You probably use it in your morning oatmeal, as a hydration boost in your bubble bath or even the secret ingredient in your softening hair mask. But the sweetest use of honey may be as a skincare product! As Diply explains, honey has been used for centuries to treat everything from wounds to heart disease to skin problems. How can a modern woman use this ancient remedy to score perfect skin? Here are the facts, tips and tricks you should know to turn honey into your sweetest beauty secret weapon yet.

Does it work?

According to Kayla Grossman, an RN who blogs at The Radiant Life, honey has been historically prized for its antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Need a breakdown of why honey is so great for the skin? Grossman explains:

  • Honey’s enzyme hydrogen peroxide and active compounds like methlyglycol have bacteria-fighting abilities. Because honey prevents pathogens from irritating the skin, it can reduce existing inflammation and prevent future infections.
  • The sugars in honey means it is a natural moisturizer.
  • Because honey is slightly acidic, it regulates the skin’s pH and encourages tissue healing and regeneration.
  • Despite its sugary reputation, honey also contains proteins, amino acids, vitamins, probiotics and more – which makes it a punch of nutrients for your skin.
  • Prone to blemishes? Honey to the rescue. It’s high antioxidant activity helps prevent damage from blemish and wrinkle causing free radicals on the skin.

Grossman advises women to use honey to treat all types of skin types and a variety of skin issues – and our research didn’t show any advice to the contrary. Mayo Clinic warns against using honey when you have a known allergy or sensitivity to celery, pollen or other bee-related substances. Sable Young from Style Caster notes that honey doesn’t do much in terms of exfoliation or makeup removal. However, it’s hard to find anyone who has had a negative experience with this sweet substance.

Which honey to use?

Before you decide to join in on the buzz, make sure you’re using the right honey. Rebecca Baily from No More Dirty Looks offer some important tips when honey shopping.

  • Darker honeys tend to offer more antioxidants – so it can’t hurt to look for those!
  • Honey is often named after the particular plant on which the bees feed. So if you notice that a certain plant helps or hurt your skin – like thyme, for instance – consider those reactions if you’re looking to purchase thyme honey.
  • Honey can also be infused with flavors after the bees have made the honey. In this case, the flavor – such as lavender blossom – affect the taste and the effect on your skin.

Now, the bottom line is that you should pick a honey that is unprocessed – you don’t want to put junk in your body, so why put it on it? – and preferably raw. If you want a clearer shopping list, though, here are Baily’s top three honey types.

1 Manuka Honey

The name may sound a little funny, but this honey is the Queen Bee in terms of its anti-bacterial properties. It’s made when bees feed on the New Zealand manuka bush and plenty of studies have supported its reputation as an anti-bacterial superstar. While it works well to heal or prevent blemishes, Baily does note that it isn’t as hydrating as some honeys.

2 Buckwheat Honey

This honey is dark, thick and a perfect moisturizer. According to Baily, it also has a deep honey smell and taste and spreads easily on your skin.

3 Pumpkin honey

Pumpkin lover? Look no further. This version is thick, moisturizing and spreads well. When you see it, though, be sure to stock up because it’s only in season for a short time!

Now the fun part – ways to use it!

1 Make a magical mask.

What exactly makes a honey mask so magical? According to She Knows, a honey mask can moisturize your skin at the same time it helps unclog pores. To make one is simple: Just add a thin layer of honey to slightly damp skin, rubbing in small circles. Wear the honey mask for at least 30 minutes before washing your face with warm water.

2 Blast blemishes.

She Knows also advises using honey as a spot treatment for blemishes instead of harsh over-the-counter creams. As long as you use a small amount, you can sleep with a small dab of honey on the spot overnight. For an extra antioxidant boost, try mixing tea tree oil and lavender oil with the honey before applying.

3 Fade scars.

Nearly everyone rocks some battle wounds from puberty or the time you accidentally walked into a pole. As Women’s Health explains, honey’s anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties can help reduce the severity of scars and encourage healing. For a natural scar fader, try mixing one teaspoon of raw honey with one teaspoon of coconut oil or olive oil (which will help hydrate and revive your skin). Massage the solution into your skin in small circles for a few minutes before letting a warm washcloth sit on your skin until cool.

4 Enjoy a DIY exfoliator.

Many sites – including Women’s Health – also suggest combining honey with baking soda for a natural exfolitator. Although you should be careful if you have sensitive skin, this combination could help remove dead skin cells to make your skin look and feel beautiful. How to make it? Just mix two tablespoons of honey with one tablespoon of baking soda. After wetting your skin, rub the mixture on your face (or body!) in circular motions. Rinse well once you’re done.

5 Save yourself from a sunburn.

You skin definitely needs Vitamin D to thrive – but we’ve all seen the unsightly lobster effect caused by a bad sunburn. According to Women’s Health, honey re-hydrates all the layers of your skin and, when combined with aloe vera, it can help calm and heal burned skin. For a natural sunburn solution, try mixing one part raw honey with two parts pure aloe vera gel and apply it to sunburned skin. Lobster be gone!

How will you use this latest trend in your beauty routine? Comment below or tweet us @entity_mag!

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