Why Aloe Vera For Acne?
I had two cystic acne breakouts. They were red, huge, and filled with pus.
After two weeks, I returned home and looked into my bathroom’s mirror and I saw that the right side of my face had two huge dark spots and my skin looked bumpy too. This was one of those mirrors; the one’s that bring out every imperfection in the most prominent way.
I tried to get over it and ignore it. I tried to tell myself that time would make it better. But despite everything, I was obsessing over the hyperpigmentation. My family members told me they didn’t even notice them, but c'mon they weren’t looking at my face under that bright white light that was in my bathroom.
Then I remembered that when I used to have milder acne, I would put on aloe gel every night before sleeping and that always helped with the scars. So I asked my mom if she had any of that gel left and she gave me some aloe vera gel that she had lying around.
What Is Aloe Vera?
It’s no secret that aloe vera is one of the most versatile plants! Aloe is called ‘miracle plant’, ‘wand of heaven’ or ‘plant of life’ and they live up to these names!
Always mistaken for a cactus, but it’s actually a succulent and there are actually 400 species of Aloe and 'Aloe Vera' is the most common!
This herbal medicine has been used for over 2000 years. Going farther back than this, 6000-year-old stone carvings of aloe plants were found in Egypt, pretty mind-blowing, huh?
WHAT IS POST INFLAMMATORY HYPERPIGMENTATION (PIH)?
Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation or PIH is the medical term for discoloration of the skin that is caused by an inflammatory wound such as a wound, scrape, rash, pimple or acne. It can differ in color from brown, red, pink, purple, depending on your skin type and color. We have to take note though that PIH is flat with discoloration and it’s neither pitted nor raised.
PIH forms when inflammatory wounds or other skin traumas cause inflammation. As our skin heals, it produces too much melanin (a substance in our body that gives skin our color) thus leaving a darker area.
Whats The Difference Between Acne Scars and Hyperpigmentation?
Good news, hyperpigmentation is actually not true scarring and is often called “pseudo-scarring” since it does not damage the skin’s follicle though it may leave a mark or discoloration for a period of time.
Acne scars which are the scars that look pitted occur when there is a loss of tissue causing the skin to appear pitted or depressed. Skin traumas can also cause an excess of tissue causing a raised scar. Hyperpigmentation, on the other hand, will just appear darker than the rest of the skin, it’s not pitted nor raised.
Will Aloe Vera Work For Acne Scars?
Aloe may not be able to help with acne scars (pitted or raised scars) since this is mainly caused by lack or excess formation of tissue on the skin and may need other forms of acne scarring treatment such as micro-needling that promotes the buildup of collagen deep in the skin to plump pitted scars and even out the skin texture.
Instead, aloe is a great, natural way to speed up the fading of PIH or hyperpigmentation.
Aloe Vera Skin Benefits
Aloe Vera comprises of over 100 vitamins, antioxidants, minerals and active compounds that are all working together to repair the skin from the inside by renewing the development of new, healthy skin cells revealing your healthy skin underneath!
1. Lightens Hyperpigmentation
Aloe Vera also contains Aloin which is a natural compound found in Aloe. It is a good depigmentation property so it will help lighten hyperpigmentation or PIH. Due to Aloe’s unique genetic makeup that allows its natural nutrients to penetrate in the deepest layers of the skin for serious healing.
2. Reduces inflammation
Lastly, since aloe reduces inflammation, it can help post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation from developing in the first place or reduce the chances of it developing.
Aloe Vera Skin Benefits:
- Contains Magnesium Lactate while soothes itching
- Aloe contains 8 enzymes that can reduce inflammation
- Aloe also contains amino acids that can increase the absorption of other products applied onto skin so it's excellent to increase product efficacy when combined with other beneficial skincare ingredients.
- Protects skin against UV radiation.
- Moisturizing and anti acne effect.
Aloe Vera For Acne Scars Review
I Used Aloe Vera On My Acne Scars For A Week
Keep in mind, I used aloe vera on hyperpigmentation or dark spot type of acne scars. I put aloe vera on every night before sleeping and washed it off in the morning. My bathroom’s mirror was just terrible to look into so I was avoiding it for a few days. A week after starting the aloe vera gel for acne scars, I happened to look into that mirror, under the harsh light. What I saw astonished me.
Did Aloe Vera Gel Work On Dark Spots?
My skin was much smoother than before (something I wasn’t able to notice in other mirrors)! You might think I am exaggerating, or that I am mistaken, but I kid you not, my acne scars were visible but not as dark. Since then, and till now, I have almost never slept without aloe vera gel on my face. That drastic improvement I saw had such a powerful effect on my subconscious, that since then, acne masks don’t freak me out as much as they used to. So I urge all of you with hyperpigmentation to try aloe vera gel!
How Long Does Results Take?
Each of our skin is different so we may see various results! Some users experienced skin brightness the next day with some seeing lightened acne marks after 7 days of use! Results may vary too depending on the damage to the skin, shape, and size of your hyperpigmentation.
“Aloe Vera Gel has some amazing benefits for acne marks! After I applied aloe vera gel on my acne marks for a week, I saw the texture of my skin greatly improved!”
How To Use Aloe Vera
Apply aloe vera topically onto skin. It's a fantastic moisturizer and skin soother. If you have sunburn it’ll soothe the skin and help the healing process go by a lot faster. It also will help skin conditions like eczema and rashes. It’s also great just to apply daily to keep the skin hydrated and soft.
How To Use Aloe Vera On Hyperpigmentation
- Cleanse face thoroughly and dry the area you will work on
- Apply the Aloe Vera gel thinly on the skin, and you can massage the gel in a circular motion to assist with the absorption
- You can leave the aloe on your skin overnight and rinse the next morning. Alternatively, you can let the aloe vera dry and wipe with a warm face towel after.
- You can repeat the application every night.
For topical application or treatment, you can’t go wrong with the natural gel from the Aloe Vera leaf. This is more concentrated and packed with natural vitamins and minerals. You can get Aloe Vera leaf on some groceries or how about getting your own Aloe Vera plant!
To use the Aloe Vera leaf, simply cut a small portion of the leaf, cut it in half and take the clear center gel out and apply directly to the area to be treated.
You can save the unused leaf for the next few days!
Harvesting the Aloe Vera gel does not kill the plant, as the center can regrow the lost leaves.
You may also buy aloe vera gel, however be careful of the ingredients since some gels might not contain aloe as a main ingredient.
Does Aloe Work For Acne?
Raw aloe vera was one of my favorite things to slap on my face every once in a while to give my skin a break from the various products and chemicals that I usually use. Aloe claims to be good for acne too so the main reason for my use of aloe vera was to get rid of the acne covering my face.
So, I admit, every once in a while I'll subconsciously (or rather knowingly) pick at the acne on my face.
Luckily, aloe vera has acne healing properties!
Aloe Vera For Acne Properties
- It contains plant hormones that promote growth and healing of skin to help brighten skin.
- Natural antibiotics, pain inhibitors, and astringents have been found in the aloe vera plant, therefore making it a promising substance in encouraging your skin cells to overturn and heal any scarring.
- Lastly, it is supposed to counteract infection because it contains antioxidants and polyphenols.
- The open wound left behind after popping acne will be protected from the dirt and bacteria from the air too with a layer of aloe over it.
My Review Of Aloe Vera On Acne
Now, for my experience of using raw aloe vera directly on the face. Like I stated at the opening of this review, I think that aloe vera, although sticky and very thick, is quite a comfortable substance to apply directly onto my skin.
What I did was cut a small piece of aloe from the entire leaf (a little goes a long way), peel it, and spread the sticky "goo" across my face. I, then, allowed the aloe to soak into my skin and dry slightly before rinsing it off (which took longer than I would have thought since the water essentially rejuvenated the aloe, making it sticky again and harder to wash off).
I did this every night for two months with the hopes that my skin cells would overturn at least once and I would see some improvement.
Did Aloe Vera Work For My Acne?
Aloe vera didn't seem to help my acne at all.
Alas, I honestly didn't see much change... or any change, really. Of course, I was disappointed at the results. Don't get me wrong, I wasn't expecting a miracle by any means, but I was expecting at least a small degree of skin brightening.
Personally, my acne didn't improve as I still experienced my usual "from time-to-time" breakouts. It's possible that aloe vera didn't benefit my acne because my acne could be caused by hormones instead of bacteria or inflammation.
The best thing that came out of using the aloe vera was that while I had it on my face, it felt relaxing as if I had a sheet mask on. That was fun, but a sheet mask is no use unless it is effective in delivering what it promised.
Overall, I don't see myself turning to the aloe vera plant again as treatments for acne. It has many other amazing qualities though, so don't completely ignore alone as a potential remedy for something else!
PRODUCTS WITH ORGANIC ALOE VERA AS A BASE:
Because of aloe vera's soothing and antinflammatory properties, aloe is commonly found is cosmetics. You can try these products that have Aloe Vera as a base ingredient, it is more convenient, hygienic and has added ingredients, like Vitamin C that can further help with hyperpigmentation treatment. The ingredients are natural so due to aloe's enhanced skin absorption properties, you don't have to worry about harmful ingredients being absorbed into skin.
Have you tried Aloe Vera for acne scars? And how else do you use this multipurpose plant? Let us know in the comments below!