I purchased the Royal Nectar Original Face Mask & Moisturizing Face Lift after doing some extensive reading on the fascinating topic of bee venom utilized in cosmetics. Seemingly overnight, it was being touted as the natural alternative to Botox, with Royals and celebs singing its praises.
As far as Bostox – I have no issue with people choosing to partake in elective procedures and may find myself doing the same at some point down the line (a little light dabbling at most, I’m sure), but as it stands I would much prefer to go the natural route on my way to what I hope will be aging gracefully. I’m of the mindset that youth doesn’t make one beautiful, but we can certainly be our best at any age. Being in my early thirties, I think I’m already slightly late for the prevention train, but you know what they say… you better hurry and catch up! 😉
That slight urgency is partly what led me to what can be considered a somewhat high-end product with prices of each of these items averaging at about $65. This purchase pre-dated my Korean cosmetics obsession and I realize that there are a great many, effective skincare items out there that contain bee venom and are a fraction of this price tag. However, one of these items remains a HG for me and one I will continue to repurchase.
First, a bit about bee venom in cosmetics. I noted in a prior post that the cosmetic benefits of bee venom are derived from its tricking the skin into believing it has been lightly stung. This causes our body to direct blood towards that area, stimulating the production of collagen and elastin, which promote skin repair. The venom also acts to remove excess keratin and sebum, eliminate acne inducing bacteria, and block inflammatory agents within skin pores to heal acne lesions. So this reaction promotes cell regeneration and has tremendous healing properties, which of course lead to the much-touted, anti-aging benefits..
Royal Nectar’s Face Mask & Face Lift are made with New Zealand Manuka honey, bee venom and a soothing blend of waxes and oils. Manuka honey is quite an impressive ingredient in its own right. Clinical studies have shown it to have anti-bacterial properties, targeting one bacteria in particular – Streptococcus pyogenes – which is associated with wounds.
Real Manuka honey comes only from New Zealand because ithe Manuka tree that provides the pollen for Manuka honey is native to New Zealand.
Here are the full ingredient lists, which are wonderfully brief and fairly comprehensible. The only item that some may find unrecognizable is ‘ticaxan’, which is another name for xanthum gum and used as a viscosity agent in cosmetics. The rest is a lovely melange of bee venom, Manuka honey, and waxes/oils – as advertised.
This range of apitherapy products is produced in New Zealand by Nelson Apiaries. Formed in 1973, Nelson Apiaries Ltd is a family owned business operated by Philip and Evelyn Cropp. Philip’s grandfather started producing honey from hives in the Nelson area on a part time basis over 100 years ago. Over the past 25 years the company has grown substantially and has diversified into the natural health market., specializing now in the increasingly popular Manuka honey, bee venom and other apitherapy products. Based in the upper Motupiko Valley, Nelson Apiaries, in conjunction with it’s sister company Rainbow, now has approximately 4,000 hives sited throughout the Nelson and West Coast areas of the South Island of New Zealand. Placed in the pristine bush and forests of this beautiful part of New Zealand, the hives produce a variety of natural honeys free from insecticide or other agricultural sprays. [source]
I really love that this little gem is made by a family business and the pride they have in their product is evident in the quality of what they produce.
I’ve used a great many skincare items throughout my life that make a great many claims and promises. It’s rare that any of these are delivered upon, and if you are so fortunate as to find something that truly works, it typically takes a considerable amount of time and continued effort on your part to ensure this happens. I was sincerely taken aback by the essentially overnight results I saw with this mask.
It can be utilized in two ways – either as a wash off mask that you leave on for 20 minutes or so and then remove or in a thin layer as an overnight mask. I thought I would get more traction with the latter option so I opted to use this as my evening moisturizer. I’m not exaggerating when I say that my reflection greeted me with an audible, “Oh, wow” when I faced the mirror the following morning. What acne scarring I had was significantly reduced and my complexion had an overall brighter/refreshed tone. Since I began to use this under a Korean-made sleeping pack (Elizavecca Green piggy Collagen Jella Pack) I found the efficacy to be even further improved. This may be due to prolonged use, but I also believe the sleeping pack helps the product to absorb better.
My Experience – Royal Nectar Moisturizing Face Lift
As you can see from the above ingredient labels, the two products are essentially identical, with the main differentiation being that the Face Mask contains a greater concentration of the two main compounds. Can I pin-point the ingredient on which I can hang this ‘lifting’ clam? Not really. Do I think it’s necessary to utilize both the Mask and Face Lift in tandem? I wouldn’t say so. Though I voice this with the caveat that I am still fairly young. If my skin were more mature, I might see more benefit in utilizing these creams both day and night. As it stands, this is a perfectly lovely moisturizer and still packing those power-house ingredients, so I certainly wouldn’t poo-poo it if you’re considering purchasing one or the other. However, to me, the Mask is really the star of the show.
Both products are a lovely, light cream consistency with a slight yellowish hue. They place nice with my combination skin and I think they would be appropriate for someone with dry or oily skin as well (and normal, of course). The consistency really seems quite universally-appealing. They don’t have a strong scent (which I really appreciate), though the aroma is slightly floral and sweet.
I do plan to test out some Korean products with similar compounds in order to compare and contrast, though I must admit I am partial to the fact that these particular items are manufactured at the source. I am eager to see what my findings will show and will certainly update this post accordingly.
In the interim though, I would highly recommend trying the Royal Nectar Original Face Mask. You can purchase samples direct from Nelson Honey here, which would be a nice way to dip your toe in. I would love to hear of your experience if you decide to do so!