Ingredient Close-Up: Aloe Vera

Wednesday, July 22, 2009 | Tips & How-Tos

Aloevera
Revered for centuries for its skin-soothing and healing properties,
aloe vera is among the world’s oldest medicines. Known as the “lily of
the desert” and the “plant of immortality,” records of the succulent
plant have been traced back as far as the 16th century BCE. Cleopatra
is said to have used the plant’s juicy gel to condition her skin and
both the Greeks and the Romans committed it to their standard
pharmacopeias. Today, the venerated botanical is a staple of cosmetic,
cosmeceutical and even dietary formulas. Thanks to modern science,
we’ve uncovered many of the dynamics behind this miracle plant.

Check out these aloe-infused Pür Minerals makeup and skin care products for supple, silky-smooth skin:
Mineral Shea Butter Lipstick
Mineral Melt
Pür Polish
Revitalizing Facial Wash
Mineral Moisture Infusion

Aloe Vera as a Skin Soother

Originally
used to treat burns and wounds, much of aloe vera’s soothing nature
comes from its physical rather than chemical makeup. Applied topically,
the plant’s viscous gel acts as a barrier, repelling pollutants and
locking in moisture. Chemically, aloe vera is rich in polysaccharides,
sterols and amino acids—biologically active compounds that target
inflammation and calm the skin.

Aloe Vera and the Immune System
Increasingly
popular in sun burn treatments, aloe vera helps jumpstart the body’s
immune response when overwhelmed by environmental stressors. Research
has shown that aloe vera can actually reverse the immune suppression
caused by UV overexposure. Additionally, studies suggest an
antibacterial, antifungal dimension to this amazing plant.

Aloe Vera and other Ingredients

Because
of its gelatinous texture and receptive makeup, aloe vera is an ideal
cosmetic and skin care base. Interacting positively with most topical
ingredients, aloe gel acts as a conductor, trapping ingredients close
to the skin’s surface and creating a moist internal environment
conducive to cellular activity.

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