Aloe vera is a well-known health and well-being natural ingredient, popular for its ability to help cure skin problems such as burns and wounds.
But its benefits for hair are relatively less known. In fact, does it have any benefits for hair?
Aloe Vera is a plant characterised by thick leaves that hold a gel-like liquid inside. This gel-like substance is where the magic of aloe-vera comes into its own, with cooling and soothing properties rich in vitamins and minerals.
It is this substance which is thought to make the plant a commonly used natural remedy for skin conditions.
The active components include vitamins, enzymes, minerals and more:
Vitamins: rich in Vitamin A, C and E which are antioxidants. It also contains vitamin B12. Antioxidant help neutralise free radicals which could cause inflammation.
Enzymes: it contains enzymes such as Bradykinase, which help reduce inflammation with other enzymes helping to breakdown sugars and fats.
Minerals: rich in calcium, copper, magnesium, potassium, sodium and zinc – these enzymes are essential for metabolic functioning and helping with hydration.
Fatty Acids: Contains plant based fatty acids which help reduce inflammation.
Aloe Vera benefits for Hair
There are little to zero studies on the effectiveness of aloe vera having any tangible benefits for hair growth. In fact, the majority of the content online is subjective – people’s own opinions about how it has helped them regrow hair and benefit from healthier scalp.
Aloe Vera is known to help reduce inflammation on the skin, so it is possible that it could help reduce inflammation on your scalp, which could promote hair growth. But this will only be possible where the cause of your hair loss was due to inflammation in the first place.
The role of inflammation has been studied more commonly in women than men, but it is theorised that inflammation of the scalp can lead to conditions such as alopecia, or cause psoriasis / eczema of the scalp which leads to hair loss.
It is thought that the anti-inflammatory benefits of aloe vera maybe able to reduce or even reverse this to help promote positive hair growth.
What we do know is aloe vera can help provide the agreeable environment on your scalp to help promote hair growth. For instance:
Aloe Vera can reduce scalp itchiness
An itchy scalp is usually symbolic of seborrheic dermatitis (dandruff). Some studies have shown how aloe vera can help reduce the inflammation on the scalp which is caused by dandruff and reduce the itchiness associated.
Aloe Vera is rich in vitamins and minerals, which when massaged into your scalp can help promote hydration and re-mineralisation of your hair follicle, providing needed nutrients to keep your hair strong and growing.
By solving underlying issues which maybe contributing to hair loss, Aloe Vera could help provide an environment that supports the re-growth of your hair.
How to use it on your hair
Aloe vera comes in many products, from shampoos and conditioners, to gels.
As it is primarily a soothing gel, we recommend using it in gel form as a mild pre-wash cleanser to apply onto your scalp before or during washing.
You could also use it in your shampoo and / or conditioner as part of your hair care regime, carefully washing and rinsing out thoroughly.
Known side effects and concerns
Like anything, before using aloe vera apply a small amount to your skin or scalp to test for any reactions. Some people who have sensitive skin, may suffer from irritation or rash in which case it will not be advised to use it.
Aloe Vera itself cannot by magic re-grow your hair.
However, it is a powerful anti-inflammatory, full of vitamins and minerals which could help rectify underlying issues such as psoriasis, dandruff or other inflammation of the scalp – and by doing so, help promote healthy, stronger hair growth.