Shea butter and Coconut oil are two useful oils that have numerous benefits of humans. Both Shea butter and Coconut oil may help you lose weight, have antimicrobial and antioxidant properties, and help improve skin and oral health. One question many people ask is : which is harder Shea butter or Coconut oil. This article will explore everything about Shea butter and coconut oil.
What is Shea butter ?
Shea butter is a seed fat that comes from the shea tree. The shea tree is found in East and West tropical Africa. The shea butter comes from two oily kernels within the shea tree seed. After the kernel is removed from the seed, it is ground into a powder and boiled in water.
The butter then rises to the top of the water and becomes solid. Shea butter has been used as a cosmetic ingredient for centuries. Its high concentration of vitamins and fatty acids — combined with its easy-to-spread consistency — make it a great product for smoothing, soothing, and conditioning your skin.
Benefits of Shea Butter
Shea Butter will provide improvement in all the conditions listed below. As you use this multi-purpose cream you are likely to discover additional uses. The amount of time required for optimum results with various conditions may vary with each condition. Wrinkles, for example, require 4 to 6 weeks of daily use. Itching is relieved immediately. Some of the benefits of Shea butter are :
It’s safe for all skin types
Shea butter is technically a tree nut product. But unlike most tree nut products, it’s very low in the proteins that can trigger allergies. In fact, there’s no medical literature documenting an allergy to topical shea butter.
Shea butter doesn’t contain chemical irritants known to dry out skin, and it doesn’t clog pores. It’s appropriate for nearly any skin type.
Shea butter is typically used for its moisturizing effects. These benefits are tied to shea’s fatty acid content, including linoleic, oleic, stearic, and palmitic acids.
When you apply shea topically, these oils are rapidly absorbed into your skin. They act as a “refatting” agent, restoring lipids and rapidly creating moisture.
This restores the barrier between your skin and the outside environment, holding moisture in and reducing your risk of dryness.
Shea butter has significant levels of vitamins A and E, which means it promotes strong antioxidant activity.
Antioxidants are important anti-aging agents. They protect your skin cells from free radicals that can lead to premature aging and dull-looking skin.
A 2012 study suggests that oral doses of shea bark extract can lead to decreased antimicrobial activity in animals.
Although more research is needed, this could indicate possible antibacterial benefits in humans. Because of this, some speculate that topical application may decrease the amount of acne-causing bacteria on the skin.
It won’t make your skin oily
Shea butter contains high levels of linoleic acid and oleic acid. These two acids balance each other out. That means shea butter is easy for your skin to fully absorb and won’t make your skin look oily after application.
The plant esters of shea butter have been found to have anti-inflammatory properties. When applied to the skin, shea triggers cytokines and other inflammatory cells to slow their production. This may help minimize irritation caused by environmental factors, such as dry weather, as well as inflammatory skin conditions, such as eczema.
Other generalized benefits and uses of Shea Butter
- skin sores.
- sun-induced creases on the skin.
- stretch stains
- swelling (inflammation) of the sinuses and nasal cavities (rhinosinusitis).
- wound recovery.
- dry skin
- Itchy, scaly skin (psoriasis).
- elevated blood pressure
- insect sting.
- itchiness brought on by a mite infection (scabies).
- muscle aches.
Coconut oil is a tropical oil derived from — you guessed it — the flesh of coconuts. In stores, you’ll see both virgin and refined coconut oil. The specific type you’re buying will be indicated on the front label. Virgin coconut oil is less processed than the refined version, and that preserves its sweet tropical flavor. Refined coconut oil goes through more processing, which leads to a more neutral smell and flavor.
Because it doesn’t have that telltale coconut taste, you can use the refined kind as a main cooking oil for a variety of recipes. “Refined coconut oil” is now often referred to as “all-purpose coconut oil,” so look for either phrase on the label. Additionally, there is no official USDA designation for “extra-virgin” coconut oil, so that language is often just marketing speak (not to be confused with olive oil, for which extra-virgin is the highest grade and virgin is unrefined)
Health benefits of coconut oil
Coconut oil is rich in fatty acids, making it a great moisturizer for both the skin and hair. Below are some benefits of coconut oil.
Contains medium-chain fatty acids
Coconut oil is different from other dietary oils, because it is mainly composed of medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs), whereas most other oils are almost entirely long-chain fatty acids. This means that the fatty acids in coconut oil are made up of a chain of six to 12 carbon atoms, as opposed to the more than 12 found in long-chain fatty acids. This difference in structure has all sorts of implications, from how the oil is digested to how it influences your body.
Has anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial and anti-fungal properties
About 50% of the MCFAs in coconut oil are a type called lauric acid, which contributes to the oil’s anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and anti-fungal properties.
May be helpful in the treatment of skin conditions
Limited but consistent evidence appears to support the topical use of coconut oil for the prevention and treatment of mild to moderate cases of chronic skin conditions, such as atopic dermatitis. It has also been shown to alleviate some complex skin conditions, such as eczema or psoriasis.
May protect hair from damage
The lauric acid in coconut oil appears to have a high affinity for hair protein and, because of the way the oil is structured, is able to penetrate inside the hair shaft. This means coconut oil and products made from it may be useful in preventing the hair damage caused by protein loss due to grooming and ultraviolet (UV) exposure. However, more studies are needed to confirm this effect.
May be helpful in the prevention of dental caries
Oil pulling is a traditional ayurvedic remedy originally practised in ancient India for the maintenance of oral health. More recent studies suggest the practice of using coconut oil may be beneficial for the prevention of dental caries by reducing plaque formation and gingivitis. However, limitations in sample sizes and duration means a larger number of well-designed randomised controlled trials are needed to determine the true value of coconut oil for this purpose.
Which is Harder Shea Butter or Coconut Oil?
Now, let’s answer the question normally asked by many people : which is harder shea butter or coconut oil. As per peoples experience, Shea butter is comparatively harder than coconut oil, It is sticky, which is good for extremely dry skin. On the other hand, Coconut butter melts when applied to the skin. It can be applied smoothly and is good for mild oily skin.
For example, coconut oil is made up of medium-chain triglycerides and has a melting point of 24 degrees Celsius. However, Shea butter comprises long-chain triglycerides and has a melting point of 35 degrees Celsius.
It all depends on what you are using it for. For example, coconut oil has a higher melting point than shea butter, so you might choose it if you need oil for cooking. Moreover, shea butter would be better for your skin because it dissolves at a higher temperature and penetrates deeper than coconut oil.
What is better moisturizer: Coconut Oil Or Shea Butter?
For best results, apply your moisturizer as soon as you get out of the shower to help keep skin hydrated.’
You’re looking for a great moisturizer that’s free of artificial fragrances, parabens, and petroleum ? Coconut oil and shea butter are two of the most popular ways to naturally hydrate the skin, and there’s no trickery here—just one ingredient, no additives.
“They’re both emollients, so they’re very good at moisturizing and smoothing skin,” says Sarah King, a naturopath in Toronto. King has suffered from eczema and dry skin all her life, so she knows her way around all the oils, creams, and lotions on the market. When it comes to coconut oil and shea butter, she says both are good options, but they do have some distinct differences. We put them through a side-by-side comparison.
Pros: Coconut oil has antimicrobial properties, so it’ll help if you’re suffering from any type of fungal infection. It’s also great at keeping moisture from escaping (though not as efficient as heavier oils, like olive or avocado).
Cons: If you’ve got acne, coconut oil may make things worse since it’s so greasy. Be careful not to over apply, warns King, since it can build up on skin and cause blockages. When it comes to coconut oil, less is more.
Pros: Shea butter, which is a fat derived from the seed of the shea tree, has a slightly deeper moisturizing effect compared with coconut oil, says King. Even better, it’s anti-inflammatory, so it does a superior job of calming irritated skin. King also finds that it helps heal abrasions or wounds.
Shea butter is the winner but only by a hair. “I love them both,” King says, but shea butter edges out coconut butter since it can work for managing all skin types and has superior moisturizing power. However, King says you may actually benefit by using them both together since you get the combined anti-inflammatory power of shea butter and the antimicrobial property of coconut oil.