Saturday, 11 December 2010

FEED ME SOME CHOCOLATE

I guess it is a bit early to eat some chocolate BUT what if you have waited for what seemed eternity?!?!? After a long wait in between nagging phone calls, text messages and even threats to purchase other chocolates, I finally received a package this morning with some bars freshly made as recent as 1st December 2010.
Ooohhh, the rich scent of Ghanaian chocolates just erased all that "anger".


I am drooling and really trying to resist a crunch - I wonder if you can resist though - visit Sheabutter Cottage for your Golden Tree chocolate

Thursday, 21 October 2010

THE MILK FLOAT IS HERE

It has been quite busy in-between organising soap production in Ghana, trips to the post office where I now have a "VIP" pass and restocking some of our products. Here is the new addition to the Cioccolatina range of handmade natural toiletries - a vegan friendly bamboo hair milk/spray.

Make sure you enter our competition before the 1st of November as we celebrate
Cioccolatina @ 8

Take care
Akua Wood
Sheabutter Cottage

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

CIOCCOLATINA AT 8

How time has flown by. Yes, Cioccolatina is celebrating it's 8th year of providing you a fine range of handmade natural toiletries.
Watch the video clip
and send your answers to eight@cioccolatina.co.uk by the closing date of 1st November 2010. A better video clip can be viewed on YouTube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=42mz90PMJaM
Good luck.

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

MY CHEEKS ARE BLUSHING

I bet you never thought I would say that!!! Well, they really are blushing with pride.
You know the saying "you wait for ages and 3 turn up". In my case, 2 turned up today. After a rather sleepless night, it was with such joy when I woke up to this picture:
This is in response to our initiative when I visited the Gumu village in June as part of our helping hand programme. I noticed that the community did not have any public place of convenience. Through your purchases and kind donations, we have so far raised £759.72 [£325.00 made up of individual donations] of our £4,675.00 target. Yes, a long way to go but this figure would enable us start construction.
I then received another picture just as the colour of my cheeks was returning to its normal hue.

In order to keep the co-ops working as shea nuts are not available all year round, we also commissioned them to make some shea butter soaps for us. Our supply of organic argan oil from Morocco was already in Ghana but production was delayed due to the supply of moringa oil from Uganda. However, the bubble machine was soon in action and here is the picture:

As always, the tools have been manufactured in Ghana:
Thank you all for your support. I can't wait to see these African beauties.
I am so full of pride as a soapmaker, a Ghanaian
mumpreneur/socialpreneur and as a shea butter lover ♥

Akua Wood
SheabutterCottage.co.uk

Saturday, 9 October 2010

PRESSED LOCALLY

It is funny how as a young girl growing up in Ghana, I used to hate having my pictures taken. It was the time when you only had the black and white option with the negative strip - no colour. I was really scared. How times have changed!!! I still get shy in front of the camera but hey, I don't mind showing my "pearlies" and cheekbones in the name of PR ;)
Here is another picture when Peter got snappy The full article can be read here -.

Saturday, 25 September 2010

JAPANESE CAMELLIA KISSI SEED OIL

I was not worried to see the delivery man this morning even though I was still in my pjays. Why? Well, he had a heavy box of a long-awaited lovely oil.
I think the mischievous squirrels must have run away in horror as I yelled at the top of my voice. The excitment was a bit too much to handle.

Although Japanese camellia kissi oil. is new to our range of oils, it is not a new product to us. We used it back in 2007 in our men's shaving oil.

For a limited time only, we are offering a FREE bamboo face cloth with the purchase of 100ml of our Japanese camellia kissi oil.

Sunday, 19 September 2010

HELP MAKE A DIFFERENCE

Imagine having an idea brought on by your talent but not being able to share with others due to lack of funds! It is not a pretty situation to be in.
We believe in empowering men & women

We believe in helping to make poverty history

If you have the same beliefs, then come and join us at our Sheabutter Cottage Kiva Community where $25 : £16 [at current exchange rate] can help make a difference.

Saturday, 11 September 2010

IN LOVING MEMORY

Remembering all those who lost their lives 9 years ago today.

Thursday, 2 September 2010

3-DIMENSIONAL VIRGIN ORGANIC COCONUT OIL

This is a repost from our facebook fanpage [18.05.10]

Made from good quality fresh coconut at low temperatures.

This is not hydrogenated so it is soft to touch.

Pure and natural without any fillers (no bleaching agents, no foaming agents)

SKINCARE

* Used in most tanning lotions, it can also be used as an after-sun care to enhance the skin tone.

* Excellent as a skin moisturiser.

* Great as make-up remover

* Natural source of caprylic acid & lauric acid to help with skin problems as eczema and psoriasis

HAIRCARE

* Seals in hair moisture.

* Great for intensive deep conditioning hair treatment - warm the oil and massage into dry hair.

* Apply a small amount [1tsp] to coat the hair prior to swimming.

* Natural source of myristic acid to sooth the scalp

* Natural source of lauric acid to help suppress hair loss

COOKING

* Enhances the flavour

* Helps boost the immune system

* Unlike coconut milk, it does not contain sodium caseinate so it is ideal for vegans.

Get your supply at Sheabutter Cottage

Friday, 20 August 2010

MUMPRENEUR AWARDS - FINALIST

I made it to the finals - woo hoo. Big thanks to all those who nominated me for Best Green Business Award which will be given to the finalist who has the most eco-friendly business or the business with the most unique way of keeping it green.

Saturday, 14 August 2010

UCUUBA HAIR POMADE

I love ucuuba butter. It is a tough butter to work with but the natural scent is so pleasing on the nostrils.
I made a fresh batch of our lovely ucuuba hair pomade yesterday evening. You might notice a change with the packaging but the ingredients to help promote shine and healthy hair have not changed.

Great for twisting the hair without any tacky feeling and it is vegan friendly too. Get your easy to fit palm-size container here

Friday, 13 August 2010

COUPON - CHIC AFRIQ

The last time I attended a fair was more than 3 years ago. However, I could not resist this event to be held in London on 22nd August 2010. I know I have more than a week to finalise everything but I am panicking.
Anyway, please print out this image [double click for full image] to enjoy your discount at the show - it would be lovely to see you.

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

ADZUKI

I am planning on treating myself to another facial this weekend - this time with our ground adzuki bean. It will be loosely based on the chickpea facial but without the salt.
Hopefully, this will sort my face out before attending the Chic Afriq summer sale in London.
You can also try mixing your own mask by getting a pouch of the medium fine ground adzuki bean

Thursday, 5 August 2010

CHICKPEA ANYONE?

I have always been a fan of ingredients in our kitchen cupboards which can easily be used on the skin. I was recently chatting to a friend when we just happened to talk about facials and she mentioned the use of chickpea flour.
Chickpeas are grown in the Mediterranean, western Asia, the Indian subcontinent and Australia. Domestically they can be sprouted within a few days all year round with a sprouter on a windowsill.
Mature chickpeas can be cooked and eaten cold in salads, cooked in stews, ground into a flour called gram flour (also known as besan and used primarily in Indian cuisine), ground and shaped in balls and fried as falafel, fermented to make an alcoholic drink similar to sake, stirred into a batter and baked to make farinata, cooked and ground into a paste called hummus or roasted, spiced and eaten as a snack (such as leblebi). Chick peas and bengal grams are used to make curries and are one of the most popular vegetarian foods in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and the UK.
Although I did not get the exact measurements, I was given the ingredients as follows: * chickpea flour
* sugar
* salt
* vegetable oil
* fresh lemon juice
* turmeric

You basically add the oil, flour & lemon juice before adding the sugar & salt.
As I always mention, prime your face before treating yourself to a facial mask.
Apply the mixture, leave it on for ~ 30mins for it to dry. Gently massage your face before rinsing off.


Salt is a bit harsh on the face but this I believe will dissolve hence the addition of the sugar.

This is what I ended up using over the weekend:
*~ 2 tbs chickpea flour
* 1/2 lemon juice
* 1 tsp table salt
* 1/2 tsp turmeric
* 3/4 tbs shea oil
<- I know these were not weighed as I was camping at the time and did not have access to weighing scales :)

I know I looked like a warrior but the treatment was very effective and worth it.

Friday, 23 July 2010

MORINGA HAIR POMADE

I seem to be working quite late these days ♥ I made a big batch of moringa pomade and posted the link on our Facebook fanpage around midnight on Thursday so it was really nice to receive this message this afternoon
Did i tell you how much i love the moringa pomade? I love love love it! I have to say I hate picking a favorite between the three hair butters/pomades but the moringa...wow!! I am not sure which ingredient is responsible for defining the hair so much .. and the scent of palm[kernel] oil...yummy!! just had to tell you that!!!
I hope I have made enough to get your hair all nice and soft with a little shine :) Read more about this handmade natural moringa pomade via our site

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

TUCUMA HAIR BUTTER

When I introduced this hair butter in June 2009, I never knew it would affect my sleep ;)
I love my job but then I also love my sleep. I am writing this feeling like a zombie as I stayed up all night to make this fresh batch of tucuma hair butter. At least I know it would be worth the lack of my beauty sleep as some thirsty hair strands are waiting to be moisturised.

Grab your jar and get your hair pampered

Thursday, 15 July 2010

PASUCA & MUNGALA

It has been a very long day but then staring at these cuties make me very proud. Say hello to Pasuca & Mungala - just be nice to them as they have traveled a very long distance to get here. This is the fruit of our labour in Ghana where I worked with a great community spirit to get these made. It was fun stirring the big cauldron especially when some of the oils had been sent over from Uganda & Swaziland. Find out more of these soaps via our site

Saturday, 10 July 2010

ROSEMARY IS BACK WITH A NEW DRESS

Ok, I am referring to our gorgeous rosemary leave-in conditioner. Fresh batch now available in new packaging. We have now decided to opt for a jar rather than the lotion pump to make it easier in moisturising those curls and helping with a little gloss on your crowning glory.

Ah, but do not wait too long as there is a special 10% discount valid till midnight of 12th July 2010.

Feed your hair
this way >>>

Wednesday, 7 July 2010

SNIFF SNIFF

The birds are tweeting, the air is calm and I can just about see the clouds through the oak trees. There is a mix of sweet, floral & herbaceous scent lingering as I type. Why? Well, I am excited to introduce 4 new essential oils into our range.

* Madagascar vanilla in coconut
* Egyptian geranium
* Caribbean bay
* Guatemalan lemongrass
Pop by our online store and start blending a spoonful of that with a drop of this.

Monday, 5 July 2010

GROUND SHEA KERNEL

We are nuts about sheabutter here at Sheabutter Cottage. We like to break boundaries with this wonderful natural ingredient in its pure form and can now offer you the ground shea kernel for gentle exfoliation.
Available in 50g pouches in slightly coarse or fine texture, you can grab one or two for your soaps or face masks via our online store

Thursday, 1 July 2010

SPEECHES AND DANCING TO THE SOCIAL TUNE BEYOND FAIR TRADE

I have spent the last few days trying to edit video clips of my trip to Ghana. Some people thought I was going on a holiday to a very warm country close to my heart. Well, the latter was true but it was all hard work with no lazying around. At least, I got the chance to meet some amazing people and survived working alongside another workaholic. Hope you enjoy these two videos.

Friday, 25 June 2010

IS IT WRONG TO BE SOCIALLY RESPONSIBLE?

As a Ghanaian - born & educated in Ghana, I have experienced poverty. I even remember the "not so fashionable Rawlings' chain". However, nothing prepared me for what I recently witnessed whilst working in Gumu in Northern Ghana. I have set up a page to appeal for donations on behalf of this warm loving community and hope that you can help.

Friday, 18 June 2010

NO REST FOR THE WICKED

It has been hard work trying to get things done under the intense Ghanaian sun. I was hoping to be reporting from the pool side sipping a chilled glass of Amarula but alas, it is almost midnight in Accra, I am wearing socks as the 'quitoes make fun of my sunripe ankles and I have a cold cup of strong tea to keep be hydrated.
My stay in Ghana is almost over and it has been work, work and keep working. I now need a holiday!!!
Anyway, the purpose of this trip has been 90% fulfilled - who knows, I might return in time to work on the remaining 10% before the 7 year old road works in Accra are completed!!!

The work schedule started with the inauguration of OhanaPassion.org a day after my arrival. I know I look terrified in the photo - I was tired and the microphone was also playing up.
Soon after the inauguration, I traveled North where I was based for 5 working days working at Gumu.
I had to inspect a soap mould soon after my arrival. At least I know it is from recycled metal - what a bonus.
I worked with the lovely ladies and men including Madam Samata Iddi who was sooooo funny and very very hardworking. Even though there was the language barrier {I don't speak Dagbani and most of the women do not speak English nor my local dialect, Twi}, we had 1 thing in common which was to educate ourselves through empowerment.
They were pleased to learn that I had managed to pay their annual Health Insurance fees.
I saw myself clad in this beautiful blue stripped fabric with gold thread after the inauguration of the co-op on Friday 11th June 2010. This was a lovely unexpected gift from the co-op.
I was invited to another village after the inauguration to visit another co-op. We hope to also adopt this co-op which is currently made up of 66 women.
I had planned on visiting cocoa farmers but I soon realised that I was few weeks late as they had harvested the crops. I managed to sneak onto a farm though on Wednesday on my return from Kumasi - my birthplace. Sorry for the blurred image, the battery was nearing death and we were also scarred of snakes that lurk beneath the cocoa trees.
Today was full of meetings so I decided to start the day harvesting some moringa seeds

Monday, 24 May 2010

KEEP COOL WITH A T

Working at the "cottage" means no more high heels nor skirt suits. I am always dressed down like a female Ranulph Fiennes as the "cottage" can get pretty cooooold. It is however nice and cool during the warm weather and I prefer to work in a t-shirt.
If you like to keep cool with an organic t-shirt, then pop over to our facebook fan page where you can win one in our Spread Hope prize giveaway. Winner(s) will be selected on Thursday 27th May 2010 so arm yourself with some knowledge about Sheabutter Cottage :)

Friday, 21 May 2010

OLIVE SQUALANE

We have been using this lovely light oil for years in our range of products
and can now offer it to you to bring the mixtress out of you. Visit our store for your bottle.

Saturday, 15 May 2010

SALAMATU IS GOING

Named after the secretary of the shea co-op in Gumu, we created this soap with 100% from sale being donated to the lovely ladies in Ghana - ie. all £2.90 of it.
We have now reduced it to clear [£2.03] to make room for an exciting project we are working on.
Grab a bar before it disappears from our site.

Thursday, 13 May 2010

IT SHOULD NOT BE A CHORE

to comb your hair!
Whichever hair style you wear, this cute comb will help to detangle the knots. Just don't leave the house without it - compact enough for your pocket.

Wednesday, 12 May 2010

DON'T MISS OUT ON THIS!

Here is a special offer on our pure unrefined creamy fair trade raw shea butter - we DO NOT compromise on quality.
Sometimes you need to use up containers taking up space hence this special offer.
Great size and value for family use too.
Grab a 425g tub of pure unrefined fair trade shea butter @ £9.75. At such a good price if I may say so, it will be a shame to miss out. Great for top2toe use:
* great as a hair conditioner
* great as a face mask
* great for all family members
* great for skin elasticity
* great for ......... the list goes on

Friday, 7 May 2010

HAPY FRIDAY - DOING THE SHEA DANCE

It has been an interesting week with the Bank holiday + elections and could not wait for today to do my happy shea dance.
If you follow me on twitter, you might have "heard me" moan for the past 10 days about our shea consignment from Ghana which was stuck at Felixstowe. Well my patience for waiting was rewarded today as I took delivery of our consignment of pure unrefined fair trade shea butter from Gumu. This is for bulk purchases of 25kgs+
I fully appreciated the advantage of having a unit on a working farm as I had to request a forklift within few minutes to off-load the consignment. I never thought I would get excited over a wooden pallet.

To end on a happy day, I had also received a notification via e-mail with the heading "Congratulations Akuawood." I was really curious to see what this was all about and here is the reason why.

I am so chuffed to bits to see our karite soap in EasyLiving

Saturday, 1 May 2010

WHAT DO YOU BID?

After months and months of never ending planning, O'hana Passion is finally born. Inauguration is scheduled for 5th June 2010 and we have decided to allow you to bid on this lovely handmade natural shea gift via eBay with every penny donated to O'hana Passion.
O'hana Passion [http://www.ohanapassion.org] is a registered local humanitarian organisation in Ghana that seeks the welfare and holistic development of disadvantaged and vulnerable children.
* VISION: Reaching out to disadvantaged and vulnerable children with love
* MISSION: Ensuring the psychosocial well being of the disadvantaged and vulnerable child
* OBJECTIVES: To show love, guidance and attention. Mobilise resources to improve care and support
Place your bids now and let us help put a smile on a child's face.

Friday, 30 April 2010

SWEET AND JAZZY

Once upon a time, I used to be able to thumb the floor with my dancing shoes and swing those hips.

Music for me is the universal language - I know football fans would disagree - but what the hey!!! I love music and this morning with the sun shining and the "world on my shoulders", I was sent a link by one of my friends Yasmeen. I have met Yasmeen but never heard her singing voice until now. Her voice is sweet on the ears. Have a listen and enjoy. The song seems to have a calming effect on me.

BANK HOLIDAY PROMO