If using soap leaves you with a dry and cracked skin, you might want to consider switching for a handmade shea one. Shea soap is made from the shea butter coming from the Karite Tree native to West Africa. The free-trade shea soap is usually hand-made by communities in Ghana who rely on years of experience and generational wisdom to create long-lasting, gentle and incredibly potent skin care items.
In its purest form, the shea butter is rich in vitamins A, C, E and essential fatty acids. The ingredients in the shea soap act as antioxidants which battle the negative effects of the harmful free radicals, while boosting collagen production for a plumper, smoother and more rejuvenated skin. The cinnamic acid provides protection against UV radiation; apart from having an SPF of six, it helps the skin retain its moisture and prevent it from drying out and cracking.
The shea butter is also packed with antibacterial compounds which fight bacteria and germs, and its anti-inflammatory properties can do wonders for the irritated skin. Simply lathering up with a bar of Shea butter can greatly reduce the inflammation, rashes or irritation, and disinfect the skin to stop the infection from spreading. Its soothing properties deliver immediate relief to the affected areas while applying an extra layer of protection against harmful bacteria. The anti-inflammatory properties make the shea soap an amazing after-sun treatment, and the antioxidants will help reduce the surface swelling and speed up the skin recovery.
The benefits of shea butter extend beyond simple skin care. Shea butter is known for its unmatched ability to hydrate the skin and boost collagen which in turn reduces the appearance of stretch marks and wrinkles. Queen Nefertiti has been said to use soap make of shea butter to keep her youthful and radiant experience. The compounds in the plant-derived butter, and the high concentration of fatty acids, in particular stimulates collagen production and enhances the skin elasticity which also keeps cellulite at bay.
Last but not least, hand-made shea butter is gentle to every type of skin. The Ghana communities create their shea butter by hand, using no parabens, artificial preservatives, phthalates or sulfates which might harm the skin in the long-term and contribute to its dehydration and drying out. Convinced already? Swap your regular soap for a shea butter one and experience its marvelous benefits first-hand!
Check out Fair Trade Fusion's collection of shea soap here.