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Known as the ‘plant of immortality’ by the Egyptians, the benefits of aloe vera are many. Today its use is becoming increasingly targeted, medicinal and it can be used to treat a host of problems – from joint pains to sunburns to treating skin issues. Aloe vera is a cactus plant and grows in dry climates, especially Africa and South-east Asia. The fleshy substance encased inside the aloe vera leaf is a clear gel that is effective in treating a range of skin ailments as well as hair and scalp problems.
It can also treat minor wounds and skin infections, cysts, herpes, psoriasis, eczema and even diabetes. Here are some of the most common skin ailments that aloe vera can fix:
- Sunburn – aloe vera acts as a healing agent for sun burnt skin. The clear gel acts as a protective layer on the skin and replenishes the skin’s lost moisture. Since aloe vera acts as an antioxidant, sunburns heal faster when treated with it.
- Moisturizing dehydrated skin – aloe vera acts as a great moisturizer for your face and the best part is it gets the job done without giving that greasy feel. It is particularly useful for women who use mineral-based makeup since aloe vera works as a great moisturizer for them. Apply aloe vera generously on your face and neck before you put on makeup to prevent your skin from getting dry. Men can also use aloe vera as an aftershave balm since it can heal small cuts caused by shaving.
- Acne treatment – for those nasty breakouts, aloe vera is perhaps the best treatment since it contains two hormones, auxin, and gibberellins. Together, these hormones act as healing and anti-inflammatory agents. In fact, gibberellin also acts as a growth hormone since it helps in cell regeneration. Thus, the skin heals quicker and the scarring is minimal. Chronic skin problems such as psoriasis and eczema can also be dealt with using aloe vera.
- It prevents skin aging – some of the most common signs of skin aging include fine lines, wrinkles, and saggy skin. Aloe vera can slow down the aging process because it contains antioxidants such as beta-carotene, Vitamin C and Vitamin E which can help the skin become firm along with keeping it hydrated.
- It reduces stretch marks – During pregnancy, the skin stretches to its maximum thus resulting in stretch marks and loss of elasticity. The marks are the result of minor tears in the skin because of excessive stretching. Applying aloe vera on your stretch marks can minimize their presence.
Aloe vera is truly a wondrous plant and can always be relied upon for any skin and hair issues. For best results, scoop out the fleshy part from inside the leaf and apply directly on your face for half an hour.