What is Witch Hazel?
Witch hazel is a shrub plant that originates from Northern America. Before becoming the popular product that it is today, witch hazel had been administered for centuries. Originally, the plant was used by Native Americans as a medicinal treatment for a number of different ailments. However, when the colonists first settled in the US and began travelling across the continent, they discovered and adopted the treatment, taking it with them on their travels. Notably, witch hazel alleviates swelling and inflammation, and further research suggests that it can be used orally to treat other ailments, such as colds and diarrhoea. However, witch hazel’s most popular use is on irritated skin. This is due to the assets found in the bark that help to reduce swelling, while rehabilitating the affected areas.
1: Acne Treatment
Woken up to an inflamed, aggressive looking spot? Witch hazel could be the cure. Its astringent, anti-inflammatory properties diminish swelling and redness of the affected area. Witch Hazel’s acne healing properties come down to the main organic compound; tannins. Tannins, or astringent compounds, help to soothe your skin, cleanse your pores and, in turn, reduce the production of excess oil. Unfortunately, witch hazel isn’t the complete cure. You may need to combine use with another treatment, especially if you have been left with scars from previous breakouts. If you have acne scarring, you may need to look for an acne scar removal treatment. Treatments like these are ideal for rejuvenating your skin and boosting your confidence also.
Bruises Originally, witch hazel was often used to treat bruises and cuts due to its anti-inflammatory properties. By definition, bruises are caused when small blood vessels called capillaries burst. This then results in the discolouration on the skin surface. Witch hazel works to minimise the swelling, allowing the capillaries to begin repairing, therefore lessening the purple hue.
If you’ve ever enjoyed the sun a little too much, you’ll know that without applying sun cream, you’re guaranteed to pay the price soon after. It can take days, even weeks, for the reddish glow to disappear. Witch hazel’s ingredients actively help to reduce swelling, helping to speed up the recovery process.
There has been plenty of research into the benefits of witch hazel and one finding showed that witch hazel’s antibacterial ingredients can help in the fight against infection. This is why it is often used to treat colds.
5. Sore Throat
Due to its astringent properties, witch hazel is also a great treatment for sore throats. It’s administered by diluting the witch hazel and then gargling the mixture. This is thought to reduce the swelling and aid recovery. However, taking witch hazel orally can cause stomach upsets in some cases, so it is important to be careful before trying this remedy.
In summary, witch hazel is bursting with medicinal properties that are ideal for treating ailments, organically. From bruising to sore throats, witch hazel is a great natural treatment. It’s most popular use in skincare is not unfounded and it is widely accepted as having a number of skincare benefits, across the many years of its origins.
One caveat, however, is that much like any other skin care product, it may not work for everyone. When trying witch hazel for the first time you should test it on a small area, away from your face. If you do not record any negative effects, then you are free to apply it to afflicted areas.