Benefits Of Shea Butter & How To Know The Original In Nigeria

Shea butter, also known as ori, is a fat extracted from shea nuts that has incredible qualities that have made it popular in Nigeria. Shea butter is a popular go-to cosmetic product for caring for hair and skin. Because of the increased demand for shea butter, it is not surprising that some fraudulent sellers combine shea butter with additives that may harm the skin or hair in order to make a profit. In this piece, we’ll give you some pointers on how to tell the difference between genuine and adulterated shea butter.

What Are The Uses And Benefits Of Shea Butter?

Shea butter is rich in nutrients and is a crucial ingredient in beauty products designed to care for the hair and face. Some of the applications and benefits of shea butter in Nigeria are as follows:

  • It aids in the improvement of skin suppleness and the prevention of wrinkles.
  • Stretch marks are reduced and prevented during childbearing.
  • Repairs damaged tresses
  • Moisturizes the skin and improves hair shine and luster. Effective in healing chapped lips, burns, eczema, and diaper rash in infants.
  • It acts as a light sunscreen against harmful ultraviolet radiation.
  • For use in the kitchen

Following the guidelines mentioned above will assist you in distinguishing between fake and genuine shea butter, preventing you from falling victim to fraudulent sellers.

How To Know Original Shea Butter In Nigeria

1. Observe how shea butter reacts to heat

One way to determine the authenticity of shea butter is to watch how it reacts to heat or absence thereof. Original shea butter should be thick or semi-solid at ambient temperature; however, whipped shea butter will be soft. For example, if you store shea butter (not whipped shea butter) in an airtight container without using it, it will solidify but maintain its effectiveness.

Shea butter, on the other hand, melts when it comes into contact with any form of heat or temperature rise. When you rub original shea butter between your fingertips or on your palms, the heat from the friction should cause it to melt. As a result, original shea butter will always melt when exposed to any form of heat or temperature rise. So, if you see shea butter exposed to heat on a store shelf and it isn’t melting, you should avoid purchasing it because it could be a forgery.

2. Observe The Smell

The smell of shea butter when you sense it can tell you whether it is original or not. Original, unprocessed shea butter should have an earthy, nutty, and smoky aroma. This distinct aroma is caused by toasting the shea seeds during the shea butter production process. If you come across shea butter that scents like lotion, perfumed, or rancid, it’s not original and should not be purchased.

3. Check The Color

The color of shea butter can readily identify the quality of the product. Unrefined and natural shea butter should be cream or pale yellow in color.  However, the color may occasionally be white. The color of unrefined and raw shea butter is typically determined by how it was made and the color of the shea nuts used in its production.

In cosmetic uses, shea butter is refined to give it a white appearance. Because some nutrients are lost during the manufacturing process, refined shea butter does not contain as many nutrients as unprocessed shea butter. However, do not confuse white refined shea butter with processed shea butter. If you observe that shea butter has been bleached, you should avoid purchasing it.

4. Observe The Texture

The texture of shea butter when applied to the epidermis indicates its quality. When shea butter is applied to the epidermis, it should feel creamy. Adulterated shea butter would be greasy and spread on the epidermis rather than being absorbed. Furthermore, when rubbed between your fingertips, original shea butter should melt readily and without lumps. If there are lumps when rubbing shea butter between your fingertips, the shea butter is fake.

Alternatively, you can test the texture of shea butter by applying and massaging a small quantity into your wrist. Original shea butter will maintain its whitish color for a while before being gradually absorbed into the skin on which it was applied. If you massage shea butter into your wrist and it quickly disappears, it’s probably fake.

5. Watch Out For Moulds 

The shell life of original unrefined shea butter is two years after it is made. As previously stated, original shea butter would become semi-solid if stored in a container at room temperature. Furthermore, original shea butter will remain that way as long as it is not exposed to heat and for up to two years without mould growing on it in the receptacle. If you notice mould developing in your shea butter container, it’s time to replace it.

6. Have A Taste

Unrefined and raw shea butter are both edible if you find the correct kind. It is critical to note that refined shea butter, which is primarily manufactured for aesthetic purposes, is not edible and should not be consumed. If you were to evaluate the quality of shea butter by taste, you would notice that original shea butter has a mild nutty flavor and a strong earthy scent. People may compare the flavor to that of a slightly sweet egg, or something natural or fruity.

So, if you don’t detect any shea butter flavor, it’s likely that it’s contaminated.

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