SEPTEMBER: The MONTH of HONEY!
September is National Honey Month! There are very few things as pure and natural as honey, I mean, it is a ONE-ingredient sweet treat produced by bee’s straight from beautiful flowers and plant nectar! Honey is naturally thought of as a cooking and kitchen staple, however, it has a smorgasbord of possibilities and uses. Honey is a humectant, meaning it not only attracts moisture, but also retains. Therefore, it works wonders for your skin and gives it a natural smooth and clear glow.
HONEY = The perfect ingredient for your beauty routine.
Nutrients and Skin Benefits:
- Vitamin B1: For proper skin functioning and healthy skin.
- Vitamin B2: Protects skin from damage against free radicals.
- Vitamin B3: Anti-inflammatory. Reduces skin and acne inflammations. Moisturizes and hydrates dry skin.
- Vitamin B6: Necessary for new skin cell formation. Keeps skin moisturized and healthy.
- Vitamin C: Rich in vitamin C, raw honey is used for healing topical symptoms such as dry skin and rashes.
- Zinc: Fights free radical activity. Slows down aging process of skin.
To help you get started and celebrate this spectacular month, we’ve listed a few homemade facial masks for specific skin types and conditions!
Honey Mask for Acne Prone Skin:
- 3 teaspoons raw honey
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Mix honey and cinnamon together, and apply to your face. Leave the mask on for 10-30 minutes. The antibacterial properties of both honey and cinnamon are especially beneficial for acne-prone skin. Cinnamon can occasionally be irritating if your skin is really sensitive, so you might want to do a patch test on the back of your hand first. Because cinnamon is so powerful, we recommend only using this mask once a week.
Honey Mask for Dry Skin:
- 1 teaspoon mashed avocado
- 1 teaspoon plain whole milk yogurt
- 1 teaspoon raw honey
Mix ingredients in a small bowl until smooth. Spread the mixture over your face and let it sit for 20-30 minutes before washing it off. The fats in the avocado and whole milk yogurt are deeply moisturizing to the skin, while the lactic acid in the yogurt smooths your skin, refines pores, and stimulates collagen production. This mask is rich in B vitamins, vitamin E, vitamin A, vitamin D, calcium, zinc, copper, manganese and magnesium. It’s basically nutrition for your face! You can use this mask several times a week if you’d like. It’s very gentle on this skin.
Honey Face Mask for Sensitive Skin:
- 2 teaspoons raw honey
- 1 teaspoon aloe vera gel
Stir the aloe and honey together and apply over your face. Leave it on for about 10-20 minutes. Aloe soothes inflammation and calms your skin, perfect for those with sensitive, irritated skin. It’s well known for it’s sunburn-soothing benefits, but aloe vera can also provide support for rashes, blisters, dry skin, eczema, minor burns, and scrapes. It’s even claimed to speed healing and prevent scarring. This mask is safe to use every day if you’d like.
Honey Face Mask for Scars and Dark Spots:
- 2 teaspoons raw honey
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
Combine the lemon juice and honey, and apply the mixture to your face. Allow it to sit for 20-30 minutes. Lemon juice exfoliates your skin, brightens dark spots and fades scars. Your skin will feel smooth and soft right away, but it may take a few applications to notice a real difference in scars and spots. Over several weeks and months, you may see a striking difference in the appearance of your skin. Lemon juice is a stronger ingredient, so depending on your skin type, you’ll want to limit the number of times you use this mask to 1-2 times per week.
Other Health Benefits of Honey:
Prevent cancer and heart disease:
Honey contains flavonoids, antioxidants which help reduce the risk of some cancers and heart disease.
Anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-fungal:
All honey is antibacterial, because the bees add an enzyme that makes hydrogen peroxide.
Increase athletic performance.
Ancient Olympic athletes would eat honey and dried figs to enhance their performance. This has now been verified with modern studies, showing that it is superior in maintaining glycogen levels and improving recovery time than other sweeteners.
Reduce cough and throat irritation:
Honey helps with coughs, particularly buckwheat honey.
Balance the 5 elements:
Honey has been used in ayurvedic medicine in India for at least 4000 years and is considered to affect all three of the body’s primitive material imbalances positively. It is also said to be useful in improving eyesight, weight loss, urinary tract disorders, bronchial asthma, diarrhea, and nausea.
Blood sugar regulation:
Even though honey contains simple sugars, it is NOT the same as white sugar or artificial sweeteners. Its exact combination of fructose and glucose actually helps the body regulate blood sugar levels. Some honeys have a low hypoglycemic index, so they don’t jolt your blood sugar.
Heal wounds and burns:
External application of honey has been shown to be as effective as conventional treatment. It is speculated that the drying effect of the simple sugars and honey’s antibacterial nature combine to create a natural healing.
Some varieties of honey possess large amounts of friendly bacteria. This includes up to 6 species of lactobacilli and 4 species of bifidobacteria. This may explain many of the “mysterious therapeutic properties of honey.”