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  5. Aloe Vera For Your Skin: The Umpteen Benefits + How To Use

Is aloe vera a part of your skincare yet? The world has lapped up aloe vera like never before - from drinking its juice, to applying raw aloe vera on the face, and purchasing cosmetics containing its gel.

The craze for aloe vera is quite justified due to its numerous skin benefits! Whether you want instant relief for a cut or a burn, or something to soothe dry and itchy skin, aloe vera gel can be your go-to ingredient.

In this article, we list out all the benefits of aloe vera and the ideal ways to use it. Keep reading.

Is Aloe Vera Good For The Skin?

Aloe vera is great for your skin and the pure gel from the plant has healing properties. It is very effective in treating several skin conditions. Thus, it is mostly used as a topical gel, which you can extract by breaking open the leaf of the plant [1].

Unless you have a skin condition for which your dermatologist has asked you not to use it, aloe vera is generally very good for all skin types. In OTC formulations, aloe vera gel is usually found in combination with ingredients like calendula or echinacea, which have healing properties.

Benefits Of Aloe Vera For Your Face

1. Cuts and Abrasions

Aloe vera gel is effective for small paper or knife cuts and even abrasions due to a fall or a bump. The gel can be applied on abrasions to give you relief from the pain caused due to the fall. It even reduces the stinging sensation. You can apply the gel at least three times a day for this issue.

For knife and paper cuts, apply aloe vera gel instead of any medicated cream. Studies have shown that the structure of the gel’s molecules can help to reduce scar formation and heal wounds faster as it has collagen boosting properties and can fight bacterial infections.

2. Burns

Aloe vera gel can be used to treat burns. You can apply the gel on burnt skin thrice a day. Studies show it also helps to reduce the pain caused by the burn [2].

3. Sunburn

Applying aloe vera gel can soothe sunburnt skin, while also moisturising it effectively. But, it can not be substituted for sunscreen or as a way to prevent sun burns. Sunscreens need to be used separately for sun protection.

4. Acne With Inflammation On The Face

Aloe vera gel has anti-inflammatory properties which can help soothe mild acne outbreaks [3] and acne with pus. Do not apply the gel with your fingers. Place the gel on a cotton ball and apply on the pimple or acne.

5. Eczema

Aloe vera gel has moisturising properties that can reduce itching and dry skin caused due to eczema. It is also effective in treating seborrheic dermatitis [4], a form of eczema that generally affects the scalp, the area behind the ears and some parts of your face (like the forehead).

6. Psoriasis

Inflammation and itching caused by psoriasis on the face or other parts of the body can also be treated with aloe vera gel [5]. Apply the gel to all the itchy parts for relief twice or thrice a day.

7. Dry Skin

If you have dry or oily skin, aloe vera gel can be used as a moisturiser. Since it is absorbed quickly by the skin, it does not block pores in oily skin. For dry skin, use immediately after your shower to seal the natural moisture of your skin.

8. Cold Sores

When you get cold sores on your lips or around your mouth, using aloe vera gel can be an effective way to bring relief to your skin. It simultaneously treats the herpes virus, which causes the cold sores. Apply twice or thrice a day till the sores vanish completely.

9. Reduce Dark Circles

Aloe vera gel can boost collagen production. So using it in the under eye area can reduce dark circles and prevent fine lines and crow’s feet.

10. Anti-Ageing

Aloe vera can be used to delay the signs of ageing as studies show that it can improve the skin’s elasticity with regular use when taken orally or applied topically [6]. It is also used in anti-ageing creams for this purpose.

How To Use Aloe Vera On Your Face?

1. Exfoliator

You can use aloe vera gel mixed with sugar crystals as an exfoliating scrub. Aloe vera is a mild cleansing agent as it contains salicylic acid [7], which can remove the dead skin cells. It also prevents acne by removing bacteria from the clogged pores of your skin.

2. Moisturiser

You can use aloe vera gel directly from the plant or as part of a formulation to moisturise your skin. It is suitable for most skin types, especially dry skin. It can also be used as a soothing agent after waxing.

If you want extra nourishment at night, you can even mix lemon juice with aloe vera gel and apply it as a nighttime moisturiser.

3. Eyebrow Shaper

If you have unruly eyebrows or you want them to look slick and neat, you can dip an earbud in aloe vera gel and apply all over your eyebrows. The gel will also promote hair growth to give you thicker eyebrows and keep them in shape.

4. Acne Scar/Dark Spots Remover

You can use aloe vera gel to reduce acne scars and dark spots on the face. The antiseptic, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties of aloe vera help reduce scars.

The moisture present in the gel also boosts collagen and cell regeneration. Mix with a few drops of lemon juice and apply on the scar and dark spot for best results.

5. Makeup Remover

You can make a natural makeup remover with aloe vera gel. Put some gel on a cotton ball and swipe the makeup off your face. You can even mix it with coconut oil if the makeup is too dry.

6. Face Mask

You can use aloe vera gel as a face mask to moisturise and nourish dry skin. Any face pack you make, add a little aloe vera and apply for extra moisture along with the other nutrients.

Aloe vera gel is considered safe to use when taken orally for a period of upto 40 days, but not more than 15 ml in quantity. It is considered safe to use over a short time period.

To use the gel for the face, you can use upto one tablespoon on its own or mixed with other ingredients depending on the reason you are using it for.

What Skin Type Can USe Aloe Vera Gel?

Aloe vera gel can be used by all skin types, especially dry and sensitive skin types. It can be used by oily and combination skin types as well to treat various skin conditions. There is very low risk in using it in its topical form according to studies.

What Health Conditions Is Aloe Vera Not Suitable For?

If you are pregnant or breastfeeding your baby, aloe vera in gel or latex form is unsafe to be consumed orally. While there is no evidence, it may increase the chances of miscarriage or birth defects.

Aloe gel or leaf extract taken orally is unsafe for children. It may lead to diarrhoea or cramps.

If you have diabetes, aloe vera should only be taken under medical supervision because research indicates that it may lower blood sugar.

Aloe vera in latex form can irritate the bowels. So people with stomach and intestinal conditions like ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease should not consume it. Aloe latex or whole leaf extract can worsen haemorrhoids and can also lead to kidney failure if taken in high doses.

If you are taking aloe vera regularly, stop taking it for at least two weeks before you go for surgery, as it can alter blood sugar levels at that time.

What Happens If We Apply Aloe Vera On The Face Daily?

If you apply aloe vera gel on your face twice everyday, you will have skin that is moisturised and free of blemishes and scars. Aloe vera, according to studies, only moisturises the top layer of the skin. But it has healing properties to improve other skin conditions. 

What Are The Side Effects Of Aloe Vera?

Aloe vera is considered safe to use for topical purposes like treating skin conditions. Studies show that aloe vera should not be used for treating post-surgical wounds as it could actually reduce your skin’s natural healing ability [8]. It is also not recommended for treating very severe burns.

Other side effects of aloe vera gel could include itching or a burning sensation, when it is being absorbed by the skin. It may also cause a rash if your skin is sensitive to the gel.

Using aloe vera gel on skin that has an infection, a rash or wound due to an infection can make it worse, as it interrupts the process of recovery. This happens because the antimicrobial properties of the gel form a layer on the wound, slowing the healing.

If you plan to use aloe vera gel regularly and frequently, it is best to get a doctor’s opinion as there is not adequate amounts of documented evidence to prove that it is completely safe and beneficial for the skin according to reports.

Aloe vera gel should not be used on infected skin. The protective layer that the gel forms on the skin actually can worsen the infection as it disturbs the healing process.

Oral consumption of the aloe leaf extract or aloe latex is considered unsafe when taken in large doses as it may cause side effects like cramps or stomach pain.

Aloe latex, when consumed for longer periods of time, may cause kidney problems, weight loss, heart problems, diarrhoea and lowered potassium levels. Even taking one gram of aloe latex everyday for a long time can lead to cancer or death due to chemicals present in it.

Wrapping Up

Aloe vera gel has multiple benefits for the skin. Since it is suitable for all skin types, it can be used to moisturise dry and oily skin, treat wounds, burns and reduce acne scars and blemishes. It can even be consumed as a juice. However, overuse of any good thing can cause adverse effects. Thus, use it wisely and consult your doctor if you have any skin problems.

Begin By Knowing Your Skin

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