Shea nuts in a bowl on a wood object. Shea nuts and shea butter are on the table

Benefits of Shea Butter for Skin

What is Shea butter?

Shea butter is the fat extracted from the nut of the African Shea tree (Vitellaria paradoxa), it has a high concentration of vitamins and fatty acids which give it a moisturizing effect. It is solid at room temperature, but melts at body temperature which allows it to be quickly absorbed into the skin. Gangsta Grease uses whipped raw, unrefined, organic Shea butter, which gives it a luxurious feel and makes it easy to spread. 

Properties of Shea butter

  • Moisturizer
  • Emollient
  • Anti-aging
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Non-comedogenic


So, Why Use Shea butter?


The moisturizing effects are tied to the fatty acids in Shea butter (linoleic, oleic, stearic and palmitic acids). These fatty acids rapidly create moisture in the skin, and restore the barrier between your skin and the environment. Because Shea butter is a wonderful moisturizer and helps to trap moisture in the skin, it is excellent for helping to repair dry, itchy, inflamed skin, including eczema.


Slow down aging of skin

Shea butter helps with the regeneration of new skin cells and can boost collagen production. Collagen is major protein that provides the skin with plumpness. More collagen in the skin can help reduce the appearance of fine lines, thus giving the skin a more youthful appearance. Shea butter also has some activity against UV rays. It offers some sun protection but not much - Shea butter on its own has an SPF of only about 3 to 4.

*Pro tip: The SPF is much higher when combined with other ingredients that help with sun protection like with our "Don't 'Sun' Me" all-natural sunscreen!



Shea butter fights against inflammation as it can help reduce the skin's reaction to irritants. It also helps to soothe the skin and relieve itching. This can be helpful to people with inflammatory skin conditions like eczema as well as psoriasis.



Shea butter is non-comedogenic, meaning it does not clog pores. It is safe to use for nearly any skin type!

Disclaimer: Pure Shea butter on its own, is non-comedogenic. We do sell pure Shea butter under "Facial Shea Butter". However, we offer other products as well such as "Glo Up" which has small amounts of coconut oil (from the carrot oil) and rosehip oil.

Is it Safe?

Yes! Unless you know you are allergic to Shea butter, which is rare. Though Shea butter does come from nuts of the Shea tree, allergic reactions to shea butter from people with tree nut allergies are almost non-existent.

Most people that have a tree nut allergy (walnuts, pecans, cashews, etc.) experience an allergic reaction because the protein found in the nuts binds with an antibody in their blood called immunoglobulin E (IgE). IgE sees the nut protein as a threat and causes an allergic reaction. IgE needs the protein to bind to and cause a reaction, and Shea butter only has a tiny amount of protein bands, making an allergic reaction pretty rare.


Thanks for reading! Do you use shea butter? Let us know in the comments!

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