Alternative Medicine/manuka honey



I've heard a lot about manuka honey lately and bought a jar of UMF 16... but realized I have no idea how to use it. I tend to get ingrown hair and was hoping to try it. Can you advise me on how to use it? Or the best way to use it? And other things it can be used for?


ANSWER: Hi Kristen.  
New Zealand Manuka honey is clinically proven for its powerful antimicrobial actions.  It is used in surgical wound dressing products which are  exported internationally.  Having said that, you have probably guessed it won't help your ingrown hair problem - unless there is a bit of infection there as a result.    Ingrown hairs are best managed by using a rough natural fibre such as loofah to lift the hairs above the skin surface.

Manuka honey has also been used to help reduce helicobacter infection in the stomach.  It is also used as an ingredient in skin care products - which is helpful against acne.

You might find this link useful:

Hope this answers your query.

All the best.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Hi Sharon,

Thanks for the quick reply!!

Well, I do have ingrown hair with infection on occasion and it can get bad. I bought the honey- but what do I do with it? Just put it on, sticky and all?? or should i mix it with something? what's the best way to remove it? I will definitely check out the above link when i get to work. I just tried it for the first time last night and put it on my trouble areas- my skin tends to get small infections (KP) and ingrown hair and when I woke up, I realized it was super sticky and I assumed I probably hadnt used it didnt come with instructions!

How can I use it on my face? as a mask? any other ingredients?

Thank you so much!!

Hi Kristen,  yes!  Honey is sticky.  You need to use it on a dressing or cover with a bandage.
For face care you can use it as a mask - thin it down with either water, aloe juice or pomegranate juice (1 tsp liquid to 1 tblsp honey) and apply a thin layer on your skin (I do advise doing a small test patch first, as the face is sensitive).  Rinse off after 30 minutes.  It is a good cleanser, that doesn't strip the skin.  
Your skin should be bright and clean but also moisturised. Blemishes and red spots will be soothed.  

Manuka honey is an ingredient in some skin care products, such as moisturisers.  Using it neat on the skin is really best as a treatment, such as a mask.

Hope this helps.

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Sharon Erdrich


Any health related question, particularly those related to an holistic approach, using nutrition, herbal medicine, aromatherapy and lifestyle options.


30 years as a registered nurse, Private health consultant and experienced educator of complementary medicine practitioners.

NZAMH, NZ Nursing Council., AIMA (Associate member), Naturopaths of NZ.

Kai Tiaki Journal. Healthy Options Magazine. See my website for downloadable articles.

Reg Nurse, Post Grad Cert Health Science (Nutrition), Dip Herbal Med, Dip Naturopathy, Dip Aromatherapy.

Awards and Honors
Best Research Paper, Top Naturopathic Student (2005)

Past/Present Clients
Varied, from all ages and with a range of health issues.

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