Aloe vera gel and lemon juice are full of vitamin-rich ingredients for the skin, so they make a fantastic face pack. Aloe vera face masks are great for keeping skin clear and healthy, not to mention reducing any skin redness, inflammation, or pain.
If you have an aloe plant waiting to be used, now’s your chance to learn how to harvest it and turn it into a skin-soothing treat. You can use up any extra to make your own aloe water to hydrate and heal on the inside.
Aloe vera is derived from the aloe vera plant and is rich in vitamins A, C, and E. These vitamins function as antioxidants and help protect the skin from damage from outside stressors such as the sun, and inside stressors such as poor diet and other negative lifestyle habits.
Aloe vera is also a powerful moisturizer, fortifying the protective skin barrier, and it has been used for centuries in various cultural practices for the treatment of skin wounds and burns. It is just a miracle substance with antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, skin-protective, and wound healing effects [source].
Lemons—and the citric acid in lemon juice—can also be good for our skin. Rich in vitamin C, it helps to ward off free radicals that contribute to aging skin [source]. Lemon juice is a natural exfoliant that can be used as a gentle peel for those top few layers of dead skin and to unclog pores.
Used regularly, it can also help fade pigmentation and acne scars. It’s also great for toning and moisturizing the skin. This facial pack is recommended for all skin types.
How to Make a Fresh Aloe Vera Face Pack
- 2 aloe vera leaves
- Juice from ½ a lemon
- 1 tablespoon honey
- Thin cloth (optional)
Cut two aloe vera leaves from the base of the plant. Slice the edges (pointy teeth) lengthwise from each side of the leaf in long sections. Then chop the leaf into two- to three-inch sections. This will make getting to the gel much easier than slicing an entire leaf whole.
Once you’ve exposed the aloe vera gel, use a knife to extract the gel from the leaf sections. It’s okay if you’ve got some pulp along with the gel. Place the gel (and any attached pulp) into a blender along with the honey and the juice from half a lemon. Blend for 30–60 seconds.
How watery your mixture is will depend on the size of your lemon and the consistency of your aloe vera gel. You can apply the mixture directly onto your face and neck (avoid the eye area since that is more sensitive) for 10–15 minutes. Alternatively, you can dip a thin cloth into the mixture, soak it well, and lay it over your face and neck.
- Place cotton pads over your eyes underneath the cloth if you are worried about irritating the skin in the eye area.
- If you feel any type of mild stinging, don’t be alarmed; you might just need to dilute the lemon juice with water a little. If you develop a rash or persistent irritation and/or burning, rinse off your face with water and contact your dermatologist.
- Once you are finished, wash off with warm water and follow with a moisturizer.
- This mask can be done once a month as a brightening and firming pack.
- As with any time you are using an exfoliant, either store-bought or homemade, you will want to be sure you use an appropriate SPF for sun protection afterward. This is because your skin will be more susceptible to sunburn and sun damage directly following an exfoliating treatment. Contact with citric acids, such as lemon juice, may make the skin more sensitive to burns upon exposure to sunlight and may cause rashes and dark hyperpigmentation. So cover up! You don’t want to undo all that work of revealing fresh, glowing skin by being in the sun unprotected. Sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or above and sun-protective clothing are ways to protect your skin from not only sunburns but cosmetically displeasing sun spots.
This post was medically reviewed by Dr. Rina Mary Allawh, M.D., a dermatologist who performs adult and pediatric medical dermatology, skin cancer treatment and cosmetic dermatology. Learn more about Hello Glow’s medical review board here. As always, this is not personal medical advice and we recommend that you talk with your doctor.20