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Clinical trial shows that a NZ kanuka honey helps acne

Large clinical trial shows that a New Zealand kanuka honey formulation helps acne

New Zealand researchers have shown that a kanuka honey formulation can help with the scourge of teenage life - acne.

A large clinical trial of Honevo, developed by New Zealand pharmaceutical company HoneyLab, found that study participants using the honey treatment had a reduction in acne severity, fewer acne lesions and even an improvement in their quality of life.

Assessments by study investigators found that twice as many of the participants had an improvement in their acne after using Honevo compared with those who did not use the product. Participants reported improvements in their acne after two weeks’ treatment with Honevo, with further improvements over the following 6-10 weeks. There were 135 participants in the 12 week study; all washed with antibacterial soap twice a day and half of the participants applied Honevo twice daily as a mask and then washed it off.

HoneyLab Science Director Dr Shaun Holt said that acne was a very common skin problem and he was not surprised by the results. “Around 90% of teenagers, and many older people, get acne lesions. Acne is caused by bacteria and we know thatkanuka honey is antibacterial. Honey also reduces inflammation and heals wounds . . . every acne spot is a small wound,” he says.

The study results were presented by Dr Holt at the New Zealand Dermatological Society meeting in Auckland on 29 August 20151.

Dr Holt said the study showed that using Honevo was better than using antibacterial soap alone, and that he believes Honevo to be a very useful product for acne sufferers. “I’ve been concerned about other acne treatments for a long time,” he says. “Prescription medications can have severe side effects, and some non-prescription bleach-like products damage the skin to such an extent that those companies then sell additional products to try to heal that damage. Honevo, on the other hand, is natural and good for the skin.”

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Dr Holt said that HoneyLab is focussed on robust research to prove that the company’s products work. “Some companies pay celebrities millions of dollars to advertise their products, rather than actually do the research to show that they work. At HoneyLab we believe science comes before advertising hype and our honey products must stand up to scientific scrutiny,” he says.

HoneyLab is a New Zealand pharmaceutical company with several platforms of clinical research, including dermatology, pain, and nutrition. The company plans to license products to pharmaceutical companies once effectiveness and safety have been proven; HoneyLab is already in discussions with several of the world’s biggest pharmaceutical companies.

People with acne can purchase Honevo at


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