For centuries, our African and Nigerian ancestors used she butter to moisturise their skin, hair and scalp, heal wounds, massage aching body and muscles. Raw shea butter is even used for cooking in some parts of Nigeria where the trees are in abundance, such as a part of Adamawa state where I saw women cook and fry with it. I’ve also seen videos of Ghanians cooking with shea butter. So, yes, raw and unadulterated shea butter is edible.
She butter is one of those ‘ works-for-everything’ essentials found in nearly every Nigerian home and widely used around the World. It’s no surprise that African shea butter is high in demand – because it is super-loaded with tons of benefits.
Raw Shea Butter Unrefined (Ivory Colour Ori)₦1,500.00 – ₦56,000.00
Shea butter has numerous skin and hair-beneficial vitamins including Vitamins E and essential fatty acids which help seal and retain moisture in your skin, making it perfect for dry cracked skin types.
Shea Butter also contains vitamin A which is an antioxidant that boosts collagen production and increases cell turnover, making it a great ingredient for preventing wrinkles and achieving a younger look, tightening sagged skin and improving the appearance of stretch marks. Vitamin F in shea butter helps hydrate and repair dry or damaged hair and skin.
Thanks to its omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidant contents, shea butter has been known to be effective at reducing scars and repair damaged skin.
WATCH: How Shea Butter is Extracted from Shea Nuts (Traditional Extraction Method)
Did you hear that in the video – how long it takes to grow a Shea tree? He said up to 40 years. Here’s the breakdown, from my research:
Shea trees take a very long time to grow. It starts producing fruits from 15 to 20 years after planting. It keeps producing fruits for the next 20 to 30 years, after which it reaches full production. A single tree yields up to 20kg of fruits at harvest. The life span of a shea tree is up to 400 years. Isn’t that amazing?
FUN FACT: Nigeria has some of the largest concentration of shea trees in the World, hence it is one of the largest producers of shea butter. Traditionally, the colour of Nigerian shea butter known as Ori or Okuma (in Nigerian language) is off-white.