What Is Witch Hazel and How Can You Use It at Home?

You may be familiar with witch hazel, even if you don't know it. Witch hazel extract is a popular ingredient in most natural skincare products, and it's even used in anti-itch creams. That's because witch hazel helps heal the skin, and thanks to the ingenuity of the Native Americans, people have been applying it to affected areas for healing purposes. Of all the many witch hazel uses, it's most well known as a home remedy. The plant has been exalted for soothing everything from acne and blemishes to sunburn, reducing inflammation, swelling, and even pain.

Natural skin care has come back into vogue in a big way, with people looking for natural products as alternatives to chemical-laden skincare products.  It's super easy to make a DIY witch hazel tonic with anti-inflammatory properties, and we want to help you learn how! And don't think you have to have a skin condition to use this tonic - it can also be used on sensitive skin, minor cuts, varicose veins, or on dry skin.

How to DIY Witch Hazel Tonic

This is my favorite of the many witch hazel uses. You can make witch hazel water or witch hazel tea, but this tincture lasts much longer and is ready-to-use when you need it. You might find yourself throwing out that aloe vera gel and using this tonic instead!

Once you make the tonic, you can soak heavy-duty round cotton pads to make pre-treated witch hazel pads. Or, you can keep it in a jar and use it with cotton balls when you need it. Better yet, put it in a spray bottle and use it as soon as you find yourself with bug bites!

Reach for this tonic if you find yourself with poison ivy (or with another other itching or rash skin conditions). You can also use it to sooth razor burn or eczema. It's really all about the essential oils in this tincture and it's ability to improve skin irritations.

As always, consult a doctor before seeking out alternative medicine treatments like witch hazel or if your condition worsens.

More Witch Hazel Uses

For the full details on witch hazel uses, our friends over at Fix put together this nifty infographic. Check it out to learn everything you need to know about this amazing natural treatment (including how to grow it in your backyard!)

So the next time you catch an awful sunburn floating the river or attending a festival, grab some witch hazel and let the natural healing and relief begin.

Watch: The 10 DIY Beauty Scrubs You Can Make at Home