Aloe vera is a succulent plant with short thick green stems filled with aloe vera gel. Due to its immense health benefits and decorative use, aloe vera is considered a versatile plant. Aloe vera gel is a powerhouse of antioxidants, several healthy plant compounds, and antibacterial properties.
There are numerous amazing benefits of aloe vera gel. It helps to:
- naturally fade away acne scars
- minimize wrinkles
- enhance complexion
- clear dandruff
- promote healthy shiny hair
- soothe sunburn
Fresh aloe vera gel made directly from the plant can be applied on your skin and hair.
Stepwise instructions for making homemade aloe vera gel
Making your own aloe vera gel is always the best way as you know what is really going into it. The plant gel can be made easily in few simple steps, requires very little ingredients and tools. Above all, homemade aloe vera gel is free from any synthetic preservatives and is far away less expensive than the bottled products.
Making fresh homemade aloe vera gel in small batches is always recommendable. One large mature aloe leaf can yield up to a cup of aloe vera gel. Read further to learn how to make aloe vera gel from the plant.
To make about a cup of aloe vera gel you will need:
- 1 large mature aloe leaf
- natural antioxidant such as vitamin E, any essential oil or simply lemon juice
- sterilized glass container for storing the gel (see how to sterilize a jar)
- Selecting the right aloe vera leaf
Mature aloe leaves are filled with a large quantity of aloe gel. Hence it is important to select a large mature leaf to make your aloe gel. Go for leaves growing around outside the plant with its base closer to the ground. Using a sharp knife cut the leaf leaving around 1 to 2 inch from its base. Take care not to cut too much if your aloe vera plant is young.
- Draining the resin
Aloe vera leaves contain a dark yellow resin in them having latex that can cause mild skin irritation. Place the fresh cut leaf upright for about 10 minutes to drain off the resin.
- Extracting aloe vera flesh
Wash the leaf thoroughly under running water. Remove the spines using a knife. Now use a peeler to peel the leave’s outer green portion. You can always use a knife to gently remove any traces of green bits. Now you will be left with succulent aloe vera flesh. Another method is to slice the leaf vertically into half and scoop out the flesh with a spoon.
- Making homemade aloe vera gel
Cut aloe vera flesh into small portions and place them in a blender. Make sure your blender is clean to avoid any skin irritation. If you are planning to store your aloe vera gel for more than a month then add natural preservatives such as vitamin E or vitamin C (an antioxidants), any essential oil or simply lemon juice in about 0.2% proportion. Blend the ingredients until smooth or until no traces of aloe chunks are left.
Important Note: If you are adding preservatives to your aloe vera gel, the prepared gel should not be taken internally.
Storing homemade aloe vera gel
Transfer the freshly prepared homemade aloe vera gel into sterilized glass container. Initially, the gel will be foamy but would gradually settle. Store the prepared gel in the refrigerator.
With preservatives, the gel can be stored in the refrigerator for more than a month. But if you wish to avoid the natural preservatives; the gel will keep good in the refrigerator for about a week or two.
If you’re wondering where and when to use your homemade aloe vera gel, here are some ideas:
- it can be used to get rid of whiteheads
- it can help you get rid of dandruff
- it can be used in this parsley skin product