Shea butter is a product that has been around ever since I can remember and is a natural plant-based oil that’s treasured in West Africa for hundreds of year due to its healing properties. It is considered a sacred tree and treated with particular respect; growing up to 60 feet tall, the Shea trees does not flower before it is 20 years and can live up to 200 years.

To the virgin shea butter users or readers: shea butter is an off-white or ivory-coloured fat extracted from the nut of the African shea tree and is a triglyceride derived mainly from stearic acid and oleic acid. It is also rich in essential vitamins A, E and F. Vitamin F protects the skin, particularly from the suns harmful UV rays. It helps promote youthful skin, reduce fine lines and dryness. Vitamins A and E help maintain the overall health of the skin and hair as well as nourish the skin and maintain blemish-free skin.

It is widely used in cosmetics as a moisturiser, salve or lotion plus it almost works as a cleanser, with its cleansing abilities it penetrates the pores and expels clogged dirt and oil accumulation allowing the skin to breathe. I use it mainly as a moisturiser but also on my hair as it works wonders. It can be used whether your scalp is dry or oily. On oily scalp, it helps reduce excessive oil production by the skin glands. It can moisturise dry scalp and reduce flaking due to dryness. A great advantage of Shea butter is that it doesn’t leave the hair greasy.

I have always been sceptical of the variations of Shea Butter products out there in the marketplace until I was introduced to IvyNat 100% Unrefined & Natural Shea butter. Unrefined Shea Butter is rich in Oleic, Stearic and Linoleic acids that help protect, nourish and keep the skin beautifully soft and moisturised. This Shea butter is 100% natural and unrefined with a smoky and nutty aroma. It has no fragrances, no colours, no parabens and no sulphates.  

I have been hooked ever since I was sent to try it and I can tell you that this is the first Shea Butter that I have used on my son that glides on smoothly and is rich in texture. 

As derived via ivynat: some Skin benefits of Shea butter

1. Shea butter protects the skin from drying out: The butter remains solid at room temperature but melts on the skin to form a non-greasy coating that effectively seals in the moisture. Applying Shea butter all over the body after a bath or a long swim will help keep the skin hydrated and soft. Alternatively, you can add a tablespoonful of butter into your warm bathwater before the final rinse. It will quickly melt and cover your body with a thin, protective layer of oil, but the best part is that it does not make the skin oily. 

2: Healing Qualities: Shea butter is known for its healing properties that can be attributed to the presence of several fatty acids and plant sterols such as oleic, palmitic, stearic and linolenic acids. Raw, unrefined shea butter is effective in curing skin rashes, skin peeling after tanning, scars, stretch marks, frost bites, burns, athletes foot, insect bites and stings, arthritis, and muscle fatigue.

3. Antioxidant Qualities: Shea butter contains plant antioxidants, such as vitamins A and E, as well as catechins. The vitamins A and E protect the cells from free radicals and environmental damage. The cinnamic acid esters in the shea fat help in preventing skin damage from ultraviolet radiation.

4. Anti-Inflammatory Properties: Shea butter has several derivatives of cinnamic acid that exhibit anti-inflammatory properties. Research has proved that in addition to its anti-inflammatory benefits, lupeol cinnamate found in shea butter prevents the development of tumors. Its anti-inflammatory properties render it beneficial for the improvement of skin conditions.

5. Sun Protection: Shea butter may not replace your sunscreen, but it can provide some protection against UV exposure. Shea butter has been estimated to have a sun protection factor of 6 (SPF-6). It may not be sufficient for full sun exposure on a summer day but may be enough for a quick trip outside when the sky is overcast. With rising concerns about the possibility of chemicals in sunscreens themselves causing skin cancer, it may be a good idea to apply Shea butter as a base coat before applying another sunscreen on the skin. The anti-inflammatory action of the butter is even helpful in reducing burning and soreness after sun exposure.

6. Healing Agent: Shea butter has amazing healing properties. It is often used as a base in medicinal ointments due to its anti-inflammatory properties. It has been used since ages for the treatment of scars, eczema, blemishes, skin discolorations, chapped lips, stretch marks, dark spots, and in reducing the irritation caused by psoriasis. Due to its high content of vitamin A, it is effective in promoting healing and disinfection and soothes skin allergies like poison ivy and insect bites. Vitamin F acts as a rejuvenator for soothing and healing rough and chapped skin.

7. Anti-Ageing Benefits: Shea butter is considered as one of the best anti-aging and moisturising agents for the skin. It stimulates the production of collagen, the youthful scaffolding protein in the skin. The vitamins A and E found in this butter keep the skin supple, nourished, and radiant, and prevent premature wrinkles and facial lines. Shea butter penetrates the skin easily, without clogging the pores, and is effective for dry skin.

8. Baby Care: Shea butter is an excellent natural moisturizer that is devoid of chemicals. Thus, it is ideal for baby care as besides being gentle and soft on the skin, it is specially adapted for the delicate and sensitive skin of babies. It can be used for after bath application on the skin and also for healing eczema or diaper rash on the skin of babies.

9. Lip Care: Shea butter is easily absorbable and provides extra moisture and nutrients that are needed during the cold season and dry weather. Thus, it acts as a perfect lip balm to protect your lips from cold and dry weather and is effective for treating dry and chapped lips.

10. Restores Skin Elasticity: The non-saponifiable matter and vitamin F in this butter are vital ingredients for maintaining the skin’s elasticity. Thus, the application of shea butter restores the elasticity of the skin and helps maintain an even skin tone, besides hydrating, softening and beautifying it.

11. Soothes Dry And Irritated Scalp: Shea butter is effective in soothing a dry, itchy scalp or dandruff. It possesses anti-inflammatory qualities and gets absorbed into the skin without leaving a greasy residue or clogging the pores. Being rich in vitamins A and E, it soothes dryness, repairs breakage and mends split ends. Hence, it is extremely effective in providing relief from a dry scalp, dermatitis, eczema, and psoriasis.

12. Moisturizer: The presence of vitamins A and E makes shea butter an excellent moisturizer to moisturise your hair from the roots to the tips. Thus, it can be used as a natural conditioner. It is highly effective in locking in moisture, without leaving the hair greasy or heavy. Shea butter has wide usage in curly hair treatments due to its emollient qualities. A number of chemical treatments like straighteners, perms, curlers, etc. are responsible for stripping off the natural moisture from the hair. Shea butter can help restore this lost moisture.

13. Hair Protection: Shea butter provides protection to the hair against the harmful free radicals in the air and water and harsh weather conditions. Moreover, shea butter has a low amount of SPF that is sufficient to protect the hair from sun damage caused due to the exposure to ultraviolet radiation and repairs the damage that has already been caused by the harsh weather and the sun. This is largely due to the fact that once absorbed, shea butter coats the hair shaft so that it is protected by a heat tool or any other damaging material being passed along the hair. This is particularly beneficial for processed or colored hair. It also protects the hair against salt and chlorine when applied before swimming.

14. Hair Softener: Shea butter is great for softening and revitalizing damaged and brittle hair. Due to its non-greasy nature, it helps to control and spread the excess oil in the scalp. Massaging the hair with generous amounts of shea butter can give soft and silky tresses. This benefit of shea butter is applicable for dry as well as fragile, curly hair. Shea butter should be applied twice a week for hair growth, improving the hair texture and moisturising the hair.

Ivynat 100% Unrefined Shea Butter comes highly recommended so for further information about the product – visit www.ivynat.co.uk or email info@ivynat.co.uk. The store is now available as an APP on iPhone and Android.

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Yours in love – The Renaissance Lady © 

What is in a sponge? Well, quite a lot judging by the video clip I watched two days ago on Facebook. Apparently there are so many ways a sponge can be used and there I was thinking it was all about just washing plates or scrubbing the bath tub (silly me). 

Sponges come in a variety of textures and different sponges will give different looks. The best type of sponge for these techniques is a small round stamping sponge with a smaller pore size. A single sponge of this type can be cut into six to eight wedges. I always keep a couple of sponges (well more than a couple) under the sink because the standard kitchen sponge can do much more than just wash your dishes!

Well thanks to Thaitrick, which is a channel that presents video on Tips, Knowledge, Lifehacks, DIY and Stupid trick just for entertainment, there are 15 or more ways a cleaning sponge can be used: view video.

So here are a few tips or creative ways (as derived from Thaitrick) to use those sponges you have lying around the house (like me, you find yourself stocking up on sponges after this):

  • One can attach small pieces of sponges to the bottom of their décor, furniture legs, or on picture frame stands. The sponge pieces will prevent scratching when these items are moved around.
  • For the pottery hands, before planting a flower in a pot, cut a piece of sponge to fit snugly in the bottom of the pot. The sponge will soak up water and help keep the roots of your plant moist! Now how’s that for creativity!
  • Use a sponge to make simple ice pack for treating swelling and bruising. Soak a sponge in water, place it in a sealed plastic sandwich bag and freeze until solid. As the sponge thaws, the water will stay sealed up in the bag without getting all over. 
  • A must have – but sprinkle a damp (not wet) sponge with baking soda and place it in your fridge. It will absorb odours, and you’ll able to stretch a box of baking soda over a longer period of time.
  • Place your bar soap on top of a sponge in between uses. It will allow the soap to dry out quickly, minimizing the mess and making your soap last longer!
  • This is a penny saver – use a sponge to make a nail polish remover jar. It’s the easiest and cleanest way to remove your nail polish! No need for cotton balls or toilet paper….just insert your finger into the sponge and twist to remove polish. Perfect for when you want to do a quick polish change.
  • Planning on sending a big batch of letters at once (like invitations, birthday cards, etc.) then save your tongue by using a damp sponge to moisten the envelope seals.
  • You can tape or rubber band a sponge to the end of a any stick to clean and dry narrow vases and containers. 
  • Bonus Tip (so I read): Quickly get rid of pet hair of lint on your clothes by using a damp sponge to swipe them away

So here you are, I hope you have had fun with these creative ways to use a sponge for everyday things. And maybe, you can think of your creative way to use the sponge and then share it on this forum. Every little tip helps!

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Yours in love – The Renaissance Lady © – Follow my blog with Bloglovin

I have often wondered on the fascination with most skin experts I have encountered and fruits peels as I have always derived pleasure in eating the peels of most of those delicious fruits amidst the odd look of ‘urgh’ Yvonne stares I get from friends but eh who cares! There are meant to be eaten, aren’t they? And besides, I have always been told that the skin or peels of most fruits are nutrients, healthy for the body…. That’s my truth and I am sticking to it!

Being surrounded by fashion bloggers, skin care addicts and much more (I feel I can never depart from that world but who can blame me eh – once a model always a model), I have now been drawn into the benefits of using fruit peels on my skin. When I was younger, I had horrible skin outbreaks (but still looked fineeeee) partly due to not taking extra care of my sensitive skin like I should have done and also due to a bad eating disorder (yes I was bulimic – blame the modelling world on that) but eventually, my skin started getting much better when I discovered a beauty regime that was perfected for my skin type (my secret and not to be shared). Part of my 2017 Manifesto was to take even better care of my skin and body ‘cause looking  this good as a young  woman (sigh) is not easy.

As derived via curejoy: instead of tossing fruit peels, reuse them for Skin Health and also in the Home.

Orange and lemon peels can fight acne by killing bacteria and controlling sebum. You can also tone the skin and prevent wrinkles with peels from oranges and mandarin. Dried peels can be turned into an exfoliating powder, while banana and avocado peels will moisturise the skin. At home, citrus peels can infuse vinegar and be made into pot-pourri. Banana peels are perfect for adding extra nutrition to plant water.

Eating fruits is one of the tastiest parts of healthy living. But when you’re left with a pile of peels, it’s tempting to head toward the compost. Not so fast, though! Those leftover peels have mind-blowing uses for both your body and home.

These fruit peel uses will also be a game changer for your health. You’ll be dealing with less chemicals, preservatives, and mysterious ingredients. Finally, you can wave goodbye to expensive products. Check out these nine ways you can benefit from reusing fruit peels.

SKIN HEALTH

Orange and Lemon peels fight Acne: Say goodbye to acne by using orange and lemon peels. Their extracts have the same abilities as antibiotics, so these can fight pimple-causing bacteria called Propionibacterium acnes (P. acnes). You’ll be less prone to breakouts, without having to use harsh acne medication. Inflammation will be less likely, too. Beyond pimples, orange and lemon peel uses extend to fighting staph infections of the skin.

Orange Peel controls excess oil In Skin: Do you suffer from greasy skin? Use orange peel on the face to control excess oil. It has a flavonoid called nobiletin, which prevents sebum buildup in the pores. This compound also stops pores from getting bigger so that there’s less room for oil. P. acnes will also be less likely to thrive in your pores, proving that orange peel is amazing for acne.

Orange Peel Tones and Strengthens Skin: If you love to get facials at the spa, you might want to learn how to use orange peel on the face. It has compounds that can perk up the skin tone, making it look healthy and young. Those compounds also strengthen the skin, so it’s a great natural remedy for cellulite. Peels from similar fruits like mandarins also have toning abilities.

Mandarin Peel prevents Wrinkles: Like facials, anti-wrinkle creams can get expensive. But this is where the awesome uses of mandarin peel come in. The peel’s high antioxidant content reduces collagenase, the enzyme that breaks down collagen. This maintains the skin’s collagen level and therefore, stops wrinkles from forming. So if you want to keep your skin firm and wrinkle-free, consider adding mandarin peel to your beauty routine.

Orange Peel exfoliates Skin: In powder form, orange peel makes an amazing exfoliator. The coarse texture will scrub away skin cells while giving your skin healthy nutrients. If orange peel powder is too abrasive for you, mix it with a small amount of milk, coconut oil, or honey. This technique can also be used with sun dried lemon, lime, apple, and banana peels.

Banana and Avocado Peels moisturise Skin: Banana and avocado peels double as amazing moisturisers. Simply rub the peels all over your body and face for instant soft skin. This will lock in your skin’s hydration, especially after exfoliating. Another idea is to mix fruit peel powder with your favourite natural lotion.

How to Use: To use fruit peels on your skin, just rub it on with the flesh side facing in. But if you want to make a powder, you’ll have to dry them first. Leave them in the sun until they wrinkle up. Finally, pulverize the peels in a food processor or blender.

HOME LIFE

Citrus-Infused Vinegar: Vinegar is a big part of green cleaning. It’s simple, cheap, and free of nasty chemicals. And thanks to its antibacterial properties, you can keep your home squeaky clean. But what if you can’t stand the smell? Add fruit peels.

Infusing vinegar is one of the most amazing uses for citrus peels. Just drop them into a large container of vinegar and wait a few days. Over time, the sweet and pleasant scent will mask the vinegar. You’ll even get an extra dose of antibacterial action. This can be done with the peels from oranges, lemons, limes, grape-fruits, mandarins, tangerines, and pomelos.

Banana Peel as Plant Food: If you have a green thumb, use banana peels to infuse plant water. This will add extra nutrients and make it a real treat for your plants. To do this, simply cut a banana peel into several pieces. Add them to a bucket of water and let them soak. After a few days, the water will be ready for your plants.

You can also use this technique with avocado and apple peels. However, always make sure that your fruits are organic and free of pesticides. Otherwise, you might run the risk of contaminating your botanicals with chemicals.

Fruit Peels To Freshen Your Home

  • After you eat a fruit, the peels stay fragrant. So why not use them to make your home smell fab? To make potpourri, dry peels in the sun until they shrivel up. Next, place them in a cloth pouch or a bowl.
  • Another technique is to make stove-top potpourri. Start by simmering vegetable oil or apple cider over low heat. Add fruit peels, cinnamon sticks, and vanilla extract. Your home will smell divine.
  • You can also use orange peel as an air freshener. Just cut an orange in half and scoop out the insides. Pour baking soda into the orange ‘bowl’ and place it in your bathroom, kitchen, or bedroom.

Now you know all about the versatile power of fruit peels. They can transform the way you deal with skin health, cleaning and green living to enable us live in a much safer environment! 

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Yours in love – The Renaissance Lady © – Follow my blog with Bloglovin