Why Is Witch Hazel Trending?

Witch Hazel

According to Pinterest, witch hazel is currently enjoying an impressive resurgence. Last year, the number of searches for the ingredient increased by a whopping 305%. Why? Well, it has some pretty impressive anti-inflammatory and blemish-busting powers that could help ease a multitude of beauty concerns.

Also referred to as Hamamelis Virginiana on the ingredients list, you most likely associate witch hazel with the on-the-spot treatments you used as a teenager to help ease those red, swollen hum-dingers that appeared on your forehead or chin overnight.  But, the ingredient can be utilised in other ways…

What are the skin benefits?

Essentially the crux of its power is in its ability to mop up any excess oil, which is why it is regularly used in anti-blemish skincare formulas. Cue 31st State’s Spot Control Gel, it’s an advanced version of the blemish busting formulas you used as a teenagers and gets rid of the spot without drying out the surrounding skin. If you regularly battle with an oily T-zone, incorporating a witch hazel cleanser, toner or face cream will make light work of a greasy sheen.

However, if ingrown hairs are a problem then it can also help reduce and prevent them. Likewise if you wake up with puffy under eyes, then witch hazel can help ease the inflammation. Dry, itchy scalps and dandruff can also be relieved by massaging a small amount of witch hazel into the roots of your hair and scalp before shampooing.

It could be an ingredient to pack in your suitcase this summer too. In 2010 a study in the Journal of the German Society of Dermatology found that witch hazel can help to ease sunburn.

Shabir also added the ingredient into the Ful.Vic.Health Fulvic Acid Nail Cream to help reduce any excess moisture than can encourage bacteria to breed and result in fungal infections. For the same reason it is included in Margaret Dabbs Foot Cleansing Wipes too. 

What about the health benefits?

Witch hazel has been used to help relieve the pain and itching of external hemorrhoids. While some people might tout the benefits of ingesting small amounts of the ingredient to help ease sore throats, no scientific study has proven the value of using it internally.

With the rise in interest around witch hazel though you can be sure that more research will come. In the meantime, there are plenty of uses for this natural ingredient.

Sun Creams vs Moisturisers With SPF

SPF Moisturisers_VH

Speak to almost any dermatologist and they will say that the best method for keeping your skin healthy is wearing SPF every day. The detrimental impact that sunlight has on our skin, in terms of health and cosmetic, is well documented. A recent study called into question our approach to sun protection and how we apply it.

Researchers at the University of Liverpool found that our choice of sunscreen – sun creams or moisturisers with SPF – can determine how we apply it and ultimately, how well our skin is protected. The study found that those who used moisturiser with SPF were likely to miss 16.6% of their face compared to those who applied sun cream, who missed just 11.1%.

“When applying both sunscreen and moisturiser, the area around to eyes is often missed, particularly near the nose. Participants covered a smaller area of the face when using moisturiser compared to sunscreen,” said Mr Austin McCormick, researcher and consultant ophthalmic and oculoplastic surgeon.

Interestingly, the study also found that men were marginally better at applying the products than women, as were people with darker skin tones and older participants. The majority of the study failed to apply enough product sufficiently and effectively.

So, how can you up your sun protection game? Finding a formula that works for your skin will make it feel like less of a chore. If you prefer to use a moisturiser with SPF rather than sun cream because they’re lighter in texture and block your pores, it might be worth looking into a translucent formula such as iS Clinical Eclipse SPF50+, £32. Not only it is lightweight, but it also doesn’t leave a chalky white finish. Incorporating Salicylic Acid into your routine with also help to unclog pores and prevent any SPF-induced breakouts.

For super lightweight SPF 30 protection, look to Coola Makeup Setting Sunscreen Spray, £39 – you do need to spritz this liberally though. This is also particularly good for when you need to reapply throughout the day. For example, at lunchtime if you intend on spending the full hour outside in the sun, you’ll need to reapply SPF and this formula won’t mess up your make-up or leave a heavy film over your skin.

To read more about being sun safe, read Sun Protection: The Ultimate Guide To SPF.

We Are Wild Skincare Really Ree Review

Really Ree

We Are Wild Skincare UK Review – Stick-based Regime By Really Ree

 

  • The US stick-only skincare brand We Are Wild has launched in the UK and I am rather taken with it. Not only is it super convenient and travel friendly but the formulations feature probiotic and fermentation technology. Here is everything you need to know.

    What are the We Are Wild Products? So this is a super concise and easy to understand collection which I am really happy to see. There are just three products in the core collection!

    Probiotic Cleanser – Solid Clean
    Probiotic Toner / Hydrating Serum – Solid Water
    Nourishing Balm Moisturiser – Solid Oil

    Every product is vegan, non-toxic and cruelty free, and offers up a complete regime. All you need to do is add sunscreen during the day.


    My Review

    I have tried out all three products and I have to say, I was instantly impressed. The range is dubbed as ‘recreation skincare’ and it’s all about ease of use, practical solutions and travelling light. I don’t really fit into this category at all, but I am still loving the products. Read More…

Is There Any Merit To Reverse Washing?

Reverse Washing

Shampoo and condition is the two-step hair care routine that has been ingrained in most of us since we were children. There is a small movement encouraging us to rethink our approach though. Advocates of reverse washing suggest that conditioning your hair before shampooing could be the key to attaining that soft, bouncy, healthy mane of hair usually associated with a trip to the salon.

The theory is that conditioner can often weigh down your hair, leaving it feeling heavy and potentially even a little greasy within a day. By switching the two around it’s thought that you get the benefits of conditioner without any of the weight.

Not everyone is convinced though. “Firstly, a few minutes is not enough time for the product to work effectively. They should be left on for a minimum of 20 minutes, with a shower cap covering the hair to hold in heat, in order to properly penetrate the hair shaft,” explains trichologist Anabel Kingsley. “Secondly, pre-shampoo treatments should not replace post-shampoo conditioners (and vice versa). You should shampoo and condition as usual afterwards.”

To ensure that your hair is fully conditioned, Kingsley recommends applying a pre-shampoo conditioning treatment for at least 20 minutes before shampooing with the help of a shower cap.

So, are pre-shampoo treatments worth it?

While there are plenty of intensive pre-shampoo treatments on the market, you can also use your existing hair oil, and in some cases your face oil. For example, if you use Repairing Oil by 72 Hair as a post-styling product to smooth your cuticles, you should consider applying it to damp hair, from mid-lengths and ends, 20 minutes before washing your hair as normal.

This trick also works with GoW’s 100% Organic Pressed Argan Oil and 100% Pure Prickly Pear Seed Oil.

What about finding the right shampoo

It’s easy to overlook shampoo and reach for any formula on the shelf, however the wrong shampoo can leave your hair feeling feeling greasy and unclean or stripped and dry. Color Wow’s Color Security Shampoo is a good all-rounder that works on pretty much any hair and has a clever amino complex that locks in colour and nutrients. We also recommend Green People’s Intensive Repair Shampoo as you can get away with washing your hair just twice a week.

If you’re looking for more of a treatment, look to Ful.Vic.Health Fulvic Acid Shampoo. Using the powerful Ioniplex ingredient found in the bestselling Ionicell supplement, this shampoo helps to clean your hair, as well infuse it with non-humic fulvic acid which helps to nourish your scalp.

Could A ‘Nature Pill’ Be The Answer To Your Stress?

Natures Pill

It’s Stress Awareness Month, so you might have noticed an increase in stress-related headlines filtering into your morning news feed. Rather than flagging up the impact of rising stress and anxiety levels on our health, a new study offers a refreshingly easy-to-implement solution that could lower your cortisol levels (the stress hormone). Read More…

Why It’s Time Sit Less And Move More

Move More

How much of the day do you think you spend sitting down? It might surprise you, but the majority of us spend at least nine hours on our bum every day. And before you blame your job, we’re just as guilty of swapping a brisk walk for a Netflix marathon at the weekend. Read More…