Shea Butter for Lips: Benefits & Recipes for Healthy Lips

Shea Butter for Lips: Benefits & Recipes for Healthy Lips
Shea Butter for Lips: Benefits & Recipes for Healthy Lips

Shea butter has some amazing health benefits. And because of this, it is a very popular ingredient in many beauty products, especially skincare and lip products.

Now, in this article, we will focus on the many benefits of using shea butter on your lips and how to incorporate it into your beauty regime for lighter, pinker and healthier lips.

Benefits of Shea Butter for Lips

Shea Butter is the fat extracted from the shea tree nuts. And recently it has been popularized because of its use in many cosmetics.

Shea butter is widely used in creams, lotions, and lip products, this is due to its ability to improve the skin and lips. Since shea butter can penetrate the skin easily to keep its cells healthy, it is an excellent moisturizer, skin smoother, and can reduce moisture loss.

Due to its hydrating properties shea butter also has a wide array of benefits for the lips as well, all of which are listed below.

1- Soften and Smooths Lips

Shea butter is typically used for its moisturizing effects. It is an emollient, so it hydrates your lips for a short period of time and with continued use, it helps soften lips over time. 

When you apply shea butter, the oils are rapidly absorbed into the lips. They help to restore lipids rapidly creating moisture.

Having soft, smooth lips helps to create a blank canvas for the easy application of lip color.

Related Article – How to use Honey to Make Dark Lips Lighter & Pinker

2- Heals Dried Cracked Lips

If you have dry cracked lips, shea butter will help to heal these cracks and to regenerate new lip tissue. A study has found that Shea is linked to tissue remodeling that’s crucial for treating cracks in the lips that may bleed.

Its protective fatty acids and antioxidant compounds can keep away dry lips and may also help shield wounds from environmental irritants during the healing process.

Related Article – How Often to Use a Lip Scrub & Tips How to use Lip Scrubs

3- Helps with the removal of Discoloration on Lips

Shea butter is a great natural alternative to preventing and removing discoloration caused by irritants or inflammation. Shea Butter has anti-inflammatory properties that treat and soothes many disorders of the lips that cause hyperpigmentation or discoloration of the lips.

Another key element for the creation of hyperpigmentation is a lack of hydration. And shea butter is great for keeping and adding moisture to the lips.

Shea butter also has fatty acids and vitamin F which helps protect damaged skin by forming a protective layer while hydrating underneath so it can heal and regain its natural color.

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4- Soothe Irritated Lips

Shea Butter has anti-inflammatory properties that can help soothe any irritation on the lips.

When applied to the skin, shea triggers cytokines and other inflammatory cells to slow their production. This may help minimize irritation caused by environmental factors, such as dry or cold, weather which can have a negative effect on the lips

Shea Butter has vitamin A which prevents dryness in the first place and is soothing to sore lips. Vitamin E lubricates the lips and is also soothing. Vitamin F is a moisture sealer. Vitamin K stops and prevents bleeding caused by chapped lips. 

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5- Slows down aging of the lips

Shea butter has anti-aging properties to slow down the signs of aging on your lips. As you age your lips lose volume or plumpness. It also starts to develop fine lines.

Related Article – How to Use Turmeric to make Dark Lips Lighter & Pinker

How Shea Butter minimizes the signs of aging

*Shea butter helps to fight off the appearance of fine lines and results in plumper lips. This is because it contains triterpenes. These naturally occurring chemical compounds are thought to deactivate collagen fiber destruction.

*Shea butter is an antioxidant since it has significant levels of vitamins A and E. Antioxidants are important anti-aging agents. They protect your skin cells from free radicals that can lead to premature aging and dull-looking skin.

*The Vitamin E in shea butter helps protect skin from free radicals to stop your skin from looking dull.

Related Article – DIY Coconut Oil to Lighten Dark Lips: Recipes that Work

6- Protects from sun damage

Your lips are just as susceptible to the sun’s radiation as the rest of your body. The best thing you can do for your lips is to use a moisturizing SPF lip balm, reapplied around every 2 hours. 

Shea butter can’t be used by itself as an effective sunscreen but you can layer it over your favorite SPF lip balm for an additional barrier to the sun’s rays.

Related Article – Castor Oil for Lips: Benefits & How to Use for Pink lips

7- Safe to use

Despite being a tree nut, shea butter is very low in proteins that can trigger allergies. This means it is safe to use by almost everyone. Plus it contains no harmful chemicals that may harm our bodies.

Related Article – Sunflower Seed Oil for Lips: Benefits, Recipes & How to Use

8- Won’t make your lips look oily

Shea butter contains high levels of linoleic acid and oleic acid. These two acids balance each other out. This makes shea butter easy to absorb into the lips and won’t make lips look oily- just hydrated

Related Article – How to Use Almond Oil for Lips: Benefits, Cons & Recipes

9- May have anti-fungal & anti-bacterial properties

Shea Butter may help in treating fungal and bacterial infections that may affect the lips. A 2012 study suggests that oral doses of shea bark extract can lead to decreased antimicrobial activity in animals.

Shea tree products have been established as powerful ingredients to fight skin infections caused by fungi. However, more research is needed, to indicate possible benefits in humans.

Related Article – Using Niacinamide For Dark Lips – What You Need to Know

Can you use Shea Butter for Chapped Lips

Since shea butter has healing properties, it is perfect to use on dry chapped lips. When your lips become chapped, they may appear flaky, dry, and may even bleed.

To remedy chapped lips- apply shea butter twice daily directly on the lips with a clean finger or a lip brush.

Lips usually get dry during the winter season but dry air can also cause lips to become chapped. So it is important to keep lips moisturized and remember to apply shea butter and some SPF lip balm.

Click Here to view our recommendation for Pure Unrefined Shea Butter on Amazon- Okay Smooth

Can Shea Butter Lighten Dark Lips

Shea butter is an effective and natural remedy to lighten dark lips.

Shea butter is an antioxidant that is also known to moisturize lips and keep them healthy. Properly moisturized lips have a more vibrant color and a plumper look.

Plus shea butter has vitamins A, E, and F, antioxidant vitamins that promote circulation and healthy skin cell growth. And triglycerides, the fatty part of the shea nut that nourishes and conditions your skin.

More research is needed to properly analyze the benefits of shea butter on lightening dark lips.

Tips to lighten Dark Lips Using Shea Butter

  • Exfoliate lips with a lip scrub.  Try making your own lip scrub by mixing sugar, honey, and olive oil and rubbing it gently over your lips.
  • Rinse the scrub away and pat dry.
  • Alternatively, apply a small amount of shea butter to trap the water used to cleanse between your lips and the shea butter.
  • Use a dry, soft-bristled toothbrush to buff away the dry skin. Apply light pressure to the toothbrush and work the bristles in a circular motion.
  • Wipe your lips and pat them dry.
  • Reapply a layer of a moisturizing lip balm in which shea butter is a key ingredient.
  • Or make your own natural lip balm using shea butter and other ingredients.
  • Additionally, if you plan on using other lip products, make sure to use the shea butter first and allow it to sit on the lips for a few minutes before applying other products.

Can you leave Shea Butter on Overnight

Shea Butter is very safe to be used on the lips overnight. Just Apply the shea butter to the lips in a thin layer just before you go to sleep.

You can also use shea butter during the day along with a lip balm that has SPF. Keep reapplying it throughout the day as needed.

On average the shea butter should be applied for at least six to eight times throughout the day. Every couple of hours is a good idea, and make sure to apply first thing in the morning.

Recipes to Use Shea Butter for Lips


While it is much quicker to grab a tube of lip balm containing shea butter, a small container is usually very expensive.

So here are some options of easy and affordable recipes for a DIY lip balm made from shea butter and other ingredients.

DIY Recipe Shea Butter Lip Balm with Almond Oil


  • 1/4 cup Almond oil
  • 1/4 cup Shea butter
  • 1/4 cup beeswax
  • 10 drops of essential oil


  1. Melt the beeswax in the microwave or over the stove in a double boiler. Wait until it is completely melted.
  1. Next, add the shea butter and almond oil. Lastly, add the essential oils. Mix well.
  1. Use a spoon to test the texture of the mixture. Coat the spoon, and allow it to dry on the spoon. Test the texture if it suits your liking. Use more beeswax to make the balm firmer or use the almond oil for a silkier texture.
  1. While it is still warm, pour the mixture into a metal container or into empty lip balm tubes using a ziplock bag to create a piping bag.
  1. Let the lip balm rest until it sets up.

Note this recipe makes a large amount of lip balm about 20 -25 small lip balm tubes. But you can adjust the recipe to suit your needs.

DIY Recipe Shea butter Lip Balm with Olive Oil


  • 2 tbsp. shea butter
  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp. mica powder a colorant (optiona)
  • 8 drops orange essential oil


  1. Melt the shea butter in the microwave or over the stove in a double broiler. Wait until it is completely melted.
  2. Next, add in the olive oil and (the mica powder if you want some color), and essential oil. Mix well.
  3. While it is still warm, pour the lip balm into empty lip balm tubes using a ziplock bag to create a pipette.
  4. Let the lip balm rest until it sets up.

What is the Purpose of Shea Butter in Lip Balm

Shea butter has several purposes in lip balm. Including:

  • Softens the lips: Because shea butter is an emollient, it hydrates your lips short term and helps soften them over time.
  • Shea butter lip balm is most commonly used to help heal and moisturize sunburned, dry, or cracking lips.
  • Shea butter is an incredible emollient, which means that it has the ability to form a barrier on the lips and help retain moisture

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