By Carla Oates
There’s no question that glowing, healthy skin is intimately linked to the state of our gut microbiome.
An ever-growing mountain of evidence continues to illustrate just how important our microbiome is for the state of our health, immunity, wellbeing and skin. While there are a number of ways we can support our gut health from the inside out—including eating a nutrient-dense wholefoods diet that includes an abundance of prebiotics, postbiotics and probiotics—lifestyle practices such as exercise, meditation, mindfulness, journaling, gratitude, dry body brushing and getting enough sleep also all impact and influence our gut in positive ways, too. By taking the time to focus on these nourishing practices, we not only feel better—but we look better.
Still, for glow-worthy skin, our topical skincare regime also plays an important role and as our body's largest organ, our skin can also influence our gut health. It’s therefore just as important to pay attention to what you’re placing on the surface of your skin (no matter your skin type!)—just as you would consider what you eat. In the same way probiotics can influence our inner health, they can also influence our outer health!
But First, What Are Probiotics?
Put simply, probiotics are the good bacteria that keep our gut microbiome happy, healthy and in balance. While there are many different species of bacteria, two of the most studied and beneficial are Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium and their associated strains. You can find them in lacto-fermented foods including sauerkraut, miso and kimchi as well as yoghurts and yoghurt drinks—but be wary as these products can be loaded with sugar—which may reduce or even eliminate their benefits. Lacto-fermentation is a process that creates a broad-spectrum of healthy bacteria and this is what you’ll find in all The Beauty Chef products where we use our exclusive Flora Culture™ fermentation process to supercharge our ingredients and make them even more bioavailable and beneficial for the body.
While we undoubtedly believe that beauty begins in the belly and you should first and foremost implement an inner beauty routine—when applied topically, probiotic skincare products can also contribute to healthy, radiant skin.
Like our digestive system, our skin has its own complex ecosystem—home to a colony of microorganisms with its very own microbiome. Probiotic beauty products like The Beauty Chef’s Probiotic Skin Refiner are designed to replenish, feed and fortify your skin’s microbiome, boasting a myriad of beauty benefits…
It protects our delicate skin barrier: As our immune system’s first line of defence, our skin plays an important role in protecting us from pathogens and infections with research showing how the microbes on our skin can actually influence our overall immune health. Not only a physical barrier, the skin barrier is also an immunological barrier and plays an important role in wound healing and combating inflammation. Probiotics such as bio-fermented Lactobacillus are antimicrobial and therefore play an important role in bolstering our skin’s natural defences—helping to protect us from environmental damage and free radicals—and have also been proven to help with inflammatory skin conditions such as acne breakouts, eczema and rosacea.
It smooths and brightens: Thanks to the presence of naturally-occurring alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs), The Beauty Chef’s Probiotic Skin Refiner, acts as a natural exfoliant, encouraging cell turnover to smooth the skin and boost skin health. Unlike harsh chemical exfoliants, natural AHAs help to remove dead skin cells and balance your skin's microflora without damaging your skin’s delicate dermal barrier.
Its anti-ageing: When it comes to fighting the signs of premature ageing such as fine lines, dry skin and pigmentation, AHA’s will soon become your new best friend. In fact, research has shown AHA’s to be effective in fading wrinkles, helping to ease symptoms of blemished skin, fading age-related pigmentation and encouraging collagen synthesis—essential considering our natural production of collagen slows as we age. There is also research to show that topical application of probiotics may also assist with skin elasticity—helping to maintain our skin's ability to stay firm, plump and strong.
It hydrates: Interestingly, lactic acid also helps with hydration and combating dryness by balancing the skin’s natural moisture levels. When used as a toner, it works by protecting the skin’s natural barrier, its stores of hydrating hyaluronic acid and ups the skin’s own natural defences, thereby preventing moisture loss.
It rebalances the skin: Glowing skin requires ph levels that are also in balance and probiotic skincare like our Probiotic Skin Refiner does just that! Literally feeding the skin with live bacteria, topical probiotics help to nourish the skin's surface and maintain its optimal PH—particularly important for those with sensitive skin.