Have you ever wondered about the expiration of that bottle of aloe vera gel hiding in the back of your bathroom cabinet? If yes, you are reading the right article at the right place.
Aloe vera gel (derived from the succulent leaves of the aloe vera plant) is a staple product celebrated for its myriad benefits in beauty and skincare. It has remarkable healing properties and soothing effects on every skin type.
Whether if used to alleviate sunburns, moisturize your dull, patchy & dry skin, or promote overall skin health, aloe vera gel has proved a super effective and versatile skincare product. Due to the unbeaten properties of aloe vera gel, it has found its way into various skincare products and cosmetics. But, like every skincare product, aloe vera gel also has a very limited lifespan, and it does expire.
Understanding the expiration phenomena of aloe vera gel is crucial for its efficacy and the overall well-being of your skin.
In this article, We will dive into the fascinating world of aloe vera gel and tackle the most burning question that lingers in the minds of beauty enthusiasts: Does Aloe Vera Gel Expire?
We will explore the signs of expiration and some exciting steps to make your aloe vera gel last longer. So buckle up yourself, and let’s unravel the mysteries of aloe vera gel expiration!
Does Aloe Vera Gel Expire?
Yes, aloe vera gel does expire. As you know, aloe vera gel is a natural plant-based skincare product and it is not immune to the passage of time. Whether homemade or commercially bought, aloe vera gel does go bad.
While there may be some difference in the shelf life, homemade aloe vera gel usually lasts for a year or 2. In contrast, commercially available aloe vera gel can last 3-4 years. But with time, both types of gel do expire.
Commercial aloe vera gel usually contains chemicals and preservatives that prolong its shelf life and prevent microbial growth, ultimately delaying its expiration. However, once the recommended time frame passes, it starts going bad.
The shelf life of aloe vera gel is also influenced by multiple factors such as formulation, storage, exposure to air, sunlight, and other direct heat sources.
Over time, all these factors affect the stability of aloe vera gel, causing breakdown and loss of effectiveness in the product that speeds up its expiration.
Usually, manufacturers print the expiration date on the product to indicate how long it will last once it is opened. So, if you want to determine the lifespan of your skincare product, check the labeled expiration date to keep track of its effectiveness.
For homemade aloe vera gels, it is usually recommended to label the dates of preparation on the bottle because it will help to indicate the expiration later on.
Signs of Expiration
Here are some key signs that will help to indicate that your aloe vera gel is no longer good to use, and you should discard it as soon as possible to ensure your skin health and safety.
- Color change: The first sign is a color change. Fresh aloe vera gel usually has a clear or yellowish color, while the commercially available aloe vera gel is light green. If you notice any color change with time, such as dark brown, blackish, or cloudy, unfortunately, your aloe vera gel has gone bad, and you should throw it out.
- Deteriorated texture: Notice the texture of your gel. If it appears clumpy, separated, watery, or gives a gritty feel, it has expired because fresh aloe vera gel mostly has a super smooth and soft texture with a mildly thick consistency.
- Off smell: Give aloe vera gel a good sniff. Fresh aloe vera gel (whether homemade or commercial) has a mild, plant-like smell. If it becomes unpleasant, sour, rancid, or odd, discard it quickly because it is unsuitable.
- Mold growth: Visible mold growth is a clear sign of expiration. When the aloe vera gel expires, bacteria grow rapidly in it. So, if you see any unusual growth or any other foreign substance in the gel, discard it. It is no longer safe to use on your skin.
- Separation of ingredients: Separation of ingredients is a special sign for commercially available aloe vera gel. But, if you have mixed any other skincare ingredient in homemade aloe vera gel, you may also notice it. If the ingredients get separated, it indicates that aloe vera gel has expired.
- Skin problems: Fresh aloe vera gel usually has a healing and soothing effect on the skin. If you notice problems like skin irritation, bumps, redness, or discomfort after applying gel to your skin. Remove it quickly because it might have gone bad, and you should throw it in the bin.
How To Make Aloe Vera Gel Last Longer?
Extending the shelf life of aloe vera gel is a super straightforward process. It involves a few common practices. Here are some common steps that you can take to make your aloe vera gel last longer:
- Store in cold, dark places: To make your aloe vera gel last longer, storing it in a cold, dark place away from sunlight or direct heat sources is essential. High temperatures or frequent temperature fluctuations affect the consistency of the gel and its natural properties. It also accelerates the breakdown of active ingredients. Therefore, it is essential to store it properly to increase its life.
- Use clean containers: While extracting the fresh aloe vera gel from the plant or pouring the commercial gel, use clean containers. It will prevent contamination risks, maximizing aloe vera gel’s shelf life.
- Add preservatives: Fresh aloe vera gel lacks preservatives and chemicals, unlike commercial products. Incorporating natural preservatives such as vitamin C, E, or essential oils into the gel will significantly prolong its shelf life.
- Refrigerate the gel: If fresh aloe vera gel is extracted from the plant leaves, refrigerate it promptly. Refrigeration will inhibit the growth of bacteria and other contaminants, eventually making the gel to last longer in the best possible condition.
- Freeze the gel: If you want to preserve the aloe vera gel for longer, freeze it. Freezing is a viable option to extend the shelf life of this natural goodness. Please keep it in containers or pour it into the ice cube tray.
- Seal the containers tightly: Sealing the aloe vera gel nicely in airtight containers will aid in extending its shelf life. Airtight containers limit exposure to air, light, and other contaminants, which preserves the gel’s natural freshness by preventing the risks of spoilage and oxidation.
What happens if you use expired aloe vera gel?
Aloe vera gel has numerous skin benefits, but it may harm your skin once it expires. Using expired aloe vera gel can result in some undesirable consequences. Here are some potential problems that arise if you use expired aloe vera gel:
- Reduced effectiveness: Aloe vera gel is a well-known skincare product used worldwide for its soothing and moisturizing properties. But, when this product ages, its active components start breaking down, ultimately losing effectiveness. Using expired aloe vera gel may fail to provide the intended skin benefits like healing against sunburns.
- Skin irritation: Expired aloe vera gel may contain harmful bacteria, mold growth, or other irritants. Applying the gel to your skin starts causing problems such as bumps, skin irritation, redness, itching, and allergies.
- Skin breakouts: If you apply expired aloe vera gel on the skin, it disturbs the skin balance and causes skin issues. Expired gel will clog the pores, leading to acne breakouts that may worsen with time.
- Skin contamination: Expired aloe vera gel provides a suitable medium for growing bacterial and fungal contaminants. When you apply the gel, these contaminants settle on your skin and cause skin contamination.
Does aloe vera gel lose its potency?
Yes, aloe vera gel loses its potency. Due to factors like temperature fluctuations and exposure to light, the active elements of the gel, such as enzymes, begin to degrade, eventually affecting the potency, causing dryness and loss of effectiveness in the gel.
What is the purest form of aloe vera gel?
The purest form of aloe vera gel is the one you extract yourself from the leaves of the aloe vera plant. Commercially available products are not pure because they contain preservatives and chemicals. So, if you want a pure aloe vera gel, try to extract the gel directly from the leaves.
Does Aloe Vera Gel Tighten The Skin?
Yes, aloe vera gel tightens the skin. It has natural astringent properties make your skin firmer by minimizing pores and constricting blood vessels. It also improves skin elasticity, which makes it a great skincare product.
Is it good to put aloe vera on your face every day?
Applying aloe vera to your face daily can be beneficial for hydration and soothing, but individual skin reactions may vary, so patch testing is recommended.
Aloe vera gel, a staple skincare ingredient with numerous benefits, does have an expiration date. Users should be vigilant about the signs of expiration, such as changes in color and off odor, etc. Practicing proper storage and adherence to the expiration date will help to ensure the longevity of gel and its effectiveness in promoting skin health and making it more radiant & beautiful.