Aloe Vera, the modest houseplant is a ‘miracle,’ wonder plant, often hiding in plain sight. Having been around and used as a medicinal herb, it nourishes the body from the inside – it is rich in nutrients, aids in improving digestion and even boosts immunity. Aloe Vera can be used topically too, i.e., it’s gel can be used to enhance one’s skin, especially the face and the hair.
However, before we get into the essential reasons and health benefits of Aloe Vera, let us first learn how to extract Aloe Vera gel directly from the plant –
If you have an Aloe Vera plant at home, select its fatter leaves or stems and cut it from the base. Or you may pull the leaves from its bottom. Be careful as the plant has thorns.
Next, use a sharp knife to slice the thorns from the edge of each leaf. Then slice the stalk into half and keep the gel side up. You may slice open leaf as well. Use a spoon to scrape the gel out into a container. When all the gel is extracted, refrigerate the gel.
If this process seems too tedious for you, you can buy Aloe Vera gel from the market as well.
Here are six reasons to apply Aloe Vera gel on your face, skin, and hair –
1 Helps soothe sunburn
Aloe Vera gel has cooling properties and is anti-inflammatory. Hence, it is one of the most natural remedies for sunburn or burnt skin. Applying this gel helps with a protective layer for the skin, and it also helps to retain moisture. It is rich in antioxidants and minerals that boost the healing process.
2 Helps to moisturize the skin
Unlike regular, market-bought moisturizers, Aloe Vera gel when used as a moisturizing gel doesn’t leave a greasy film on the face and the skin. In fact, it does just the opposite – it unclogs the pores and softens the skin.
It can be used as an aftershave-treatment. This is because the Aloe Vera gel helps to keep the skin hydrated and heals burns by razor and smaller nicks & cuts. It also helps treat dry skin.
3 Boosts healing of wounds
It is now a known fact that Aloe Vera is highly beneficial for burns, cuts and other injuries. This is because Aloe Vera boosts the healing of wounds, i.e., reduces the time of healing. This is true especially in the case of 1st degree and 2nd-degree burn. It also helps to speed up skin cell reproduction as much as eight times. Aloe Vera is also known to penetrate the epidermis, i.e., the outer layer of the skin faster than water.
4 Fights skin-aging
Aloe Vera gel has vitamin C and E, beta-carotene in abundance. Therefore, it has anti-aging properties. It also contains antimicrobial properties and is anti-inflammatory. It also helps to eradicate skin blemishes and diminish age lines. Additionally, it helps to increase the production of collagen in the body and skin elasticity.
5 Reduces infection and acne
Those who suffer from acne will find respite in Aloe Vera. It helps in gentle cleansing, and its antimicrobial properties treat pimples without causing any damages to the skin. It is antiseptic that allows protection against bacteria. Aloe Vera contains polysaccharides and gibberellins. These help in the growth of new cells and at the same time, reduce inflammation and redness. It also works as an astringent that reduces the size of pores, flushing out the excess sebum, microbes, and dirt.
6 Lightens blemishes on the face
As we already know, Aloe Vera contains powers to boost skin cell reproduction, reduce redness and fight skin inflammation, it is a natural treatment for stretch marks and acne marks. To treat freckles and lighten age spots, add some lemon juice to the gel mixture.
Aloe Vera for hair and scalp
1 Helps in hair growth
Like skin reproduction, Aloe Vera gel helps in activating new hair growth as it increases the blood circulation to the scalp. It also provides essential minerals and vitamins. Aloe Vera contains proteolytic enzymes which help repair dead skin on the scalp.
2 Keeps dandruff at bay
Aloe Vera helps in healing dry skin, fungal infections, and excessively oily skin. All these are significant causes of dandruff.
3 Acts as a conditioner to the hair and scalp
Just as how it moisturizes the skin, Aloe Vera helps to condition the hair and soften it. Regularly applying Aloe gel to the hair and scalp helps to maintain the vitality of the hair and its shine.