Is there a natural hair diva out there that has not yet heard of the wonders of shea butter for dry natural hair? I doubt it. But what many are not up on yet is the rich, emollient properties available in mango butter.
Mango butter is a light, almost sweet smelling soft butter extracted from the kernels of the mango seed. Since it is not processed from the fruit, you don’t have to worry about smelling like a mango! For women that find the smell of Shea butter distasteful, mango butter will be a welcome change.
Mangoes are highly nutritious, offering Vitamins A, C and E which are potent antioxidants. Just 1 cup of fresh mango provides 80% of the recommended daily vitamin C intake and 25% of vitamin A.
Mango butter contains natural emollient qualities that help keep the skin moisturized, therefore when applied to the scalp it restores and maintains the moisture and promotes cell regeneration. This all contributes to a healthy scalp that in turn results in healthy hair growth.
Mango butter possesses qualities very similar to cocoa butter and Shea butter in its consistency and benefits for natural hair, however mango butter contains higher levels of linolenic acid, making it a more intense moisturizer. Natural hair that lacks moisture lacks pliability and strength, making your hair prone to breakage and split ends. Mango butter makes your dry natural hair flexible and soft which greatly reduces breakage.
What Does Mango Butter Look Like?
The appearance of mango butter is slightly different from Shea or cocoa butter as well. Mango butter is a relatively hard butter. Though it melts well on contact with warm skin and absorbs easily, it’s best used in combination with other oils and butters.
An interesting historical fact: mango butter has a long history of being used by residents of the rainforests to keep their skin line and wrinkle free, while offering natural U.V. protection from the sun. It can do the same for you!
Mango Butter Hair Moisturizers
Here are some great mango/shea butter recipes you can whip up in your own kitchen to moisturize and lubricate your hair and scalp.
#1 Mango Shea Butter Pre-Shampoo Treatment
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons raw honey
- 2 tablespoons raw Shea butter
- 1 tablespoon mango butter
Instructions: Add water to a double boiler and heat until it reaches boiling point. Add Shea butter, olive oil, mango butter, and honey. Stir continuously with metal spoon until melted and completely mixed. Remove pot from heat and allow mixture to cool. Apply mixture to hair and scalp concentrating on the ends of your hair. Cover head with a plastic shower cap and leave mixture on for 45-60 minutes. Rinse out thoroughly, then shampoo and condition as usual.
#2 Hair Growth Mango Shea Whip
- 1/3 cup mango butter
- 2/3 cup Shea butter
- 2 tsps. apricot kernal oil
- 1 tsp coconut oil
- 1 tsp. Vitamin E oil
- 4 drops rosemary essential oil
- 8 drops cedarwood essential oil
Instructions: Place butters in bowl, then sit that bowl in a pot of hot water (not boiling) for about 5 minutes to soften. Remove bowl from pot and add remaining ingredients. Using electric mixer, blend ingredients together until well blended and get the consistency of whipped cream. Spoon into a small jar or lidded storage container.
#3 Mango, Shea and Cocoa Butter Hair and Body Butter
This recipe makes approximately 1 cup (8 oz.) of product. You need a food scale (an example of the type I use is below) to accurately weigh the butters you’ll be adding.
- 2 oz cocoa butter (by weight)
- 2 oz natural Shea butter (by weight)
- 2 oz mango butter (by weight)
- 1 teaspoon wheat germ oil
- 1 Tablespoon apricot kernel oil
- 3-5 teaspoons Aloe Vera gel or juice
- Mango or Sweet Orange fragrance oil (or any fragrance oil of your choice)
- 1/4 teaspoon Vitamin E oil (optional, but recommended as a preservative)
Instructions: Add all the butter ingredients to a pan or double boiler on low until all the ingredients have liquefied. Continue to heat on low for another 20 minutes (do not boil). The continued heating will help prevent the butters from becoming grainy once solid. Add additional oils and let set to cool for a few hours. Before the mixture sets, stir or even whip with mixer to better blend. Spoon into two 4 oz containers with lids and label.
Note: This is a firmer textured body butter. If you prefer a softer more frosting textured butter, the consistency can be adjusted by decreasing the amount of cocoa butter or by adding a little more Aloe Vera gel.
The great thing is that you don’t need a lot to get great results, so your DIY whip should last a good long time. Mango butter also provides greater hold and definition than Shea butter, which is an additional benefit if you enjoy wearing your hair in twist-outs, braid-outs or curly fros.
About the Author (Author Profile)Blogger, writer, relationships/dating expert, fitness trainer and natural hair enthusiast since 1997. Sharing information from grandmomma, books and scientific journals, as well as my personal discoveries and experiences with natural hair as we journey from relaxers, flat irons and weaves together.
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