Shea Butter and Cannabis | FREE Body Butter Recipe

Shea Butter combined with Cannabis will give you a body butter to nourish, soothe, and moisturise your skin. Easy-to-follow FREE recipe.

Body butter is a type of moisturising cream that is thicker and richer than typical lotions. Made from a blend of nourishing ingredients, including fats and oils, it is designed to hydrate and protect the skin. Shea Butter, a key component in many cosmetic formulations, is renowned for its moisturising properties. Shea butter comes from the nuts of the Shea tree and is rich in vitamins and fatty acids, making it great for nourishing the skin.

Many people are interested in natural and holistic health, so using CBD in skincare products is becoming more popular. CBD can come from hemp or marijuana that you grow yourself. Whichever the source, it is valued for its soothing properties that complement the moisturising effects of Shea Butter. Infused body butter is great for targeted treatment on areas like the knees, or for overall coverage if desired.

What Is A Body Butter?

Body butter is a thick moisturiser that provides intense hydration, more so than lotions and creams. My skin benefits greatly from its rich texture, particularly during harsh weather conditions when it requires extra care.

Shea Butter and Cannabis Body Butter for Hands
Shea Butter and Cannabis Body Butter for Hands

Ingredient Focus

In this section, I’ll cover the specific ingredients I use. These ingredients are selected for their ability to rejuvenate, moisturise, and soothe the skin.

Shea Butter Benefits

Primarily produced in sub-Saharan Africa, Shea trees grow naturally rather than being cultivated. The “Shea belt” extends right across from West to East Africa. The trees take between 20 and 50 years to mature, and will produce Shea nuts for up to 200 years. East African Shea tends to be softer than West African Shea due to differences in fatty acid content and consistency.

Shea Butter is known as “women’s gold” because women benefit the most from the difficult process of making the butter. It is extracted from the nuts of the Shea tree by crushing the nuts to a paste. This paste is quite toxic as it contains alkaloids, so it is washed in water until the water runs clear. Then the butter is safe to use.

The INCI is Butyrospermum Parkii Butter, and it’s extracted from the nuts of theSheaa tree. It is well known for its moisturizing properties and is high in fatty acids and vitamins A and E, which help keep the skin flexible and soft. 

Ordinarily, I prefer raw and unrefined products, but not in this case. The raw butter is quite strongly smelling and is likely to be rancid in just a few weeks. The gentle refining process creates a lighter coloured butter with a subtle aroma, while retaining its valuable phytosterols that help skin cells regenerate faster. This leads to fresher, brighter, younger looking skin. 

It’s also rich in tocophererols which are antioxidants. Around 66% of these are Alpha-Tocopherols, which have the highest level of antioxidant activity. They help delay the signs of ageing and reduce inflammation. Kept in the right conditions, the butter will have a shelf life of a couple of years.

When used in cosmetic formulations, it melts at body temperature and offers deep moisturisation, keeping your skin hydrated for several hours. This also forms a protective barrier for your skin.

Apricot Kernel Oil for Sensitive Skin

Apricot Kernel oil is a popular ingredient in body care products due to its moisturising and nurturing properties. When incorporated into a whipped body butter formulation, it adds a luxurious touch to the product. This is because Apricot Kernel Oil is not a greasy feeling oil. It sinks into the skin quickly and this will make the Shea Butter feel less greasy and more luxurious.

There are several important Essential Fatty Acids (EFA) in Apricot Kernel Oil. The main one is Omega-9, also known as Oleic Acid. This makes up over half of the content. This makes your skin very soft and smooth and protects the skin’s barrier function. 

The next main EFA is Linoleic Acid, also known as Omega-6. This has antioxidant, antibacterial, antimicrobial, and antifungal properties and equally helps to protect the skin’s barrier function.

There is a small percentage of Palmitic Acid and Stearic Acid, which both replenish the lipid structure of your skin. The key factor for this oil is that it is heat stable. When I make the cannabis infusion, the oil is heated, so it is important that heat does not damage the integrity of the oil. You can read more about Apricot Kernel oil in this blog post.

Vitamin E as an Antioxidant

I consider this to be a hero ingredient due to its antioxidant properties. It will help to slow down oxidation of the finished butter, as well as protect your skin from environmental damage. It plays an important role in skin repair and conditioning.

Note that Vitamin E is NOT a preservative. You will find many people who do not fully understand the ingredients they are using. As this water does not contain any water, it does not need a preservative.

Essential Oils for Terpene Boosting

Carefully selected essential oils add more than just fragrance to your product. They can have many benefits such as anti-inflammatory and soothing effects. If you check out the terpene profiles of different ones, you can either boost or support the terpene profile of the cannabis you infused.

In this formulation, I will use Spearmint essential oil as it has a very cooling aroma that is a little sweeter than peppermint. It contains several terpenes such as Carvone which is a great ant-inflammatory agent, so it will help reduce inflammation throughout my body. It also contains 1,8-Cineole which is an excellent analgesic. This will ease minor aches and muscular pains as I rub the infused butter in. These terpenes will nicely complement the cannabis strain used. You can learn more from this blog post How to Use Spearmint Essential Oil with Cannabis.

Making The Cannabis Infusion

The melting point of Shea Butter is 47 ℃ (116℃) which is above skin temperature, but extended heating at high levels will destroy the desirable attributes of the butter. Therefore, it is not a butter that can be cannabis-infused. This is why I have chosen the Apricot Kernel Oil for its heat stability as well as the amazing texture and beneficial attributes.

POT by NOIDS Herbal Decarboxylator
POT by NOIDS Herbal Decarboxylator

Using the POT by NOIDS

This is simply the best piece of equipment for getting the maximum out of your cannabis. Decide whether you want a CBD body butter or a THC one instead.

  • Place your dried cannabis in the glass jar (1 gram would be sufficient, but you can add more if you want it stronger). Put the lid on and set the machine to decarboxylate either for CBD, or for THC. Then leave it alone to do its work.

  • When it has finished, add 100g of Apricot Kernel oil and ensure all the decarbed bud is covered. Put the lid back on and twist the machine to the setting for either CBD oil diffusion or for THC oil diffusion. Once again, leave the machine alone to work its magic.

  • When it has finished, take the glass jar out – be careful if it is still hot. You can leave it cool down as this will not affect the infusion.

  • Put the strainer lid on and get a clean bottle or jar ready to collect the oil.

  • Holding the strainer lid on VERY tight, tip the jar upside down so the oil pours into your container. Then press the strainer to squeeze out the remaining oil. The leftover weed can be put into capsules for a light buzz or added to a smoothie.

You can also check out this Review Of The POT by NOIDS Herbal Infuser blog post.


  • 39g Shea Butter
  • 59g Cannabis-Infused Apricot Kernel oil
  • 1g Vitamin E
  • 1g Essential oil of your choice

100g Total


  • Pour a few inches of boiling tap water into a saucepan – this will be the base of your double boiler (Bain Marie).

  • Weigh out the Shea and cannabis-infused Apricot Kernel oil into a heat-safe glass jug or a stainless steel bowl. This container needs to be big enough that you can get an electric cake beater in later.

  • Let it all heat through until the Shea has melted. The double boiler protects the Shea from overheating or scorching.

  • Let this stay on a low heat with the water barely moving for about 20 minutes. The Shea Butter will already look melted quite quickly, but extending this gentle heat will stop the finished butter from going grainy when it cools down.

  • Remove the container from the heat, dry the base and sides and place it into your freezer for about 20 minutes.

  • Check on the contents – you want a solid “crust” to the mix, like a balm, but it is still soft underneath (not liquid, though). 

  • Using the electric beaters (either one or two), start whipping the frozen mixture. It will start to soften from the room temperature and the friction of the beaters. After a few minutes it will be soft, so scrape off the beaters and add the Vitamin E and essential oils. Stir them through thoroughly, then put the mix back into the freezer for another five minutes.

  • Back out of the freezer and use the beaters again. You should now see a huge difference in texture. It will look a little lighter because of the air mixed in, but it will also be smoother and much less dense.

  • Cover it up and leave it to settle overnight – not somewhere hot!

  • Next day, check the consistency. You can always whip it up again if needed, but the key thing to note is the texture. If it is still too hard (you probably live in a colder climate), then add a little Apricot Kernel oil. If it is a little too soft or is collapsing into a puddle, melt a little more Shea Butter and whip it in with the beaters. 

  • In my experience, it will be just right as it is. Even though I live in a hot country, I have a lower indoor temperature because we use blinds to keep the sun out.

  • When you are happy with the butter, jar it up. You’ll have noticed that there is no preservative because there is no need. No water equals no preservative. Label and date the jar, and if you did make any tweaks, make a note of what you did for next time. It should be good for at least a year.

When it comes to using it, remember that a small amount of this luxurious body butter goes a long way! It’s great for the face, body, knees, elbows, hands and feet!

If you want to know more about the containers, scales and equipment I use, read this blog Tools & Equipment for Making DIY Skincare Products at Home.


Incorporating Shea Butter and cannabis into cosmetic formulations offers a powerful combination of intense hydration and soothing properties. Shea Butter, with its rich content of fatty acids and vitamins, deeply nourishes the skin, while cannabis, particularly CBD, provides additional calming benefits. This blend not only enhances skin moisture and protection but also supports holistic wellness. By understanding the benefits of each ingredient and following careful preparation methods, you can create a luxurious, effective product that addresses a variety of skin and recreational needs.


How does CBD body butter differ from regular lotion?

A regular lotion contains a lot of water and that still makes a great product. However, this formulation is much richer and more luxurious than even a heavy cream. If you want to make a lotion, check out this blog Make Cannabis Lotion at Home

Can I use hemp seed oil in my whipped shea butter recipe?

Not in this formulation, sorry. The Apricot Kernel oil is heat tolerant whereas hemp oil is damaged by the infusion heat. It’s also worth noting that while hemp is a beneficial oil, it does not contain CBD or THC.

What essential oils can I add to this amazing recipe?

If you are going to use it for just your feet, for example, Tea Tree or Plai essential oils would be a wonderful choice. However, if you are using it for full body coverage, a much lighter oil like Petitgrain would be much nicer.

Is it better to make this in small batches?

Yes, I recommend making it in small batches. With a big change of temperature in your house, it is possible that it could melt down or seize up. Unless you are making a big batch for a lot of family and friends (lucky them!) wait until you see just how far a small amount goes.

glass laboratory flask with cannabis leaves

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