If you’ve come across soothing, aesthetically pleasing videos of people pressing, rubbing and tapping raw honey into their skin, this means you’re somewhat familiar with honey tapping. This practice, beloved by the holistic aesthetician community, involves a lymphatic massage with the added benefits found in honey. While most skin types can benefit from this practice, holistic nutritional esthetician Bonnie Cruz warns that those with severe rosacea and broken capillaries should stay away from this practice. If you’re interested in the why and how of honey tapping, see what the experts have to say.
What is honey tapping?
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It’s “an ancient treatment that combines honey, an ingredient used for centuries for its anti-microbial, anti-inflammatory and hydrating properties with lymphatic drainage massage for detoxification, brightening and firming of the face and neck,” explains Cruz. She says the practice is one of her favorite go-to beauty hacks, using it both on clients and at home on herself.
The benefits of honey tapping
Holistic aesthetician at ONDA Beauty Kristin May Lee says one of the biggest benefits of honey taping is the lymphatic drainage. The practice is “incredibly effective to help lymph move along quicker to the nearest lymph node, speeding up detoxification.” She explains that doing this “will help clear up acne quicker from beneath the skin as well as on the surface due to the properties of the honey itself.” Lee describes honey tapping as “the ultimate natural glow-enhancing modality to ease inflammation.”
Cruz says honey tapping also stimulates circulation, which, in addition to clarifying blemishes, can help heal wounds, reduce puffiness and restore elasticity to the skin. “Honey tapping produces a gentle exfoliating effect leaving the skin more bright, firm and plump! It will also prepare the skin to better absorb any serums and products applied after this ritual,” says Lee.
The best honey for tapping
This trendy ritual only requires one ingredient—honey. Raw honey is preferable due to its beneficial minerals and vitamins, says Cruz, who prefers manuka honey because it boasts the highest amount of nutrients with helpful healing properties. Lee says he favorite honey to tap with is Mahoni Health Manuka Honey ($53). “It gives my fingers the perfect amount of stick during tapping while providing efficient antibacterial qualities,” she explains.
How to perform honey tapping
First, wash your face with a gentle cleanser, dry it off and pull your hair back. “With dry fingers, spread about one teaspoon of raw honey to the face and neck in slow massaging movements,” instructs Cruz. Then begin tapping your skin “like playing the piano,” she explains. “You can try fingers separately, one at a time first, then try all four fingers together in gentle upward movements. Cover the entire area of the face and neck and décolleté for up to 10 minutes.”
Don’t forget the neck and décolleté, warns Cruz, as it’s “quite important for stimulating lymphatic flow and providing all maximum the benefits of honey tapping.” Note that if the honey becomes too tacky, you can add a drop of water to your fingertips, says Cruz. “When finished tapping, add another few drops of water and massage in lifting movements for another minute to hydrate the honey mask while it’s on your skin. For additional benefit, Leave the honey mask on for 10 to 20 more minutes and then rinse with warm water and a clean washcloth. Your skin should be bright, firm and glowing.” Cruz recommends doing this practice once or twice a week just before showering for the easiest cleanup.
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