August 1, 2015

5 Great Skin Care Benefits of Witch Hazel

Witch Hazel is an affordable, multitasking, plant-based astringent with antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties that can be beneficial when it comes to skin care.

If your face wash or makeup remover leaves anything behind, applying witch hazel on a cotton round to gently wipe over the skin will help remove impurities. Leftover residue can wreak havoc on the skin (clogged pores, blemishes, irritation, premature aging). Witch hazel breaks down the residue without being as drying as many common cleansers/toners with higher amounts of alcohol. But be sure not to overuse the product, and still follow up with a moisturizer suited for your skin type!

Whether you deal with an occasional blemish or persistent, stubborn breakouts, witch hazel can be used to aid in controlling and reducing acne. As a natural astringent, it decreases oil and inflammation. It may also be more gentle on your skin than benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid if you're sensitive to those ingredients. I've used witch hazel as both a spot treatment and an all-over facial toner and it's been effective in both ways at reducing inflammation and redness from blemishes.

"Bags" Under the Eyes
Puffiness in the eye area is somewhat common and often difficult to manage. When the extract is rubbed gently below the eyes, witch hazel can diminish their swollen appearance as it tightens up the skin, quickly reviving the area and leaving you looking more refreshed! Be very careful not to get any of the product in your eyes. Follow up with a good eye cream or gel.

Razor Burn
If you're prone to irritation from shaving, witch hazel (alcohol-free) may help diminish bumps and redness associated with razor burn as it contains tannins that can quickly promote healing and alleviate the inflammation. Soak a cloth or cotton round in witch hazel and place it on the affected area as needed. Keep in mind that you can find alcohol-free witch hazel, as well as formulas specifically meant to target skin issues associated with shaving, such as Thayers After Shave Witch Hazel with Aloe Vera.

Speed up the healing process of a bruise by placing a cloth soaked in witch hazel on the bruise for 10 to 15 minutes a few times per day. It minimizes discoloration and helps restore blood vessels. You can also make an ice cube out of witch hazel for more painful bruises or those accompanied by swelling. Just be sure it doesn't accidentally end up in someone's drink beforehand!

Witch hazel is not only affordable, gentle, and eco-friendly, it's also sitting in most drugstores! Opt for an organic, or a 100% natural, formula. A quick search on Google and Amazon will also reveal numerous options for witch hazel, including alcohol-free formulas. Expect an "herbal" smell (but it won't linger). And as always, proceed with caution when introducing something new to your skin care regimen (test a small area first).


Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post.