You may have read about it in the magazines or seen it on the shelves of your local health food store. Now it’s popping up in a range of natural skin care products. Manuka Honey—the vitamin, mineral and enzyme-rich golden nectar from bees down under—is no longer the best kept secret of New Zealand. While it’s not exactly mainstream, this special honey is starting to take its rightful place in the health and beauty spotlight. We’re not talking about any old regular honey, honey. This is a class above. Manuka honey is the bee’s knees and really is worthy of all the buzz it is generating these days.

Just like the quality of fine wines varies according to the geographic region the grapes are grown in, honey quality varies according to the plants near the hives where the bees work to produce it. Consider manuka to be the Dom Perignon of honey, not so much in terms of taste but in terms of its exceptional nutrient content. It is exclusively created by honeybees that gather pollen and nectar from the manuka bush (Leptospermum scoparium) found only in New Zealand and has been prized by the Maori for centuries. This small evergreen shrub related to the tea tree produces white flowers that make all the difference in terms of the therapeutic value of this liquid gold.

Biologically active raw unpasteurized manuka honey is full of flavonoids, amino acids and has 4 times the mineral content of most other honeys. What really makes it a standout, however, is its unique high content of methylglyoxal (MG). The higher the concentration of MG, the higher the Unique Manuka Factor—or UMF—rating. A UMF rating of 10 or higher is considered beneficial for a host of health and skin conditions, from digestive issues to high cholesterol. Topically, it is remarkable at treating wounds, burns and infections due to its natural antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant qualities. In fact, it is used medicinally in creams, lotions, gels and bandages in hospitals burn units around the world. Studies have shown that manuka honey stimulates the production or cells that can repair tissue. It’s a powerful humectant, meaning it attracts and retains water to rebuild moisture levels in the skin without making it oily. It makes skin soft, supple and elastic, so it’s no wonder that it’s being coveted by the skin care and anti-aging market.

Naturally, this holistic healing honey features prominently in our New Zealand-based Living Nature line of skin care, body care, hair care, makeup and more. Taking cues from local Maori traditions and an array of unique native plants that only grow in rugged, isolated New Zealand, this company developed a comprehensive range of skin and cosmetic products for men and women. Make a beeline to check out some of these items and see how marvelous manuka works for you.

Manuka Nourishing Body Wash gently cleanses and revitalizes the skin head to toe, without stripping it of essential moisture.

Rescue Gel leverages the power of manuka oil and honey in a potent skin salve that heals blemishes, scratches and irritations.

Firming Eye Cream tightens those fine lines around the eyes, lips and neck, giving you a natural lift.

Ultra Nourishing Mask renews and restores your skin with a deeply hydrating manuka treatment ideal for dry or damaged complexions.

Balancing Shampoo & Conditioner brings bounce and shine to your hair without sodium lauryl sulphate.

Tinted Moisturizer offers light coverage along with nourishing hydration boosted by manuka honey.

A perfect way to try out the Living Nature Line is with one of their complete starter kits. There’s one for different skin types with various manuka-rich products for cleansing, moisturizing, firming and treating your skin, all tucked in a reusable fabric travel-handy pouch.