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DIY Friday: Whip Up Your Own Shea Butter

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DIY Friday: Whip Up Your Own Shea Butter

Alexis Krauss

The fabulous Scarlett Newman is back, this time to share her family recipe for homemade Shea Body Butter. Shea Body Butter is a safe and effective moisturizer for women, men and children. It is especially nourishing during the cold winter months and you'll love the affordable and sustainable way Scarlett and her mommy craft and package their beautiful DIY creation. Enjoy! Xoxo Alexis

Shea Butter is something that’s been used in my family for a really long time. My mom and I have been using it not only as a moisturizer, but also as a hair product and as an alternative to prescriptive creams to cure dermatitis and eczema. It’s a health and beauty staple that I can’t live without! The benefits are endless, and at a basic level it makes your skin super-soft and tops it off with a natural glow. When I was younger, my mom usually handled the Shea Butter prep, but now that I’m living away from home I’ve had to learn how to prepare it myself—which is incredibly simple! As we are coming up on the intense winter months, it’s essential that we’re keeping our skin moisturized, as the harshness of the weather can cause it to dry out and/or crack. Rather than buying a brand of Shea Butter that’s possibly injected with harsh chemicals, why not make your own? It’s healthy, it lasts long and it’s inexpensive (something I always have to take into consideration as a student here in NYC). 

Some background on Shea Butter

Shea Butter is a fat extracted from the nut of the African Shea tree. It’s been used in Africa for centuries to protect and condition the skin. It’s naturally rich in Vitamins A, E and F helping soothe, hydrate and balance the skin. Shea Butter also offers a low level of UV protection (around SPF-6) and is great to incorporate into your sunscreen routine!

The traditional extraction consists of separating the nut from its shell. The nuts are then crushed, roasted, grinded, shaped and then hardened for consumption. When sold, natural Shea Butter is offered white or yellow. Both butters are grown from the Karite Tree, but are processed differently. In the milling process, yellow butter has a root from the Borututu Tree that is added to it, giving it the Tumeric color. They both have the same benefits, but in my experience, The Ivory colored Shea is easier to work with and manipulate. Experiment with both, Yellow may be the one for you! 

Tutorial

This is a tutorial based on how my mom and I prepare our Shea Butter! It’s simple, inexpensive and will leave your skin hydrated and glowing. For this recipe, we used 16oz of 100% All Natural Shea Butter, which yielded 2 ½ Mason jars worth of butter. Here’s what you’ll need:

100% All Natural Shea Butter

Virgin Coconut Oil

Your Choice of Essential Oils. Here we used Rosemary, Lavender and Jasmine.

A Carrier Oil that serves as a scent and adds for winter protection. Can also be beneficial for massages! Here, we used Patchouli oil. 

Mason Jars!

*Additional tools: a hand mixer and a double boiler or a medium to large pot. If you don’t have a double boiler, use a heat safe container to sit on top of your pot (like we did). Last but not least, Avocado Oil! 

Let’s get started! 

Go ahead and bring your pot of water to a high boil. 

Once you’ve got your water boiling, sit your heat safe bowl on top of your pot. Go ahead and scoop your entire container of Shea Butter into the bowl.

Here the Shea Butter starts to melt.

Add about half your container of Coconut Oil into the bowl. 

Let your mixture liquefy and then remove your bowl from the boiling pot. Allow mixture cool. Once you see it re-solidify on the top layer(it should still be soft underneath) that’s when you can start blending it.

Blend your butter on a low setting until you start seeing it become a whipped texture. 

Add 10 drops of each essential oil into a tablespoon

Two tablespoons of Avocado oil

Add two tablespoons of your Carrier oil then go ahead and blend these into your Shea Butter.

Behold! Your perfectly whipped and ready to use Shea Butter! Go ahead and scoop the final product into Mason Jars (or the container of your choice) and enjoy!

 Be sure to keep these in a cool and dry storage space. If the temperature gets to warm, they’ll melt and re-solidify. This means no more light and whipped texture.

Thanks for all the help and guidance, Mom!

Lots of love!

-Scarlett