Chances are, you’ve probably heard of probiotics – traditionally taken in capsule form to maintain a healthy gut, they’ve become a bit of a buzzword in the past few years because they’ve entered the beauty world in an all-new way. Probiotics are known for their ability to balance and calm your digestive system, but when applied topically they’re also proven to work their magic on your skin – and the best thing is, they have benefits for any and every skin type and concern.
Now found in everything from serums and moisturisers to cleansers and masks, probiotics are well and truly mainstream. Here’s everything you need to know.
What are probiotics?
They’re often referred to as ‘the good bacteria’, and that’s right. The bacteria you find in probiotics are micro-organisms naturally found in your body and they provide health benefits such as aiding digestion, strengthening the immune system, and protecting against harmful bacteria. Skin is naturally covered in good bacteria – they help to keep it healthy, moisturised, and free from redness and irritation.
What are prebiotics and postbiotics?
If you start reading up on probiotic skincare, you’ll also notice the words prebiotic and postbiotic being thrown around. Prebiotics are essentially food for probiotics (they encourage growth) and postbiotics are useful chemicals that the microbes in our gut produce.
What are the benefits of using probiotic skincare?
1. The defend against first signs of ageing
Probiotics improve the skin’s ability to defend against environmental stressors and free radicals that trigger signs of ageing like loose skin, pigmentation, lines, and wrinkles.
2. They soothe irritated skin
By reducing inflammation, probiotics help to take down redness and calm easily-irritated or sensitised skin. They can help to calm skin that’s experiencing a product reaction or breakouts.
3. They create a natural shield
Probiotics strengthen the skin’s barrier by acting as a protective layer on the skin’s surface. This makes it hard for bad bacteria and pollution to get in and trigger breakots.
4. They balance your skin
Just like probiotic supplements balance your gut, they also balance your skin and restore a healthy pH balance to the skin’s surface. This results in a complexion that isn’t too dry or too oily – instead skin feels calm and healthy.
5. They improve hydration levels
By supporting the skin’s barrier, probiotics help to lock in moisture in order to prevent dehydration. Thi improves skin’s ability to maintain healthy hydration levels, and reduces signs of dryness like tight, uncomfortable skin.