refined Shea Butter is white in colour, odourless and hard and sometimes grainy in texture. It is one of the most popular and common kinds of Shea Butter available.
The process that creates Refined Shea Butter starts with the raw product. During the refinement process, Raw Shea Butter is subjected to extremely high heat. The heating process induces a state change that allows the refined product to have a long shelf life. The heating process, however, also eliminates naturally occurring essential fatty acids and proteins. Added preservatives like sodium hydroxide and sodium carbonate also help to keep Refined Shea Butter long lasting. Finally, to remove the earthy scent of Raw Shea Butter, we use hexane to strip the butter of its colour and nutty fragrance. This is helpful if one wants to use Shea Butter without all of the variation in appearance and odour.
RAW – Raw Shea Butter ranges in colour from light beige to a more creamy yellow. It is smooth to the touch, absorbs easily and sometimes has a roasted fragrance to it. Interest in Raw Shea Butter is having a well-deserved resurgence.
Raw Shea Butter is extracted and processed in the traditional way women of Africa have done for centuries. In Raw Shea Butter, the nuts of the wild growing Karite Tree are hand harvested and brought back to the village. At the village, women hand shell the Karite Nuts (i.e. the Shea nuts) and uncover the raw nut that makes up the butter. The nut is then grilled to open up its properties, pounded into a powder and boiled. During boiling, the potent oils in Shea Butter rise to the surface, after which they are scooped into gourds and left to cool and set.