Mar 18, 2013

Makeup Crush Monday: Hazel-crazed

      I know you all missed Makeup Crush Monday this past week (maybe), so I'm bringing it back this week.  Today's product is not fancy nor groundbreaking, but it is time-tested and celebrities claim to like it on their own, meaning no paid endorsements here.  It is *drumroll*.... witch hazel or hamamelis virginiana for you ingredient snobs.

    I discovered witch hazel a couple years ago in my search for a new toner option.  I was just exiting my Clean & Clear and Sea Breeze harsh/drying/colored/scented astringent phase and I had finally learned that skin shouldn't feel tight and tingly all the time.  In my best efforts to be kind to my skin, I suppose I ended up equating gentleness with a simple bottle and natural ingredients.  Luckily, I was spot on when I chose Dickinson's Original Witch Hazel Pore Perfecting Toner.  Dickinson's toner boasts a natural, no frills formula that comes in equally unexciting packaging.  The ingredients, as written on the bottle, are: All Natural Witch Hazel, containing Natural Grain Alcohol 14% and Witch Hazel Extract.
      Many of you are probably thinking "Whoa, whoa, whoa! Alcohol? No ma'am!", and you are right to be concerned, but I have extremely sensitive, breakout prone skin and I have never experienced adverse effects when using this toner.  However,  if you would like to read some articles on the pros and cons of witch hazel use, you can find them here and here.  I support the school of thought that suggests the pros outweigh the cons (Truth in Aging), but Paula Begoun does present her points well.  I just figure that with all of the highly regarded and fairly new products that contain alcohol out there, such as Caudalie's Beauty Elixir, an ingredient that has been used for centuries as a disinfectant and anti-inflammatory should be the least of our concerns.

     BUT, if you are interested in a witch hazel toner that is alcohol-free, I was recently introduced to the Thayer's Rose Petal Witch Hazel with Aloe Vera Formula.  This impressive product not only contains witch hazel, but it also has aloe, glycerin, and vitamin E, and smells amazing to boot!  It's ideal for those of you with drier skin types.  Those of you with fragrance sensitivities may want to skip out on this one, but that's fine because Thayer's also has an unscented formula in their line of toners!
*Photo Credit: Walgreens
        Dickinson's also makes witch hazel towelettes which I normally stockpile for vacations.  They are perfect for a quick cleanse when there isn't a sink nearby.  Even Drew Barrymore claimed to like these during an interview she did with Into the Gloss, calling them "facials on-the-go". 

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