About aloe vera
Aloe Vera was a popular houseplant years ago. They are a succulent, which is nice, because you don’t have to pay too much attention to them and they survive just fine. I recently spent the day with one of my nephews and one of our activities was transplanting an aloe “pup” into a new pot so he could take it home with him.
Aloes are very easy to propagate. When you have an established plant, don’t be surprised if you find little baby aloes growing in the pot alongside it. These are called “pups”. The outside of the stalks have prickles on them but the rest of it is very smooth. The inside guts of the plant are called filberts, and these are collected and processed and sold in gel form (used externally). You can also get pure aloe juice which may be ingested.
Using aloe vera topically
There are some significant benefits to using aloe. It:
- speeds recovery of burns including radiation, sunburn and chemical burns
- helps treat many, many skin conditions including eczema, psoriasis, rashes and irritations
- is anti-inflammatory- helps boost the immune system response to inflammatory conditions
- promotes skin cell regeneration- used in wound management and anti- aging products and as an antifungal treatment
- is high in antioxidants, minerals and vitamins
- helps promote digestion & constipation
- is being considered for use in treatment of diabetes. If you want to try using aloe for this reason, work closely with your health care provider to monitor your glucose levels
- has a high water content, so is often added to lotions and creams to increase moisture through the skin
- may be used as a hair mask to promote hair growth and nourish scalp (leave in for 20 mins. once or twice a week)
- can be used in a face mask for mature or dry skin (recipe to follow)
Aloe vera included in natural formulas increases the potency of the other ingredients used by 4 times!
Aloe vera face mask recipe:
- 1/2 to 1 inch of aloe vera (plant)
- 1/4 ripe avocado
- 1 tsp raw honey (liquid or runny)
- 1 drop rose otto (or lavender or rosewood)
Scrape out the aloe vera from its skin. Mash the avocado. Mix all the ingredients together and apply it to freshly cleaned face for 20 mins. Wash off with warm water and apply your favourite facial oil.
Taking care of your aloe vera plant
If you are lucky enough to have one of these lovely succulents, you may have questions about how to care for it. They are actually a very easy plant to care for- just let it dry out a bit between watering. When you go to take some for use, cut from the base of the plant (not the top). When your aloe has pups, they may be transplanted into another container with well drained soil. Water the pups regularly until they develop a strong root system. This usually takes about 4-6 weeks, so be patient.
Cautions for using aloe vera:
- some people have sensitivities and/or allergies to this plant, and if you are one of them you should always read self care labels on your products
- if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, avoid ingesting aloe vera (it may stimulate uterine contractions)
- if you are scheduled for surgery, stop using/taking aloe 2 weeks before and after your surgery
- before you ingest aloe vera, discuss this with your health care provider, especially if you are taking any medications
- since aloe vera is taken orally as a laxative to relieve constipation, do not overuse it…it may also be a bowel irritant
Experience the powerful benefits of aloe in these Nature Notes products
This cream is favourited by hardworking hands! That’s right. Man hands, gardener hands, dish-washing hands, dry hands.
Do you have dry hands? Men and women both love this amazing cream made with aloe, frankincense, chamomile and sandalwood. For a full ingredient list, go here.
People use this spray for a number of things. It feels soothing and comforting to hurting skin. You can check it out here. It’s a perfect travel buddy- and flight regulation friendly.
Don’t have an aloe plant but want to make some of your own self care DIY recipes?
No problem. I’ve sourced some excellent options for you here.
Aloe Vera GelUS purchase here
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