It’s that time of the year when, like clockwork, my T-zone becomes a battle zone for dryness. For years, I have fought against my winter skin with lotion until I realized that most store-bought lotions contain ingredients that actually dry out your skin. They pull the natural oil your skin produces to the surface of your skin, causing momentary relief from dryness, but create a dependency on the product that only makes dry skin worse. After many years of trial and error, I have finally conquered my dry skin with a few simple tricks. Aside from using a small amount of coconut oil on my face every night, or a couple drops of Argan oil, I use honey.
I have talked about honey as a hair lightener, but the many uses of honey for health and beauty are almost too good to be true. Do you know how wonderful honey is? Honey is a natural cleanser and moisturizer. It has anti-inflammatory properties that help relieve irritated or puffy skin, has lightening agents that will help reduce dark circles and acne scars, is anti-aging, immune-boosting, anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, and a powerful antioxidant. Honey can also help stabilize blood pressure and balance sugar levels. I mean, is this stuff real?
An important note on honey: For the best health benefits, make sure to use only raw honey. I don’t recommend the kind that comes in the bear bottle at all, as cute as he is. Pasteurized honey is the equivalent of refined sugar, which, as we all know, is not so healthy! You will only get all of the health benefits of honey by buying raw, unpasteurized honey. It is not hard to find. Just be sure to check the label.
So what are my favorite uses for honey, especially during these dry winter months? I am glad you asked because I made a list.
-After washing your face, take a teaspoon of honey and apply it all over your face. Wait five minutes, and rinse with warm water. You will notice how soft and radiant your skin is immediately! Do this a few times a week, or every day if needed, and you will keep dryness at bay. Be sure to apply to your dark circles as well, as the bleaching effects of honey will help them fade.
-Use honey mixed with sugar to exfoliate your lips. Use a small amount of honey on chapped lips for a very effective moisturizer.
-Take a tablespoon of honey every day for numerous health benefits that you will see in your skin. Also, taking a tablespoon of honey with a sprinkling of cinnamon on it will help sooth a sore throat, calm a cough, and help fight a cold!
-Use honey as a hair conditioner by mixing it with a small amount of olive oil and letting it soak in your hair for 20-30 minutes before rinsing. It will take away that winter dullness while moisturizing your hair.
-And of course, using it as a lightening agent for hair is another favorite use of mine, especially now that days at the beach have come and gone.
If you use honey in your diet as well as topically, every day, you will notice a difference. Fight winter dryness naturally, while fighting wrinkles, boosting your immune system and reaping the multiple health benefits it provides at the same time! Honestly, you’d be crazy not to.
Jenny Williams is an Oklahoma-native who moved to Washington, D.C. in 2009 to fulfill her dream of living in her favorite city and working on Capitol Hill. It took her two-and-a-half-years, however, to realize her true passion was not in writing someone else’s policies behind a desk all day, but rather, in the thing she has always loved: observing the beauty of the world, and writing about it. Leaving politics without glancing back, she entered the less glamorous private sector which allows her more time for writing, and her other favorite things: making breakfast, tearing up while reading Anne of Green Gables for the fiftieth time, and exploring the District with her husband. She can be found elsewhere on the internet at Jeneric Generation.