Do you ever feel like your skin just can’t make up it’s mind? One day it’s gorgeous and clear, the next dry, and the next oily and breakout prone. If that sounds familiar, I think you’ll love one of my favorite skincare secrets for healthy, glowing skin – raw honey. I’ve shared before how I use it in my homemade face scrub, but today I’m going to explain why it also makes an amazing cleanser.
Why Wash With Honey?
When massaged into moist skin, honey gently breaks down excess oil and debris while soothing and moisturizing. Although you might expect it to leave skin sticky, it doesn’t. Honey rinses away clean, leaving behind only soft, happy skin.
Perfect For All Skin Types
Raw honey is prized for it’s ability to clarify and nourish skin. Unlike many cleansers which are too harsh for sensitive skin or too mild for oily or acne-prone skin, honey has qualities which make it suitable for all skin types.
Here’s what makes it so special:
Probiotics & Enzymes
Honey contains beneficial bacteria which compete with unwanted bacteria when used topically – that’s one reason it’s a favorite of those with acne-prone skin. (Lund University, Mandal et. al.) It also contains enzymes which break the bonds of dead skin cells so they can easily be rinsed away.
Cell Renewal and Hydration
As I mentioned in my honey and salt scrub recipe, honey promotes skin renewal and possibly the formation of hyaluronic acid, a polysaccharide that draws moisture to the skin, making it plump and dewy. (Babies are born with very high levels of hyaluronic acid – it’s one of the reasons their skin is so beautiful.)
Bright, Even Skin Tone
Honey also contains gluconic acid, a mild alpha-hydroxy acid that helps brighten and even out skin tone, plus antioxidants that neutralize damaging free radicals.
As I mentioned in this apple cider vinegar toner recipe, our skin needs acid even if it isn’t oily. Unlike soap cleansers which are alkaline and break down our skin’s acid mantle – the protective barrier that keeps moisture in and pollutants/bacteria out – honey supports our body’s built-in defense system.
What Type of Honey Should I Use?
Pretty much any kind of raw honey will work. I’ve used this one and it works really well – just be aware that it’s very thick, so you need to gently warm it up a bit by stirring so that it’s easier to spoon into your container.
In the recipe pictured I used manuka honey, which is renowned for it’s antimicrobial and antioxidant properties.
Do I Need Essential Oils?
You don’t need them, but tea tree is a great addition for acne-prone skin, and lavender essential oil is beneficial for all skin types. I’ve included them in the recipe below, but you can leave them out if you prefer.
Can I Use This Recipe To Make A Honey Face Mask?
Yep. This recipe works beautifully as a mask – just apply to moist skin and leave it on for 10-15 minutes before rinsing.
What Else Is Honey Good For?
Because of its unique properties, honey has been clinically studied for it’s ability to support burn healing, help children with a cough get more sleep, and even diminish dandruff.
Homemade Honey Face Wash
- 1/3 cup raw honey – I like this brand or manuka honey
- 15 drops tea tree or lavender essential oil
In a small bowl, combine honey and essential oil. Use a teaspoon to spoon into a squeeze tube. The one I use is no longer available but these are similar. They’re also perfect for storing homemade toothpaste.
Apply 1/2 – 1 teaspoon to moist skin and massage into skin. If you have time, allow the honey to sit for 1-2 minutes before rinsing.
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I want to try this. Is there any difference with using the Raw Honey as opposed to the more liquid honey?
If honey is pasturized, there’s nothing healthy left such as the enzymes, etc., that r destroyed. Why wud anyone want honey that isn’t raw. In its raw form-It’s a natural antibiotic/antibacterial and virtually never spoils! I’m not sure if honey that runs has been heated enuf in all cases to destroy the nutrition, because some say they r raw. U would hav to contact the producers to see the highest heat used.
I love your coconut shampoo bar it’s great and really lasts.and my hair feel great too
How long does a batch keep?
Three thousand year old honey pots have been found in Egypt’s pyramids – and the honey was still edible! http://www.nationalgeographic.com.au/history/honey-in-the-pyramids.aspx
So, if you’re just using honey, the answer is pretty much forever. However, tea tree essential oil can go bad over time, so if you’re including it I’d say 1-2 years.
Thank you so very much for making the instructions simple as well as your ingredients. I downloaded your book the other night and it sparked something in me that has been dormant for bout a year now. I’ve been dabbling in soap making, face creams, face scrubs as well as natural hair products. People line up for my soap and body oils but I’ve never stepped out cause I felt so consumed with all the work I’d have to do for labels, packaging, product purchase and all the labor needed to be put in as a business. Well thanks for breaking it down for me in your book, I now feel I Can too Do this. God Bless you
I have used honey on my face for years now, it meets the needs of my skin beautifully. I have had acne prone skin since I was a teenager, when I used special cleansers to clear up the red bumps I was left with dull old wrinkled skin and the acne came back anyways. I started using honey as an experiment when I wanted a use for liquid honey that had started to crystallize. I use a microfiber cloth to wash off dirt from my face and neck, then warm tge honey by exfoliating my hands (rubbing crystalized honey on hands) and then spreading liquid on my face. I let it sit while I wash the rest of my body and hair. I then rinse off the honey, leaving soft younger looking skin with much less acne.
Everything works differently for each person, but I encourage you to just try it for a few days and see if your skin appreciates all of the goodness that honey and essential oils can provide.
Liz (Eight Acres)
I’m a beekeeper and I never thought of using honey on my face! I am going to try this!
Hi! Would honey face wash be good for dry mature skin? If not do do have recipes for dry mature skin? Thank you!
Mine would probably be considered mature skin and it is certainly dry, as I live in a very dry, cold climate. Nothing — and I mean nothing — has worked for my face. It has been so dry that it is rough and flaky. Nothing, that is, until I tried honey. With that and tallow moisturizer (I just use plain old tallow), my skin is soft again.
Do you recommend using this and separately a scrub or could sea\Himalayan salt be added to this as a two for one?
Hi I also forgot to ask, should you recommend this over the OCM? I’m trying to figure out the correct regimen so should go with. Currently (I’m sad to say) I use a non-natural cleansing routine with exfoliating cleanser, brightening toner, hydrating serum, brightening moisturizer, eye cream. It has worked fantastic to erase Sun spot and have a wonderful complexion but I would definitely like to go more natural.
Ok, I’m absolutely loving how my face looks after using this. I use regular raw with teat tree oil as a scrub and filtered raw with lavender to wash/remove makeup before bed. My problem is my eyes, though. I’m still using my regular makeup remover for my eyes because it works so well, but there’s a noticeable difference between the skin above my eyelids and the rest of my face. What should I use that’s gentle enough for my eyes but still gets my mascara off?
So funny you should ask, I’m writing a post about makeup remover next week!
Which do you like better, the honey or oil cleansing? I have oily, blemish prone skin. I I have been cleansing my face with coconut oil and tea tree for over a year now and I like it. It’s good at getting eye makeup off too. I’m wondering if the honey would be even better or if I should stick with the coconut oil? Thoughts?
Right now I’m all about the honey face wash, but I’m a tinkerer and will often switch things up just because I like to formulate and experiment, so there’s a good chance I will test out a different carrier for oil cleansing soon. 🙂
Yes pls a mild but effective eye make up remover is what I really would like too. Not something that needs to rub to remove. Cant wait for ur recipe.
I have a makeup remover recipe here but it does call for gentle wiping with a cotton ball or washcloth (not rubbing, though.)
I made this and then started noticing ants in my shower where I stored my face wash. They were attracted to the honey and I had to get rid of it to get rid of the ants!
Wouldn’t it be better to use a glass pump bottle than a plastic container considering you use essential oils? I would think the EO would leach out some harmful ingredients in the plastic. Just wondering your thoughts.
The face wash is too thick to work well with a pump bottle. The squeeze containers I use are silicone rather than plastic, which is a better option in my opinion.
Since one week i am using this miracle face wash. My Skin is as soft and silky as never before. Even while i am using it i can feel how soft my Skin gets. I have used expensive brands before without those great results. And all at the costs of a view Euros for a jar of premium natural honey.
What do you use to remove makeup before using face wash?
This makeup remover recipe 🙂
Well, OOPS! I just made this. I read the post a few hours ago, and just now decided to make it. I had to find my silicon tubes, and then get the honey ready; I used 2 parts regular clover honey (local) and 1 part manuka (that stuff is SPENDY!) The OOPS part: I ‘remembered’ it was 3/4 cup honey …oops! But got the 15 drops of essential oils right! So now, I have to ramp up (ahahaha!) my math skills and add in the correct number of drops of essential oils! It is sitting on my face right now. I occasionally have used honey on my face, but thought I’d try giving it a regular place in my routine. Thanks for the idea of adding the essential oils.
Also, why does my face feel so very dry after using honey?
Oh, yeah, I forgot. I used three essential oils that are wonderful for mature skin. Well, any skin, actually. 5 drops of carrot seed, 5 drops of frankincense and 5 drops of geranium. The lavender might have been nice, and I may add it in as I do have to adjust the amount of essential oils now due to my oops moment. Lavender is also great for the skin.
Figured out the additional number of drops of essential oils: 7, just in case anyone else has an OOPS moment!!!
Can any kind of raw honey work?
Like the kind I buy at target? Or can I get some from a friend bee keeper?
I agree to the recipe rating! I love your recipes! Thanks for sharing!
Fantastic, I’m going to try it, thanks so much for all your amazing recipes 💕
(I couldn’t open the link to the squeeze bottles)
Just curious, how would you use honey for the hair?
Yes, thank you I get your notification every week and I always find something that’s relevant to my life. Thank you for stepping out there and being I help to us
This is fantastic thankyou
Look forward to more wonderful things from you