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Witch Hazel is Not Just A Normal Herb! See Why Everyone Should Have it At Home!

Witch Hazel is Not Just A Normal Herb! See Why Everyone Should Have it At Home!

Witch hazel – it sounds like a hocus pocus ingredient that’s used in spells and magic potions. But if you have ever suffered from acne, stretch marks, hemorrhoids, or varicose veins, or if your baby has ever been plagued by a dreaded diaper rash, then you’ll be glad to know that witch hazel isn’t a mythical ingredient, and that it has the power to cure these and other common ailments.

But what exactly is witch hazel?

    In its most common form, witch hazel is a clear, inexpensive liquid that doesn’t get nearly the attention it deserves. With its multitude of uses and cure-all solutions, you’d think that witch hazel would be a staple in every medicine cabinet in the world. Yet many people still don’t realize how powerful this magical elixir can be.

    Witch hazel comes from a compound made of the leaves and bark of the North American witch-hazel shrub. Native Americans used to boil the stems of the shrub and use the resulting decoction to treat swelling, inflammation, and tumors. In modern times, witch hazel is still commonly used to treat swelling and inflammation, among other health woes like acne, bug bites, hemorrhoids, and bruising.

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    6 Major Benefits of Using Witch Hazel

    Relives Post-Partum Pain

    Hospitals usually give chilled witch hazel pads to women recovering from childbirth. Witch hazel has long been know to reduce swelling and soothe wounds, both of which are experienced by post-partum mothers.

    Soothes Diaper Rash

    A baby’s sensitive skin can be prone to the rubbing of the diaper, along with prolonged exposure to moisture in the diaper. Witch hazel offers a safe, natural alternative to diaper creams and chlorine wipes. Its astringent properties are similar to zinc oxide, a common ingredient found in most diaper creams.

    Cools Sunburn

    The anti-inflammatory properties can help cool your sunburn and provide much needed relief. Although this is a temporary solution, as it doesn’t actually make your sunburn disappear, it can feel soothing against burnt skin and help divert your attention from your pain.

    Repel Bugs

    Witch hazel can help you keep bugs at bay the natural way. Rather than coat your body in potentially hazardous bug sprays and chemicals, you can use witch hazel as a base in a homemade bug spray to keep those bloodsuckers from sharing their germs with you.

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    Prevent Body Odor

    You can create your very own all-natural deodorant using just one ingre dient: witch hazel. Just dab some under your arms to prevent body odor. This is an exceptional alternative to traditional deodorants that might contain harmful, hormone-disrupting ingredients, as well as a good solution for people with sensitive skin.

    Treat Acne and Other Skin Conditions

    As an astringent, witch hazel helps to tighten pores which can help prevent acne. This makes sense, since witch hazel has long been used to help fight infections, cure poison ivy, and reduce inflammation.

    The Side Effects to Using Witch Hazel

    Just because something is all natural doesn’t mean that it there aren’t any consequences to using it. However, in witch hazel’s case, risks of using it are relatively low.

    Although witch hazel is often used to reduce inflammation, it can actually cause inflammation if you rub it into your skin too often. In addition, some people might naturally be allergic or become allergic to witch hazel. Most doctors recommend you do not take witch hazel by mouth; rather, use it as a topical remedy only.

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    There’s only the slimmest chance of any of these side effects happening to you, but be aware that they can occur.

    How to Use Witch Hazel

    Depending on what you are wanting to treat with witch hazel will depend on how you use it. For those who want to try witch hazel as an acne or sunburn solution, it’s best to spot treat your acne by dabbing it directly onto the affected area. Spot treating can help ensure you do not further irritate your skin by rubbing large areas.

    You can also add witch hazel to a spray bottle to use as a deodorant or bug spray. You can then spray the solution directly on your skin.

    For post-partum treatments, you can apply witch hazel to sanitary pads and apply directly to swollen areas. Many moms recommend freezing the pads before using them, as the coolness of the pads can add extra relief.

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    Where to Buy Witch Hazel

    You’re in luck! Witch hazel can be found at pretty much any major grocery store, wellness stores, mass merchandise store, or pharmacies. It’s usually, but not always, found in the first aid aisle, alongside rubbing alcohol and hydrogen peroxide. It’s also relatively inexpensive, too, about $3 for a 16 oz. bottle.

    If you can’t find witch hazel in any of your local stores, you can order online from retailers like Amazon, or sites that specialize in all natural solutions.

    What Makes Witch Hazel Better Than the Alternatives

    Granted, there are lots of solutions out there that offer the same solutions for the above benefits of witch hazel. So why wouldn’t you buy Desitin for your baby’s diaper rash or Proactiv to treat your acne?

    Keep in mind that most of those solutions don’t offer the all-natural benefits that witch hazel does.

    Witch hazel helps you eliminate your exposure and intake to potentially harmful chemicals, ones you may not even realize you’re exposed to. In addition, given witch hazel’s all-around versatility and inexpensive price tag, you can save yourself some space and money by stocking one product to take care of a multitude of tasks.

    But the only way to know for sure it to try it for yourself.

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    Alli Hill

    Freelance Writer and Marketing Consultant

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    Last Updated on December 2, 2018

    How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life

    How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life

    Ebb and flow. Contraction and expansion. Highs and lows. It’s all about the cycles of life.

    The entire course of our life follows this up and down pattern of more and then less. Our days flow this way, each following a pattern of more energy, then less energy, more creativity and periods of greater focus bookended by moments of low energy when we cringe at the thought of one more meeting, one more call, one more sentence.

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    The key is in understanding how to use the cycles of ebb and flow to our advantage. The ability to harness these fluctuations, understand how they affect our productivity and mood and then apply that knowledge as a tool to improve our lives is a valuable strategy that few individuals or corporations have mastered.

    Here are a few simple steps to start using this strategy today:

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    Review Your Past Flow

    Take just a few minutes to look back at how your days and weeks have been unfolding. What time of the day are you the most focused? Do you prefer to be more social at certain times of the day? Do you have difficulty concentrating after lunch or are you energized? Are there days when you can’t seem to sit still at your desk and others when you could work on the same project for hours?

    Do you see a pattern starting to emerge? Eventually you will discover a sort of map or schedule that charts your individual productivity levels during a given day or week.  That’s the first step. You’ll use this information to plan your days going forward.

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    Schedule According to Your Flow Pattern

    Look at the types of things you do each day…each week. What can you move around so that it’s a better fit for you? Can you suggest to your team that you schedule meetings for late morning if you can’t stand to be social first thing? Can you schedule detailed project work or highly creative tasks, like writing or designing when you are best able to focus? How about making sales calls or client meetings on days when you are the most social and leaving billing or reports until another time when you are able to close your door and do repetitive tasks.

    Keep in mind that everyone is different and some things are out of our control. Do what you can. You might be surprised at just how flexible clients and managers can be when they understand that improving your productivity will result in better outcomes for them.

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    Account for Big Picture Fluctuations

    Look at the bigger picture. Consider what happens during different months or times during the year. Think about what is going on in the other parts of your life. When is the best time for you to take on a new project, role or responsibility? Take into account other commitments that zap your energy. Do you have a sick parent, a spouse who travels all the time or young children who demand all of your available time and energy?

    We all know people who ignore all of this advice and yet seem to prosper and achieve wonderful success anyway, but they are usually the exception, not the rule. For most of us, this habitual tendency to force our bodies and our brains into patterns of working that undermine our productivity result in achieving less than desired results and adding more stress to our already overburdened lives.

    Why not follow the ebb and flow of your life instead of fighting against it?

      Featured photo credit: Nathan Dumlao via unsplash.com

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