Witch Hazel is a miracle ingredient for skin and hair as established in the cosmetic world. Witch Hazel is small deciduous shrub with orange and yellow flowers that begin to flower in autumn through winter. The name ‘Witch’ in Witch Haze is taken from the Old English word ‘wice’ meaning ‘easily bendable’. It has no relation to the word ‘witch’ related to a doer of magic. .
There are five species of Witch Hazel that are available –
- Japanese Witch Hazel
- Chinese Witch Hazel
- Ozark Witch Hazel
- Big Leaf Witch Hazel
- American Witch Hazel
Witch Hazel comes with a multitude of Benefits for Skin and Hair. Research has shown that skin products and shampoos which have some content of Witch Hazel in them tend to soothe the skin and scalp.
Below are the main benefits of using Witch Hazel for Skin and Hair.
Helps Soothe Haemorrhoids
Hemorrhoids, also called piles, are swollen or inflammation of veins in the rectum and the anus are which causes severe discomfort and bleeding. Their usual cause is straining during bowel movements, pregnancy, or obesity.
Witch Hazel wipes and liquids can give relief to the hemorrhoids by soothing the skin. Due to its anti-inflammatory properties, witch hazel can reduce redness, swelling and pain caused due to piles. Due to its hemostatic properties, witch hazel may be used to stop the bleeding caused by hemorrhoids.
Helps Fight Acne and Pimples – Witch Hazel for Skin and Hair
Witch Hazel is an excellent astringent which you can apply on oily skin to shrink pores and clear out the dirt in them. This results in soothing the breakouts, pimples, and acne on the skin. Many acne soothing creams use witch hazel as an essential ingredient.
Apply Witch Hazel water directly on the face with cotton. It can be more effective after steaming the face.
Protects against Skin Damage and Inflammation
Witch Hazel is a boon to people with sensitive skin. It has a compound called tannins which act as a barrier to prevent foreign substances from entering your skin. It has powerful anti-oxidant properties which can protect against skin damage.
The gallic acid present in witch hazel also lends it to anti-inflammatory properties. It neutralizes free radicals inside the body. As a result witch hazel can also be effective against psoriasis and eczema.
Helps treat Dandruff and Scalp Sensitivity
The study has shown that Hair Products and Shampoos which have Witch Hazel Extract have helped relieve scalp dryness, and dandruff and soothe scalp inflammation. Due to environmental pollutants, the scalp becomes increasingly susceptible to infection and redness. This can lead to irritation and Hair Fall. Applying a little amount of witch hazel diluted in water can also help reduce this discomfort.
Even though Witch Hazel has multiple benefits for the skin and hair, it is still not widely used the world over by manufacturers due to lack of knowledge and access. Only recently has this magical plant seen a surge in usage due to increased awareness.
How to choose the best witch hazel for your skin
Prefer alcohol-free: Witch hazel is a typical extract with alcohol to create an astringent toner; however, “if the alcohol content is too high for your skin, it will dry out or cause disruption to the skin’s barrier function,” says Dr. Longwill. For this reason, dermatologists recommend choosing a witch hazel product that’s alcohol-free—especially if you’re planning on making the ingredient a regular in your skin care routine.
Patch Test: To avoid an adverse reaction, read the label to make sure it doesn’t contain any ingredients that you’re sensitive or straight-up allergic to, says Dr. Schlessinger. If you’re not sure, test the product on a small, concentrated area of skin first—say, on your arm—to see if a reaction occurs before using it on your face.
Check for Other Moisturizing Ingredients: When purchasing witch hazel, Dr. Longwill recommends looking for products that also contain hydrating ingredients, such as aloe vera, so that the delivery of the product isn’t too drying to the skin.
How to add witch hazel to your skin care routine
When it comes to witch hazel, moderation is key—otherwise, you run the risk of voiding the potential benefits. Using too much too often can cause adverse reactions (such as drying out the skin and damaging the protective skin barrier) that leave skin irritated and more sensitive to topical products, says Dr. Shainhouse.
We recommend you to definitely give it a try to get rid of your Skin and Hair related Problems!