When it comes to skin care ingredients, some truly impressive ones are often overlooked (like manuka honey, for instance), while others are, well, a little overhyped. One ingredient that has amassed a large following from convincing testimonials is aloe vera. The ingredient has been used in many different cultures throughout history for its healing properties and has been touted as a miracle ingredient for everything from treating acne to improving wrinkles!
But does it deserve all the praise it gets?
Before you replace all your skin care products with a bottle of the green gooey gel, find out which benefits have been proven to be true and whether aloe vera is the cure-all ingredient it's said to be (or whether it's a little overrated). Keep reading to find out about the possible skin benefits of aloe vera!
What Is Aloe Vera?
Aloe vera is a naturally derived ingredient known for its soothing properties. It can come in powder, liquid, and gel form and can be found in products like creams, moisturizers, gels, and masks. The leaves of the aloe vera plant are made up of three layers: the inner gel or mucilage (which is 99.5% water), the middle latex layer, and the outer layer or rind. So how did aloe vera get its reputation for being a magical cure-all ingredient? That likely has to do with the fact that the other 0.5% is made up of a wide range of chemicals—more than 75.
Aloe is rich in vitamins, amino acids, polysaccharides, and phytosterols, so it has all these calming, great properties. Additionally, it has vitamins A, C, D, and E, and it also has minerals, like zinc, potassium, and magnesium, so it really is this rich gel or extract that can be used for a variety of things.
When it comes to its actual benefits, there are two main functions of aloe vera for treating the skin: to soothe and moisturize. There are tons of uses for it, and it’s great for face masks and calming red or inflamed skin, but it’s not better than other things we have, like vitamin C and niacinamide (this are much stronger, potent skin care ingredients with stronger uses). It’s a safe thing to use for the skin for hydration and anti-inflammatory, but it’s not an end-all, be-all (and that’s okay! Aloe vera is great for hydrating the skin, hence why it’s usually applied after a sunburn while offering soothing/calming benefits).
Different Forms of Aloe Vera
As previously mentioned, aloe vera comes in a powder, liquid, and gel form. The raw material typically starts out as a liquid or gel, depending on what type of plant extract they take. To make a powder, the water is evaporated off. But when companies make aloe products, they either add powder to a liquid or add a diluted version of the stuff that comes from the plant.
As far as how the different forms are used in cosmetics, there isn't much of a difference, but that the decision is mostly an economical one. In addition to topically, aloe vera can be consumed orally. However, there isn't any evidence that drinking aloe will help skin or hair. It’s not suggested taking it orally at all to help the skin. It’s much more effectively used topically on the skin.
Aloe Vera Use in Skin Care
We may have sounded harsh about aloe vera at the beginning of this article, but when you look at why aloe vera is used for your skin, it’s certainly not an ingredient you should put back on the shelf (or in your online shopping cart). Its benefits have been utilized and observed for decades, if not centuries, and it’s an oldie but a goodie all the same! When you add it with other beneficial skin care ingredients, however, you’re looking at a major powerhouse against wrinkles, acne, uneven skin tone, and redness.
To find the best aloe vera skin care products, look no further than Wild Naturals! Instead of water in our products, we replaced it with aloe vera, for a bigger punch to help aid your skin and get better results faster! Shop the Wild Naturals online store today and reap the benefits of aloe vera, along with a handful of other amazing natural ingredients!