Fun fact: Aloe vera is one of the oldest mentioned plants on record to be used for medicinal purposes. In fact, there were 6000-year-old carvings found in Egypt that depict the aloe vera plant, which, back then, was considered the "plant of immortality." Now, we consider it the go-to solution for healing sunburns and treating itchy skin. But aloe vera can actually be supremely useful in one specific area of our skin — our face. And finding the best aloe vera gels for your face can be your ticket to a whole host of skin benefits.
Aloe vera may help heal wounds, thanks to two powerful chemicals — polysaccharides and glycoproteins. These chemicals, which are found in aloe, are believed to help increase cellular movement and control the inflammatory response, leading to more rapid healing. That means aloe can help heal dark spots, scars, and acne. Aloe is also especially great if you're someone, like yours truly, who can't help but attack a zit with spot treatments and drying lotion. If your zit has scabbed over, applying a little aloe vera gel may help it heal quickly and without scarring. That in and of itself means aloe vera could be a mini miracle for your skin. And of course, if you've got a sunburn, there's nothing better to slather on your face than this soothing gel (pro tip: store in the fridge — it'll feel amazing).
When shopping for an aloe vera gel specifically for your face, make sure the formula you choose isn't too thick. You want something lightweight that you can use on its own or mix with your favorite moisturizer.
Ahead, find my top three picks for the best aloe vera gels you can put on your face.
1. The Best Aloe Vera Gel For Your Face (And The Best Bang For Your Buck)
Seven Minerals Aloe Vera Gel is my top pick because it contains the most product — a whopping 12 ounces, to be precise — and it has a near-perfect rating with over 2,000 rave reviews. The formula is simple, gentle, and effective: It's grown in USDA certified-organic fields in Texas and contains only five natural ingredients. Reviewers report that this aloe gel is great at healing acne and also helps prevent new breakouts from forming. If you're looking for a lightweight, all-natural moisturizer, it makes for a great alternative to creams and lotions. You can also buy it in a huge 128-ounce bottle for the whole family, and it comes in a smaller travel-size for beach vacations, too.
2. A Near-Identical Formula That's A Bit Cheaper
Amara Beauty's Aloe Vera Gel is pretty similar to Seven Minerals, but it boasts even more five-star reviews. You do get much less product — this is only an 8-ounce bottle — but it's also cheaper. Also, the five-ingredient formula uses xanthan gum to thicken instead of seaweed extract. Both are totally fine to use on skin, but expect this gel to be a bit on the thinner, runnier side (which can be a pro or con, depending on your preferences). Use it on your face to help hydrate skin, treat acne, or heal post-procedure peeling. Some reviewers say it helped their skin recover after radiation treatments, too.
3. A Soothing Aloe Vera Gel In Mist Form
If you prefer lightweight mists and sprays over gels and lotions, give Earth's Daughter Organic Aloe Vera Hydra Mist a try. It's an aloe vera gel in mist form, made with 99.8 percent organic aloe vera and cucumber oil to further help soothe your skin. This bundle comes with two bottles — one full size and one travel size — so you can leave one in your bathroom cabinet (or fridge) and stow the other in your toiletry bag. Reviewers say it feels super refreshing on skin and helps set makeup and heal burns, though some report that it's not as moisturizing as they'd like, so if that's what you're after, you might be better off with the Amara Beauty option, above.
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