I tell everyone I meet about witch hazel. The ones that finally listen, know the magical powers it possesses to change your skin. The key is trusting that it will work it's magic and not getting carried away with added ingredients to whatever one you purchase. I keep one alcohol-free bottle next to my tooth brush for morning and night routines (Thayers pictured below) and one bottle that is not alcohol-free under my sink for the pesky pimples that only seem to come around during my special time of the month (Dickinson's pictured below). I'd like to share with you two different examples where witch hazel helped personal friends of mine. One with an over oily problem area and one with severe dry skin issues. This is the magic part -- same product for both examples!
Example #1: My good friend, Michelle, was suffering from stress pimples. Often times these are hormonal along the jawline and under the skin, but for Michelle, these were just as painful and showing no signs of going away but instead of her jawline, they were on the bridge and tip of her cute lil' button nose. Now don't get me wrong, every face is beautiful, but you could see how painful these were because of the redness and irritation. Her skin is completely flawless everywhere else with an olive complexion most women and men envy, so I wanted to help her restore her face to it's happiest state. When she told me she had tried everything, I asked how the area reacted to the witch hazel. She didn't think witch hazel was a real option, so only because she felt like she had tried everything, I was able to get her to try one more thing. I gave her a few individually packaged Dickson's witch hazel wipes and told her to cleanse her face and then use wipe. If she was watching TV at night, she could hold an ice cube on the area too just to bring the swelling down. The very next day I saw her and the redness had cleared. She said she didn't have any ice so it was only the wipe that helped. By the end of the week (3 days later) the entire area was cleared up and back to 100% olive toned perfection. Since then, she has incorporated an alcohol-free witch hazel with rose petals by Thayer as her daily toner and loves it. I personally am allergic to rose and lavender, so I avoid products with these ingredients.
Example #2: Another friend, Sean, suffered from dry and flakey skin. He was gearing up for a photoshoot and didn't want the makeup artist or photographer to complain about his eczema like symptoms and he asked if I knew of a quick fix that could help him in less than a week. I asked what his current routine was and he said he'd been dabbling around with CVS brand face creams and was still using a harsh astringent for acne he had used as a teenager. First I asked him to swap out his astringent for a distilled bottle water. To wash his face as normal, and then use water on a cotton ball as he would with astringent and to be gentle. This acts as an exfoliant without stripping the natural oils we want to keep on the skin. Next, I told him he'd need to pick one moisturizer and give it a chance to do it's thing and give his skin a chance to 'recalibrate.' Then take some alcohol-free witch hazel and pour it into any kind of clean spray bottle. Put the chosen moisturizer on first, then lock in that moisture by misting your face with witch hazel spritz afterwards. He had several questions about this, so if you do as well... Toners tighten the pores, right? So why do we want to tighten our pores or as he was doing tightening and stripping them of all the natural oils and messing with pH balance? Lock in the dewy goodness with witch hazel or any toner you use. It will help for extra moisture and will save you money because you will start using less moisturizing product. He was on board to give my simple suggestions a shot and I'm pleased to report Sean started seeing a difference in just a few days. He waltz into his photoshoot with the confidence of a Happy Face and the shoot was a success. At first I thought maybe just cutting out the teenage astringent could have done the trick for Sean, but then I saw him recently and his skin was glowing!!! He said he has continued with the water & cotton ball in the mornings and witch hazel every night. He also uses a few other tricks in my men's routines. Note: that when it comes to guys and skin care the fixes are often very simple. Check out my blog about recommendations for men's daily routines if you are interested further on this topic
Why? because witch hazel is really great at balancing our skin's pH levels. It also has a cleansing agent and is natural, so it's a great alternative to some of those other products that are very pricey that we may not even know what's really in them. Leading up to your wedding day or any special occasions, I always like to see if witch hazel can help improve skin's health so the base will be Happy. #happyfacebyhh