Your lola probably grew this stuff in the family garden when you were young, and your mom would break off a juicy spike whenever a burn needed treating. We all see aloe vera as a humble plant, but unbeknownst to many, it boasts a ton of uses that go far beyond sunburn care.
Aloe has actually been used as a natural remedy for centuries by Native Americans, Egyptians, and even famous historical personalities (Cleopatra slathered the stuff all over her body!). Here’s why: it’s very effective in treating many skin conditions, age-related ailments, and hair and scalp problems, just to name a few. With the popularity of Korean aloe vera gels at an all-time high, we thought we’d list 15 ways to use aloe right now!

1. AFTER-SUN GEL
Apply aloe vera gel where your skin is red and tender to the touch. It’ll soothe discomfort and replenish skin that’s been baked in the sun. No burn to speak of? Aloe also prolongs tans and prevents peeling!

2. ACNE TREATMENT
If you are prone to pimples, aloe vera gel can help soothe flare-ups. Gently apply it to your face and massage it in. The soothing properties will eradicate redness, inflammation, and bacteria.

3. ANTI-AGING TREATMENT
The Egyptians didn’t dub aloe vera “the plant of immortality” for nothing! Slather aloe vera gel all over your face and neck to stop fine lines and wrinkles from surfacing. We have one you can use during your everyday cleansing ritual.

4. MOISTURIZER
Aloe vera can double as a daily moisturizer if you like to keep things natural. The gel is lightweight and absorbs quickly into the skin, but is potent enough to smooth over dry patches.

5. EYEBROW GEL
With a spoolie, run aloe vera gel through brows that refuise to behave. They’ll stay put all day long.

6. HAIR GROWTH TREATMENT
Aloe vera can also help encourage hair growth. So if you leave it on your brows daily, they’ll get bushier in time.

7. SHAVING GEL
Apply the stuff pre- or post-shave to lock in moisture and heal any accidental cuts.

8. BLEMISH BALM
You can soothe a bloody scrape or speckled bruise by applying aloe vera over the area. The results aren’t instant, but the gel will help speed up the healing process.

9. INSECT REPELLENT
Bug-proof your body with aloe vera, which just happens to be a natural insect repellent. Apply it over exposed skin and emerge from the wilderness unscathed! Should you be punctured before you remember to apply, aloe vera gel can also heal bites and rashes.

10. HAND AND FOOT GEL
Got calloused hands and feet? Aloe vera gel will polish that sandpaper surface in no time.

11. MAKEUP REMOVER
Many makeup removers contain drying ingredients that strip the skin of its natural moisture. Aloe vera gel can remove makeup without desiccating your complexion. It’ll actually leave you all dewy!

12. EYEBAG ERASER
Banish bags and signs of an all-nighter by applying aloe vera gel around the rings of your eyes. This will moisturize as well as shrink puffiness with its naturally cooling effect.

13. LIP TREATMENT
You can have soft and smoochable lips with the slime from this spiky plant.

14. STRETCHMARK SALVE
Moms-to-be may apply aloe vera gel all over the tummy area to prevent stretch marks as they grow. The cooling sensation will also keep itchiness at bay.

15. LEAVE-IN CONDITIONER
Mix equal parts aloe vera gel and water (maybe even a few drops of your fave essential oil for fragrance). This will create a leave-in conditioner for super unruly strands. Work it in from scalp to tip.
L-R: Tony Moly Pure Eco Aloe Gel, P348, Tony Moly Peeling Me Aloe Soothing Peeling Gel, P548, Aromatica Organic Aloe Vera Gel, P495, Holika Holika Aloe 99% Soothing Gel, P395, Holika Holika Aloe 92% Shower Gel, P325

Top photo: Shutterstock