For centuries, aloe vera has been utilised for its medicinal properties. It's well-known for its soothing and healing properties, which make it a popular ingredient in skincare products, hair care products, and even beverages. However, once you've extracted the gel from the aloe vera leaf, it's essential to know how to store it properly to ensure it stays fresh and usable for longer. Here are some suggestions for preserving aloe vera gel:
Refrigerate the aloe vera gel:
Freshly extracted aloe vera gel has a relatively short shelf life. If you want to keep it fresh for longer, store it in the refrigerator. The gel can last for a few days to a week if kept refrigerated. Make sure to store the gel in an airtight container to prevent it from drying out or absorbing unwanted flavours and odours from the fridge.
Freeze the aloe vera gel:
If you want to extend the shelf life of your aloe vera gel, freezing is a good option. Start by cutting the gel into small cubes or scoops. Place them on a plate or tray and freeze for a few hours until they're solid. Once the gel is frozen, transfer the cubes or scoops into an airtight container or freezer bag. Ensure that you attach a date of freezing label to the container or bag. Frozen aloe vera gel can be stored for up to six months.
Add a natural preservative:
You can add a natural preservative to your aloe vera gel to prevent bacterial growth and extend its shelf life. Vitamin E oil or grapefruit seed extract are two natural preservatives that work well. Simply mix a few drops of the preservative with the aloe vera gel and store it in a clean, airtight container in the fridge.
Add lemon juice or citric acid:
Another way to extend the shelf life of aloe vera gel is to add lemon juice or citric acid to it. These acidic substances help prevent bacteria and fungi growth, thereby keeping the gel fresh for longer. Mix a teaspoon of lemon juice or citric acid with a cup of aloe vera gel and store it in the fridge.
Store the gel in a clean and dry container:
It's essential to store aloe vera gel in a clean and dry container. Moisture and bacteria can quickly spoil the gel, so make sure the container is completely dry before adding the gel. It's also a good idea to sterilise the container by boiling it or washing it with hot, soapy water before use.
By following these tips, you can make sure your aloe vera gel is always fresh and ready to use for your skincare, haircare, or other needs.