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5 Reasons Not to Use Manuka Honey Acne Treatments

Manuka honey has been a rising star in natural skincare, often hailed as a miracle cure for various skin issues, including acne. It is well-known for its unique properties, such as high antibacterial and anti-inflammatory abilities.

But is manuka honey really the best option for treating acne? This article will present five compelling reasons you might want to reconsider using manuka honey as an acne treatment.

Also read: How to choose the best acne treatment

Biggest Take-Aways:

  • Manuka honey, although beneficial for skin health, is not a targeted treatment for acne.
  • The natural humectant properties of manuka honey may provide temporary benefits but don't address the complexities of acne treatment.
  • Manuka honey's generalized approach to skincare limits its efficacy in treating specific issues like acne scarring and inflammation.
  • Exposed Skin Care offers specialized, comprehensive solutions for treating acne, making it a more effective alternative to manuka honey.

Young person holding jar of manuka honey

1. The High Cost of Manuka Honey

Why Is Manuka Honey So Expensive?

Manuka honey is produced only in certain parts of New Zealand and Australia from the nectar of manuka flowers. This unique geographical limitation, combined with the short blooming period of the manuka flower, makes this type of honey rare and, consequently, quite expensive.

Is the Investment Worth It?

When it comes to acne treatment, there are various options available that are far more budget-friendly. While some people may see results with manuka honey, the benefits for the skin can also be achieved with other, less pricey treatments.

The high cost raises questions about whether manuka honey delivers a bang for your buck or simply empties your wallet.

Image of person holding and opening empty wallet

2. Lack of Scientific Backing

What Research Says

The properties of manuka honey, particularly its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, have been widely touted. However, the science backing manuka honey for acne is not as robust as one might think.

While honey has antioxidative properties and has been used historically in wound healing, its efficacy in treating acne is still debatable.

Do the Claims Hold Water?

The benefits of manuka honey, like wound healing and antimicrobial action, are often extended to presume it suits acne. Yet, rigorous scientific studies do not universally support these claims, leaving room for skepticism.

3. Potential for Skin Irritation

The Double-Edged Sword of Methylglyoxal

One of the key components that gives manuka honey its antibacterial properties is methylglyoxal. This compound found in manuka honey may offer some benefits but is also associated with skin irritation in some individuals.

Risk for Sensitive or Eczema-Prone Skin

People with sensitive or eczema-prone skin may find that manuka honey exacerbates their skin condition. Although honey can also be a natural humectant that helps retain moisture in the skin, the concentration of methylglyoxal can potentially irritate delicate or inflamed skin.

Girl lying in bed with irritated red skin

4. Impracticality for Daily Use

Honey, It's Sticky!

While it's tempting to slather on a honey mask and expect magical results, the sticky nature of honey makes it impractical for everyday use. Honey is also difficult to use as a cleanser, given its texture, and washing it off can be cumbersome.

Limitations in Versatility

Honey alone might offer some moisture to the skin, but using it for treating acne can be limiting. The humectant properties of honey help retain moisture, but it isn't a comprehensive solution for acne that often requires a multi-faceted approach, including exfoliation and sebum control, which honey doesn't provide.

5. Inconsistency in Quality and Composition

Not All Manuka Honey Is Created Equal

The antibacterial potency of manuka honey is often measured by the Unique Manuka Factor (UMF). However, not all jars of manuka honey come with this rating. Even among those that do, the UMF can vary, leading to inconsistent treatment outcomes.

Woman with acne looking at mirror

Issues of Authenticity

With the rising popularity of manuka honey for skincare benefits, the market is rife with counterfeit products. You risk applying an inferior product that offers little to no benefits for your acne or other skin issues without a guaranteed way to ensure you're getting high-quality honey.

The Exposed Skin Care Advantage: An Alternative to Manuka Honey for Acne

While manuka honey has been used for various skincare benefits, an alternative worth considering is Exposed Skin Care. Our range of products offers a comprehensive solution to manage acne effectively, considering various factors contributing to this skin condition.

Exposed Skin Care Basic Kit

Here are the benefits of Exposed Skin Care:

  • Inflammation: Unlike manuka honey, which may or may not reduce inflammation, our Treatment Serum is specifically formulated to tackle inflamed skin, providing guaranteed results.
  • Face Mask: Forget the stickiness and mess of using a honey face mask. Our Clarifying Charcoal Mask is easy to apply and remove, targeting acne without the fuss.
  • Acne Scars: Our products contain active ingredients that not only prevent acne but also work on reducing the appearance of acne scars.
  • Hydrogen Peroxide: While manuka honey derives its antibacterial properties from naturally occurring elements, our formulations use proven ingredients like hydrogen peroxide to deliver consistent results.
  • Eczema: For those with sensitive or eczema-prone skin, Exposed Skin Care offers gentle and effective products.
  • Cleanser: No need to rely on the humectant properties of honey to draw moisture. Our Facial Cleanser hydrates your skin while cleansing it deeply.

By choosing Exposed Skin Care, you opt for a regimen specifically designed to treat acne. Our products promote healthy skin, free from the lines and wrinkles often associated with irritated skin. This way, you can focus on achieving the best skin of your life without any guesswork.


While the use of manuka honey for acne treatment has garnered attention due to its antibacterial and healing properties, it's essential to question its efficacy compared to specialized skincare products.

Manuka honey, native to New Zealand, may have been the first honey to gain widespread recognition for its potential benefits. However, its effects are generalized; it's not designed to target acne specifically.

Manuka honey is often considered a natural humectant that draws moisture to the skin. While this property is good for general skin health, it's not specialized enough to tackle the nuances of acne treatment.

Using a small amount of honey on your face might give you a temporary glow, but it won't offer a lasting solution for acne. Contrastingly, Exposed Skin Care provides a comprehensive set of products explicitly designed to treat acne.

Our formulations don't merely focus on the antibacterial aspects; they consider inflammation, scarring, and overall skin health. These are tailored solutions with proven ingredients focusing exclusively on treating acne and promoting healthy skin.

In conclusion, while the benefits of honey, especially manuka honey, are noteworthy for skin care, they may not offer a targeted treatment for acne. Exposed Skin Care rises as a robust, effective alternative to honey's generalized approach.


Is manuka honey effective for treating acne?

While manuka honey has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, its effects on acne are generalized and not specifically targeted.

How is manuka honey different from regular honey?

Manuka honey is produced from the nectar of the Manuka flower native to New Zealand and contains a higher concentration of antibacterial compounds like methylglyoxal than regular honey.

Can I use manuka honey as a cleanser?

Yes, you can use it as a cleanser, but it won't provide a comprehensive solution for acne treatment.

Does manuka honey help with inflammation and scarring?

While it has anti-inflammatory properties and can help with moisture retention, it isn't specialized in treating acne-related inflammation and scarring.

What are the limitations of using manuka honey for acne?

The limitations include the lack of targeted treatment for acne, potential allergic reactions, and inconsistency in results.

How does Exposed Skin Care compare to Manuka honey for acne treatment?

Exposed Skin Care offers a range of products specifically designed to tackle various aspects of acne treatment, from inflammation to scarring, providing a more comprehensive and targeted solution.