The word “cocoa” makes you think of chocolate right!?! While it’s related to the chocolate we eat, cocoa butter is totally a different product! All of which derived from the same source however. Although cocoa butter is sometimes used as a food product, it’s more often used as a topical product! Cocoa butter is an amazing moisturizer, as it is loaded with fatty acids and is rich in antioxidants!
The high level of antioxidants in cocoa butter make it helpful in fighting off free-radical damage to the skin. Free radicals can cause skin aging, dark patches, and dull skin. Protecting your skin from free-radical damage is crucial to keep it healthy and youthful-looking. Cocoa butter is also an anti-inflammatory, a great ingredient to pamper your skin with! Especially after a long day outdoors.
Cocoa butter reduces stretch marks and scars: now I can’t speak for everyone who uses cocoa butter for stretch marks, but many women claim that the regular use of cocoa butter kept stretch marks at bay both during and after pregnancy. And I can definitely testify to that. Although just like every product ingredients, the quality of the ingredients and how the product is made matters significantly.
I’ve used The Avocado Cocoa Hand & Body Butter when I was expecting my son, and yes…. no stretch marks!!! Even though I wasn’t consistent with it or always remembered to use it, I still end up with great results. However, this may not be the case for everyone as consistency will be key! And as I believe in ingredients synergy, other ingredients formulated in the final product, definitely enhance the effects of the cocoa butter. Similarly, the ingredient is reputed to help heal scars. However the scientific research is limited and isn’t yet very compelling of these results. So it boils down to a consumer’s base results and reporting.
Additionally, cocoa butter is high in fatty acids and hydrates the skin deeply, making it a wonderful addition not only to body moisturizers but lip balms. Check out our Replenishing Cocoa Coconut Vegan Lip Balm. Cocoa butter also heals sensitive skin. It contains high concentration of polyphenols which plays a major role in easing dermatitis and rashes. Therefore, helps with skin irritations such as eczema, as has been shown by some research. Some of these effects may still need to be confirmed by future studies. In the meantime you can be the judge of your results as some of you have reported to me, especially of its effects for eczema. So, don’t forget to post your testimonials!!! 😊😉
Because of cocoa butter’s high fat content, it has a richer, denser feel than many other butters. It’s often compared to Shea butter which is also high in fatty acids, although it doesn’t smell as sweet as cocoa butter. They both improve skin elasticity and moisture retention. Although, Unlike cocoa butter, Shea butter contains vitamins that are thought to help repair skin damage and speed healing. On the other hand most find cocoa butter to have better effects on smoothing scars and stretch marks hence it’s high polyphenols content mentioned above. Still, some find cocoa butter to have the same skin healing benefits as Shea butter and more. Additionally cocoa butter has a longer shelf life than Shea butter. So it becomes a matter of preference and purpose.
As always, all of the above-mentioned skin care benefits of cocoa butter naturally come with the unrefined version. Raw unrefined cocoa butter has a very strong chocolate aroma. If you like that ‘chocolaty’ smell then you are on for a treat, but if you don’t, you can opt for the refined version. However, you’ll lose out on all the great benefits of the unrefined version.
Resources for this information
- Everything You Need to Know About Cocoa Butter. Medically reviewed by Debra Rose Wilson, PhD, MSN, RN, IBCLC, AHN_BC, CHT Written by Stephanie Watson — Updated on March 30, 2017. https://www.healthline.com/health/beauty-skin-care/cocoa-butter-benefits
- Topical management of striae distensae (stretch marks): prevention and therapy of striae rubrae and albae. BBC S. Ud‐Din, D. McGeorge, and A. Bayat. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5057295/
- Cocoa Bioactive Compounds: Significance and Potential for the Maintenance of Skin Health. https://www.mdpi.com/2072-6643/6/8/3202/htm
- What are the benefits of cocoa butter? Medically reviewed by Cynthia Cobb, DNP, APRN — Written by Aaron Kandola on May 21, 2019. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/325227