Why You Need To Add Cocoa Butter To Your Skin Regime
Cocoa butter comes from the cocoa bean—that’s right, the same bean that gives us chocolate! That right there was enough to get me interested in incorporating cocoa butter into my beauty regime. Aside from its wonderful chocolaty smell and its relation to my favourite food group (in my life, chocolate is its own food group), cocoa butter can do absolute wonders for your skin!
Cocoa butter is full of antioxidants, which fight harmful free radicals. Free radicals are small molecules that are formed through exposure to environmental pollutants. When they come into contact with your skin, they destroy the cells and damage the overall appearance of your skin, leading to wrinkles. This is why cocoa butter makes such an amazing anti-wrinkle, anti-aging agent that you should apply daily, especially to wrinkle prone areas like around the eyes and mouth. Due to its antioxidant properties, cocoa butter is also said to reduce the visibility of scars and stretch marks. Many pregnant women have attributed the regular application of cocoa butter during pregnancy with keeping their tummies stretch-mark free and their skin-tone even. Cocoa butter is also used to get rid of scarring—from acne or otherwise.
Cocoa butter is also high in fatty acids (maybe that’s why we have to eat chocolate in such moderation). Though fatty acids aren’t great to have in our diet, their presence in cocoa butter is what allows it to deeply penetrate our skin. This deep penetration allows it to hydrate from within, making it a great moisturizer—particularly for people who suffer from problems such as eczema, psoriasis, dermatitis, and other rashes or irritations that are caused by extreme dry skin. In fact, cocoa butter is so high in fatty acids that it’s not recommended for people who have acne-prone skin, as it could clog pores. So if you’re acne-prone, use sparingly.
With so many benefits to your skin, it’s no wonder that many lotions and moisturizers on the market now list cocoa butter among their ingredients. However, these cosmetic products typically use refined cocoa butter, which in addition to stripping the butter of its color and odor also strips it of some of its good, healing qualities. So when you go shopping, be sure to look for products which include unrefined cocoa butter, or, failing that, go straight to the source and pick yourself up some unrefined cocoa butter!