Guest Post by Nimisha
What is Aloe Vera?
Scientific name for this useful plant is 'Aloe Vera Linn' believed to be very good for skin. “Aloe Vera” also known as “Grhrit Kumari” has gained huge popularity lately. It’s a primary ingredient in most of the cosmetics and medicines we see and use. Aloe Vera is not a new
herb; it has been in use in herbal medicine since the beginning of the First Century AD.
Aloe Vera which originated from Northern Africa was introduced to China and various parts of southern Europe in the 17th century. It is well known for its soothing and curing properties is now widely used in Cosmetics as well as Alternate medicine. In Thailand it is known as 'Crocodile Tail' plant, since it looks like a crocodile's tail. The Arabs call aloe vera as the 'desert lily' because the flowers that grow on aloe vera plant resemble lily
The aloe vera plant is widely used for commercial purposes. They include aloe vera shampoo, aloe vera gel and aloe vera body wash. Aloe Vera is widely used in skin products and acne treatments. It’s a versatile herb which has lots of benefits both when used externally as well as internally.
Aloe Vera contains important minerals like Calcium, Chromium, Copper,Iron, Magnesium, Manganese, Potassium, Phosphorous, Sodium, and Zinc.Aloe Vera also contains useful vitamins. These include A(beta-carotene and retinol), B1 (thiamine), B2 ( riboflavin), B3
(niacin), B6 (pyridoxine), B12 (cyanocobalamin), C (ascorbic acid), E(tocopherol) and Folic Acid.
Aloe Vera has over 300 species so it’s difficult to say which of them can be consumed but for application most species are safe. Since I am not qualified enough to advise intake of Aloe Vera, I would like to share some of the topical use of the herb.
The Aloe Vera plant has thorny leaves which are filled with slime-like Gel. The gel is the magic ingredient which we use for various ailments.
Extract the gel out of aloe vera by slitting the leaf lengthwise and then scraping out the gel using a spoon.The gel should be mashed. You can mash it using a hand blender or mixer. The gel can be stored in a good and clean airtight container in the fridge for a week.
Aloe Vera for Hair Loss
- Take one leaf of Aloe Vera and wash it. Now slit the leaf into 2 halves lengthwise. You will see the slimy gel. This gel should be smeared all over the scalp. Leave it for 15-20 mins and wash until clean or with a mild shampoo(optional).This should be done twice a week for best results.You will see reduced hairfall as well as growth of new hair very soon.
- Another way of using aloe vera for hair is by boiling aloe vera gel in pure coconut oil for sometime and then using the oil.
Aloe Vera for Skin
Aloe Vera extracts have been widely used by the Arab, Malay and Chinese communities for its soothing and healing properties.
- Use aloe vera gel directly on face and neck and let it dry for 15-20 mins. Wash off.This can be done daily for curing dry skin and acne.
- Another way of using aloe vera is by mixing it into grated cucumber for a great refreshing summer face pack.
Aloe Vera is suitable for most skin types.Though, mild irritation can occur on application.
Aloe Vera has anti septic properties which help in healing of wounds,scars and injuries. Aloe Vera possesses incredible moisturizing properties. Studies show that Aloe Vera improves the skin's ability tohydrate itself, aids in the removal of dead skin cells and has an effective penetrating ability that helps transport healthy substances
through the skin.
Aloe vera is also helps to slow down the appearance of wrinkles as it can actively repair the damaged skin cells that cause the visible signs of aging. Components of Aloe Vera have been found to reversedegenerative skin changes by stimulating collagen and elastin
Aloe Vera in Pain Management-
Aloe Vera is also believed to reduce severe joint and muscle pain associated with arthritis, as well as pain related to tendinitis and injuries. When applied directly to the area of pain, Aloe Vera penetrates the skin to soothe the pain.
Aloe vera grows very easily in pots or on ground. The plant doesn’t require much care and grows pretty fast so it is also very inexpensive. I highly recommend readers to plant atleast one aloe vera plant in their home and use the miraculous herb. It not only saves
money but also provides all in one cure for common skin and hair problems!
Hope you enjoyed reading this !