Hailed as the plant of immortality by the ancient Egyptians, the aloe vera plant has been valued throughout the centuries for its healing properties. Aloe vera is used in many cosmetic and skin care products due to its high nutrient content and its ability to soothe various skin care problems. Some of the current well-loved products like Etude House may be using aloe vera for their creams or gels.
Aloe vera is a succulent that adapts well in dry arid climates. The aloe vera plant is prized for its thick spiky leaves, which contains a clear, viscous gel. The gel contains a lot of minerals, vitamins, and enzymes that work together to strengthen the body’s immune system, hydrate the skin, and heal cuts and wounds. The plant’s gel is extracted and used for various medicinal and cosmetic purposes.
Here are the beauty benefits of aloe vera for skin and hair and the myriad ways you can use aloe vera in your beauty routine:
Aloe Vera Beauty Benefits
Here’s a list of the beauty benefits of aloe vera:-
1. Hydrates and moisturises skin. Aloe vera is 96% water and is great for hydrating the skin and keeping it moisturised without leaving a greasy feeling, making it ideal for oily skin types. It easily penetrates the skin, delivering precious nutrients along to be absorbed deep in your skin layers. It also helps restore and balance your skin’s pH levels.
2. Treats acne. Aloe vera contains anti-bacterial and anti-microbial properties, making it effective in dealing with acne. It also helps reduce inflammation and make you heal from acne faster, since it prevents further skin eruption caused by dryness or irritation. It’s also non-comedogenic and doesn’t block pores, which is important since acne flare-ups are usually caused by blocked pores.
3. Treats sunburns. Aloe vera has anti-inflammatory and cooling properties, making it ideal for treating sunburn. It also has a high moisture content to help slough off dried up skin cells and hydrate new ones.
4. Promotes hair growth. Aloe vera is a popular ingredient in many hair regrowth formulas. It helps remove dead skin cells in the scalp that can clog hair follicles, maintain your hair’s pH levels, and deliver nutrients in your scalp, which all contribute to renewed hair growth and healthy hair.
5. Reduces dandruff. The anti-microbial properties of aloe vera are effective for treating dandruff causing bacteria in your scalp. It also has a natural cooling effect on your scalp leaving you cool and refreshed after a shower, and its wide array of vitamins and minerals nourish your hair and scalp at the same time. No need to use expensive, artificial, and chemically-laden anti-dandruff hair products when you can singly replace them with aloe vera!
6. Heals minor cuts and insect bites. The anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties of aloe vera make it ideal for healing minor cuts and insect bites rapidly. It’s hydrating and nourishing properties also prevent the formation of scars post-healing.
7. Soothes chapped lips. The high water content of aloe vera is ideal for soothing chapped lips. It also helps exfoliate old skin layers to keep your lips soft and moisturised.
8. Prevents signs of accelerated skin aging. Aloe vera contains a chock-full of enzymes, nutrients, and polysaccharides to deeply hydrate the skin and promote skin cell renewal, which is crucial for mitigating accelerated signs of skin aging such as fine lines, wrinkles, and sagging skin. It also has a high concentration of antioxidants to fight skin cell damage caused by free radicals. Aloe vera’s store of powerhouse nutrients works synergistically to target various skin care concerns and even provide a natural defense against UV rays.
9. Minimize stretch marks. Aloe vera helps promote skin elasticity, leading to the reduced appearance of stretch marks. It’s high water moisture content also prevents the formation of new stretch marks.
10. Gently removes makeup. The slippery nature of aloe vera gel makes it effective in wiping off makeup from your face without causing irritation, and it’s antibacterial properties prevent breakouts as well. It doesn’t strip off your skin’s natural oils too.
11. Treats cracked feet. Applying aloe vera gel after scrubbing your feet helps prevent your feet from drying which can lead to further cracking. Also, it’s anti-bacterial properties keep foot odor away, and its cooling properties help refresh tired feet.
How to use aloe vera
The clear viscous gel inside the thick leaves of the plant is collected for making aloe vera gel. You can make your own homemade aloe gel by cutting the serrated ends first to make it easier to scrape out the gel, then peeling off the outer skin of the leaf and scraping the gelatinous parts out. To convert it into a gel that’s easier to apply, finely chop or blend the gelatinous contents until you reach a smooth consistency.
Fresh aloe vera gel only lasts for about a week. To extend its shelf life, add 2000mg of powdered Vitamin C per 1 cup of fresh aloe vera gel. This formulation can be used for up to 8 months.
Aloe vera is a powerhouse of nutrients with anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory, and soothing properties that make it an ideal addition to your beauty regimen. It’s also cost-effective and free from harmful chemicals that can save you time, money, and health risks from conventional beauty products.