What does Brad Pitt have in common with Cleopatra? Just like the ancient Egyptian queen, he’s a fan of aloe vera. Cleopatra is said to have included aloe vera in her beauty regimen, while Pitt collaborated with beauty line Kiehl’s in 2008 to market an environmentally friendly aloe vera body wash.
Aloe vera isn’t just popular among celebrities. This green succulent plant has been used for thousands of years as a moisturizing ingredient in hair and skin care, being dubbed at various times “the plant of immortality,” “lily of the desert,” and “medicine plant.” Aloe vera originated in Africa and is now cultivated in most tropical areas all over the world. The name aloe derives from an Arabic word meaning bitter, while vera means true.
Aloe vera juice is 99% water, which accounts for the plant’s legendary moisturizing properties. It is used nowadays in a vast array of beauty products such as cleansers, gels, moisturizers, acne creams, sunscreen, shampoos, conditioners, and make up.
Luckily, you don’t need to spend a fortune to enjoy the healing and moisturizing qualities of aloe vera. Pure aloe vera gel can be purchased at most organic stores. Rub aloe vera into chapped heels and elbows for a near-magical cure, massage it into dry or sun-damaged locks, or add a few drops of an essential oil to create an all-purpose moisturizer. Once you add aloe vera to your beauty regimen, you’ll never want to go without this miracle plant.