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Old 01-28-2011, 06:31 AM - Thread Starter
 
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We go through an insane amount of shea butter in our house.  I use it on my face and legs, on Leda's bottom, as a hair conditioner, DH uses it as an aftershave...

 

I'm currently using L'Occitane shea butter but at $40 for 5 ounces, shea butter is becoming a budget buster!  Do any of you mamas use shea butter?  Where do you get it from?  If you don't mind me asking, how much does it cost?

 

I've seen it on Internet sites for as little as $7 for 8 ounces but I'm not sure if the difference in price between that and the L'Occitane is because of the L'Occitane brand name or because it's inferior in some way.  Help!  Thank you :)


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Old 01-28-2011, 11:11 AM
 
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I use L'Occitane also and love love love their products. I try and stock up when it's on sale. As for the super discount prices from others from what I've read online it seems that a lot of these are either not pure shea butter or are not filtered.

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Old 01-28-2011, 11:17 AM
 
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I'm pretty sure you are paying for brand name. I have been selling natural bodycare products all my adult life and I have never seen a shea butter so expensive.

Go with Mountain Rose Herbs. It is not a filtered product, it is organic and they buy directly from the processor. The savings is amazing. I have never been disappointed by any of their products. Even if you end up not liking it as much, you will be out $4.00 for 4oz. No biggie (but its exactly the same thing as the L'Occitane product, so you'll be fine).
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Old 01-28-2011, 01:44 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you for your replies, mamas! 

 

Chamomile Girl, since you're in the business perhaps you could answer a question about shea butter for me?  Does it expire or go bad?  Is there an optimum temperature I should store it at?  Also, I see that the shea butter at Mountain Rose comes in hunks instead of in a tin (which is fine by me considering how much money I'm gonna save!).  Do you just dip into it with your hand and it melts quickly?  Or do you need to stir it?

 

Thanks!


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Old 01-28-2011, 02:03 PM
 
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All oil-based products can go rancid but butters that are solid at room temp rarely do unless they have been held at high heat for a long time (like in a 140 degree storage unit lol). I've got shea that's five or six years old that is still fine. Cocoa butter is similar.

If you want your shea in a container its pretty easy to melt it down...put a glass jar into a hot water bath. Kind of like melting chocolate. You can also add other oils to make it softer if you like (although as stated above adding liquid oils will reduce its shelf life. Unless you use jojoba oil, because jojoba is actually a liquid wax). Heck, you can just use the lump straight...the heat of your hands/body will melt it. One thing though is that shea that has been melted will reform kind of grainy unless you constant stir it until it is totally cool. Even professional products that contain shea eventually get the grainy texture as the shea migrates out of solution...totally normal, and the grains of shea will also melt with simple body heat.
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Old 01-28-2011, 09:19 PM
 
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Forgot to post before that I've seen quite a few threads on shea butter in the natural body care forum here, you might want to check over there for recommendations of cheaper sources too.

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Old 01-29-2011, 12:32 PM
 
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Oh wow I'm so happy that I've stumbled on this post! I used to pay 20$ for 4 oz of shea butter... Now I know better, I'll order from Mountain Rose Herbs :P Thank you Chamomille Girl!


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Old 01-31-2011, 10:53 PM
 
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A couple of years ago, DH found that the store-bought shea butter helped with his chronic skin problems, so I bought a huge block from an online importer (here) that worked out to around $6/lb.  It smells great, works fine as a moisturizer, and doesn't seem to have gone rancid.   Unfortunately, DH can't use it, as it made his sensitive skin break out in a rash.  Maybe because it's unrefined? Anyway, we are never, ever going to use it all at this rate.  We'll be passing it down to our grandchildren.  "Here, dearie, put some of this shea butter on it!"  Like the Windex guy in "My Big Fat Greek Wedding."  lol.gif  

 

So I was hoping this thread might be about how to use it for cooking.   It's used that way in Africa, and it certainly smells yummy.  But I'm kind of scared to hack a piece of this yellowish, vaguely dirty-looking blob and throw it into my cookie batter. 


ETA:  Just found this page: How to Cook using Unrefined Shea Butter.  It says, "Shea butter should not be gray or green and it shouldn't stink, nor should it contain dirt or debris."  Hmm.  Mine has a slight touch of gray, but is probably okay by those standards.  I'll have to look at it more closely before deciding.

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Old 02-01-2011, 05:51 AM
 
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I use this:

http://allnaturalscosmetics.ca/shop/products.php?product=Shea-%22All-Naturals%22

 

I've used it for years and liked it. On the same site you can get 5 lbs of the pure unrefined for 40 $.

 

humming mom: I like the site you linked to a lot... thanks for that! But I feel nervous about the idea of using anything sold for topical use as a food... I understand there are different safety regulations.

 

Just to throw an idea out there, maybe you could use the big block to melt down and set in cute molds or in little tins as gifts/stocking stuffers?

 

Perhaps with a little printed off note listing the ingredients and the site.

 

I know I'd appreciate that as a crafty gift!  

 

 

 

 


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Old 02-01-2011, 05:45 PM
 
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Shea butter is so nourishing for the body. You might want to supplement with other natural oil such as coconut oil. We use coconut oil for our skincare and it is especially good for dry, cracked feet. A good jar of coconut oil from a natural food store is about $15-20 for about 500 mL. Good luck...

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Old 02-02-2011, 08:36 AM
 
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I just recently discovered using coconut oil for skin care. It is now my fave. Shea butter is handy when skin gets REALLY dry, but CO is more versatile/easy. And, it's certainly safe to eat!  


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