Honey is amazing. It’s thick, rich, and golden, and it acts as a natural sweetener in food, offering numerous health benefits like antioxidants, which fight off free radicals and help prevent cell damage. It’s also wildly popular as a skin treatment, and has many antibacterial and anti-fungal properties that may help soothe skin problems like acne and irritation. The big question, however, is how do these claims hold up? Can a honey mask help give you hydrated, glowing skin and fix your most irritating skin woes? Here’s what you need to know about honey skincare—as well as some tips for incorporating it into your normal skin routine.
What Can Honey Do for Skin?
From the number of bloggers who sing the praises of honey as a cleanser, as an acne treatment, and as a natural face mask, it’s clear that these treatments work for many people. It’s also a safe and edible substance that shouldn’t have any negative effects on the skin, so there’s no harm in exploring the potential benefits of honey skincare. What can honey be used for? Some popular uses include:
- Moisturising face mask
- Acne treatment
- Facial cleanser
- Pore clarifier
- Scar treatment
Because honey is ultra-hydrating, nourishing, and cleansing, it can take on many roles in a skincare regimen. Many people find that using a honey mask or other honey treatment makes their skin feel smooth, soft, and supple, without harsh chemicals or other synthetic ingredients.
Moms should take note, however, that honey is not safe for infants to eat, so it’s best to keep this skincare powerhouse away from baby, even as a topical treatment.
The Type of Honey Matters
If you’re thinking about using honey in your skincare routine, the type of honey you use matters. This is true for other natural skin treatments as well, such as coconut oil (always choose virgin coconut oil!). When it comes to honey, don’t pick up a bear-shaped bottle that’s typical on store shelves. Choose a raw honey that will have more antioxidants, healing properties, and antibacterial qualities. Processing removes some of the benefits from honey, so always choose the purest form you can find. It might be more expensive, but the extra few dollars you spend will make a difference.
DIY Honey Skincare
Because it’s easy to buy raw honey, you can whip up many treatments at home. A honey mask is one of the most popular DIY honey skincare treatments you can try, and it’s a great place to start. If a raw honey mask overnight doesn’t sound like a great idea to you (hello sticky pillowcases!), rest assured that you don’t have to leave your mask on that long to get the benefit from it. Just leave the mask on for about 15-20 minutes, then rinse with warm water. You also don’t have to use pure honey on your face—there are lots of simple recipes that combine raw honey with other ingredients.
People with troubled or oily skin often mix up a lemon honey mask for acne, which offers the soothing, antibacterial qualities of raw honey, combined with the acidic power of lemon juice. Other treatments you can try include:
- Face mask recipes that combine honey with ingredients like avocado, yogurt, and oats
- A gentle exfoliating scrub that combines honey with ingredients like yogurt, ground almonds, and olive oil
- A hydrating honey-yogurt hair mask
Try starting with a mask once a week, and see how your skin reacts. If you notice positive changes, you could benefit from more frequent treatments. Have fun with these recipes, and see what works best for your skin!
Will Raw Honey Skincare Work for You?
Honey may be a powerful tool in our natural skincare arsenal, but that doesn’t mean it will work for everyone. The only way to find out for sure is to try it! A honey mask is a great place to start—it only takes a few minutes to mix one up, and it will give you a chance to see what honey can do for your skin. Honey can be a great supplement to your other natural skincare products—you can swap out a lot of your bathroom clutter for a few pure oils and all-natural formulas. Mother Nature approved bathroom staples include:
- Virgin coconut oil—for moisturising and soothing the skin and hair
- Argan oil—as a face oil for both oily and dry skin, or as a hair mask
- Sweet almond oil—as a makeup remover or massage oil
Supplementing your normal skincare products with raw honey is a great way to get beautiful, glowing skin. Always choose products made from cold-pressed oils, and try to buy as pure as possible—your skin will thank you.