Witch hazel isn’t just for blemishes and oily skin, it’s also good for a number of other things you may or may not know about, so today’s article is about the many ways you can get all your bang for your buck out of witch hazel.
The Top Uses for Witch Hazel
Witch hazel is very astringent and is able to tone and tighten tissues bringing down redness and inflammation caused by acne. Swiping a cotton ball over clogged pores will actually help extract blackheads and shrink large pores with continued use. Witch hazel will also control oil production without over drying skin.
2. Diminish Under Eye Circles
Speaking of toning and tightening tissues, applying witch hazel on those raccoon eyes will help constrict inflamed capillaries making your dark circles look lighter and brighter. You can even mix equal parts of witch hazel and strong green tea together, soak some cotton rounds in the mixture, pop them in the freezer, and use them to freshen and de-puff the eye area. Use this once a day as needed for a quick pick-me-up.
3. Reduce Varicose Veins
Dab witch hazel on broken capillaries, spider veins, and varicose veins to reduce inflammation, pain, redness, and visibility. The witch hazel will tighten and tone the walls of the veins allowing temporary relief. The best method is to soak a cloth in chilled witch hazel and apply to the affected veins for 15-20 minutes a day.
4. Heal Bruising
Don’t have any arnica on hand and banged your leg into the coffee table again? Apply witch hazel to the bruise 2-3 times per day to remove stagnant blood and speed up healing.
5. Sooth and Prevent Ingrown Hairs
Swab some witch hazel over irritated hair follicles to keep the pores clear and free of inflammation and germs. Doing this right after shaving will greatly reduce itchy irritated bumps from forming leaving a clean smooth shave every time.
6. Heal Sunburn
Combined with a few drops of peppermint essential oil, witch hazel has the ability to help pull heat from sun burn and sooth the pain that comes with it. You can even add witch hazel to a cool bath to help bring down inflammation and heal the burn faster.
7. Heal Cuts, Scrapes, Abrasions and Bug Bites
Applying witch hazel straight onto minor bites and wounds will keep them from becoming infected and encourage faster healing. Like always, witch hazel will reduce irritation, inflammation, and redness caused by simple injuries. Witch hazel also has anti-itch properties and is really useful to have around where bugs abound!
Aside from the above uses I’ve experienced personally, there are many other applications for witch hazel. I especially love using it as a face toner (infused with rose petals!) and often incorporate it into many face care recipes.
Witch hazel is also beneficial for all skin types ranging from very oily to dry mature skin. It works for oily skin types by removing excess oil and works well for dry skin types by locking in moisture if used right after bathing.
You can also use it to remove make-up. Try mixing equal parts witch hazel and your favorite facial oil. Shake it up each time before use to mix, and swipe it over even the most resistant mascara for easy removal. I love adding a few drops of tea tree or lavender essential oil to make things extra luxurious.
Medicinally, witch hazel if often used as a poultice or compress to treat minor injuries, skin irritations, rashes, hemorrhoids, localized inflammation, and even poison oak and ivy.
Some athletes even use it on areas of the body they expect to become sore after a workout to help prevent muscle strain and soreness prior to their routine.