Shea butter is a fat extracted from the nut of the African shea tree (Vitellaria paradoxa). It is usually yellow in color when raw, with Unrefined, refined, and Ultra-Refined Shea butter being ivory or white in color.  Shea butter is a triglyceride (fat) derived mainly from stearic acid and oleic acid. It is widely used in cosmetics as a moisturizer, salve or lotion. Shea butter is edible and is used in food preparation in Africa. Occasionally, the chocolate industry uses shea butter mixed with other oils as a substitute for cocoa butter, although the taste is noticeably different.