The leaves and bark of the North American Witch-hazel Hamamelis virginiana may be used to produce an astringent, also referred to as witch hazel, and is used medicinally. This plant extract was widely used for medicinal purposes by American Indians and is a component of a variety of commercial healthcare products.
It's mainly used externally on sores, bruises, and swelling. Witch hazel hydrosol is used in skin care. It is a strong anti-oxidant and astringent. It is often used as a natural remedy for psoriasis, eczema, aftershave applications, ingrown nails, to prevent sweating of the face, cracked or blistered skin, for treating insect bites, poison ivy, and as a treatment for varicose veins and hemorrhoids. It is found in numerous over-the-counter hemorrhoid preparations. It is recommended to women to reduce swelling and soothe wounds resulting from childbirth.