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Witch Hazel, long considered one of nature’s best kept secrets, is a natural herb known for its skin care benefits. However, this little beauty does so much more than clear skin.
From banishing acne to treating sunburn, easing headaches and much more, here are 11 witch hazel benefits and uses you’ll wish you knew sooner!
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What is Witch Hazel?
Witch Hazel is extracted from the bark and leaves of the Hamamelis Virginiana plant, a yellow coloured flower.
Witch Hazel is often used in skin care products thanks to its astringent effect, meaning it shrinks and constricts skin tissue. It’s also used in traditional medicine to treat sunburns, itches, inflammation and bruises.
Where can I purchase Witch Hazel?
Witch Hazel is available to purchase at most supermarkets and drugstores, however if you prefer to shop from the comfort of your own home, you can find it online.
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4 Skin Care Benefits Of Using Witch Hazel
1. Fights Acne
Thanks to its astringent properties, witch hazel naturally helps decrease oil and redness. Acting as an anti-inflammatory, it helps to put an end to the irritation caused by acne breakouts.
But its true power lies within its anti-microbial properties which are known to reduce bacteria on the skin, thereby fighting acne.
2. Tightens Pores
Super rich in pore constricting compounds, witch hazel encourages the proteins in your skin to bunch together, leading to a tighter skin structure. Perfect for those no-makeup days!
3. Treats Sunburn
There’s a reason some sunburn products contain witch hazel as one of their ingredients. Packed with anti-inflammatory properties, it helps to reduce the sting of sunburn, soothe the redness and alleviate irritation.
4. Fights Signs of Ageing
Rich in polyphenols, a type of anti-oxidant, witch hazel helps to fight signs of ageing by mopping up free radicals from the skin. Free radicals are known to damage the skin and can come from UV radiation and air pollution.
Plus, thanks to its astringent effects, witch hazel helps to reduce the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines.
5 Witch Hazel Benefits for General Health
1. Eases Headaches
When applied to the temples of the head, witch hazel can help ease the tension of the small capillaries which often cause headaches. You can also make a witch hazel tea to soothe the blood vessels.
2. Fights Infections
Witch hazel has been shown to fight off certain viral infections. This may include problems such as cold sores, where witch hazel can be applied topically.
3. Soothes Sore Throats
Thanks to its anti-inflammatory and other soothing properties, witch hazel tea might be the perfect natural herbal remedy to soothe a sore throat.
4. Relieves Aches and Pain
Rich in tannins and anti-oxidants, witch hazel has been proven to reduce pain and inflammation from conditions such as arthritis. It can also alleviate muscle and joint pain after exercise and boost recovery time.
Mix witch hazel with equal parts water or olive oil and rub it over the affected area.
5. Soothe Sores
Suffer with mouth ulcers, small cuts on the gums or cheek blisters? When applied, witch hazel can help speed up the healing process, soothe irritation and reduce swelling.