Aloe vera has probably been a staple for everyone of us after we got our first sunburn. My favorite was when you would put the aloe in the fridge and then rub it on your parched, dry skin. Even in an all of our now fancy, grown-up beauty products, aloe has a major presence as a gentle skin soother. But the all-natural ingredient has just been included on a list that calls into question whether "natural" is synonymous with "safe" for your skin when it comes to aloe vera.
We use aloe vera in our products because of the wonderful benefits that they bring however there is now a very specific version that is now listed on the Prop 65 in California.
According to cosmetic chemists, the plant's soothing properties are questionable. We received some more information from one of our favorite beauty insider outlets, Allure. So, what is a totally natural ingredient like aloe vera doing on the list? Aloe comes in different forms both naturally and in products (decolorized aloe, aloe latex, aloe water, the sap-like gel that comes straight from the leaf). Prop 65 only calls out "non-decolorized, whole-leaf extract," which is "the liquid portion of the aloe vera leaf (e.g., what remains after removal of fibrous material, such as lignified plant fibers), and is a natural constituent of the aloe barbadensis Miller plant," according to the American Herbal Products Association.
Here's why: Non-decolorized, whole-leaf aloe extract contains a chemical called aloin, which has been shown to cause cancer in rats. There's one major caveat here, though: The study found aloin causes cancer only when ingested. In other words, the worrisome kind of aloe included on the list isn’t actually relevant to your favorite beauty products. To be totally clear, there is no evidence that aloe applied to the skin can causes cancer.
Our products however do not use the aloe vera leaf extract that is now on the list.
So, why keep the product that walks such a fine line?
The first recorded use of aloe vera by humans took place in the 16th century BC in ancient Egypt, where it was referred to as the “plant of immortality”. Throughout the course of history, verified mentions of aloe vera and its herbal benefits have been found in countries like China, Japan, India, Greece and even by the Roman Empire.
Aloe vera, given its anti-microbial properties, is often used as a facial herbal remedy to help heal blemishes and scars that may be created as a result of acne. Aloe vera is a rich natural source of vitamin C, which can help with the production of collagen, an important protein that can be found in the skin and other connective tissues. Collagen helps to ensure that skin cells remain supple, firm and strong, which, if you're looking to help combat spots and acne, may be a beneficial addition to your skincare treatment.
Aloe vera may be able to help promote the production of collagen to help keep skin healthy. Without sufficient collagen you may begin to see your skin sag, wrinkle and age faster.
Aloe vera skin creams, gels and supplements might be able to help counter these different dermal issues because of the diverse nutritional content they possess. Like we talked about earlier, vitamin C in particular is known to play a role in collagen production, so increasing your intake of this nutrient through the use or ingestion of aloe vera products or supplements may be an ideal solution to help boost anti-ageing efforts.
We can’t argue with hundreds of years of research… we simply use the cleanest version of the aloe in each of our products.