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Witch hazel lotion is used as a holistic remedy for the skin. The lotion is made from extracting oils from the bark of the witch hazel plant. Alcohol is then added to it and the lotion goes through a distilling process. This process produces witch hazel lotion and it is considered a skin astringent. Tannin acid is the main ingredient found in this lotion.
An astringent helps to reduce skin irritation. It can shrink tissues and membranes in the skin that have been damaged by things that include too much sun exposure or acne. Astringents tighten the skin and ease any skin eruptions. For example, when a person suffers with acne, it can be made worse by oily skin and larger pores, which can excrete the oil at a faster rate. Using an astringent such as witch hazel lotion can remove excess oils and tighten up pores.
Other types of skin conditions, including hemorrhoids, also can produce swollen and inflamed skin. They can be a result of straining during bowel movements, which can cause the veins in the anus to swell. Hemorrhoids can be very painful and they can become so swollen that constipation can also occur. Witch hazel lotion can be applied to the affected area, bringing relief as well as a reduction in swelling to ease symptoms.
Insect bites, severe sunburns, and heat rash are other skin conditions that can be eased with hazel lotion. It can also be used as a simple cleanser for the skin. Make-up and cold creams can be removed with it and although it is a deep cleanser, it is gentle enough to be used everyday. Sore throats can also be eased by using this lotion. Witch hazel lotion can be mixed with water and used as a gargle.
There have been reported allergic reactions to witch hazel lotion, including skin dermatitis. These side effects can make skin conditions worse, so when they happen the use of the lotion should be discontinued. If witch hazel lotion is ingested, it can cause nausea, vomiting, and vertigo and it should never be taken internally. Expecting or nursing mothers should not use this lotion because it is unclear if it can harm the fetus or negatively effect the breast milk. It has been deemed safe to be used as a diaper rash ointment.