I’m sure the phrase aloe vera for acne sounds way too familiar, just like aloe vera for wound healing or aloe vera for clear and glowing skin, but the real question is does it work? Can one plant really be that powerful?
Trust me, I would be skeptical as well, but the research and anecdotal evidence both support this theory. When you think about it, how many skincare products you know that are based on aloe vera? And let me tell you a secret - you don’t need to throw your money on expensive creams filled with abrasive chemicals when you can make your very own aloe vera remedy for acne. It’s an effective, easy-to-make, and safe-to-use alternative that might be the solution to your pimple problem. But let’s first try to understand what exactly is aloe vera and how it really works on blemishes, then we can dive right into the natural homemade recipes based on aloe vera for acne-prone skin.
If you thought of aloe vera as a type of cactus, you’ve been mistaken. It’s actually a succulent - the Latin word for juice, in the genus Aloe and Asphodelaceae family. It has a distinctive thick and fleshy green to grey-green leaves, with pointed limbs and pins down its sides. One of the best things about aloe vera is that it’s very common and easy to grow at home, and it grows really quickly - meaning you can have your very own 100% natural and pure aloe vera gel in no time.
Most uses of aloe vera involve the plant’s leaves. It’s most frequently used as a food flavoring (approved by the FDA), as a food supplement, in cosmetics, and as a herbal remedy. People refer to it as the wonder plant, and it has been the topic of much scientific research over the years, regarding several claimed therapeutic properties.
We advise using the aloe vera gel topically for various skin conditions like acne vulgaris but don’t ingest it orally. While the use of topical aloe vera is not associated with significant side effects, the aloe vera leaf extract has been listed by the OEHHA among "chemicals known to the state to cause cancer or reproductive toxicity". Also, several studies made by the International Agency for Research on Cancer have found the ingested liquid aloe vera gel to be a possible carcinogen, and it can also cause abdominal cramps and diarrhea.
You can hear countless claims regarding the beneficial and therapeutic properties of aloe vera, but not all of them are actually backed up by science. Here are the most well-researched uses of aloe vera:
In 2009, a study by the Academy of General Dentistry claimed that aloe vera tooth gel is as effective, and in some cases more effective, than commercial brands in controlling cavity-causing organisms. According to the article, this effect happens because the aloe latex contains anthraquinones, which are chemical compounds that are used in healing and arresting pain, anti-inflammatory in nature.
Additionally, the aloe vera tooth gel tends to be less harsh on teeth, as it does not contain the abrasive elements typically found in commercial toothpaste, which makes it a great alternative for people with sensitive teeth or gums.
Research has backed up the claims that aloe vera is a powerful antioxidant source. So powerful, that one study associated it with alleviating symptoms/or prevention of cardiovascular diseases, cancer, neurodegeneration, and diabetes. On the skin, the antioxidant and antibacterial properties of aloe vera help prevent damage caused by pollutants, and if you have pimples caused by bacteria these properties of the aloe vera can help your skin.
Aloe Vera is a healing agent rather than a protective one. This means that using aloe vera as a sunscreen is probably a bad idea, but applying it after being exposed to the sun can help you heal faster and protect you from consequences of sun-damage, like cancer.
Aloe Vera acts as a protective layer on the skin, it cools it down and moisturizes it. The powerful antioxidants in the aloe vera gel can help the sunburn heal much faster. Additionally, mixed with the right cosmetic ingredients, aloe vera can be a potent anti-aging ingredient slowing down the formation of fine lines and wrinkles.
You might think that sunburns are a kind of wound on the skin, and you’ll be right. Yet, aloe vera contains two great chemicals which help improve the wound healing process, in more general terms. The first chemical is called polysaccharide, and it boosts cellular movement, which leads to faster and more efficient tissue regrowth.
The second chemical is called glycoprotein, and it acts as a pain reliever and controls the inflammatory response. One study conducted in 2015 reviewed the effect of aloe vera in healing cutaneous wounds and concluded that aloe vera improves wound healing both clinically and experimentally.
Yet another benefit of aloe vera is in its power to help other acne-fighting ingredients penetrate deeper into the skin layers, which makes them more effective. A study from 2004 concluded that the aloe vera gel enhances the anti-acne properties of the Ocimum Gratissimum Linn leaf essential oil.
The effect of aloe vera on skin affected by acne vulgaris has also been studied extensively. In one study from 2014, researchers found that aloe vera reduced the acne lesions during the 8-week trial. Another study from 2014, found that oral aloe vera juice may be helpful in decreasing noninflamed and total facial acne lesion counts in patients with mild-to-moderate acne vulgaris. It works by preventing the bacteria from infecting acne wounds and stimulating the process of healing. This also reduces the redness caused by acne. Aloe vera also has antifungal properties which help in treating inflammation like cysts on the skin.
The best way to use aloe vera for acne is by applying it topically on the skin alone or mixed with other ingredients that are known to help skin affected with acne.
The first and most simple way to get the benefits of aloe vera is by applying pure aloe vera gel on the skin affected with acne. If you want it completely natural, take one aloe vera leaf and gently squeeze the gel from the plant. After this, dab a thin layer of aloe on the affected areas of your body. Make sure your hands and skin are well-cleaned before applying the gel. Leave the gel on the body until it completely dries out, and then wash your skin with warm water. It’s best used before going to bed. Use it on a daily basis.
Freshly squeezed lemon juice is one of the most famous natural remedies for acne. It’s filled with antioxidants, like vitamin C, which helps the skin fight free radicals and also helps boost collagen levels. Additionally, the citric acid in lemon juice can reduce excess oil and dry out the skin. This is why is also recommended to always moisturize the skin after using homemade facial masks with lemon juice in the recipe. To make this powerful mask take one tbsp of pure aloe vera gel and mix it with a few drops of lemon juice. Blend the ingredients well, and then apply them on the affected areas on the skin. Make sure you clean your hands and face before applying the mask. You should leave the mask on a couple of hours before washing your face with lukewarm water. Use this mask every night before bed.
Honey is known for its numerous benefits for the human body. Eating raw honey can improve your immune system, and it sure improves your skin, especially if you are suffering from an acne problem.
To make this mask and cure your acne get 1 tbsp full of aloe vera juice and 1 tbsp of honey, mix the two ingredients, leave it on for 10 minutes and apply it fresh on your acne-affected area. This mask will also help a lot of people that have more sensitive skin because the honey and aloe vera together will soothe your itching and easily irritated skin and do miracle work in getting rid of your acne.
Tea tree oil is a promising way to treat acne, it has a lot of benefits for the skin, it calms redness and it’s anti-inflammatory. It can help you get the clear skin you have always wanted.
To make this tea tree oil and aloe vera mask you take 2 to 3 tbsp of pure aloe vera gel and mix it with 3 to 4 drops of tea tree oil. After making the mixture, apply it on your affected areas and leave it overnight for best results. In the morning just rinse your face with water and make sure to repeat this process for a while until your face is clear from the acne.
If acne is a problem for you, regular exfoliation can do wonders to your skin. Scrubs are amazing for exfoliating your skin and keeping the dead cells away from your face. A scrub with sugar and aloe vera is good for helping you exfoliate your dead cells, but also it will help keep the pores from becoming clogged and thus reduce the formation of acne.
For this scrub, you will need sugar, aloe vera, and some olive oil. Take ¼ cup of sugar (you can use white or brown sugar), 1 tbsp of olive oil and 1 tbsp of aloe vera gel. Mix these three ingredients until you get a paste form of them and apply it on your face while massaging it in a circular motion.
Turmeric has a rich history when it comes to skincare and beauty. It’s been used over the centuries for many skin conditions, and research has backed up the beneficial characteristics of turmeric. That includes acne, blemishes, itching, and rashes; even dermatitis and allergic reactions, not to mention that its anti-inflammatory qualities can target your pores and calm the skin. So, if you are suffering from acne, a homemade mask from turmeric and aloe vera might just do the trick for you. What to do? Take 1 tbsp of pure aloe vera gel, put it in a small bowl, add 1 tsp organic turmeric powder and 3-5 drops of rosehip oil. You can use a fork to mix all the ingredients until you get a smooth paste. Clean your face and hands before applying the mask. Leave it on the face to act for about 30 minutes. In the end, when the mask is fully dry, wash your face with lukewarm water. You can repeat the procedure on a daily basis.
Cosmetic clay possesses strong antibacterial properties and it might be the best option for oily and acne-prone skin. This is because the clay tightens the skin and draws oil and dirt away from the skin’s surface. Another benefit that cosmetic clay is frequently linked to is the ability to soothe inflammation and cleanse the skin.
Take one small bowl, add 1 tbsp of aloe vera gel and 1 tbsp of cosmetic clay. Mix the ingredients well, until you get a fine paste. Use an applicator or your fingers to apply a thin layer of the mixture on the affected area. Make sure your face is clean before applying the mask. After 15 to 20 minutes wash your face with lukewarm water. For best results use this mask twice a week.
Apple Cider Vinegar is frequently used in anti-acne home remedies because it’s believed it can kill acne-causing bacteria due to the organic acids found in vinegar. Those same acids can make acne scars and discoloration of the skinless visible. Just be careful, applying apple cider vinegar directly on the skin can cause burns. This is why it’s good to mix it with other ingredients like aloe vera and still get the most out of its healing powers. Mix together 1 tablespoon of aloe vera gel, 1/2 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar, and 1/2 teaspoon of water. Stir well until you blend the ingredients completely. After this, use your fingers or a cotton ball to apply the mixture all over the face. Let it dry for 20 minutes and then wash your face with warm water. Repeat the procedure one to twice a week.
Vitamin E is actually a group of chemical compounds mostly found in leafy greens, oils, and vegetables. Vitamin E oil is considered as one of the most powerful moisturizers that work best for dry skin. In your search for solutions to your acne condition, I’m sure you’ve stumbled upon information about the powers of vitamin E. The compounds inside this Vitamin assist the body in the process of forming collagen, which is the component that gives healthy skin its elasticity and flexibility, making it endure more damage without permanent scarring. Just extract some aloe vera gel and add a few drops of vitamin E oil. Mix the ingredients well and then apply the enriched gel directly on the face. Let it act on the skin for about an hour or two and then rinse off. You can repeat this procedure on a daily basis.