Chances are you’ve heard of witch hazel because it’s so well known for its ability to soothe sensitive skin and ease inflammation. I was blown away when I learned how many more benefits the plant offers.
For centuries, the entire plant – leaves, bark and twigs – have been used to make medicine.
Below are some reasons why it’s still popular today:
Inflammation- Eczema, Psoriasis
Witch hazel is perfect for inflammation, eczema and psoriasis because it’s rich
in a compound called tannins, a powerful antioxidant that helps protect your
skin against damage. In fact, researchers say the natural antioxidants give your skin a boost and protect against free-radicals.
That’s why you often find “tannin acid” in the ingredients of your favorite skin care products.
Simply rubbing the witch hazel on your skin should offer immediate relief.
Bug Bites, Sunburns, Diaper Rash, After Giving Birth, Acne, Scars
* Going camping or enjoying a day at the beach? Make sure to put witch hazel on once you see redness. This can relieve itchiness from bug bites and from sunburns.
* After giving birth you can add witch hazel on your pad or use a witch hazel pad for the affected area to help reduce swelling and pain.
* If your baby gets a diaper rash, use a little witch hazel to the area to help relieve your baby’s pain.
* Do you have a big pimple that will not go away? Witch hazel may help reduce the redness and help that pimple disappear faster.
Witch hazel is common for hemorrhoid relief. Just add witch hazel to a cloth or cotton ball and rub it on the area where you need pain relief. You’ll even find witch hazel pads specifically for this condition. And it doesn’t simply help the pain. Witch hazel has hemostatic qualities showing that it may even help stop bleeding from your hemorrhoids or any other wound.
Do you have an itchy or sensitive scalp? Well, rub some witch hazel up there as well! This may even be better than your dandruff shampoo as it is often used for dryness and dandruff.
Common Ways to use
You can buy witch hazel in pads, gels, ointment, and liquids to apply externally. Most of these
have alcohol in them so use cautiously to not dry out your skin, as well as alcohol-free ones.
I’ve also seen witch hazel sold as teas. Ingesting it was a common way to get its medicinal benefits back in the day, but some researchers today say this isn’t an herb that the more you drink, the better because taking it in large doses (more than 4 teaspoons daily) can cause vomiting, upset stomachs and even liver damage.
The FDA has only approved it for topical use on the skin.
Witch hazel is a plant that most of us aren’t growing, primarily because it grows very slowly. It can take up to 2 years before the seeds germinate, 6 years to get mature flowers.