Cocoa butter may not be getting the star treatment in the media like coconut oil is these days but don’t be fooled— cocoa butter is a majorly important player in the natural beauty product game!
Plus, chocolate (but we’ll get to that).
Seriously, the products that come from cacao beans - whether it’s cocoa butter, cacao or cocoa — can be incredibly nourishing for your body, both inside and out. We’ve broken down its different forms and uses in the post below so you can hurry up and get your cocoa butter on— literally.
What Is Cocoa Butter?
Cocoa butter is the light yellow, edible vegetable fat that’s extracted from the cacao bean after it is fermented, dried and hulled.
A simple, natural product that has a ton of health and beauty benefits that actually work.
The Benefits of Cocoa Butter for your Skin & Hair
1. All Natural Moisturizer. Cocoa butter is amazing for dry or cracked skin. Cocoa butter melts just above room temperature and is high in saturated fats which help to lock moisture in. You can also use cocoa butter as a lip chap.
2. If you have dry skin, eczema or psoriasis try using cocoa butter in all natural moisturizer. This also works extremely well in your hair. We list several excellent recipes closer to the bottom of this article.
3. Fights Signs of Aging. This study suggests that the topical use of cocoa butter can help improve skin elasticity and reduce wrinkles. In addition to improving skin elasticity, cocoa butter applied topically can reduce photoaging. The best part is studies have shown it's as effective as commercial products.
4. It also works well as a natural rash cream.
5. Works Well With Sensitive Skin. If your skin is sensitive often times commercial products can irritate your skin. Cocoa butter can be a wonderful alternative.
Cocoa Butter Uses
In addition to the general health benefits of cocoa butter listed above, it also has many practical, everyday applications that can help fix a number of skin and body-related concerns naturally and effectively.
Cocoa Butter for Dry Skin
Using cocoa butter as a moisturizer is a no-brainer, especially in the drying winter months. Not only does it have the light, lovely fragrance of chocolate to keep you company on those cold winter nights, its antioxidant properties will keep your skin nourished and the emollient properties will lock in moisture all day long.
And if you’re wondering “is cocoa butter good for your face?” the answer to that is: sometimes! As long as you aren’t prone to major breakouts or have oily skin, using a small amount on your face is an awesome, natural way to combat dry patches. You can also use it as an eye cream, where your skin can always use an extra dose of hydration.
If you're prone to breakouts or have oily skin cocoa butter has a comedogenic rating of 4 which is very high.
Cocoa butter is especially great to use after shaving since it’s so hydrating and shaving creams can be incredibly drying and stripping.
Actually— cocoa butter can also be used as a shaving cream itself! Not only will you eradicate any crazy chemicals from your shaving routine, you’ll be adding a huge heaping of hydrating to it as well!
DIY Cocoa Butter Shaving Cream Recipe
Via: Healy Eats Real
- Coconut oil
- Liquid Castile soap
- Cocoa Butter
- Baking soda
- Tea tree oil
Heat coconut oil and cocoa butter together in a double broiler until melted and transfer to a bowl. Add the Castile soap, baking soda and tea tree oil; using a hand mixer, beat the mixture until you get a fluffy, foamy shaving cream.
We love this recipe because it's incredibly moisturizing featuring both Coconut Oil and Cocoa Butter. Fellas, you shouldn't use this for shaving your face it's more for the ladies who are shaving their legs and under arms.
If you prefer to learn via video this All-Natural Shaving Cream recipe from Kendra Atkin's Youtube is fabulous as well. She uses Shea Butter but Cocoa Butter also works.
DIY Cocoa Orange Winter Body Balm
Via: Gold Mountain Beauty
- 15 g Jojoba Oil
- 30 g Coconut Oil
- 15 g Cocoa Butter
- 5 g Beeswax
- 1 drop Vitamin E (optional)
- 5-10 drops Sweet Orange essential oil (optional)
Instructions refer to the original recipe
Simple DIY Body Lotion
Recipe & Image Via: Little Green Dot
If you're looking for another everyday all-natural lotion this recipe from Little Green Dot only requires three ingredients
- Coconut Oil
- Cocoa Butter
- Almond Oil
We really love the simplicity of this recipe and it works extremely well. Sometimes DIY recipes are overly complicated. You can whip this up in the matter of minutes and odds are you will already have 2 out of the 3 ingredients on hand.
Cocoa Butter For Hair (is cocoa butter really good for your hair?)
Absolutely! (are you surprised?) Cocoa butter for hair is hydrating, frizz-fighting and shine-promoting; its moisturizing properties work the same way for hair as they do for skin!
Try using it as a leave-in mask before shampooing; just melt the butter in your hands and apply mid-shaft to ends and leave for 30 minutes. It rinses out easily and will leave your hair feeling and looking super smooth and shiny.
Cocoa Butter Deep Hair Conditioner
If you're looking for a little inspiration this DIY Cocoa Butter Deep Conditioner consists of two ingredients; cocoa butter and coconut oil plus your favorite organic conditioner.
Cocoa Butter for Cooking
You can use cocoa butter for cooking, as long as the jar is labeled “food grade” and is 100% pure cocoa butter; you’ll probably find it in the skincare aisle of your local grocery store though, not hanging out with the olive and coconut oil.
Be warned, while cocoa butter is perfectly safe for cooking, cocoa butter calories are incredibly high.
A better way to get at edible cocoa butter is to eat it the old-fashioned way: chocolate. Ok, so maybe chocolate isn’t exactly the same as cocoa butter but they both come from the same place and share many of the same health benefits. Again, it’s all about those antioxidants that help reduce inflammation and neutralize free radicals.
There are two ways you can eat chocolate: cacao vs. cocoa
The two sound similar but there are some major difference between them. Cacao is the raw, unadulterated product of the cacao bean being fermented, dried and hulled. It’s what every other type of chocolate is derived from. Cocoa comes to be once the cacao beans are roasted and processed. Because of the processing, cocoa loses a lot of its nutritional benefits. That’s why dark chocolate (cacao) is doctor-preferred. So if your sweet tooth is raging, make sure you pick a dark chocolate bar that has a high percentage of cacao listed on its label.
Unfortunately, many people write off natural health and beauty as inferior in effectiveness, pleasurability and taste to their more processed counterparts. We know that’s just not the case… and cocoa butter proves it! It’s highly effective, incredibly nourishing and free of all weird and harsh chemicals that you definitely don’t want in your body. It’s true: we’ve become absolutely obsessed with cocoa butter this winter and think you should, too.