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Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter

What is it?

Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Hydrogenated Shea Butter, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter Unsaponifiables, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter Extract, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Oil and Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Nut Extract are derived from the sheatree, Butyrospermum parkii, also called Vitellaria paradoxa. Shea Butter and the other ingredients made from the sheatree are used in many types of cosmetics and personal care products including bath products, cleansing products, eye makeup, lotions and creams, suntan products, lipstick and hair care products.

Safety Information

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) includes sheanut oil on its list of direct food substances affirmed as Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS).

The safety of Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Hydrogenated Shea Butter, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter Unsaponifiables and Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Oil has been assessed by the Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) Expert Panel. The CIR Expert Panel evaluated scientific data and concluded that these ingredients were safe for use as ingredients in cosmetics and personal care products

Botanical and botanically derived ingredients used in the formulation of cosmetics are generally mild and safe. Prior to marketing the finished cosmetic product, the safety of each ingredient must be substantiated in accordance with 21 CFR 740.10. Safety substantiation of cosmetic ingredients may include tests for ocular and skin irritation as well as allergenicity, phototoxicity, photoallergenicity and mutagenicity, depending on the application or intended use. There is a considerable body of information about the safety of botanical ingredients and a well-established history of use. These resources are consulted to ensure the safety of these materials as they are used in cosmetics.
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Why is it used in cosmetics and personal care products?

The following functions have been reported for the ingredients derived from the sheatree.

Hair conditioning agent - Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter Unsaponifiables
Skin conditioning agentemollient - Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Nut Extract
Skin conditioning agentmiscellaneous - Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter Unsaponifiables
Skin conditioning agentocclusive - Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Oil, Hydrogenated Shea Butter
Viscosity increasing agentnonaqueous - Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Hydrogenated Shea Butter

Scientific facts:

The sheatree is native to Central Africa, where it is used as a source of vegetable oil. The oil from the fruit of the sheatree contains about 45-50% oleic acid, 30-41% stearic acid, 5-9% plamitic acid and 4-5% linoleic acid.

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