Aloe Vera is a short-stemmed shrub that can be distinguished by its succulent and upright leaves which form a dense rosette. Its genus, Aloe, contains more than 500 species of flowering succulent plants, with many of those growing wild in tropical climates all over the globe.
It is also sometimes described as a wonder plant because of the many uses and health benefits that it brings. Some of its uses include in the field of research, as a dietary supplement, as a traditional medicine, and even in commodities such as tissues, wipes, moisturizers, soaps, and shampoos.
One of the major reasons why Aloe Vera is often used in hygiene products is probably because of its moisturizing and soothing effect. Aloe Vera is so versatile that it can be used to solve problems in different parts of the body, from toe nails to our hair tips.
Aloe Vera’s Active Components
Aloe Vera is called a wonder plant for a reason, and that is because of its high nutritional and medicinal ingredients. In fact, it contains more than 200 essential nutrients and no other plant or natural product contains as much. Some of Aloe Vera’s active components are vitamins, minerals, sugars, anthraquinone, enzymes, hormones, and fatty acids.
Aloe Vera and Hair Growth
One of the most popular benefits of Aloe Vera is its ability to enhance hair growth. In fact, it has been a prevalent ingredient in hair products such as shampoos, conditioners, hair creams, and other hair enhancing products. This is because of Aloe Vera’s high vitamin and mineral content, which makes up a powerful hair stimulus.
Aloe Vera gel, which can be found and easily squeezed out from the leaves, is the main part of the plant that is used for hair growth. It helps promote and enhance hair growth by increasing blood circulation to the scalp and providing essential nutrients to the hair follicles, to allow them to grow strong and thick hair. It also cleanses the scalp by balancing its pH level. A clean scalp and good blood circulation is a good combination to achieving faster hair growth.
Aloe Vera also helps in reducing sebum build up, which is one common reason of slow hair growth. Sebum is an oily substance that is naturally produced and secreted by the hair glands. It helps keep the scalp moisturized, but too much of it can slow down and even totally hamper the rate of hair growth. When it mixes with dirt and accumulates on the scalp, the pores where hair grows out get blocked. Since Aloe Vera has antibacterial properties, it helps solve the problem of having excess sebum on the scalp.
Men and women all over the world have also used Aloe Vera as a safe and natural treatment in preventing hair loss and solving thinning hair problems. However, it can be more effective in treating hair loss if it is used upon noticing signs of hair loss and not waiting for the condition to worsen.
Aloe Vera is a good natural treatment for hair loss because it contains proteolytic enzymes, which repair the dead skin cells on the scalp and promote hair growth. It also has a chemical composition which is similar to that of keratin, the primary hair protein that nourishes and rejuvenates the hair.
Does Aloe Vera Have Side Effects?
Generally, Aloe Vera is a safe plant. However, there is one part which can be toxic when ingested in its pure form and in big quantities. The potentially dangerous part is the yellow latex called Aloin, which can be found in the outer layer of the plant. Latex consumption can cause stomach pain, cramps, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, and electrolyte imbalances.
If you use commercially made products, the chances of encountering Aloin is very minimal as commercial products are already made without the said substance. But, if you are planning to use or consume Aloe Vera at home, do not consume pure Aloe Vera juice, especially if it has not been treated. Also, make sure that the gel from different parts of the plant will be extracted carefully and properly to avoid any risk of poisoning.
Advantage of Using Aloe Vera Over Other Chemical Products
If you have to choose between an organic hair product and a hair product made with chemicals, always go with organic. Organic and plant-based products such as Aloe Vera, will gently infuse your hair follicles and skin cells with natural minerals, oils, and herbal extracts while chemically treated products may contain harmful ingredients which can lead to health problems in the long run.
Also, when you use Aloe Vera, you are doing your part in helping the environment by letting biodegradable substances go back to nature instead of draining harsh chemicals.
6 Ways of Using Aloe Vera for Hair Growth
- As a treatment before shampoo
Using Aloe Vera before shampooing your hair can maximize your shampoo’s effectiveness in cleaning your hair strands and washing off dirt and oil. Aloe Vera treatment can remove the itchy and flaky dandruffs even before shampooing an can also prevent dandruff from coming back.
- As a shampoo
There are natural Aloe Vera shampoos available in the market or you can use freshly extracted gel and use it as a shampoo. If you find it too sticky, you can mix it with any mild shampoo that you are using.
- As a hair conditioner
Aloe Vera gel works as a great conditioner because of its natural moisturizers. Just apply the gel on your hair and massage it up to the tips. For best results, wrap your hair with a towel and leave the gel on for 10 to 15 minutes. Since the gel is sticky, you may need to wash it off with an herbal shampoo to remove the stickiness.
- As a styling gel
What better way to use Aloe Vera gel than to use it literally as a gel? This is even better than chemical-based hair gels because it is all natural and gentle enough for everyday use without damaging your hair.
- As a hair mask
Using Aloe Vera as a hair mask is recommended for those with dry and damaged hair as the gel can help repair and rejuvenate hair strands. Just mix half a cup of Aloe gel with two teaspoons of powdered fenugreek, two teaspoons of Castor oil, and a tablespoon of Basil powder. Apply the mixture onto your hair and leave it on overnight. Wash your hair with a mild shampoo the next day.
- As a hair growing gel
This is very simple as you only have to apply the gel on balding parts of your scalp. Since it is natural and free from any chemicals, you can put as much and as often as you want.
Top 5 Aloe Vera Products
Aside from using Aloe Vera gel that you yourself squeezed from the plant, there are also great Aloe Vera products available that can provide great benefits for hair growth.
- Organic Aloe Vera Gel Great for Face, Hair, Sunburn, Acne, Razor Bumps, Psoriasis, Eczema
This Aloe Vera gel from Nature Sense is cold pressed and charcoal filtered, which means that all the essential vitamins and nutrients are retained in their pure form. It is organic so you can get the highest potency of fresh aloe for healthy and hydrated skin and hair. It is also a great alternative to products containing harsh chemicals and prescription drugs.
It can be used all over the body for hydration and rejuvenation while also stimulating the production of elastin and collagen. It also works as an amazing hair conditioner and styling gel for dandruff treatment and healthier hair growth.
This Aloe Vera has so many uses and is safe for everyone, including children. It is free from gluten, fragrances, artificial colors, aloin, and parabens. To use on the hair, just apply as a pre-shampoo scalp treatment for dandruff, as a conditioner, or as a light hair styling gel.
- Aloe Vera Gel Organic for Face, Hair, Skin
La Lune Naturals’ Aloe Vera Gel is 99.75% organic and has less additives that is why it has a thinner consistency than other natural Aloe gels. It is also cold pressed, meaning essential nutrients are retained.
It has many skin benefits such as providing treatment and soothing effect to sunburn, eczema, acne, wrinkles, abrasions, razor burns, insect bites, and scratches. But, it can also be used as a nourishing hair gel or even as a pre or post shampoo treatment.
It only contains USDA certified organic ingredients such as Aloe Barbadensis, Citric Acid, Ascorbic Acid, and Potassium Sorbate. It also has Xanthan Gum, which works as a natural thickener for the aloe to coat skin and hair better. To use, just apply a sufficient amount of La Lune Aloe Vera Gel to skin and hair. Leave it on for a few minutes, especially when using as a treatment. It may also take several applications before you notice desired results.
- Premium Nature Aloe Vera Gel for Face, Body & Hair
Premium Nature’s Aloe Vera Gel is an all natural product that can be used to heal and soften skin, especially for those who are suffering from eczema, burns, psoriasis, insect bites, chronic itchiness, and dry skin. It has a non-oily and alcohol-free formula, which makes it even more effective in tackling various skin problems.
It also helps in nourishing the hair and scalp and promoting hair growth for those who have bald spots and thinning hair. It works great as a hair styling gel because it holds style while still keeping the hair soft. It also keeps the hair lustrous and strong, so it will not be prone to breakage and damages.
Its ingredients include Water, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Glycerin, Carbomer, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate, Diazolidinyl Urea, and Disodium EDTA. For best results, apply daily on affected area and use as a hair treatment or a hair mask before shampooing your hair.
- Aloe Vera Oil For Skin Hair And Health 2 oz Amber Glass Bottle with Glass Dropper
Dr. Adorable’s Aloe Vera Oil is purely organic that is why it is suitable for both internal and external applications. It can be used in many cosmetics by mixing a few drops to facial wash, body lotions, shampoos, conditioners, and hair styling creams. It comes with a dropper, for easier application.
It is natural and purely organic and was manufactured with the highest standards of quality. It does not contain any GMOs and other harsh chemicals. Aside from pure Aloe Vera, it also contains Vitamin E to provide more benefits to the skin and hair.
- Premium Organic Aloe Vera Oil Pure Health Hair Skin Care Moisturizing
This organic Aloe Vera Oil from Liquid Gold is 100% natural and can be used to make treatments for hair growth. It has anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-inflammatory properties which can be used in a lot of ways to benefit hair and skin.
You can combine a cup of this Aloe Vera oil with two tablespoons of Castor Oil and apply the mixture on your hair roots and strands. Cover your head with a shower cap and leave it on overnight for maximum absorption and penetration.
Because of Aloe Vera’s and Castor Oil’s essential vitamins and nutrients, this hair mask can highly condition, nourish, and rejuvenate hair. It can also promote hair growth on bald spots and thinning areas on the scalp.
You can also use this Aloe Vera oil to make other hair masks and hair treatments such as Aloe Vera and Yoghurt Mask; Aloe Vera, Coconut Oil, and Honey; and Aloe Vera and Apple Cider Vinegar.
The Bottom Line
There is no doubt that with its high vitamin and mineral content, Aloe Vera is a great natural product that can be used to address common skin and hair problems. Since it is natural and does not contain any chemicals and other harmful ingredients, using it is not just safe, but also affordable.
However, if you are experiencing a more severe and advanced hair loss problem, including scalp infections and other illnesses, it is best to consult a doctor first so that you can be properly checked and advised about your condition. While there may be nothing wrong with using Aloe Vera, you may also need other medications or other solutions to effectively treat your hair problem.