The Benefits of Shea Butter on Hair

Native to various countries in Africa, the shea tree grows naturally across the dry savannah from Senegal to Ethiopia. Seed fat from kernels inside the tree, shea butter gets its name from , which is “shea tree” in Bambara, Mali’s national language. But it’s known in many different local languages: karité in Senegalese, and sometimes referred to as “women’s gold” in West Africa.

In almost any language though, shea butter is a natural treasure known for its nourishing, softening and soothing properties – which is why we incorporate it in our Weightless Conditioner formula.

What is shea butter?

Derived from kernels within the shea tree seed and then refined, shea butter is essentially seed fat that includes palmitic, stearic, oleic, linoleic, and arachidic fatty acids. It’s a creamy-white colour with a faint nutty, lightly smoky scent.

Is shea butter good for hair?

Shea butter is – when refined in the right way – a great emollient that’s easily and smoothly distributed to the hair, leaving behind a smooth and soft feeling. It also has a good ability to hold in moisture.

Why does Hårklinikken use shea butter in Weightless Conditioner?

Unrefined shea butter tends to be heavy and, when applied to finer hair strands, it can be easy to overuse, leaving the hair looking and feeling oily, greasy, and weighed down. Hårklinikken uses a highly refined, unsaponified shea butter that's rich in vitamin E, sterols, and fatty acids which – in combination with other ingredients – allow for the formula to feel super lightweight and creates a soft, silky feeling without heavy oily residue.

What is the difference between saponified and unsaponified shea butter?

Saponification is a refining process that filters out even more impurities and separates the shea butter into saponified and unsaponified fractions – constituents that form a soapy consistency when in contact with alkaline ingredients and constituents that are unsaponified. We use unsaponified shea butter (Butyrospermu Parkii Unsaponifiables) which is the fatty acid and sterol portion of shea butter that is rich in vitamin E. This ingredient feels more lightweight and less greasy than its counterpart and works well as an emollient for hair when used correctly and in a very specific manner.

Unsure where to start?

We only accept candidates who we believe we can help, which is why our online Hair Assessment is the best place to start. Based on your results, you will either qualify for immediate treatment or we will organize a consultation.