Manuka honey, a special type of honey with wide ranging therapeutic properties, has risen in fame as a natural skin care ingredient. Made in New Zealand with the honey of bees that exclusively feed on the pollen of the manuka plant, the honey has antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Recommended by naturopaths for clearing acne, it works both as an internal and external agent to fight inflammation and acne causing bacteria. While manuka honey alone may not be enough to clear acne, it makes a valuable addition to any acne fighting regimen.
Things You Will Need
Look for the UMF seal on the manuka honey jar. Regulated by the Active Manuka Honey Industry, the UMF, standing for unique manuka factor, guarantees the antibacterial properties of the honey in the jar labeled with seal.
Buy a manuka honey jar with a UMF factor of 10 or more. The number next to the UMF seal indicates the strength of the honey. Strength of 10 or more marks a superior honey with medical grade healing properties.
Add a few drops of the honey to your regular cleanser. Wash your face with it and rinse with lukewarm water. Possessing strong antibacterial properties, manuka honey may kill acne causing bacteria on contact.
Apply manuka honey as a mask on face. Add a few drops of honey to a store bought mask or directly use a tablespoon of honey on clean facial skin. Leave the mask on for 15 to 20 minutes and rinse with warm water.
Dab a little honey directly on inflamed blemishes. Leave it on either for 30 minutes or overnight for more visible results. The honey has anti-inflammatory properties that reduce redness and the size of blemishes.
Consume a spoon of manuka honey every day before lunch or dinner to fight acne from the inside out. Alternatively, add a spoon to green tea to further enhance the antibacterial properties of the honey.
Look for manuka honey as an ingredient in store bought cleansers and facial masks if the stickiness of honey bothers you.
Considering the dangers of antibiotic resistance, there is a surge of interest in ingredients with inherent antimicrobial properties. Manuka honey with its strong antibacterial properties may work as a gentler alternative to standard anti-acne medications such as retinoids and glycolic acids.
Tips & Warnings
When consumed internally, manuka honey also aids digestion.
Manuka honey is a safe topical agent with no side-effects.
Manuka honey, like other honeys is not a low calorie food. When consumed in excess, it may lead to weight gain!