Mānuka Oil for a Healthy Microbiome: A Technical Reference

by | Jun 6, 2023

Nourish Your Microbiome with Mānuka Oil: A Path to Health and Balance

Maintaining a Healthy Skin Microbiome

Our skin is the largest organ in our bodies, with an area of around 1.8 square meters. It acts as a protective shield against toxins and microbes that cause infections while keeping moisture and nutrients inside (Grice et al., 2011).

Our skin is colonized by a wide range of microbes such as bacteria, fungi, viruses, and mites (“microbiota”), most of which are harmless or even beneficial. There are many factors that affect the skin microbiome and the delicate balance between us and these microscopic organisms that live on our skin. These include sex, age, genetics, health status, lifestyle, stress levels, skincare practices, climate, antibiotics usage, and much more. When this balance is disrupted, skin problems and infections can arise.

diagram of a healthy skin barrier vs a damaged skin barrier

Daily skincare routines and sensible lifestyle choices go a long way toward creating well-hydrated, clear, even-toned, and beautiful skin, preventing skin problems such as blemishes and acne and delaying the effects of aging. Skin basics include a healthy diet, sun protection, not smoking, avoiding long hot baths and strong soaps that strip natural skin oils, moisturizing dry skin, and managing stress levels (Mayo Clinic, 2022).

The skin microbiome | Nature Reviews Microbiology

Mānuka Oil for Beautiful, Clear Skin Every Day

East Cape Mānuka Oil is ideal as a multi-benefit active ingredient in everyday skincare formulations. Here are some of the reasons why:

  • Triketone-rich East Cape Mānuka Oil helps maintain a balanced skin microbiome and clear skin by killing or reducing bacterial, fungal, and viral growth on the skin that causes common infections such as acne, impetigo, cold sores, and cutaneous candidiasis (facial thrush).
  • Given its physical and chemical properties and ability to promote collagen production in the skin, East Cape Mānuka Oil moisturizes skin, prevents water loss, helps repair the skin barrier, and erases any blemishes while minimizing scarring (Source: MBS 2022, Orchard et al., 2017).
  • East Cape Mānuka Oil also contains the sesquiterpene calamenene that calms the skin.
  • Too much sun causes skin inflammation that degrades collagen and elastin and weakens the skin barrier. This results in premature aging, characterised by fine lines, wrinkles,
    sagging and skin thickness. Processed foods, smoking and pollution create free radicals in the body that also contribute to skin aging. Sesquiterpenes and monoterpenes in mānuka
    oil such as pinene, calamenene, cadinene and caryophyllene have incredible anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antiaging powers. These compounds reduce skin
    inflammation, neutralise damaging free radicals and promote collagen production in the skin that helps improve skin structure and integrity.
  • Mānuka oil is very gentle on the skin. Human Repeat Insult Patch Testing (HRIPT) with 50 people demonstrated that 2% mānuka oil has very good skin compatibility and did not
    cause any sensitising effects. (Manuka Bioscience, 2021).
  • The anti-inflammatory properties of mānuka oil also help prevent or treat common chronic inflammatory skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, and acne.

Skin Barrier Repair Using Natural Oils Such as Mānuka Oil


  • Grice, E.A. and Segre, J.A. (2011), The skin microbiome, Nat Rev Microbiol. April 2011, 9(4), 244–253
  • Mayo Clinic, Skin Care: 5 Tips for Healthy Skin << https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/adult-health/in-depth/skin-care/art-20048237 >>
  • Orchard, A. et al., (2017), Commercial EOs as Potential Antimicrobials to Treat Skin Diseases, Hindawi Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine Volume, Article ID 4517971, 92 pages
  • Vaughan, A.R. et al. (2018), Natural Oils for Skin-Barrier Repair: Ancient Compounds Now Backed by Modern Science, American Journal of Clinical Dermatology, 19, 103-117.