There are three methods to extract the butter from the kernel contained in the shea fruit:

  • the traditional method: the kernels are crushed, roasted, kneaded and then heated in a pot of boiling water. Artisanal shea butter is produced. Heat can affect its quality to some extent.
  • Extraction by cold pressing: the kernels are simply crushed in a press at a temperature below 80°C. This mechanical method does not make it possible to extract all the butter found in the nut. However, it is the method that results in the best quality, since the active ingredients of shea butter are preserved. SOPHIM now offers cold-pressed refined Shea Butter.
  • Extraction by solvent: the kernels are crushed and then a solvent, hexane, is used. The butter remaining in kernels dissolves in hexane. Hexane is then allowed to evaporate, and the shea butter is recovered. This method is the most profitable, but the shea butter obtained is of inferior quality.

After extraction, raw shea butter is obtained which is yellow-green in colour, and with a marked smell. This raw shea butter is then refined, especially for use in cosmetics, which consists of three stages:

#1 | neutralisation, which removes fatty acids that can oxidise.
#2 | deodorisation, which removes the characteristic smell of shea.
#3 | fading, which makes it possible to obtain a white butter.


SOPHIM widens its portfolio of butters and offers the following butters in addition:

  • Cosmetic almond butter

    • Obtained from sweet almond oil, this rich and velvety butter is recommended for the care of dry skin and hair. Rich in natural antioxidants and phytosterols, it brings a nourishing and restructuring action to your care, and prevents the signs of aging. It blends remarkably well in your formulas of creams, balms, sticks, etc. It is perfect especially for the gourmet treatments.
  • Cosmetic argan butter
    • Obtained from argan oil, from the argan tree which is endemic to Morocco. Argan butter is the ideal ally for enhanced moisturisation, to deeply nourish the skin and strengthen its elasticity.
  • Cosmetic cocoa butter
    • Cocoa butter is obtained from cocoa beans, which are contained in pods growing on cacao trees. Antioxidant, it fights the effects of time by giving back elasticity to the skin. Its fatty acids nourish, protect and soften skin and hair.
  • Cosmetic mango butter
    • Originally from India, the mango tree produces a very popular fruit rich in vitamin C. Ideal for dry, mature skin with dry and devitalised tendency, mango butter maintains moisturisation, prevents skin aging and is used in soothing care when the skin has been ravaged by both the sun and the cold. Its pleasant texture allows it to be used much in hair care where it also demonstrates all its benefits: it repairs and nourishes the hair, while preventing the formation of split ends.
  • Cosmetic peach butter
    • It is obtained from peach oil, a popular fruit because it contains many vitamins. It has nourishing, softening, firming and emollient properties

Shea is particularly recommended for the driest skin, which it will protect and nourish deeply. In addition to its moisturising action, shea soothes the skin thanks to its calming and relaxing qualities. Rich in vitamins A, D, E and F, shea has many restorative properties as it softens, smoothens and moisturises the skin in depth. Excellent for skin care, it is beneficial for the elasticity, the hydration and the protection of the skin.

In case of pregnancy, applied on the affected areas (chest, hips, thighs, etc.), the shea will have a preventive action against stretch marks.
In winter, it can treat dry and dehydrated skin, it can be used as repairing lip balm. Its ultra-nourishing properties make it an excellent ally for dry hands, healing and moisturising them intensely. It is also an essential ingredient of natural hair care formulations: it nourishes the hair intensely and protects it from multiple aggressions.