It's funny, we've all heard about aloe vera and it's miraculous healing benefits - but do you really know the power behind this little green plant?
Aloe vera didn’t hit the beauty market just yesterday. The first written reports on the benefits of the aloe vera plant reach as far back as 6,000 years ago in ancient Egypt. It was regarded as a sacred plant, the “blood” of which held the true secrets to beauty, health and immortality. Cleopatra and Nofretete, two amazing and powerful women, greatly valued the nourishing plant and used it as a part of their daily skincare regimens. Aloe quickly became known as the “plant of eternity." Even its anti-inflammatory and pain soothing effects were documented in the “papyrus Eber” of 1,550 BC. Now who wants to take a closer look at this amazing gift from nature? Umm, we do!
Aloe vera is a cactus plant that belongs to the Liliaceae family. It grows in dry climates, such as those found in Africa and India, and has been used medicinally for centuries. There are over 400 species of aloe, with each plant providing it's own unique health benefits. Aloe leaves secrete a clear gel, that when broken off from the rest of the plant, can be applied topically to heal wounds and soothe skin. The uses and benefits are endless, but we like to focus on those related to skincare.
First, let's review what components make this miraculous succulent such a skin hero. Rich in vitamins, enzymes, minerals, sugars, lignin, saponins, salicylic acids and amino acids, coupled with Auxin and Gibberellins, two plant based hormones, the plant's composition is almost too good to be true. So, let's get specific. It also contains vitamins A (beta-carotene), C and E, which are antioxidants. But the list goes on! Aloe even contains vitamin B12, folic acid, and choline, which aid in tissue growth and cell development. All these elements add up to super rich ingredients created by nature to help heal, soothe and slow the effects of aging in our skin.
Those with oily skin will love aloe vera because it has the ability to moisturize without being greasy. It’s also anti-bacterial and anti-septic, which helps to prevent acne from appearing in the first place. If that weren’t enough, aloe also works as a natural toner to tighten pores and restrict dirt and residue buildup. Could it get any better? We think not.
Yet one of the most exciting benefits of aloe is its ability to prevent and even reverse signs of aging. The naturally occurring nutrients and moisturizing-elements of the aloe plant help to increase collagen production, firm skin and plump the completion - seeming to erase fine lines and wrinkles with ease. Additionally, antioxidants found within the gel protect skin from the damage caused by free radicals, reducing the appearance of age spots for an even, more balanced complexion.
Dry or irritated skin? No worries! Because of its ability to boost skin regeneration and soothe the skin with its hydrating properties, moisturizers that contain aloe are an excellent choice for your daily skincare regimen, especially if you suffer from bouts of eczema, psoriasis, or chronic flaking or peeling. Not only will aloe vera improve your skin with hydration to stop flaking and itching, it will also soothe the inflammation that often causes these symptoms.
So what does all of this mean? Here's a quick snapshot of the results that come from combining aloe vera gel into skincare products.
* Anti-inflammatory relief * Offers UV protection * Provides accelerated wound healing * Anti-bacterial * Increases moisture binding into the skin * Aids in the reduction of acne * Softens skin * Reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles
For JEM, we believe aloe vera is a super hero amongst super heroes. The applications of use and endless benefits make it one of our favorite ingredients. That's why you will find it in so many of our products, including: