A bright red witch hazel branch against a grey sky next to a bottle of rubbing alcohol

Witch Hazel vs Alcohol-Based Toners

     Alcohol-based toners are very popular, and they do work.  However, they can dry out your skin and contribute to signs of aging.  As a vegan skincare company, we prefer witch hazel.  We include it in our blissani Naturals anti-acne clear face toner, but we’d recommend using it even by itself.  Just choose a natural supplier you trust.  It’s a great way to tighten pores and exfoliate the skin, which is exactly what you want a toner to do.

why use toner to tighten pores, exfoliate and restore pH balance

     Toners are often used after shaving and/or cleansing the face.  It’s a great second step in any skincare routine.  Step one is to use a natural face wash.  Step two is to use a natural toner and Step 3 is a moisturizer with sunscreen during the day and anti-aging at night.  After cleansing or shaving, your pores are open and ready for exfoliation (the removal of dead skin cells.)  Witch hazel is a great way to do just that.  Although, we can see why alcohol toners are still popular.

      Alcohol(s) are in most skincare products.  It helps dissolve ingredients which are not water-soluble (easily dissolved in water) and gets valuable nutrients deep into your skin.  However, there are different types of alcohol.  The simple and fatty alcohols found in most skincare products won’t damage your skin the way many alcohol-based toners will. Most alcohol-based toners contain aromatic alcohols which can dry out your skin initially (fooling you into thinking they work).  Yet, over time they can produce the opposite effect.

witch hazel a natural astringent dries out zits pimples and blemishes without drying skin

     Aromatic alcohol and too much alcohol in general (we’re looking at you Uncle Larry) will cause your skin’s pH to be out of balance.  This is your skin’s natural oil-acid balance and when out of whack it can cause acne, blemishes and irritation.  Witch hazel, on the other hand, can help restore your skin’s natural pH balance to reduce signs of aging and acne.

     It also helps tighten pores and exfoliate the skin.  This made it a natural inclusion in our blissani Naturals Clear Face Anti-Acne Toner.  Our vegan-friendly, cruelty-free formula contains licorice root to help with dark spots, green tea extract for wrinkles, and aloe to soothe and heal your skin.  Simply swipe one thin layer over the face with a cotton round after shaving and/or cleansing.  If you’re the DIY type you can do the same with Organic Witch Hazel, and are feelings won’t be hurt. 

The Big Differences Between Alcohol and Witch Hazel

For those of us dedicated to the principles of vegan skincare, the choice between alcohol and witch hazel as skincare ingredients holds more significance than meets the eye. While both substances are commonly used in skincare products, their origins and effects on the skin couldn't be more distinct.

Alcohol, often derived from non-vegan sources, can raise concerns for ethical skincare enthusiasts. It's crucial to note that some alcohols might be derived from animal products or tested on animals, contradicting the vegan philosophy of avoiding any harm to animals. Moreover, alcohol's astringent nature can be harsh and stripping, disrupting the skin's natural balance and potentially leading to dryness or irritation. For those who prioritize cruelty-free and compassionate skincare, the potential non-vegan origin and the harshness of alcohol make it a less appealing option.

A branch of witch hazel, the blissani clear face toner, a cup of green tea "the blissani Naturals Clear Face Toner"

In contrast, witch hazel aligns seamlessly with the vegan skincare ethos. Derived from the witch hazel shrub, this natural extract offers a gentle and effective alternative. Witch hazel is celebrated for its soothing and anti-inflammatory properties, making it a suitable choice for all skin types. Its ability to minimize pores, reduce redness, and promote healing without compromising the skin's moisture barrier is a boon for ethical skincare enthusiasts seeking cruelty-free and plant-based solutions. When opting for witch hazel, those committed to vegan skincare can confidently choose a product that aligns with their values while nurturing their skin harmoniously.



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