The most famous advocate of using honey and its benefits for the skin lived over 2,000 years ago and she happened to be one of the most powerful women ever to have lived: Cleopatra. Legend has it that she bathed in milk and honey every day, and even two thousand years later the world today still thinks of her as a woman of intense beauty and seduction.
In the 21st century, manuka honey is being talked about in a similar mystical fashion as a natural product with wondrous benefits for the skin. Is it all hype? The answer is a simple no — a lot of research has been and continues to be done all over the world on the benefits of manuka honey for the skin.
Manuka honey is so packed full of goodness and as it has so many benefits for the skin it has become a key ingredient for many beauty and skin care products. This is not surprising given its organic nature, long list of nutrients and minerals together with its astoundingly beneficial properties. It is considered to be bioactive, which means it has an effect on living tissue.
Good for skin health and can treat problems
But what exactly are the benefits for the skin of manuka honey? Anyone interested in maintaining healthy and supple skin has reason to consider investing in a jar of manuka honey but its well-documented healing properties also mean it can be used to treat common skin ailments.
Minerals, vitamins and antioxidants
Manuka honey is packed full of vitamins and minerals including many of the B vitamins such , thiamin (B1), niacin (B3), riboflavin (B2), pantothenic acid (B5), and also has the vitamins C, E and K, as well as beta carotene. When it comes to minerals it has calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, and potassium.
Antioxidant activity – another reason why manuka honey is great for the skin is because it is also high in antioxidants. The skin can become damaged from free radicals, such as from UV radiation from the sun, and these free radicals can cause cell damage that can cause the skin to age prematurely. Manuka honey has been shown to fight these free radicals.
Treatment for problems
Manuka honey’s famous, well-researched antibacterial properties mean that it can protect your skin from blemishes, acne and germs in general by destroying bacteria. Acne occurs when the pores in your skin get blocked and infected with bacteria, but manuka honey penetrates the skin and kills the bacteria.
The anti-inflammatory effect of manuka honey has also been widely studied and it can soothe the skin and is effective in treating skin wounds and irritated skin. It has also been shown to be effective in treating skin diseases such as eczema and psoriasis, which are both inflammatory-related skin problems.
The moisturizing and emollient action of manuka honey can bring relief to dry skin too.
Manuka honey can be effective in preventing the formation of scars because it keeps the wound area moist while keeping a protective layer over the wound. But the honey also has a special osmosis effect so it draws out nutrients from the body that stimulate skin recovery while also drawing out harmful bacteria.
Studies have shown that manuka honey stimulates the growth of new skin tissue and improves the strength of collagen, which is responsible for keeping skin young looking and supple. Free radicals are created for example by uv radiation and pollutants and these can destroy collagen leading to premature ageing of the skin.
Fights fungal infections too
Manuka honey also has antimicrobial properties and this means it can be effective against fungal as well as bacterial infections. This is the reason why manuka honey can be beneficial for other skin conditions as its antifungal properties mean it can also be effective with skin conditions such as ringworm.
We can all take a leaf out of her book, so don’t be afraid to give in to your temptations and pamper yourself and your skin with manuka honey: let its rejuvenating and soothing properties work its magic.