Aloe Vera is a centuries-old choice for nourishing the skin. Due to the gel’s high water content, which spreads gently on the skin, aloe vera is an excellent choice for your skincare routine. Aloe contains 75 active ingredients, including vitamins A, C, E, B12, and choline. It’s rich in antioxidants such as vitamin A, vitamin C, and vitamin E. It also contains seven of the eight essential amino acids and is known for its anti-inflammatory properties. There’s a reason this plant has been used for centuries for skincare!
Aloe vera originated in the Arabian peninsula and spread to ancient Egypt and Greece before moving around the globe. Aloe is a succulent with 500 different varieties, but the one used predominantly for medicinal and beauty purposes is Aloe barbadensis miller.
Aloe is undoubtedly a buzzword in the beauty industry, and many companies include aloe in their products to increase sales. But highly processed aloe loses a great deal of potency. If you are purchasing aloe, always choose a product where aloe is the first ingredient listed and processed as minimally, and organically as possible.
My recommended option is to grow your own aloe plant. Aloe is honestly one of the easiest plants to grow! It’s not a plant that requires a great deal of fussing, and being a succulent, it needs or wants very little water.
Aloe can be grown in the ground or in pots. If you live somewhere with harsh winters, grow aloe in pots and bring it in during the winter months. Potted aloe grows fine indoors if it has access to sunlight.
Besides giving you free access to aloe gel whenever needed, growing your aloe also eliminates the need for plastic bottles, which is a win for the environment.
Read how to grow aloe plants and harvest your aloe vera gel here.
How To Use Aloe Vera Gel for Skin Care
When you’ve spent too much time in the sun, your skin needs help to heal and replenish lost moisture from the drying effects of the sun. Aloe vera gel’s high water content rehydrates the sunburned skin and its anti-inflammatory properties aid in healing.
Take pure aloe gel and rub on the sunburned areas. The gel will absorb into the skin without leaving a greasy feel. Repeat two or three times a day as needed to reduce uncomfortable side effects of sunburn and aid in healing.
Aloe gel can be frozen in ice cube trays and kept for when needed. Rub a frozen cube on burned skin to cool the skin as well as beginning the healing process.
Due to the anti-inflammatory properties of aloe vera, the gel can also reduce the swelling and itch of bug bites. Bring along a jar or tube of aloe gel next time you go for a hike and get instant relief from bug bites.
Aloe gel can be rubbed directly on legs, arms, or face to moisturize your skin. As your skin ages, it starts to look more saggy, wrinkled, and loses its elasticity. Aloe Vera can help reduce the effects of aging. It retains the skin’s lost moisture and restores its radiance. Along with reducing visible wrinkles and fine lines on the face, Aloe Vera gel also helps in improving the elasticity of the skin and repairing skin cells helping to prevent premature aging of the skin.
Rub aloe gel directly on legs before showering. The aloe will coat the legs to help prevent nicks or cuts and moisturize your skin at the same time.
Aloe Vera Face Cleanser
5 TB aloe vera gel (or heaping 1/4 cup)
2 TB sweet almond oil
1 TB castile soap
20 drops lavender essential oil
Add pureed aloe vera gel using a funnel to a bottle. Combine the rest of the ingredients in the bottle. Shake vigorously to mix.
If you have dry skin, skip the castile soap and use an extra tablespoon of almond, castor, or olive oil.
Aloe Cucumber Moisturizing Face Mask
Cucumbers have anti-inflammatory properties and antioxidants, and nutrients like vitamin C and folic acid, which make a nourishing ingredient for a face mask.
2 T aloe gel
Slice the cucumber with the skins on. Add to a blender with the aloe gel and puree. Immersion blenders in a bowl work well. Pat the mask onto clean skin and rest for 15 minutes. Rinse with cool water.
Aloe vera is excellent for naturally calming the skin and works well to soothe the skin when acne is irritated and inflamed. The naturally occurring salicylic acid and sulfur in Aloe Vera are ideal for fighting back acne, especially with oily skin. Turmeric and Green Tea are also helpful in controlling oily and sensitive skin.
Aloe-Tumeric-Green Tea Face Mask
Two tablespoons of Aloe Vera gel
One tablespoon of Turmeric or Green Tea
Blend Aloe Vera and Turmeric or Green Tea to make a smooth paste. Apply it all over the face and rinse it off after 15 to 20 minutes.
Recipe from kamaayurveda.com
Aloe Vera & Tea Tree Face Mask
Tea tree oil has anti-inflammatory properties, which help to soothe and relieve painful and irritated skin and reduce redness and swelling. Aloe Vera and tea tree oil face masks help eliminate excess oil from the skin, which aids in preventing acne.
1/8 cup fresh aloe vera gel
10 to 12 drops of tea tree essential oil
Add tea tree oil to fresh Aloe Vera gel and whisk it until combined. Apply the mixture all over the face and leave it overnight. Rinse off in the morning with lukewarm water. You can repeat this twice a week.
Aloe, Honey & Cinnamon Face Mask
Thanks to its antibacterial and antiseptic abilities, honey may benefit oily and acne-prone skin. Honey is also a natural humectant, so it helps keep the skin moist but not oily. Cinnamon has anti-fungal, antioxidant, and antibacterial properties that make it a beneficial ingredient for acne-free skin. It dries out the skin by supporting enhanced blood flow.
2 T honey
1 T aloe vera
1/4 T ground cinnamon
Mix the honey and aloe vera together. The mixture should be easy to spread but not runny. Mix in cinnamon before applying the mask to your face. Rest for 5 to 10 minutes. Rinse thoroughly with lukewarm water.
Used alone or combined with other ingredients, aloe vera is an excellent choice for all your skincare needs.
Have a favorite aloe vera skin care recipe? Share it below in the comments!