Cocoa butter is a natural fat that is harvested from the cacao bean, and has been used for centuries past in Mesoamerica, the Caribbean and Africa as a natural healing agent and moisturizer for the skin. Cocoa butter in its natural state is off-white or ivory in colour, has a mild fragrance and a very smooth texture. Today, cocoa butter has become something of a household term, and there are various products ranging from cooking oils to body butters that have cocoa butter as their main ingredient (for good reason too). Thanks to its ultra-hydrating and healthy fat properties, cocoa butter is one of the most popular choices when it comes to body care. The next time you’re looking for a new product to try for your hair or skin, pick something with cocoa butter, because it’s actually pretty great. Here’s why:
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1. It Improves As Well As Heals Your Skin
Cocoa butter is an amazing source of natural antioxidants, which repairs your skin and heals it through (it’s the same natural antioxidants that help in improving heart health and cognitive function found inside real dark chocolate). Since cocoa butter is a saturated fat, it is easily absorbed by the skin and remains on the skin for hours, and especially helps in hydrating dry, cracked skin. It also acts as a barrier on the skin to protect from external forces that can damage skin, like dust, pollution and dirt.
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2. It Fights Signs Of Aging
The high concentration of antioxidant compounds in cocoa butter like oleic acid, palmitic acid and stearic acid help to neutralize free radicals throughout the body, particularly the skin. This helps to reduce the occurrence of oxidative stress on the body, and controls the signs of aging such as wrinkles and fine lines. Moreover, cocoa butter contains compounds called cocoa mass polyphenols, which has been shown to diminish signs of aging, as well as help in regenerating collagen, improve skin elasticity and keep skin thoroughly hydrated. Cocoa butter has also helps to improve the appearance of scars and marks all over the body
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3. It Soothes Skin Rashes, Burns And Infections
The cocoa mass polyphenol in the cocoa butter is an important compound in healing and soothing skin infections like eczema, psoriasis and dermatitis. Cocoa butter is also a mild enough to not irritate or disturb the skin, and is more effective when used with aloe vera or tea tree oil. Using pure, unadulterated cocoa butter is important, however, because additives like alcohol or fragrances tend to inflame the skin, especially for rashes or skin infections.
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4. It Bring Lips Back To Life
Cocoa butter is an emollient, which means that it keeps a layer of hydration on your lips to protect from external factors like extreme temperatures and sun damage. You can mix cocoa butter with essential oils such as orange, vanilla or peppermint to make a homemade lip balm that is healthy, healing and flavourful.
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5. It Helps Boost Your Immune System
The cocoa mass polyphenol in cocoa butter, while already beneficial, also plays a large part in boosting our immune system. Initial research has showed that the polyphenol suppresses T-cell activity, which results in the decrease of inflammation and DNA mutations that are responsible for cardiovascular diseases, cancer and autoimmune diseases. Cocoa butter has also shown to regulate and balance hormones.
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6. It Improves Your Hair Quality
Cocoa butter is a great moisturizer for your hair, promoting healthy hair follicle beds and less dandruff on your scalp. This keeps your scalp healthy and reduces hair loss, while also generally strengthening the quality of your hair and improving its texture and appearance.
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7. It Can Make You Feel Happier
Cocoa butter in its pure form is edible, and smells and tastes a bit like chocolate. The polyphenol in the cocoa butter mean that it is helpful when topically used on your skin as well as promoting internal health when eaten. In fact, the cocoa butter inside chocolate is responsible for a rise in endorphin and serotonin levels that are known to elevate your mood. Cocoa also contains phenylethylamine which acts as a stimulant, and can result in heightened mental alertness and greater stamina.