Beyond The Suds
Whip It, and Whip It Good (Whipped Shea Butter Tutorial)
I mentioned in yesterday's blog post that our favorite way to use shea butter was to make Whipped Shea Butter. With it's soft, silky, and airy texture whipped shea butter is simply dreamy on your skin, providing some intense moisturization. Our daughter uses it daily on dry, irritated patches but we adults in the house enjoy it most for massages :). Remember, shea butter melts at your body temp, so a small amount will be able to spread out and go a long way!
I'll walk you through the main steps of how we make our whipped shea butter. There are numerous different methods, but we've developed a process that works well for us.
- raw shea butter
- liquid oils and/or coconut oil
- metal container (for melting shea butter)
- bowl or container (for whipping shea butter)
- stove top (or other heat source to deliver low, constant heat)
- spoon (not wooden)
- scale (not necessary, but helpful)
- jar or containers for finished shea butter
- 80-90% raw shea butter
- 10-20% liquid oils and/or coconut oil (argan, avocado, emu, jojoba, meadowfoam, sweet almond, or any combination of nutrient-rich carrier oils)
- The point is to combine a high percentage of shea butter with a low percentage of liquid oils to equal 100%.
- Melt the shea butter using a double boiler (or double boiler set-up). To help prevent graininess (which is fairly common in shea butter), we heat the shea butter until melted and then continue to keep it melted over low heat for at least 20 minutes.
- Pour the melted shea butter into a bowl (or other container) and place immediately in the freezer or refrigerator. We've found that rapid cooling after heating and holding the shea assists with preventing graininess.
- After 20-30 minutes in the freezer/refrigerator, remove the shea butter bowl and use your mixer to whip the shea butter. It will most likely still be very liquid-y at this point. Return it to the freezer/fridge.
- Check the shea butter every 15-20 minutes, using your mixer to whip it each time. The shea butter will begin to harden at the edges of the bowl, and you'll want to scrape that down to make sure it gets mixed in well.
- Continue with the mixing-freezer-mixing pattern until you find the shea butter is becoming more solid than liquid. You don't want it to be "soupy" or slushy, but you also don't want it to be completely hard, as you'll need to continue mixing it.
- Once the shea butter has reached a soft-solid consistency, it's time to add in your liquid oils and/or coconut oil. Pour your oils into the whipped shea butter and continue mixing. (How much oil you choose to add is really a personal preference. There's a great opportunity here to add in some beautiful skin-loving oils, but too much oil can create an undesired greasiness in the end product.)
- I like to whip the mixture for a while, but extended mixing isn't necessary. The main point is to make sure the added liquids are incorporated well and you achieve a nice, silky-creamy texture with the shea butter.
- Transfer the whipped shea butter to clean, dry containers. That's it!
A few final notes:
- Shea butter melts in hot temps, especially inside vehicles! Be careful about leaving your whipped shea butter in the sun or outside during these warm summer months.
- You can add fragrance or essential oil to your shea butter, at the same time you add in the liquid carrier oils. Please take the time to research any additives/oils you include and make sure you stay within safe usage rates. (If you need further explanation about usage rates, shoot us an email or comment and we'll be glad to point you in the right direction.)
- An allergy to shea butter is rare, but does happen. If you've never used shea butter before, test a very small amount on your skin before applying liberally.
Have you ever used Whipped Shea Butter? If so, what did you think about it? What are some other ways you enjoy using it?