Aloe Vera is a very popular and widely used plant pretty much available anywhere nowadays. Originally from Africa Aloe has an extensive and rich history. Stemming all the way from ancient times to modern times, Aloe has proven to be very versatile and useful. Aloe Vera has been known to be used for mummification purposes, health care, skin care, beauty, hair care and just simply as a very pleasing and peculiar plant to have and look at.
I have been using Aloe leaves since about September but in the past 2 months or so I have been using it religiously everyday as part of my skin care regimen. I use up about a whole leaf every 3 weeks or so depending on how much I need and how juicy or succulent the leaf is. I usually get these very big, succulent (love that word) leaves for about $2 at my local fruit and vegetable shop. There’s usually a whole bunch of leaves in a box and you are able to sift through all of them and pick the one that looks the healthiest and greenest. I try to avoid the ones with brown spots or dark marks, the greener and plumper the better.
Aloe is most popularly known for it’s great uses for treating all types of skin ailments. From Sunburns, wounds, and many other skin issues such as psoriasis and eczema, Aloe has been known to assist with healing them. One of my most favorite uses for Aloe is spot treating pimples and blackheads.
For years my nose has been plagued with a huge population of black and white heads. Mostly because I have always dealt with sinus issues and everyone knows what happens when you constantly have a stuffy, runny clogged nose. You are constantly rubbing, blowing your nose and most of the time you are rubbing your nose in anger and frustration as those with sinus “allergies” may know. So the damage done to your nose’s skin and the surrounding areas as the result of so much rubbing, can be very frustrating and sometimes the damage can be irreversible.
So I have been applying pure Aloe gel from the plant directly on my face and incorporating them into my facials. One of the main things I started using it for were for pimples. I hardly get breakouts but when I do one of the first things I do is apply Aloe. What the Aloe does to these pimples is amazing. Aloe gradually kind of dries them out. Not too dried out but just enough to make that pimple’s top layer of skin peel. This then reveals a new layer of skin much lighter than what I just peeled. Which is fascinating because most pimples have been leaving dark marks on my skin lately so this layer picks up the dark layer and reveals a new lighter layer of skin. So that actually reduces scarring a whole lot.
As you can see in the picture below I use a little jar and squeeze all the Aloe I will need for the day and with a q tip I apply throughout the entire day depending how busy I may be. Since the Aloe dries clear in less than 5 minutes you will not notice anything. Many people don’t like dealing with Aloe Vera pure because it can be slimy at times but for me it’s not an issue it dries clear and no flakes or anything it just seamlessly blends with your skin.
As far as blackheads I apply Aloe Vera to my nose then I moisturize with my regular moisturizer or just leave the Aloe on my nose alone overnight and rinse the following morning. Since I have been doing this, the colony of blackheads on my nose are not so apparent. AlsoI noticed the skin around my nose is less red and dried out. So Aloe has been actually repairing my skin and even the wrinkles I had along the side of my nose are almost gone. I have been very pleased with how aloe has been helping my skin repair itself.
* ***When squeezing out aloe make sure you get the clear substance free of any yellow or green by products from the leaves. This yellow and green byproduct from the outer leaf, is actually an irritant known as Aloin. So if you are especially consuming Aloe Vera in juice form it is very important to carefully avoid any green or yellow by products. Also make sure that you are not also applying it on your face either. Make sure you are getting the all clear stuff if you choose to extract the aloe juice directly from the plant. Most store bought aloe gel are free of Aloin.****
I like to use aloe in many of my natural homemade facials and can also be used in many hair concoctions as well. It works well with most fruits, honey, aspirin basically whatever face mask you desire to come up with I’m sure Aloe would be a great addition.
Not only is Aloe limited to just beauty and skin care but Aloe also has it’s myths and beliefs surrounding it.
According to Scott Cunningham’s Encyclopedia of Magical herbs:
Gender: feminine /Planet: moon/ Element: Water
“The aloe a popular house plant, is also protective. it guards against evil influences and prevents household accidents. in Africa aloe is hung over houses and doorways to drive away evil and draw in good luck. in Mexico, large wreaths made of whole garlic bulbs strung on wire are festooned with pictures of saints, packets of magical herbs,rocks,sat,as well as clumps of freshly cut aloe. These are used for protection, luck etc.”
So overall Aloe has many benefits. Health wise Aloe is also vital for the immune system, collagen production digestive issues as well. I can’t compare store bough Aloe gel, both natural or processed, since I have never tried them. I’m sure if it’s pure it should provide the same benefits although to me it’s never the same like the real thing. There are many youtube videos showing you different techniques for extracting the juice for me I just simply squeeze it out or cut a piece of the leaf and squeeze the juice out from both ends.
For more information on Aloe check out 10 Health benefits of drinking Aloe.