10 Things You Never Knew About Aloe Vera

Aloe vera has healing powers that are proven by science – studies have shown that it heals small wounds up to eight days faster than a standard dressing. It is also rich in vitamins and minerals and has antibacterial properties.

Read on to find out why you should use this plant in your beauty program. For best results, use a 100% pure aloe vera gel, as it contains no added dye or fragrance that could irritate your skin.

1. Make-up remover

Many commercial make-up removers contain chemicals and dyes that can dry out the skin, says Ildi Pekar, founder of a skincare line. She recommends putting some pure aloe gel on a cotton pad and using it to remove your makeup, including stubborn mascara.

2. Shaving gel

Pure aloe vera makes an excellent shaving cream, and it is antibacterial, which means it takes care of all the nicks of the razor. It allows a close shave and also moisturizes. Use it alone or combine it with nourishing ingredients to get a luxury beauty product to use yourself.

3. Soothing aloe ice cubes for burns

Fill an ice cube tray with aloe gel, then put it in the freezer. Use them after a little too much sun, insect bites, poisonous sumac, or even to soothe psoriasis, says Corene Hejl, owner of feed my skin, a beauty company.

4. Face washing

Mix 1 tablespoon of aloe vera gel with 1 tablespoon of almond milk and 1 tablespoon of lemon juice. Wash and let rest for a few minutes on your face before rinsing. According to Pekar, this product is ideal for people with sensitive skin and those suffering from rashes and rosacea. If you want to give your skin an anti-aging treatment, mix 1 tablespoon of aloe with 1 teaspoon of 100% raw organic coconut oil. Massage your hands until the contents are hot, then wash and rinse.

5. Exfoliating Skin

Exfoliation can be a chore, but it is important if you want fresh, radiant skin. Aloe vera is a good base for a homemade scrub because it helps soften the skin and provide oxygen to skin cells, Pekar explains.

Mix a cup of 1/2 aloe with just enough brown sugar or baking soda to obtain a grainy but not pungent texture. Rub it on your elbows, heels, knees or any other place that needs to be softened. Do it in the shower so you can easily rinse the mixture.

6. Breath freshener

To combat bad breath, drink up to 1/4 cup of pure aloe vera gel dissolved in 1/2 cup of water or apple juice, advises herbalist Letha Hadady, author of Healthy Beauty. Aloe vera contains a compound called B-sitosterol, which calms acidic indigestion – a common cause of bad breath. But don’t drink more than you should: aloe vera has a laxative effect in high doses!

7. As a night treatment

If you want a moisturizing night mask that you can wear to bed, mix pure aloe juice with three inches of cucumber and half an egg white, says Tammie Umbel, founder of Shea Terra Organics.

8. Eyebrow gel

If you have a lost eyebrow hair problem, try putting some aloe gel on a clean mascara stick and sweeping it over the lost hair. This should make them stay in place without them becoming hard or sticky.

If you’ve done too much with tweezers, mix some aloe gel with some castor oil and apply it to your eyebrows. This seems to help the eyebrows too waxed to grow faster.

9. Dry and cracked feet

Try this ultimate foot mask for soft feet: Mix 1/2 cup oatmeal, 1/2 cup cornflour, 4 tablespoons aloe vera gel with 1/2 cup unscented body lotion. Rub on all feet until exfoliated. Allow the mixture to work for ten minutes, then rinse with hot water.

10. Hand sanitizer

The commercial hand sanitizer dries your hands, so try this recipe instead. Mix 1/2 cup aloe vera gel, 1/4 cup alcohol, and 20 drops of your favorite essential oil. Pour into a bottle of spritz and use it on your hands.