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Nail Care: Aloe Vera for Hydrating and Strengthening Brittle Nails?

Aloe vera is recognized as a preferred ingredient when it comes to body care. It is attributed with various virtues, and it is even suggested that it could have a beneficial effect on nails. What's the reality? Discover here if aloe vera gel can take care of your nails.

Summary
Published June 10, 2024, updated on June 10, 2024, by Pauline, Head of Scientific Communication — 4 min read

What are the benefits of aloe vera for nails?

Cultivated for over 5000 years, the aloe vera is a plant from the Asphodelaceae family, renowned for its decorative potential and cosmetic virtues. Indeed, when you cut an aloe vera leaf in half, you notice the presence of a translucent gel with a viscous texture. This is the aloe vera gel, known for its moisturizing and healing properties. Rich in hygroscopic amino acids, this ingredient acts like a sponge to attract and retain water. In vitro studies have also shown that aloe vera gel can form a film on the skin's surface thanks to the mucopolysaccharides it contains. By polymerizing, their long chains form a thin semi-permeable film that limits water loss.

This moisturizing property of the aloe vera gel can prove beneficial for nails, which are fragile structures primarily composed of keratin. Subjected daily to various aggressions such as cold, repeated typing on computer keyboards, household products, or even the application of nail polish, nails can become weak without regular care. To strengthen the keratin and protect the nails, regular use of aloe vera gel can be beneficial. However, it should be noted that this is only a hypothesis, as no studies have been conducted on this subject to date.

Some advice for applying aloe vera gel on the nails.

Used alone or in synergy with vegetable oils such as olive oil or apricot oil, aloe vera gel could help strengthen nails and make them less brittle. To do this, you can apply a small dab of gel to each of your nails and massage until fully absorbed. The application can be done directly with your finger or with a brush, similar to the one used for applying nail polish.

If you wish, you can also mix aloe vera gel with the moisturizer you usually use for your hands before applying it to your entire hands and nails. To achieve a uniform treatment, we recommend using only one to two drops of gel for a dollop of cream, due to the viscous texture of aloe vera.

Note : After extraction, aloe vera gel can be stored for a few days in an airtight and opaque container in the refrigerator. By adding a bit of vitamin C or vitamin E, antioxidants, it is possible to extend this duration up to 6 months. Regardless, if you notice a change in the color, smell, or texture of your aloe vera gel, it is likely that it has oxidized: it should then no longer be used, as a precautionary measure.

Sources

  • SAPLE D. G. & al. Aloe vera: a brief review. Indian Journal of Dermatology (2008).

  • QADIR M. & al. Medicinal and cosmetological importance of Aloe vera. Medicinal and Cosmetological Importance of Aloe vera International Journal of Natural Therapy (2009).

  • LI J. & al. Aloe vera: A medicinal plant utilized in skin wound healing. Tissue Engineering (2021).

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