Body Care Must-Have: Body Butters

   My favourite body moisturising product is body butters.  I love how they keep my skin moisturised and smooth, and get absorbed faster than oils. They also have a lovely consistency, nice smells, and are really pleasant to use. Body butters even have a couple of unusual uses, which I will also share with you.

   The traditional body butter recipe consists of only oils and butters. A huge advantage of this is that these do not need any preservatives. This makes body butters very skin-friendly (when you think about the fact that a lot of cosmetic ingredients end up in our blood stream -- and body moisturiser is something one uses a lot of).
   There are however products that are called body butters but have deviated from the original recipe. They contain water, preservatives and other ingredients, which technically makes them creams rather than butters. These products can be lighter and very moisturising, but the consistency is thinner and they get used up quicker. Also chances are that you get a bunch of preservatives and perfumes (especially if the product is not certified organic), which I would strongly advise to avoid.

   A good traditional body butter is made up of plant-based ingredients, no petroleum or its derivatives. I like the Alverde (DM) and Alterra (Rossmann) body butters, they are rich yet get absorbed quite easily by the skin, leaving no oily residue. The skin is moisturised and smooth, and I don't get dry skin in spite of hot showers and wintry temperatures if I use the body butter once a week. Also, they have pleasant but light scents. I have a very picky sense of smell and can't stand heavy, chemical scents. They are certified natural, but very affordable. The texture is very creamy. Many other butters have an almost solid texture that melts on the skin, like some of the butters from Lush.

  The best time to use a body butter is straight after a shower. Not only are you sealing in the moisture, but the body butter is absorbed better by the skin. In the winter a good body butter will be all you need to keep your skin smooth, supple and soft. I use my body butters in the summer too, however if you live in a hot climate and your skin isn't dry they might be an overkill. But then again it depends on the particular butter -- some are heavier than others.

   Body butters are very versatile. They can be used as a hand or foot cream. If you have a body butter that is free of perfume or anything irritating (so, only oils and butters), it can also work as a rich under-eye moisturiser for the night. Or even for dry patches your face, if there are no ingredients that block your pores. Of course you can protect your lips with body butters as well. A very very small quantity of body butter spread between the palms can be used to smooth flyaways on dry or frizzy hair, and to protect the hair ends.
    However, the most innovative use for body butter is as a rich hair mask. Apply on moist hair, cover with a shower cap, and wash off after at least 20 minutes. Whether this will work for you depends on the particular oils and butters in the body butter and how these work with your hair, so it is a matter of trial and error. Do try it out! This trick became so popular among bloggers that Alverde released a body butter especially meant for hair.
   So you see that a tub of your favourite body butter is a great thing to have in your car or to take on your travels. It's just so versatile!

   Do you like body butters? If so, which is your favourite one?

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