|Aloe Vera belongs to the lily family|
|Cut Aloe Leaf reveals the gel|
It is inside the leaves of this succulent plant (a member of the lily family) one finds the beneficial gel that is harvested for the different uses. If you break or cut an aloe leaf, you can see the gel.
Where The Bad Stuff Is
Before you go completely native and just break off a piece of Aloe Vera and rub it directly on a wound, think again. Directly beneath the outer skin of the plant is a substance called aloin that is a skin-irritant. If taken internally, aloin is a laxative. The aloin is always removed as part of the harvesting process. A reputable supplier will carry aloin-free Aloe Vera that is completely safe.
The Magic Regulator
Now, I think Aloe Vera is fabulous for a lot of reasons, but of all the positive things I can say about it, I love it most of all for how it performs as a perfectly natural PH regulator. I know that doesn't sound very sexy, but I really like the idea of using this gentle ingredient instead of (the more commonly used) citric acid where possible.
Because I use hydrosols instead of water in all of my products, and the different hydrosols have varying PH values, it is sometimes necessary to adjust the PH of a product. Adding even a small amount of Aloe Vera to any mix of hydrosols and/or floral waters will instantly bring the PH to within the ideal of 5,0 - 5,5 (for external use). I've tried it numerous times and in several different products and it just performs every time – like magic! I know there is a scientific explanation for this and one day I will research it in earnest. Meantime, I'm still having fun enjoying the magic.