Makeup isn’t big in Hawaii, as many of the women—wahine—spend their free time riding the waves, exploring the ocean or enjoying the nature outside, but skin care is important. Daily exposure to abundant sunshine and breezy winds means skin needs to be protected and hydrated to remain healthy and youthful, and nighttime repair is essential. Oahu-born aesthetician Kapua Browning, founder of Honua, knows this all too well, and her Māhealani Glow Balm does the trick.
The nickname for this rich, nighttime moisturizer is Moonlit Glow Balm, as “Māhealani” draws inspiration from the full moon, specifically the third night of our full moon. “Among ancient Hawaiians, this special night was dedicated to sacred rituals,” says Browning. “Our ancestors used the moonlit glow of Māhealani to plant to ensure an abundant harvest, caring for their families. We created Māhealani to nourish your skin and highlight your natural glow.”
Some balms are greasy and make my skin break out, but not this one: It’s the perfect addition to a winter skin-care routine because you apply it before bed and it transforms your skin as you sleep, working its moisturizing and brightening magic so you can wake up to the prettiest glow. One of the key ingredients is Hawaiian botanical liliko’i, or passionflower, which contains vitamin A and more than 70-percent omega fatty acids (it’s also high in lycopene, which is super soothing—you can also use this balm to help heal burns). Other star actives include brightening licorice root and moisturizing kukui nut butter, plus blue tansy and vetiver essential oils, which also contribute to the beautiful, calming scent (think oceanic and citrus notes).
The sustainable packaging is also a plus: The formula is housed in a 100-percent recyclable glass jar and the outer carton is made from recyclable kraftpaper.
Hawaiian Liliko’i (passionflower), licorice root, jojoba oil, squalane, Hawaiian kukui nut butter, blue tansy and vetiver
How to Use It:
“Like beautiful moonlight, a little goes a long way,” Browning says. I like to use it at night as a last-step sleeping mask, warming about half a pea-size amount on my fingers and then massaging it into my skin. (You can also bring it down to your neck and décolleté.) If you’re skin cycling, Browning says you can use it to slug in between retinol nights, or wear it during the day, but it will leave your skin pretty dewy, so keep that in mind. It’s also effective as a spot-treatment on dry patches if for whatever reason you don’t feel like using it on your whole face one night. Note: Like most face balms, the product may appear hard and grainy at first, but once you warm it up in your fingers, it becomes smooth and soft. That’s why the warming step is so important.