You’ll find them at every Farmer’s Market, car boot sale and school fête, but what makes aloe vera such a popular plant? Sure, it’s indestructible nature makes it an obvious choice to grow, but there’s much more to it than just that.
A staple ingredient in natural skincare products around the globe, you might be surprised at just how beneficial this unassuming succulent really is. Here’s the lowdown on aloe vera: what it is, how it’s used and who it’s for.
What is Aloe Vera?
Aloe is a genus of shrubs that predominantly originate from North Africa. Aloe vera is a succulent which has been used for centuries, and which is now grown all over the world thanks to its hardy nature and beneficial properties. The thick upright leaves of the aloe vera plant are harvested for the gel which they contain, which is used in food, herbal remedies, and of course, cosmetics.
Fun fact: We know that many natural ingredients have been used “for centuries”, but here’s an example of just how long people have been using aloe vera. The earliest records of aloe vera being used to benefit people dates back to Egypt in the 16th century BC – that’s over 3500 years ago!
What Does Aloe Vera Do For Your Skin?
With a water content of a whopping 99.5%, aloe vera is super soothing and cooling, which is why it’s so often used in skincare, particularly for hydrating dry skin and as an ingredient in products aimed at sensitive skin, psoriasis and eczema.
Rich in enzymes, antioxidants, and vitamins A and C, aloe vera also boasts anti-inflammatory properties that make it great for treating burns, including sunburn, and improving the appearance of acne.
Overall, aloe vera is a fantastic all-rounder that is widely well-tolerated, sustainable and great for all skin types.
Who Can Benefit From Using Aloe Vera?
As we’ve already covered, there’s no limit to who can benefit from using aloe vera. However, there are a few areas where aloe vera really excels; for sensitive or dry skin, inflammatory conditions, and burns.
Aloe Vera For Sensitive And Dry skin
While you can have one without the other, we’re lumping sensitive and dry skin together here because the benefits of aloe vera apply to both. Whether you have reactive skin or irritation caused by dryness, the natural soothing and hydrating properties of aloe vera can ease your discomfort.
Aloe Vera For Inflammatory Conditions
It may not be able to cure your eczema, psoriasis or dermatitis, but aloe vera can be a great help for those with inflammatory skin conditions. Thanks to its combination of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties – and with the added benefit of being very hydrating – aloe vera can offer some much-needed relief.
Aloe Vera For Burns
While it goes without saying that you should seek medical advice for serious burns, for milder cases, aloe vera can be a huge help. Whether you’ve grabbed a hot pan or just spent a little too much time out in the sun, aloe vera can cool the skin down and soothe the inflamed area.
What Products Contain Aloe Vera?
A wide range of skincare products boasts aloe vera amongst their ingredients. Thanks to its light texture, easy tolerability and green credentials, it’s a must-have for any soothing skin range. Here are just a few of our favourites…
Best aloe vera for dry skin:
With aloe vera, hyaluronic acid and black oat extract, Babor Essential Care Moisture Serum is ideal for drier skins, though can be used for anyone who needs a boost of hydration.
Best aloe vera for all skin types:
Combining ultra-hydrating aloe vera with vitamin A & C, Elemis Superfood Kefir-Tea Mist nourishes and refreshes the skin. With the added bonus of antioxidants from superfood, Kefir-Tea, it’s a great all-rounder for any skin type.
Best aloe vera shower gel:
Free of drying soap and 100% plant-based, Caudalie Shower Gel is an incredibly gentle body cleanser. With natural iris and white musk fragrances, this is sure to add a touch of luxury to your daily routine.
Best aloe vera body moisturiser:
An allbeauty best-seller, Clarins Body-Smoothing Moisture Milk with Aloe Vera is a lightweight body moisturiser which deeply hydrates the skin for up to 48 hours. Find out why our customers swear by it – read reviews.