Witch hazel is a botanical extract derived from the bark and leaves of a shrub plant called Hamamelis virginiana.
The active ingredient of witch hazel is added into different skincare formulations including cleansers and toners. It has anti-inflammatory, astringent, and antioxidant effects on the skin. Overall, the formulation is depicted as non-comedogenic, non-irritating, and non-stinging.
The active ingredient of witch hazel can greatly reduce redness and inflammation. Thus, it can help to minimize breakouts and/or inflamed acne.
One of the antioxidant components within the witch hazel is polyphenols or tannins. They help to protect the skin from environmental stressors and neutralize the damage caused by free radicals. As known, free radicals penetrate one’s skin and trigger quicker ageing, which results in loss of elasticity and formation of fine lines and wrinkles.
The active ingredient of witch hazel does not have major side effects and is safe to use on daily basis but not in excess. The excess amount can result in a drying effect.