The Holy Grail of Skin Care
If someone asked me to pick my favourite houseplant, it would 100%, without a doubt, be aloe vera. It’s probably one of the most versatile plants around, and it hides in plain sight too.
Aloe vera has been the talk of the skin care crowd for thousands of years. Known for its healing and medicinal properties, it nourishes the body inside and out, and features in multiple skin and hair care products across the globe.
The benefits it provides are extensive – from hair strengthening, to cleansing skin, to soothing skin irritations. How does it work its magic? The aloe stems store water, creating a clear, gel-like substance which is jam-packed with vitamins, antioxidants, minerals and amino acids.
If you don’t have a green thumb, don’t worry – it’s not a tricky plant to grow. Because aloe vera is a succulent it prefers dry, warm climates and doesn’t require daily watering. You can easily grow it indoors or outdoors – just pop it in a sunny space. To extract the gel, just cut one of the leaves from the base, scoop out the gooey insides of the plant and whizz through a blender. It doesn’t get much more natural than this! (Alternately, aloe gel is readily available in tube form at various stores and pharmacies.)
Here’s some of it’s best uses:
Healing acne, sunburn and skin issues:
The plant has the ability to reduce itchiness and inflammation because it abounds in antioxidants and minerals that boost the healing process, speed up new cell growth and repair damaged tissues. It’s also naturally cooling and soothing, making it the best sunburn relief treatment.
Aloe vera doesn’t leave a greasy film on the skin like many store-bought moisturisers do. In fact, aloe is renowned for unclogging pores and softening the skin. It also keeps the skin hydrated thanks to its water-dense nature.
Aloe vera works wonders keeping dandruff at bay, getting rid of unnecessary oil on the scalp, acting as a hair conditioner and even aiding hair growth by naturally increasing blood circulation.
Aloe juice is packed with important vitamins – B, C, E – minerals and folic acid. Regularly consuming an aloe tonic helps to maintain these nutrients at the right levels. It’s also one of the only plant sources of vitamin B-12, so it’s perfect for vegetarians and vegans too. And, let’s not to forget other essential health benefits it provides, including aiding digestion, constipation, liver function and heartburn.