Hamamelis virginiana, commonly known as witch hazel, is a natural product found in the bark and leaves of a witch hazel shrub. Thanks to the high level of tannin acid in witch hazel, this product provides health and skin benefits without causing skin irritation. Plus, witch hazel is affordable, unlike other pricey beauty products. Witch hazel is most often used for its disinfectant properties to treat acne by reducing bacteria and inflammation. Healing, soothing witch hazel masks are easy to make yourself at home.
Mix one teaspoon of witch hazel with one teaspoon of tree oil and two teaspoons of honey.
Add a few drops of lavender essential oil, which is also a soothing antiseptic, to add scent and additional healing properties. Alternatively, sandalwood essential oil works well on oily skin and carrot seed essential oil is helpful in reducing the appearance of wrinkles. Rose otto essential oil is best for dry skin.
Mash either an avocado or banana with an egg white.
Apply the mask to coat the skin entirely, or to only coat the infected area of the skin.
Rinse the mask off with cool water after fifteen minutes.
Pat the skin dry.
Whisk one egg white to make it stiff.
Add six drops of witch hazel and six drops of lemon juice to the egg white and mix.
Apply the mask to the skin.
Rinse face with warm water after 15 minutes to remove the mask.
Blend one egg with the juice squeezed from one lemon, four tablespoons of nonfat dry milk powder and one tablespoon of witch hazel in a blender or food processor.
Apply the mask to the face, chest and neck.
Remove the mask by using the remaining mixture as cleanser.
Rinse face with warm water and pat skin dry.
Many beauty products affect the pH level of skin, causing irritation. Witch hazel doesn’t disrupt the pH level at all.
Witch hazel can be applied directly to the skin as an astringent. Wet a cotton ball with witch hazel and dab on the skin no more than three times daily.
A witch hazel mask should only be applied to clean, dry skin.
Witch hazel has a natural numbing effect when applied. This is normal and no cause for worry.
Don't take witch hazel orally.
As a full-time writer in New York's Hudson Valley, Lindsay Pietroluongo's nightlife column and photos have appeared regularly in the "Poughkeepsie Journal" since 2007. Additional publications include "Chronogram," the "New Paltz Sojourn," "About Town" newspaper and "Outsider" magazine. Pietroluongo graduated from Marist College with a B.A. in English.