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Aloe vera actually works

Sarah Bellum Says:

One of my personal heroes of the cosmetic industry is Zoe Draelos, MD a dermatologist who is frequently quoted on matters of cosmetic science. In a recent article in Dermatology Times, Dr. Draelos answered a question that’s bugged me for ages: Is there really a scientific reason that aloe vera is good for burns? So, here are three things you should know about aloe vera:

Where does Aloe come from

Aloe vera gel is harvested from plants by cutting open the leaves and collecting what oozes out. This thick, clear “ooze” is known as a mucilage.

What is Aloe made of

This mucilage is 99.5% water. The other 0.5% is a combination of mucopolysaccharides, choline and choline salicylate.

What does Aloe do?

Aloe works two ways: Mucopolysaccharides are film formers that create a thin, protective covering over the burn as the aloe dries; this film helps shield exposed nerve endings. Choline salicylate (which is chemically similar to the active ingredient in muscle rub creams) is an anti-inflammatory that soothes burned skin.

Her explanation really helped me understand why this natural remedy really works. But here’s the REALLY important part: don’t buy products that use reconstituted powdered aloe vera because it doesn’t contain the same 0.5% of goodies that make the aloe work.

Have you ever used aloe vera gel on a burn? Did it work for you? Leave a comment for the rest of the Beauty Brains community.

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