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Manuka honey key ingredient of premium skin care brand

Manuka honey is in the spotlight again, New York skincare brand Kiehl's, part of the L'Oreal group, have used it as a key ingredient in their new hero product.

Kiehl's Pure Vitality Skin Renewing Cream ($98) is focused on the idea of skin health and relies on NZ Manuka honey, says Roberta Weiss, the company's senior vice-president of innovation and product development.

"Good health is the ability to resist disease, and if you do get sick you can recover quickly. For skin it's the same," she says.

Pure Vitality uses Korean red ginseng root in tandem with Manuka honey to support skin in those ways, with the manuka's healing properties coming to the fore alongside ginseng's energy boost.

Weiss is an advocate for Manuka in her personal life - she keeps a jar on her desk and dishes out spoonfuls to anyone with a tickly throat - and she says it was important to get a New Zealand honey for the cream.

"It became very clear that Manuka was the queen of all honeys - there was no question, every other honey paled in comparison."

"We knew that it needed to be New Zealand Manuka honey... we wanted the indigenous, original product."

It was worth it for the end result. The Manuka honey (which is added at the end and not heated, to preserve its active enzymes) lends it a light scent and rich feel on the skin.

Kiehl's studies showed the cream improved skin radiance by 41.8 per cent and smoothness by 39.7 per cent. Those results from a product that owes its power to an NZ ingredient can't be bad.

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