Harrison Farm

for now, the only thing we're growing on this farm is kids - not the goat variety

Bruise-Be-Gone with Witch Hazel

image compliments of flickrs sea turtle

image compliments of flickr's sea turtle

I’m one of those souls who bruises easily. I’ll occasionally find a large bruise, and I’ll have no recollection of how I got it. For a long time I’ve suspected that witch hazel, an astringent produced from the leaves and bark of the North American Witch Hazel shrub, helps me not bruise. Now I have proof.

A couple of days ago I whacked my right shin on a stool. The skin turned pinkish almost immediately. It hurt!

I dropped what I was doing, soaked a cotton ball with witch hazel, and dabbed it on my sore shin for a couple of minutes. The discoloration faded quickly and now there is not a hint of blue or purple bruising on my skin!

There seems to be a correlation between how soon the witch hazel is applied and its effectiveness. If I wait until my skin is already turning blue, the astringent doesn’t seem to make much of a difference at all.

I did a quick search and it seems that witch hazel is helpful for other ailments too from relieving pain from varicose veins, to soothing the itchiness and swelling of poison ivy, to helping nicks and cuts heal. Have you had success using witch hazel? Seems like handy stuff to have around.


  1. That sounds like something I could use. Can you find it at any pharmacy?

  2. Milkmaid

    June 22, 2009 at 3:18 pm

    Yes. Any Walgreens, CVS, etc. should have it. Good stuff.

  3. Hi! I use Arnica a lot, the same way, with WONDERFUL results. I am able to buy it as an oil, but I have seen it as a gel or homeopathic tabs in health food stores. Arnica happens to be a wildflower here in South West Oregon.


  4. Milkmaid

    June 25, 2009 at 10:04 pm

    Hi Christina,

    I’ve heard great things about arnica but have never tried it. I remember that it has several uses but can’t remember what they are. If you have more to share about it, I’d love to hear.

  5. Oh! I’m wishing I would have read this yesterday! JMurrs fell at the park and got a big bruise on the forehead.

  6. debbie miller hufford

    October 4, 2009 at 6:13 pm

    Hi there, it’s been a while : ).

    I had my kids at a very special hospital in Lancaster, PA. How many hospitals have hitching posts for Amish? They had mobile nnicu, message therapy, herbal remedies and some of the best food ever.

    They used witch hazels for after care for moms. Thank God for the Women’s and Baby’s Hospital and witch hazel.

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