Aloe vera is the Superman of botanical medicine. It is full of vitamins, minerals, anti-inflammatory compounds, and other healing properties that relieve irritation. The only thing it cannot do is emit lasers from its eyes. Is it safe for your skin?
The short answer: Absotutely (to quote Leslie Knope). However, you must use it in the right way. Here are some reasons aloe vera should be a prominent part of your medicine cabinet.
Why it’s great for skin
- It may help to combat acne. Oral aloe vera products can be beneficial for people suffering from mild to moderate acne. It is important to consult your doctor before you use it, especially if it is combined with isotretinoin (a prescription medication used to treat cystic and mild acne).
- It can reduce dark spots and scarring. Even if you don’t have acne right now, scars can last for years. Aloe vera gel stimulates collagen production, which helps reduce scarring.
- It can soothe sunburns. Aloe vera gel has cooling and soothing properties. It feels great on sunburns. Although it isn’t clear if it speeds up sunburn healing (some studies suggest it does), it can reduce the pain and redness, as well as help with peeling and reddening.
- It moisturizes dry skin. It contains high amounts of mucopolysaccharides, which you can say five times fast. This type of molecule chain has hydrating properties and is a common ingredient in moisturizers.
- Aloe vera can be used to treat cold sores. Aloe vera’s antiviral properties make it an effective topical treatment for cold sores. You should be aware that oral herpes can still spread to others if there is an active breakout. Aloe vera can’t make it more contagious.
- It can help with eczema and psoriasis. Eczema and psoriasis can be a horrible combination. Itchy, itchy skin can make you feel like you have a rash and a burning sensation. Aloe vera is a natural moisturizer that can soothe and heal these skin problems.
- It helps reduce puffiness and dark circles. Aloe vera has collagen-producing properties. They don’t just reduce acne scarring. They can also reduce inflammation and stimulate the production of new skin. This will make you radiant and glowing.
- It is a natural exfoliant. Salicylic acid from the plant is known to help remove dead skin cells and bacteria. It doesn’t irritate your skin and is gentle enough to be used on the face.
- It could slow down the signs of aging. Although science is not conclusive, some studies on aloe vera’s ability to improve skin elasticity have shown promising results. It’s no wonder that aloe vera is a common ingredient in anti-wrinkle creams.
- It is safe for sensitive skin. Aloe vera gel, in its purest form, is 100% natural. This makes it a great product to use for people who are allergic to chemicals. To ensure you don’t get allergic, test the gel on your wrist and inner arm before applying it to your face.
What is the difference between fresh and bottled aloe Vera?
Be aware that there are many options available before you rush to buy an aloe plant. Gel from aloe plants can also be found in store-bought products.
Aloe vera gel is a common ingredient in both high-end and drugstore skin care products. However, it is not often used in large quantities. You should look for products with aloe vera listed as the primary ingredient, or one of the first ones.
You can buy bottled aloe vera gel at your local drugstore. However, it may contain additives that will prolong its shelf life at room temperature.
FDA doesn’t regulate safety of aloe Vera products at this time. According to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health not enough information is available about its effects to determine whether it can be used for skin treatments.
The NCCIH does say the plant is likely safe when used topically.
You can make your own skin care products and go straight to the source by growing your aloe vera at home. You can get the gel inside the plant leaf. Use a sharp knife to cut the leaf open and separate the gel from its prickly stalk.
You can keep the gel in an airtight container for at least one week in the fridge and use it as often as you need.
PSA: Don’t eat the plant! There is not much information available about the possible side effects of aloe verdea when consumed. California’s Proposition 65 legislation added aloe vera to it in 2015. This law lists ingredients that could cause cancer if they are consumed. So, don’t eat aloe vera. Trust the experts. It is safer to be safe.
How to use aloe vera to get maximum results
Be cautious if you have never tried aloe vera. Begin by applying a little bit of the plant to your skin.
To test for allergic reactions, wait at least 24 hours. You can use it in greater quantities if you don’t notice any allergic reactions.
There are many home remedies for making all-natural aloe Vera face masks. You may need to modify these ingredients depending on your skin type.
Avoid clogging your pores by not leaving the gel on for more than a few hours, especially when you first experiment with it. Begin by only using the gel for 5-10 minutes, then increase your time.
Before you buy a lot of new products, consult your primary care doctor or dermatologist if you have any skin problems. If you are interested, ask them about aloe Vera gel.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t have enough scientific evidence for it to be officially classified as a cure-all. However, it has become a cult favorite product and tons of people swear by it.
As you test it out, do your research and exercise caution.
- Aloe vera is praised by many for its benefits on the skin. Aloe vera gel has been proven to be effective in treating acne, sunburns and dark spots, as well as dry skin, cold sores, inflammation, and irritation. The appearance of wrinkles may be reduced over time.
- Aloe vera skin care products can be purchased in bottled or fresh form. You can also grow your own aloe plants and use the gel for your skin.
- Mix fresh aloe vera gel with honey and coconut oil to make a face mask. Allow it to sit for about 10 to 15 minutes, then rinse off.
- Don’t ingest aloe vera. It is not known if it is safe to consume.
- If you have any skin conditions you wish to address, talk with your doctor. Although aloe vera is generally safe for sensitive skin and can be used safely, some people may react to it. Before applying it to your face, test a small amount on your arm and thighs.