Every once in a while you stumble onto something so simple and useful, it seems too good to be true. I recently discovered witch hazel and can’t believe I lived this long without it. Typically used as a natural astringent and cleanser for your skin, its antiseptic properties actually make for a variety of witch hazel uses. Here are three reasons why everyone should have some at home:
Natural Medicine Cabinet
After recently giving birth to my second baby, my best friend visited me in the hospital armed with a gift basket of new mom essentials, including a giant bottle of witch hazel. Because swelling, soreness, and hemorrhoids can be a painful part of your post-pregnancy body, one of the best witch hazel benefits for new moms is its use as a natural anti-inflammatory. This is why it’s often found as an ingredient in over-the-counter (OTC) hemorrhoid treatments. Simply add some to a cotton-round and dab it gently on the affected area as needed.
In addition to treating inflammation, witch hazel can be used for plenty of other soothing home remedies as well, such as easing the pain of sunburns and the itchiness of bug bites and rashes. It can also be an effective ingredient in natural diaper rash treatment. Keep in mind you should still check with your doctor before using any natural home remedy.
With two young kids I get very little sleep, and it shows. Between the puffiness of my face and the circles under my eyes, I’m always on the hunt for a new way to look a less tired. It just so happens witch hazel is one of the best treatments I’ve found. Not only does it reduce puffiness after being up all night, but it’s a great, refreshing way to rejuvenate and wake myself up in the morning—all without any of the harsh chemicals that are often found in facial treatments.
Aside from reducing puffiness, witch hazel also makes a great natural blemish fighter, allowing you to tighten your pores and even guard against razor burn. Dab a bit onto a cotton ball and apply under your eyes, on blemishes, or across your face up to twice a day after your shower. It’s extremely gentle, so don’t worry about drying out or irritating your skin.
Witch hazel doesn’t just work it’s witchy magic on you; it also makes a great all-purpose natural cleaner for your home. Whip some up by mixing 1/2 cup witch hazel with two tablespoons of baking soda and some lemon juice. I like to use it to scrub the bathroom counters and sinks to clean soap scum, but you can use it just about anywhere. It also makes an effective glass cleaner. Just add some, undiluted, to a spray bottle and use it to wipe down windows and mirrors. You can even use it to clean your jewelry. Rub some on specific spots or give your jewels a quick bath in it for ten to fifteen minutes.
The best part about witch hazel is that it’s all natural, so you’ll never expose yourself or your family to a harmful petrochemical in order to keep your house clean and your skin looking healthy.
What are some of your favorite alternative witch hazel uses? Share your ideas in the comments!
Image source: Sher Warkentin
This article was brought to you by Tom’s of Maine. The views and opinions expressed by the author do not reflect the position of Tom’s of Maine.