The ancient Egyptians revered the Aloe Vera plant for it’s healing and beauty properties and accordingly named it the “plant of immortality”. Aloe Vera is a cactus plant that belongs to the Liliaceae family. It grows in dry climates such as those found in parts of Africa and India and has been used medicinally for centuries.
Aloe leaves secrete a clear gel that when broken off from the rest of the plant that can be applied topically to heal wounds and soothe skin.Various studies have been conducted to examine the benefits of the aloe vera plant and several components of the plant contribute to it’s ability to treat a variety of skin conditions such as acne and skin burns. Aloe Vera also has potent anti aging and skin protective properties.
Aloe Vera contains components that moisturizes the skin without giving it a greasy feel, so its perfect oily skin or combination skin. For women with more mature skin, Aloe Vera acts as a moisturizer and is wonderful in skin products for the face prior to the application of make up to prevent skin drying and maintain moisture. For men, Aloe Vera is excellent in products to apply after shaving, as its healing properties help soothe small irritations and blemishes caused by shaving.
In Ayurvedic medicine, Aloe Vera is used to heal chronic skin problems, such as psoriasis, acne and eczema. Its soothing ingredients reduce skin inflammations, calm itchiness, and help the skin heal more rapidly. For sunburned skin, Aloe Vera has powerful healing activity at the epithelial level of the skin.
When skin is constantly exposed to sunlight, it is also exposed to free radicals, which contribute to the aging process. Aloe vera is also rich in antioxidants including beta carotene, Vitamin A, Vitamin C and Vitamin E. The Vitamin C in Aloe Vera reduces the appearance of sun damage and promotes collagen regeneration. The Vitamin E in Aloe Vera is a powerful antioxidant that reduces free radical damage, fights inflammation and helps naturally slow the aging of cells.
These and other antioxidants aid in improving the skin’s natural firmness and keep the skin hydrated and young looking. Antioxidants work by neutralizing the harmful effects of free radicals, thus protecting against aging and reducing the appearance of wrinkles on the face.
Aloe vera gel also contains two hormones: Auxin and Gibberellins. These two hormones provide healing and anti-inflammatory properties that reduce skin inflammation. Giberellin in Aloe Vera acts as a growth hormone stimulating the growth of new cells. It allows the skin to heal quickly and naturally with minimal scarring. Bradykinase, also present in Aloe Vera, has been shown to reduce redness and excessive inflammation when applied to the skin topically.
The vitamins and minerals in Aloe Vera can play a vital role in skin protection and regeneration, and Aloe Vera is a prized addition to skin care products.