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by Jenn Rutsky
So first a little about myself and my skin. I'm 34 years old, and have combination skin with what I view as large pores. I don't tend to breakout often and generally have pretty decent skin. I do and have worshipped the sun all my life so I'm sure I have sun damage although luckily it has yet to really show. I have noticed some small wrinkles around my eyes but other than that I think I'm aging ok.
I wasn't expecting too much from Royal Nectar Cream Cleanser ($29) since I wasn't familiar with the brand nor the idea of bee venom. I'm a beauty geek and love trying new products so I'm always up for learning about a new ingredient or brand. My basic hope was that the product cleaned my face and did so without irritation.
I incorporated the product into my routine by using it when I showered every other day. Basically after I've done everything else in the shower, my last step was to wash my face. I'd push the pump a few times - I want to say five times seemed like the right amount to give generous coverage to my face and neck and then smooth the cream all over my face and neck. Sometimes I would use my fake Clarisonic (mine's a Conair knock off) to help get the cream into my skin, but I found that wasn't really necessary and started to use it less and less with this cleanser.
I loved the smell of this cream and found it very pretty and a sweet floral but not in an overbearing manner. Just in a perfect level of scent really divine smell - I enjoyed it very much and liked the scent that lingered in the bathroom from it.
I'm no scientist but tried to learn more about the two main ingredients in this product - manuka honey and bee venom. So first a little about the manuka honey. I guess there is a plant all over Australia and New Zealand called the manuka tree. There are European honey bees which feed on this tree and then produce the honey. This honey is considered to have all sorts of great features like it's antibacterial, and seems similar to aloe in its ability to help with wounds and burns. Now to that bee venom. So a bit more obvious than the manuka honey, bee venom is exactly what it sounds like - it's the poison that bee's sting us with that cause bee stings to be painful. It's actually used in shots to help people with all sorts of ailments from MS to bee allergies. In a cream it's considered less potent but does seem to have a property that increases blood flow which plumps the skin and thereby reduces the look of wrinkles and aging.
What I did notice from this cleanser is that it did not irritate my skin at all - it wasn't drying or harsh in any way which was great. Many cleansers do tend to make my skin overly dry or tight or irritated/red - upon exiting the shower any time I used the Royal Nectar Cream Cleanser I felt like I may not have even needed moisturizers. I think this is likely thanks to the manuka honey. Something else I did notice was a slight (read - very super slight) film on my skin that had a waxy texture. I don't know if this was intended or not, but it gave my skin a matte appearance. I did feel like the cream didn't help with the size of my pores and I would still need to do extractions to clean my pores out.
Overall I really liked the Royal Nectar Cream Cleanser and on a scale of 1-10 would rate it an 8. I liked that it smelled great and wasn't harsh on my skin, the only reason I take away two points is I don't know how deep of a clean I really got.