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These days, it seems like essential oils are everywhere. They’re easing our headaches, scenting our laundry detergent, and invading our homes through irresistibly aromatic modern-day Tupperware parties. When we run across a new oil, it’s easy to get carried away by the hype before we even know what it can be used for — or why we should care in the first place.
Luckily, Averr Aglow is here to ease the burden of research for you! So sit back and meet your newest oil obsession: manuka.
Manuka oil comes from the manuka plant (Leptospermum scoparium), a shrub native to New Zealand. You may have heard the name before, as in the oh-so-popular manuka honey currently stashed in your kitchen cupboard. Yes, it’s the same plant!
Manuka is a member of the myrtle family of trees and shrubs, as is its better-known cousin, the tea tree (Melaleuca alternifolia). The two plants share many qualities and are often confused — in fact, some people even refer to manuka as a “New Zealand tea tree.”
Manuka oil comes specifically from the leaves of the manuka plant, which are hand-harvested to assure top-quality product and to protect the mother-plant from damage. The harvested foliage then undergoes steam distillation. During distillation, steam is passed through the leaves and then condensed into water. The manuka oil floats on top of the condensed steam and can be drawn off in its pure state.
Spoiler alert: steam distilling can be a delicate process. The importance of distillers’ expertise has even been likened to the labor of love undertaken by beekeepers. Extracting manuka oil with its active ingredients intact requires thorough training, proficiency, and understanding of the product.
Our manuka oil is sourced from the motherland — New Zealand! We are lucky enough to work with partners local to the region, who have in-depth knowledge and experience in producing the highest quality oils and extracts around.
They also practice sustainable agriculture and eco-friendly harvesting, because they care about preserving the precious ecosystem where their botanicals are grown! It’s good for the planet and good for the product. Conditions in the environment around a growing manuka plant can affect the chemical makeup of the distilled oil, so it’s extra important to preserve the natural integrity of the area.
Manuka has been used by New Zealand’s Maori healers for centuries, applied to all sorts of illnesses and ailments. It’s only recently that scientists have started acknowledging manuka’s epic potential for modern medicine and skincare.
Foremost in its arsenal of health benefits, manuka oil has antimicrobial, antifungal, and anti-inflammatory properties. These strengths make it an ideal choice for skin plagued with acne bacteria and inflamed pores. Manuka’s anti-inflammatory nature helps soothe irritation, while its antimicrobial and antifungal properties help fight the infections that cause your breakouts. This not only makes you feel (and look) better but may also clear the field for your immune system to heal blemishes faster.
Even if acne isn’t your biggest skin concern, manuka oil has another potential benefit that everybody can get behind. Early studies suggest that manuka may protect your skin from wrinkles and inflammation caused by UV radiation — a.k.a. premature aging! So by incorporating manuka oil into your skincare, you can supplement your rigorous (or not-so-rigorous) sunscreen regimen with the power of nature. Take that, sunlight!
Like many other essential oils, manuka oil is available for purchase. It’s still a little out of the mainstream, though, so you may not find it on the shelves of your favorite health shop just yet. If you do decide to search out pure manuka oil for use on your skin, remember the golden rule of topical essential oil usage: DILUTE IN A CARRIER OIL.
But instead of toiling through the arduous guess-and-test process of finding the right mixture, why not save yourself the trouble by capitalizing on formulas already carefully crafted and balanced by professionals? Our Radiant Cleansing Nectar is perfect for anyone who wants to take the leap and see what manuka oil can do! This tough but gentle cleanser packs the power of manuka oil to help clear and calm your acne-prone skin. Plus, it gets an added boost of vitamins and antioxidants from complementary botanicals like hawthorn berry and apple seed oil!
We love the luminous clarity and brilliance manuka brings to our complexions, and we feel confident that you will, too. Take the next step in your skincare journey with Averr Aglow and discover the magic of manuka — it puts the essential in essential oil!