A homemade combination of aloe vera gel and skin-nourishing oil makes a gentle face moisturizer that saves money and nourishes the skin. Discover how easy it is to make a moisturizer for all skin types using two simple and natural ingredients.
Years ago, when it came to shopping for a face moisturizer, I would turn to the fancy bottles sitting at the speciality counters in department stores. You know, the kind of bottle with an ingredient list so long that you’re immediately sold on the idea that something extra special is about to happen. And since the ingredient list was so special and the bottle was always so pretty, I felt guilted into buying the product, This must be what my skin is missing!
Since I certainly didn’t want to miss out on anything, I spent way too much on moisturizers that didn’t work as promised and were full of toxic ingredients. I was a marketer’s ideal customer: naive and hungry for a miracle product.
If you want to skip an expensive moisturizer and opt for a budget-friendly option, making your own moisturizer at home is the way to go! That’s what I’ve learned over the years. (Today, I choose to buy a moisturizer from one of my favorite natural skincare brands, but I still adore this recipe because it’s easy to make and works so well.)
When I first started my quest to seek out natural skincare products, there weren’t many store-bought options on the market. (That’s all changed today: the best 8 natural store-bought moisturizers). Coconut oil was all the rage. And one of its many uses includes moisturizing the skin, so I started using coconut oil as a face and body moisturizer. I loved that moisturizer, but I found that after some time, coconut oil was causing breakouts on my face. While the rest of my body did well with the coconut oil moisturizer, my face did not. Hello, pimples!
Since then, I’ve experimented with many different options for moisturizing my face, naturally. Some experiments have been absolute failures and others have been great successes (the successes have made their way to the blog: explore homemade body and face moisturizers).
When it comes to good skincare practices, it’s important to get to know your skin, pay attention to what works for you, and keep things simple.
Today, I’ll show you how to make one of my favorite natural face moisturizers from my DIY experimenting, using just aloe and oil.
Is aloe vera a good face moisturizer?
Aloe vera gel, taken from the inner gel of the Aloe barbadensis plant (aloe vera plant), is a natural moisturizer that offers natural hydration to the skin, so it’s an ideal ingredient to add to a skincare routine, whether you have dry skin, sensitive skin, acne, or aging skin. (Explore natural acne skincare products or aging skincare products.)
Aloe vera is an excellent natural beauty treatment and moisturizer. It’s rich in vitamins and minerals, antioxidants and phytochemicals, and has a soothing and healing effect on skin that makes it great for skin conditions like acne, minor burns, dermatitis, psoriasis and eczema. Aloe vera is a common ingredient used to treat sunburns due to its soothing and antioxidant properties.
In an article by Penn Medical, Aloe Vera: Not Just For Sunburns, Dr. Manasija Rath shares about the benefits of using aloe vera on the skin, “It contains anti-inflammatory chemical compounds — which reduce swelling — called anthraquinones. These chemical compounds promote healing and alleviate pain when applied to your skin. If your skin needs to heal, aloe may be a good option.”
We’re all exposed to free radicals and environmental conditions that can cause damage to skin over time: sun exposure, cold weather, wind, pollutants, etc. This is why a nourishing skincare routine, using nutrient-rich products, is so important. And aloe is a fantastic ingredient to add to this routine!
According to WebMD, “(aloe vera) increases collagen in wounds and scar tissue to help the skin heal faster, may prevent UV and gamma radiation damage, and helps stimulate both collagen and elastin fibers, boosting the elasticity of your skin.” Free radicals (which decrease collagen production), sun damage, and aging concerns are real. Aloe vera is an amazing ingredient for providing nutrients, naturally, to the skin. Nature truly knows best.
If you’re interested in some of the benefits of aloe vera, this article from Mind Body Green is very insightful.
When Buying Aloe Vera…
It’s important to purchase a quality aloe vera gel that doesn’t contain a bunch of yucky ingredients (artificial green coloring, etc.). My favorite brands are Real Aloe or Majestic Pure. Fresh aloe is also a great choice, but when you mix it with oil to make a moisturizer, you’ll need to keep the moisturizer in the fridge (which can be very cooling for the skin, so the coolness might be an added benefit).
Can I apply aloe vera on my face daily as a moisturizer?
I’ve used aloe vera on my face as a daily moisturizer without issue and haven’t found any studies that caution against the daily use of aloe vera.
According to WebMD, you can use too much aloe vera on your skin as a moisturizer. Aloe has enzymes that can exfoliate the skin and too much exfoliation can cause the skin to overproduce oils (which could lead to breakouts) and become overly dry. If you notice this is happening, or experience any skin sensitivity, listen to your skin and take a break from aloe as a moisturizer.
Of course, too much of anything is not good. In this aloe vera face moisturizer recipe (below), you’ll dilute the aloe with a nourishing oil, like jojoba or sweet almond oil. The oil adds moisture and helps balance out the aloe, making it a face moisturizer that could be used daily.
Will aloe vera make my face breakout?
Aloe vera should not cause breakouts on the face, as it’s known for its healing properties. Aloe vera is actually used to calm breakouts. Aloe may be used to make a soothing breakout mask or mixed with aloe and honey to create a face cleanser that is soothing and gentle.
The bottomline: Aloe will not cause breakouts and it’s a great option for calming any breakouts currently on the face and improving the texture of skin.
3 homemade aloe vera products to add to your skincare routine
Aloe is one amazing natural skincare ingredient! Besides this aloe vera face moisturizer, here are 3 of the best DIY aloe products to add to your skincare routine:
- Soothing Clay Mask for Stubborn Breakouts and Scars: Use this mask, made with honey, clay, and aloe vera, on a weekly basis, or as needed, to calm and detoxify the skin.
- Aloe and Honey Face Cleanser: Combine soothing aloe vera and honey to make a simple and effective face cleanser.
- Gentle Homemade Makeup Remover Wipes: Use aloe vera, combined with a nourishing oil, castile soap, and witch hazel to make makeup remover pads.
2-Ingredient Aloe Vera Face Moisturizer
- aloe vera gel
- jojoba oil or other nourishing oil: grapeseed, sweet almond, apricot kernel, argan, or tamanu.
- In a small bottle (I use a 4-ounce glass bottle with a dropper), combine the aloe vera and nourishing oil in equal amounts. Feel free to play around with the ratio that works best for your skin.
- Shake the bottle to combine the mixture. If you'd like to add additional ingredients, I suggest adding a small amount of vitamin E oil or a few drops of your favorite skin-friendly essential oil (I love lavender, tea tree, or carrot seed).
- Before use, vigorously shake the bottle for a few seconds to combine the ingredients. Then, place a small amount of aloe moisturizer on (clean) fingertips and massage the moisturizer on the face.
A lot of Aloe Vera gels are thick so I was curious how you can shake the oil and gel ingredients or are you using a more liquid aloe? Also I get severe cystic acne that I need a bunch of prescriptions for so I was wondering what is a good moisturizing oil for this type of acne prone skin that gets dried out from medicine? I’ve read grapeseed or jojoba although I think jojoba is rather greasy. I understand you cannot give medical advice I just wanted to know which oils are best for sensitive skin.
Hey, Aloe vera gel is a bit thick, but should be easy to stir, shake, or whisk. Personally, what worked best for me and cystic acne is Marie Veronique products and also addressing some underlying issues I had with my gut. The Marie Veronique products (not a rep and not an MLM company): https://www.marieveronique.com/
I’m in love with this diy moisturizer,I’ve an acne prone skin so I made mine using grape seed oil,rose essential oil&tea tree essential oil but I would like to use hazelnut oil as a carrier oil the next time I make this moisturizer so can I use hazelnut oil?
Also,I would like to ask you if I can use this moisturizer and go out,of course after applying a sunscreen?
And finally,do I need to apply a store-bought moisturizer or serum along with this diy moisturizer?
Thanks in advance dear?
So glad you like it. I’ve never used hazelnut oil, but if you think it will work well for your skin, I don’t see why not. Yes, you can go out after applying this. If you want to apply another moisturizer you can, but don’t have to.
I do love to use black seed oil for my skin..can I use it or I have to use one of the mentioned carrier oils?
Hey Tia, As long as it’s a carrier oil. If not, use just a few drops.
I have an acne prone skin so is it better to use grapeseed or jojoba or Argan oil?
Hey Nada, Everyone’s skin is different. I would try jojoba to start.
I love this recipe! I have a lot of acne on my cheeks, but it could also be a reaction. It has gotten really bad in the past year, and it gets worse when I wear makeup. It also gets very red even when I have been in my car for 10 minutes. I need a moisturizer that does not make my semi-dry, sensitive skin oily (my face gets very dry when I wash it but at the end of the day it gets very oily). I was wondering if you are supoosed to leave the aloe vera gel and jojoba oil on your skin or if you are supposed to wipe it off because as far as I know, aloe vera makes a “film” on the skin? And do you suggest using a store bought aloe vera gel or aloe vera gel extracted from a plant at home?
Thank you very much! I love your blog and I am your fan. I appreciate the time you take making and testing your simply wonderful recipes. I’ve been using aloe vera juice and oil as a mosturizing and I also add glycerine, no more than 10% of the aloe juice,.and I love it! I just mix them on the palm of my hand. From now all, I will make ahead the biphasic combination in one small jar! Thanks again!!!
Does this need to be preserved, and how long does it last?
Hey Anna, The aloe should contain a preservative. You could also store in the fridge to keep it safe. It will last about a month.
Hi Kristin! I’m about to run out of my store bought moisturizer and I need to switch back to completely homemade (not to sound like a sob story but my husband had a stroke and can’t return to work so we’re cutting costs wherever we can). Anyway my skin is super dry since I had my 3rd baby 10 months ago. Do you think this would be enough? I’ve never made face lotion before, but I’ve been following you for 5 years and have made literally everything else. Thanks
Hello! I was just wondering if you think i could do this and add a bit of she abutter? i live in scandinavia so i think i need a bit more moisture , but i dont want a heavy cream since i plan on using it as a day cream! thanks in advance
Also! when buying aloe vera gel, does it need to only contain aloe vera..? i cant find any. the best ive found so far is 98% aloe vera!
Hey Markus, I wouldn’t mix shea butter with this mixture. You could mix oil and shea butter (a body butter: https://livesimply.me/2017/03/31/how-to-make-easy-body-butter/). Any bottled or tube aloe will contain other ingredients, mostly preservative ingredients to keep the aloe from spoiling.
Hi! Just made it for the first time and I love it 🙂 I put it in a glass blue-colored squirt bottle. About how long should it last in there?
Hey Savanah, Awesome! If you used an aloe with a preservative (from a bottle), then about a month.
How about for acne prone skin? What oil should I use along with aloe?
Hey Meredith, I like almond oil for my acne-prone skin. It’s an oil that works well for many different skin types and it’s very light.