Legend has it that honey was Cleopatra’s preferred weapon in her beauty arsenal, and now science is catching up to what many women have known for years.
Honey, especially raw or unpasteurized, is a fabulously versatile and all-natural ingredient to use on the skin. It’s full of antioxidants, which are good for wrinkles and aging skin. It is also an antibacterial, which helps with acne treatments and prevention. It clarifies skin by opening up and unclogging pores.
It’s also a great moisturizer that soothes irritation and blemishes, and leaves a lovely afterglow.
Try the following recipes for an effective, at-home spa treatment.
- As a Moisturizing Honey Mask:
Make sure your hair is pulled back from your face before starting one of these recipes. Your face will feel clean and soft afterwards.
- Scoop a generous spoonful of honey into your hand and spread all over your face.Rub it into your skin and let sit for 5-30 minutes. Rinse with warm water.
- Combine 1 tbsp buttermilk, 1 tsp honey, and 1 egg yolk. Apply to clean skin and let sit 20 minutes. Rinse with warm water.
2. As a facial cleanser:
Honey is good at dissolving makeup residue, especially when mixed with a gentle oil. Combine honey and jojoba OR coconut oil to create an easily spreadable texture. Rub it into your skin, avoiding eye area, to loosen makeup and unclog pores. Rinse with warm water.
- Mixed with almond as a bodyscrub:
This scrub is finger-licking good. The texture from the ground almonds exfoliates the skin, while both the almonds and honey moisturize. Combine 2 tsp. ground almonds and 2 tsp. honey to form a paste. Rub into your face with a circular motion. Rinse with warm water. You could easily increase the quantities to treat your whole body.
- As a skin lotion:
If you’re feeling that dry weather and harmattan skin coming on, mix a spoonful of honey with a teaspoon of olive oil and a squeeze of lemon juice (a natural skin brightener). Apply this lotion to dry areas and let sit for 20 minutes. Wipe off with a warm washcloth.
5. With Lemon for facial treatment
This is a fun one that’s a bit different. Lemons are rich in vitamin C and antioxidants. They also contain alpha hydroxy acids that exfoliate. Cut a lemon in half and remove the seeds. Add 1 tsp honey to one of the lemon halves. Rub the cut side all over your face. Let it sit 5 minutes, then rinse with warm water.
6. As a hair shine-boosting rinse:
There are two options.
1) Combine a spoonful with a quart of warm water. Rinse through hair after shampooing. Let it condition for an hour, then rinse.
2) Mix 1-1/2 tsp honey with 5 cups warm water. Rinse through hair and leave on. Dry and style as usual.
- Cleopatra’s milk-and-honey bath soak:
Combine ¼ cup honey with 2 cups milk and a few drops of essential oil. Add to a hot bath, sit back, and relax.
- As an exfoliant:
Use this scrub once a week to soften and clarify your skin. Mix 2 parts honey with 1 part baking soda and rub into your face. This is also good for a full body scrub.