Not Just for Sunburns
DIY beauty vlogger Farahdhukai shared on her video how aloe vera can be very beneficial to keeping our hair healthy and shiny- a perfectly cheaper hair mask- and millions of followers gobbled up all about the succulent plant. Now it’s more popular than it ever was, especially being called by the vlogger one of her “personal hair care secrets.”
Aloe has been known for its soothing qualities, and it’s been used to aid sunburned skin or scalp, doubling also as a styling product. It’s ph level is similar to our hair’s, and it’s composed of beneficial vitamins and minerals. Penny James, a salon owner, shares Farahdhukai’s obsession for Aloe and cites its 75 active ingredients are like “essential amino acids and minerals like copper and zinc that have been clinically proven to help with healthy hair and hair growth.” In spite of Aloe’s positive reputation as a potent product, Stephen Ko, a cosmetic formulator, reminds us that no actual scientific evidence supports all these claims. Read on.
Aloe Vera is a Great Conditioner
Aloe vera is more popular as a skincare product. However, Chaz Dean, the founder of WEN Hair + Body Care, believes that if one should use aloe for hair it is best used as a conditioner. He attributes this quality for its proteolytic enzymes that is partly responsible for replacing dead skins on our scalp.
As a conditioner, he says it leaves your hair smooth and shiny. Additionally, it can promote hair growth, prevent dandruff, and takes away itchiness on the scalp. Stephen Ko also points out that aloe contains polysaccharides, which makes it effective for hair styling and has water-binding qualities. No wonder why companies are making aloe an important ingredient in their various products.
Aloe is Magic
Aloe is a very powerful plant and Chimere Faulk, the creator of Dr. Locs, explains that there are many ways to use both the gel and the raw aloe vera. You may add its gel to an existing conditioner to add to its effectivity, or, the raw plant may be mixed in carrier oil as a hydrating conditioner.
To keep it from smelling, Faulk advices to wash it off your hair after minutes of use, and keep the raw product refrigerated. Also, the efficacy of aloe may differ, depending on one’s hair type. If your hair is fine or too dry, the film that attaches to the strands might give it a “crunchy” texture as a leave-in conditioner.
Aloe Can Help With Scalp Irritation
Aloe vera naturally moisturizes the scalp, thanks to its watery properties. At the same time it may reduce dandruff. It has anti-inflammatory qualities, as well as anti-bacterial and antimicrobial, but don’t expect it to cure extreme dandruff problems. It will hydrate the skin, too, but not as effectively as glycerin or hyaluronic acid.
As a moisturizer, aloe can weigh on thin hair, and it is best to wash it off first before using other hair styling products.
Does Aloe Help With Hair Growth?
It’s been years since aloe has been reputed for promoting hair growth. In fact, a chemical known as Aloenin has been identified in it, which caused hair growth in mice in one scientific experiment.
Still, its effectiveness on humans has not been proven, nor extensively experimented on. No data is able to show its veracity.