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Monday, 23 June 2008 15:21

Aloe Vera - "The Plant of Immortality"

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Ancient Egyptians revered the aloe vera plant and considered it to be the “Plant of Immortality.” The glamorous Cleopatra regarded aloe vera as her beauty secret. Legend states that the Pharaoh kept the Aloe as a palace plant, assigning it a very high status.  Drawings of the aloe plant have been found inscribed in the tombs of the pharaohs. Supposedly, Alexander the Great in 333 B.C., was persuaded by his mentor, Aristotle, to capture the Island of Socotra in the Indian Ocean for its famed Aloe supplies, needed to treat his wounded soldiers.

In recent times aloe vera has been “re-discovered” and has come back into general use.  Ironically enough, it was the invention of the x-ray and the atom bomb that revived the focus on the plant.  Aloe vera heals internal tissues damaged by radiation exposure.  It is one of the oldest natural remedies that modern medicine uses as one of the “miracle” herbal drugs.

Therapeutic Effects of Aloe Vera

Aloe produces anti-aging effects on the skin and is the ultimate skin care treatment. Aloe vera products are carefully formulated from natural ingredients for beauty, skin cell conditioning, nourishment, and body toning.  It helps to reduce and eliminate scars, wrinkles, marks and blemishes. It contains anti-inflammatory and anti-fungal components, which heal cuts, scrapes, and burns.  As a beauty supplement aloe vera soothes, softens, and moisturizes. Aloe lotion has been used to control acne and eczema.  It is used as an anti-cellulite product. Its ability to penetrate the water-retaining layer of skin allows the enzymes within the gel to slough off dead cells, which aids in restoring the complexion. Aloe nourishes the skin, increasing the formation of collagen and elastin, and stimulating the regeneration of damaged tissue. Aloe vera is also beneficial for gastrointestinal ailments, constipation, pain relief, and boosting the immune system.

How to Market Aloe Vera in Your Spa

Marketing aloe vera products and treatments at day spas, resort spas, and mobile spas is a great way to increase cash flow. Cosmetic collections, aromatherapy products, anti-cellulite products, grooming products, natural facial peels, and body toning kits are some of the items made with this magical plant.  Nearly every cosmetic counter has shampoos, soaps, skin lotions, and creams containing aloe vera.  They are popular among salon and spa visitors. Marketing aloe vera products and services to your clients is simple and effective, if done properly and with benefit-driven selling techniques.
Following are some skin care items made with aloe vera.  Keep these at the front desk area. They are “impulse buys” that customers tend to purchase, as they clear their bill.

· Aloe Lotion

· Aloe Grooming Products

· Aloe Exfoliant

· Aloe Bath Gelee

· Aloe Moisturizing Lotion

· Aloe Suntan Lotion

Incorporating Aloe in the Treatment Room

Introducing aloe facial peels, body toning, massages, and skin conditioning treatments can help to increase clients visiting your salon and spa. Mention these special treatments in the spa menu. Here are some treatment ideas:

Aloe Body Toner
Aloe body toner is useful in beautifying, toning, and firming fatty deposits in the body.  The body toner wrap minimizes the appearance of cellulite. Two key natural warming ingredients, cinnamon oil and capsicum, enhance circulation to warm the skin under the wrap, helping to drive water and toxic substances out of the fat cells, thus minimizing the appearance of cellulite.

Natural Facial Peel
Aloe vera can be used as a natural facial peel.  It contains antibiotics that promote the removal of dead skin and stimulate the normal growth of living cells.  It serves a function similar to a chemical peel, except using natural products. Aloe can aid in keeping the skin supple.  Aloe's healing power comes from increasing the availability of oxygen to the skin, and by increasing the synthesis and strength of tissue. It has the ability to pull moisture from the air and help the skin to hold on to it, acting as a humectant.

Aloe Massage Treatments
Massage treatments using aloe body conditioning cream are popular among day spa, mobile spa, and salon guests. The conditioning cream is good for all skin types. The soothing therapeutic moisturizing cream aids in dermatitis, itching, allergies, insect bites, and mild irritations.

Aloe as a Part of the Ambiance

In addition to its endless healing properties on the skin, aloe vera can be incorporated into the interior and exterior landscaping of your spa. It is a beautiful plant with fleshy leaves that can add a soothing effect to the environment.  Aloe is a succulent, and grows to a height of 12 to 16 inches. It has a fibrous root system producing long, tapering, and stemless leaves. Flowers of this daylily range from yellow to oranges and red. In a salon, it can be potted and used to decorate the interior. In the spa setting consider creating an aloe garden.
Introducing aloe vera into the landscape can subconsciously promote the plant products and services among guests. Having a live plant in the spa vicinity can make the visitors feel connected to it, thereby, creating a desire to receive an aloe vera massage or a natural facial.

Additional Uses

Aloe vera can be used as a nail polish and as a disinfectant for nails. Offering nail treatment programs in your salon with natural aloe is another marketing strategy that can help to increase your clientele.
Aloe vera juice is high in vitamins including enzymes, amino acids, polysaccharides, and minerals. It contains properties that absorb bacteria and restore health in the intestines, strengthens the immune system by regenerating cell growth, relieves pain with anti-swelling agents, and regulates digestion.  Its tissue-restoring properties are antibacterial and help to cleanse and detoxify the body.  Aloe vera juice helps maintain good health, youthfulness, high energy levels, and works as a disease preventative. When used as part of a purification regimen it can be beneficial with fasting or cleansing diets that eliminate intestinal toxins.  Why not greet spa customers with a complimentary aloe vera juice? Add it into the spa menu, and serve it as a nutritional drink at meals.

Conclusion

In order to sell a product, clients must be convinced of the benefits they are getting for their money. Staff members selling the products should be informed about what they are offering clients. Give the staff a basic overview of the health benefits of aloe. The more knowledge they have of the products the better they will be at persuading clients to buy them.

Preethi Burkholder recently started an Ayurveda spa in the island of Sri Lanka. Aloe vera products bring the largest single product income in her spa. Burkholder can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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