It did not take long for Queen of the Hive Face Contour Cream to prove its weight in golden honey goodness. It contains not just any honey but rather the crème de la crème of anti-bacterial, healing, skin-soothing honeys—organic manuka honey.

Lately, only select creams are my friends. I can not use many of them successfully due to the assortment of other ingredients that are necessary to bind the oils to water in the formula and to give the product a longer shelf life. These are often fillers and preservatives that don’t always work well for sensitive or inflamed skin types. Since my skin tends to erupt like the Old Faithful Geyser in Yellowstone National Park, it was kinda a big deal when Queen of the Hive not only eased my troubles, it also felt really soothing and healing when applied to my skin.

Another happy discovery was learning that no bees are harmed in collecting the bee venom. Maintaining a thriving bee population is more than a hot topic, it’s a real concern. The other feature that I value is Wedderspoon’s attention to eco-friendly packaging. The company took extra measures to reduce its 100 percent recyclable packaging by an estimated 70 percent, plus it’s designed on 88 percent recycled stock.

I loved this product so much that I asked Kelly Nelson, a media rep for Wedderspoon, all about the select ingredients in the company’s latest successful endeavor. (The raw organic manuka active honey 16+ is already a darling of Spirit Beauty Lounge and many other beauty aficionados).

With several emails back and forth, I appreciated her openness and willingness to answer all my questions—even when I started digging into the nitty gritty on bee venom. That certainly reflects well on the company. I truly thank you and applaud you, Kelly and team!*

What are the skin-loving benefits of raw manuka honey and bee venom in Queen of the Hive?

Manuka honey has been shown to have a higher concentration of therapeutic anti-inflammatory properties than other types of honey– though scientists aren’t sure what these properties are exactly, they are working on it as we speak! What we do know is that this unique combination of enzymes, pollen, hydrogen peroxide and non-peroxide makes manuka a necessity in your beauty regimen. Enzymes in manuka honey remove dead skin cells and help skin regeneration while anti-inflammatory properties calm redness and problem skin. Manuka fanatics swear it reduces the appearance of acne scars and decrease the size and duration of pimples. As a humectant, manuka helps dry or itchy skin retain moisture and imparts a supple, youthful glow. Additionally, its properties make it an effective daily facial cleanser as well!

Our newly released Queen of the Hive line of body and facial care products features organic manuka honey. Specifically, our Face Contour Cream contains premium bee venom, rare New Zealand organic manuka honey, Egyptian geranium oil, evening primrose oil, rosehip oil, marshmallow root and other natural botanical oils. These natural ingredients and antioxidants have antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties that work to reduce dryness, repair sun damage, plump fine lines and even skin tone.

Bee Venom in combination with manuka honey work to stimulate, nourish and intensely moisturize skin.

Bee venom has been used through bee-sting therapy for centuries in all cultures. The actual healing process is the subject of ongoing research, which has identified a number of naturally occurring chemical compounds appearing to work together in the body. One possible way that venom works its anti inflammatory effects is by assisting in the production of cortisone in the human body, without the side effects of synthetic cortisone. Bee venom is known to increase circulation and stimulate the production of collagen, elastin and cortisone, filling in those tiny lines and wrinkles.

Queen of the Hive products are organic and contain no sodium lauryl sulfate, no petroleum, no mineral oil, no parabens and no artificial color.

What products include these ingredients?

All of the Queen of the Hive products use our premium, raw, organic manuka honey– our Face Contour Cream, the Manuka Honey and Peppermint Lip Balm as well as our Oatmeal and Tea Tree Soaps. [Bee venom is used exclusively in the face contour cream.]

What realistic results can you expect to see?

You can expect results from the first use! Immediately skin feels plumper, softer and more even-toned. After daily use you will find even more dramatic results—clearer, more youthful looking and moisturized skin whether you’ve been using your manuka products on your lips, face, or body.

What customers are saying about it…

Our customers love that they are getting a pure, organic alternative to chemical laden skin products that show tangible results on your skin. With our manuka-based line, you know you’re using clean products that actually work wonders for your skin.

Bonus question: Name one product (yours or in another line) that you can’t live without. (Just for fun, cuz we all want to know!)

I honestly can’t live without our Manuka honey. I use it daily (morning and night) to wash my face and have seen such a change in my skin. I had been suffering from the dreaded breakout plus beginning signs of aging combo, but since I’ve been using manuka honey for cleansing and acne spot treatment, along with the Bee Venom Face Contour Cream, I’ve seen dramatic results in my skin’s texture. The breakouts are controlled and my skin looks more youthful too.

Can the skin be “fooled” into being stung? My Edible Facial notes on Bee Venom or apitoxin

Here’s what a Wedderspoon press release says about bee venom:

Bee venom is used topically to ‘fool’ the skin into thinking it has been lightly stung. This action causes the body to increase blood flow to the area and stimulates the production of the naturally occurring chemicals collagen and elastin. Collagen strengthens body tissue while elastin is the protein that helps the skin to remain firm.

Marta Wohrle, the founder of Truth in Aging, does extensive research when it comes to ingredients. She found that bee venom mainly consists of peptides. It acts as a strong anti-inflammatory and antiseptic, plus it contains 19 different active components, according to a review on the topic.

Personally, I am on the fence and I’ll explain why.

I do find that using honey markedly improves my skin. With honey-based masks (particularly those with high Organic Manuka Active ratings as in Wedderspoon’s honeys), the enzymes and phytochemical compounds activate my skin’s healing processes, leading to an immediate turnaround in scars, blemishes, and many other issues. When I say immediate—I do mean that. It’s no hype. But let’s take a look at the ingredients:

Canadian glacial water, *rose hydrosol (rosa damascena), lanette wax (cocos nuciferia, cetearyl glucoside, cetearyl alcohol), *apricot kernel oil (prunus armeniaca kernel oil), *cocoa butter (theobroma cacao seed butter), *hydrolyzed rhizobian gum, acacia senegal gum, *manuka active (OMA) honey (mel), *refined avocado oil (persea gratissima oil), *beeswax (cera alba), natural phenethyl alcohol, *marshmallow root (althaea officinalis root), *rosehip oil (rosa fruit oil), *evening primrose oil (oenothera biennis oil), *vitamin e (mixed tocopherols), *vanilla (vanilla planifolia), *ylang ylang essential oil (cananga odorate flower), *egyptian geranium oil (pelargonium graveolens oil), bee venom (Apitoxin).


Frankly, I’m uncertain about the function of bee venom in this cream—especially when it’s included as the last ingredient. Most ingredients on a label are listed in order of the amount present in the formula. So I’m not sure what quantity is actually used or how much is needed to create the coveted “bee stung” effect. Perhaps, Kelly or Wedderspoon will offer an answer to my question in the comments. I’m also uncertain about whether or not it matters that much, as this results-driven cream offers many other perks beyond the bee venom.

Aside from the healing properties, my skin reaps the benefits of an ample firming effect when using the Face Contour Cream, thanks to the addition of hydrating and pigment-fading ingredients, like apricot kernel oil, cocoa butter, avocado oil, rosehip oil, evening primrose oil, and more. At 44, firmness can sometimes feel like a long lost friend whom you wave to from afar. (Helloooo down there!) The honey-sweet cream eases into my skin like butter melting into a warm croissant (yes, I’m hungry right now) and leaves nary a trace behind. That’s good because residual product likes to clog up my pores, so instant absorption is no laughing matter.

At the end of the day—bee stung or not—this product is a keeper.

If you’d like to try this incredible cream (and I highly encourage it!), Wedderspoon is offering 25% off plus a free lip balm with purchase.

Head on over to read other awesome reviews on My Lucite Dreams and on Kristen Arnett’s Green Beauty Team.

Do you use any products containing honey? What results do you find?


Psst! Tonight is the big True Beauty Brooklyn event! Hope to see you there.


*I purchased the cream myself and do not receive any benefits from endorsing these products. All material including photos in the post are my own (other than the featured image which I’m using with permission from Wedderspoon).

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