Tricky, Tricky, Tricky! An Easy Way to Extract Aloe Vera Gel from the Plant

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What is your first step when making any kind of medicinal skin cream, juice, dessert that includes aloe vera gel? A difficult one! Before you can do anything else, you have to extract that slimy, fleshy gel from the inside of the plant’s leaves, which can be complicated, time-consuming, and intimating–especially to aloe newbie’s! But don’t let a little difficulty keep you from benefiting from one of the world’s most medicinal plants! Here’s a cool tip that should help you tackle even the most tricky aloe vera leaf. Be discouraged no more! Go get that aloe vera gel!

The Normal Method and its Flaws

While the “filet it like a fish” description of aloe vera gel extraction gives you a good visual of how to go about using your knife to get to the aloe’s plant’s inner gel goodness, it is also a dangerous picture. Aloe vera leaves are thick and fleshy, but relatively thin considering you are slicing them down the middle. It would take an experienced knife-wielder to get that one done quickly, efficiently and without injury!

Easily Extract Aloe Vera Gel: The Trick

So how can you make the task easier and safer? You need a new tool.

Fruit Peeler to the Rescue!

Get out your fruit peeler! A kitchen utensil that may not get too much use in your household (except for maybe those potatoes), the fruit peeler can be reinvented! Just as you would peel a carrot, use your fruit peeler to skim the surface of your aloe vera leaf and peel off the skin. This technical method is not only safer than using a knife but it is more precise. You can really remove that layer of leaf you need to without sacrificing any aloe gel underneath. This is especially good for when you want to make aloe vera gel cubes (e.g. like when making dessert or putting it in a salad) and need a thick chunk (the filet way may just not cut it!).

The Caution: Solving the Fruit Peeler Problem

As with anything, there is a potential drawback to using a fruit peeler to extract aloe vera gel. However, it can and shall be overcome! Aloe latex is a yellow sap that lies just below the surface of aloe vera leaves. Due to its laxative properties, you should avoid consuming it: it can really mess up your digestive tract, not to mention make you run to the toilet all day long! Because the fruit peeler method should allow you to hit just below the surface of the aloe leaf (which is what allows you to salvage so much of the gel whole), you to make sure no aloe latex contaminates your gel. Be sure to rinse the aloe gel you collect off in water two or three times to remove any aloe latex that inched its way in. Easy enough solution, am I right?

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Now that you know the secret to being a master of aloe extraction, confront that aloe leaf with confidence!


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  1. Rohit Kankani says

    when we cut the aloevera leaf immediately yellow juice starts coming out fromthe leaf, can you tell me the use of that juice which is very bitter.

    • Danielle Brown says

      Hi Rohit,
      That yellow juice you are talking about it called aloe latex. You usually want to rinse your extracted aloe gel so it is free of aloe latex, as this bitter part of the plant is known to have serious side-effects if consumed at the wrong dosage. To read up on aloe latex, here are a few articles: This one describes what aloe latex is; this one discusses possible side effects of the yellow substance. Happy reading!

    • Joyse says

      I have aloe vera plant on my farm but want help on which one is pulp and latex. There is mucous like gel is that what we call latex and hard white rubber like stuff is called pulp please help. Also the flowers to the tip of the plant can l use them for facials

      • Joyse says

        I am failing to differentiateam wehat exactly to use wehen making drink. Will understand better if u explain to me in this form, the mucous, the green outer, the rubber like in white colour. Am sorry l am illiterate dear. Many thanx

      • Dominique says

        Ok so I’m also experimenting with some aloe. And initially upon removal of the entire leaf from the plant it stunk and yellowish think stuff was oozing out. My solution was to fill my sink with enough water to put the base of the stalks in. I let it soak for several hours then refrigerated it. The smell subsided quite a bit but was not completely gone so, I’ve now cut the allow into pieces and taken the green thick leaf part off of the gel. Add some lemon to it, and away that scent goes. Now, for sunburns, vinegar is great so instead of lemon use a tiny bit of apple cider vinegar. I do not recommend using lemon if you are planning to put this on your face. Some people have a bad reaction to lemon on the skin and sun. My skin has burned terribly before from lemon on my skin so I wouldn’t put this on my face. The lemon will make it better for drinking though definitely. I hope this is helpful to someone.

  2. Cindy M. says

    I have super sensitive skin and every summer I get sun poisoning. This year I want to try Aloe Vera to help sooth and minimize the effects of the sun. With that being the base I think this method of extraction would work for me. Should I be concerned about the aloe latex on my face? Is the Aloe Latex bad for the skin?


    • Danielle Brown says

      Hi Cindy,

      I would avoid using the aloe latex on your face, just to err on the side of caution. Although aloe latex is known primarily for its laxative effects and therefore interference with the digestive system, its potent properties might cause irritation (at the least) to skin. An easy way to make sure none of the yellow sap wanders into your aloe gel is to rinse off the aloe gel after extraction. Just run the aloe gel under water two or three times to make sure you are getting a clean sample. That should do the trick!

      • Rae says

        Sun Poinsoning is when there is an allergen to your skin on your skin and then it is exposed to the sun. It shows up as a red rash. That is how I found out I was allergic to a specific kind of bath soap.

  3. Bhaskar says

    I have a painful knee joint diagnosed as arthritis. I have heard that Aloe vera is beneficial in providing relief. Could you kindly advice?

  4. Katy says

    I read a suggestion of sitting the aloe leaf up in a bowl for about 15 minutes after cutting it off the plant before extracting the gel, supposedly to allow the sap to “drain” out of the leaf. Is this a viable suggestion?

  5. GoGee says

    Hi. Anyone ever have good results using aloe on molluscum (MC)? Is a a virus on the surface of the skin that produces bumps.

    • Katie says

      Molluscum isn’t easy to treat with aloe unfortunately but my daughter had great relief with an anti viral cream made by our local herbalist. The list of ingredients was with it but I can’t remember where.
      Hope this helps.

    • Lilian says

      Yes. I know what you mean. It smells like onion similar to a body odor stink coming from the underarm. Perhaps that is the smell of the latex. I just rub the gel on my arms after gardening and it does smell like onion.

  6. Tina Chu says

    The Aloe plant I have has black juice instead of yellow under the skin. When I peel off a leaf,
    the black juice gradually comes out. What is it?

    • says

      If you take a piece of aloe skin with the gel still on it, about 1/8″ thick, and rub it on the spot you want to have it stay, eventually, it will stick. And it works wonders. I had a precancerous lesion on my nose and after two night of putting a piece like I described under a band-aid while I slept, it was gone and still is. Amazing.

  7. Kate Philip says

    hi…is it advisable to use cooking blender for the aloe gel? and what else is to be mixed with it for effective result. thanks. Kate

  8. Joyse says

    I have aloe vera plant on my farm but want help on which one is pulp and latex. There is mucous like gel is that what we call latex and hard white rubber like stuff is called pulp please help. Also the flowers to the tip of the plant can l use them for facials

    • Dominique says

      Joyce the latex is usually milky white or yellow. It smells aweful, almost garlicky, so you will know when you smell it. The pulp and the gel are what you want to keep. Both of these into your blender and you get aloe gel.

  9. a says

    i have many ways to use the aloe vera gel as face wash or lotion or serum or tonner . but only one problem with this is that whwn ever i store it it gets yellow the next day n i dont like that is tere any way to avoid that bcoz… i levea away from my with a busy schedule i can’t make it every day or store it in any cool place

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