Monday, 10 December 2007

Benefits of witch hazel

The benefits of witch hazel are broad and varied. Witch hazel has traditionally been used for the treatment of wounds, itchy and dry skin and bleeding. It has also been used to treat inflamed eyes.

Though an awful lot of purported herbal remedies are of little value, there is no doubt that witch hazel is an effective natural pharmaceutical. It is one of the few natural remedies to have obtained US FDA approval for sale specifically for medicinal use.

Witch hazel does in fact, contain high levels of tannin, which is an astringent, hence it's long association as a skin treatment. The astringent properties of the plant, has seen an increase in the uses of the plant, which is now widely used in skin-care products, after-sun lotions and aftershaves. It also has uses as a haemorrhoid treatment and for treating varicose veins and inflamed gums.

Witch hazel is often used as a cleanser or toner, for facial care routines and has success as a toner in the treatment of acne and is particularly suited to oily and combination skin types.

The key ingredient in witch hazel is a tannin acid derivative called catechol tannin, When applied to wounds, cuts and abrasions, tannins constrict the tiny capillaries and below the skin surface.

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