Gettin' Witchy With It: 11 Reasons To Add Witch Hazel To Your Beauty Regimen

When it comes to our skin, we try to take a natural approach as often as possible. And, while we may not always be able to stay 100% green when it comes to our beauty routine (there's just too much good stuff to try) we can at least rest easier knowing that a lot of our favorite products are packed with good-for-you plant extracts working overtime to make our complexions sparkle.
One of our favorites among these ingredients is witch hazel. It's found in everything from body lotion to eye cream, so the name is probably familiar to you, but chances are you don't know what it actually is. "Witch hazel itself is a distillation from the leaves and flower-bearing twigs of the witch-hazel plant," says Elizabeth Vislocky, lead aesthetician at the Jurlique Madison Avenue store in NYC. "Today, this multi-purpose ingredient is commonly used for treating skin disorders such as acne, psoriasis, insect bites, and poison ivy."
We've been using witch hazel for years as a toner, but it turns out many of the products we use on a daily basis contain the hamamelis virginiana plant (witch hazel's alias). "Since the herbal extract derived from the plant is naturally astringent and anti-inflammatory," says Vislocky, "it seems to work best for oily, combination, or problematic and temperamental skin. Sensitive skin types should consider using witch hazel-based products, but with caution, as they may find the astringent nature to be too harsh."
Ready to add this power-packed plant to your beauty routine? Read on to see our fave ways to get witchy.
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A caffeine-rich eye roller that works to de-puff the undereye area and eliminate dark circles. Witch hazel soothes the skin around the eyes and protects it.

First Aid Beauty Detox Eye Roller, $24, available at Sephora.
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The grandaddy of witch hazel toners, Thayers is formulated from a 150-year-old recipe. The company combines their witch hazel with aloe vera and other good-for-your-skin ingredients like rose and lavender.

Thayers Alcohol-Free Rose Petal Witch Hazel Toner, $9.95, available at Thayers.
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Korres harnesses the mattifying effects of witch hazel in their pomegranate primer. It helps to tighten the skin and remove excess oil and dirt without overdrying or stripping the skin of moisture.

Korres Pomegranate Mattifying Primer, $33, available at Sephora.
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An all-over body moisturizer that hydrates and speeds up cellular turnover. Witch hazel helps to ward off bacteria, acting as a natural antiseptic.

Kate Somerville Goat Milk Body Lotion, $32, available at Nordstrom.
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A light-hold hairspray that adds shine and harnesses witch hazel to eliminate frizz and flyaways.

Aveda Witch Hazel Light Hold Hair Spray, $18, available at Aveda.
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A skin-smoothing bar soap that has been around since 1878 (quite the apt name, no?), it works to refresh and smooth the skin.

Grandpa's Witch Hazel Soap, $2.31, available at Amazon.
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Witch hazel works its astringent powers in these wildly popular strips. Not only does it help to clear pores but it works to tighten them as well to avoid future clogging.

Boscia Pore Purifying Black Strips, $15, available at Boscia.
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Jurlique's natural blemish cream combines witch hazel and tea tree oil help to help cleanse and control oil on the skin. Bonus: It has a subtle tint to it, so it can also act as a cover-up.

Jurlique Blemish Cream, $28, available at Jurlique.
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Specially formulated for the body, these exfoliating towels combine witch hazel, glycolic acid, and willow bark extract to exfoliate, firm, and tone the skin.

Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Alpha Beta Exfoliating Body Towel, $36, available at Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare.
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An ultra-soothing mask that uses witch hazel to help calm redness and irritation on the skin. Can also be used to treat sunburned skin.

Thalgo Immediate Bio-Soothing Mask, $42, available at
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Specifically formulated to control acneic skin, this all-natural moisturizer is soothing enough to use daily. It combines salicylic acid and witch hazel to naturally clean the skin and control oil.

Burt's Bees Acne Solutions Daily Moisturizing Lotion, $18, available at Burt's Bees.