Honey has been a beauty staple for centuries. Women in the Ming Dynasty would use the sweet substance to keep their skin lit from within, while Cleopatra was rumoured to soak in a concoction of milk and honey to maintain her skin’s softness.

Modern experts agree that honey can indeed work wonders for the skin. “[Honey] makes the skin look plump and dewy,” says facialist and owner of SKINBYVEE® Vee Mistry. As a natural humectant, it has the ability to attract and retain moisture, leading to a softer and brighter complexion. “The antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties of honey are great for repairing and healing the skin and [also for] fighting acne,” she says.

French luxury beauty brand Guerlain has been using honey in its products for decades, and its commitment to harvesting the ingredient sustainably has preserved its potency. “Honey is a product of nature that only bees know how to prepare, and its complexity comes from the foraged flowers the bees have found in their environment as well as the transformation of their nectar,” says Frédéric Bonté, scientific communication director at Guerlain.

Take the Abeille Royale Honey Treatment Day Cream and Honey Treatment Night Cream, for instance, which utilizes cold-pressed honey harvested from the UNESCO-protected Ouessant island in Brittany, France. Inspired by clinical honey bandages, the careful extraction method helps to preserve the quality and efficacy of the ingredients.

Ready for a sweeter beauty routine? Read on for our 8 favourite honey-infused product picks.