When it comes to medicine cabinet and skincare staples, there are few things I get as enthusiastic about as witch hazel. I just love this stuff! I was introduced to it by a friend whos European family had been using it for years.
It’s refreshing, effective, and I look forward to using it everyday in the morning and the night. My skin loves to soak this stuff up for good reason, and I’ve found so many creative uses for it.
It’s gentle enough to use 2-3 times per day, and it keeps my skin hydrated, toned, and acne-free.
Because I love it so much, I want to share a little more about witch hazel with you guys today. We’ll talk about what exactly witch hazel is, some of its beneficial properties, and a few awesome ways to use it.
What is witch hazel?
Witch hazel or Hamamelis virginiana is a flowering plant with species that grow in North America, China, and Japan. As you can tell, this deciduous shrub is quite beautiful and vibrant!
Not only is this plant a lovely addition to your year-round garden – it’s also a medicinal shrub, and its extract is often used topically as an astringent compound.
It’s quite common to find it as an ingredient in skincare products. In fact, you may have seen it packaged and sold all on its own.
Let’s break it down! The main constituents of witch hazel include calcium oxalate, gallotannins, safrole, tannins, flavonoids, saponins, choline, gallic acid, and bitters which work together as a powerful skincare tool.
It’s been used for medicinal purposes in Native American culture for many years. Traditionally, the astringent is created by boiling the shrub stems although distillation is necessary for optimal beneficial properties.
The benefits of witch hazel
For skin health, witch hazel is key. It’s no surprise that it’s been used for centuries as a natural topical remedy.
Because it is anti-bacterial, astringent, antioxidant-rich, and anti-inflammatory, it provides a wide range of relieving treatments for all things skin-related which we’ll talk more about below.
Considering the skin is technically the body’s largest organ, it’s vital to take care of that. Naturally, there are foods and certain nutrients that are great for skin health and some of that work is done from the inside out.
In addition to that, it’s important to consider all that our skin is exposed to daily. In our modern world, there’s a whole lot going on and our tough skin takes the brunt of it.
Instead of adding fuel to the fire with unnatural, additive-ridden skincare products, reducing that toxic load begins in your medicine cabinet.
Witch hazel is gentle, mild, and seldom elicits a reaction, making it safe for most people to use without undesired side effects. Not only does it work to give you that natural glow on the face – it’s also a powerful healing agent for minor abrasions, burns, and even hemorrhoids.
Top 10 Uses Of Witch Hazel
11. Everyday Toner
Use witch hazel after washing the face and before applying moisturizer as a natural toner. Toner works to pick up any extra dirt on the face and in the pores while smoothing out the pigmentation of the skin. It also helps keep acne at bay. Simply use a washcloth or cotton ball to gently dab witch hazel on the face, avoiding the eyes. Let dry and apply your favorite moisturizer and/or serum.