Friday 9 February 2018

21 Great Uses for Witch Hazel

There are many great ways to use witch hazel, which is an extract of the shrub or tree with the same name (Hamamelis virginiana). Here are 21 of my favorite uses:

Wet Wipe Alternative

Most wet wipes contain harmful chemical ingredients, including synthetic fragrances, phenoxyethanol, disodium EDTA, sorbic acid and propylene glycol. Fortunately a facial tissue with a splash or two of witch hazel makes a great, natural substitute. 

Facial Toner

Acetone found in most facial toners can cause dryness and irritate the skin, which is no surprise when you understand that it is nail polish remover. Fortunately, witch hazel on small cotton pads is superior as a facial toner and lends its natural antibacterial action.

Acne or Blemish Treatment

Witch hazel can be applied with a cotton swap or cotton ball directly to blemishes to help them dry up.

Scalp Irritation or Redness

Research in the International Journal of Trichology shows that witch hazel helps treat scalp irritation when applied directly to the scalp.

Possible Cancer Treatment

Research in the Journal of Natural Products found that witch hazel demonstrates anti-cancer activity. While the research was conducted on colon cancer, it may be helpful for skin cancer when applied topically. And, while we await the research, it is worth a try. 

Cooling Pads

Add witch hazel to cotton pads and use to help cool irritated or feverish areas of the body.


Apply witch hazel to cotton pads and apply directly to hemorrhoids to help soothe the area and alleviate inflammation and pain.

Under Eye Bags or Circles

Apply witch hazel-soaked cotton pads to the area below your eyes and lay back for a quick and inexpensive spa facial treatment.


Apply compresses soaked in witch hazel to help with pain from bruising and to speed healing time.

Cold sores

Using a cotton swab or cotton ball soaked in witch hazel, apply directly to cold sores to help speed healing.

Room Deodorizer

Add 10-20 drops of your favorite essential oils to a spray bottle filled up with witch hazel as a room disinfectant and deodorizer. Be sure to shake the bottle prior to each use.

All-Purpose Household Cleaner

Add some baking soda and lemon essential oil to witch hazel for a great all-purpose household cleaner.

Floor Cleaner

Add about ¾ cup witch hazel to a gallon of hot water, and several drops of your favorite essential oils for a great hard flooring cleaner.

Poison Ivy and Poison Oak Soother

Apply witch hazel to affected areas to help soothe itching, reduce inflammation and speed healing.


Use a witch hazel product suitable for internal use and swish in your mouth as a mouthwash. Research shows that witch hazel helps to break down plaque and the biofilms secreted by oral infections.

Sore Throat

Swish witch hazel in your mouth before spitting out as a way to soothe and disinfect your mouth and treat sore throats. Choose a product suitable for internal use.

Varicose Veins

Swab affected areas daily with witch hazel to promote vascular health.

Sun Damage and Sunburn

Apply witch hazel repeatedly every day to affected areas to promote skin health and alleviate burning sensations.

Razor Burn

Apply witch-hazel soaked pads to razor burn to ease irritation and speed healing.


Use witch hazel as a mouthwash to ease toothaches.

Allergic Skin Reactions

Apply to areas of rashes, hives, or other skin irritation caused by an allergic reaction.

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