MakeUp in Paris, on October 20&21, will be the perfect opportunity to to discover the latest skincare and makeup innovations for packaging, formulas and ingredients. Meanwhile let’s explore a skincare trend where ingredients act in symbiosis with our skin : microbiome skincare.
Skin microbiome, or skin flora, refers to the microorganisms (bacteria, fungi and viruses) which reside on the skin. Having a balanced microbiome is key to a healthy skin. The opposite also stands true, an unbalanced microbiome can be the cause to various skin concerns. Based on this observation, the beauty industry has been focusing more and more on developing products to balance the skin microbiome.
That is where probiotics, prebiotics and postbiotics come at play. We all have heard of them at least once and while they are usually talked about when referring to the guts and digestive system, the are becoming key ingredients in skincare. Indeed, each of them has a role in making sure the skin microorganisms stay healthy.
Adding good bacteria with probiotics
Probiotics are living strains of bacteria that add to the population of good bacteria in the digestive system. They have the ability to rebuild and strengthen the skin's barrier. Sensitive skin may take a while to repair itself after being damaged, but incorporating skincare with probiotics can helps speed up the process. Similarly, acne-prone skin can benefit from probiotics as the added bacteria comes as a treatment against acne, calming and balancing inflammations. Brands like Gallinée and Aurelia Probiotic Skincare have built whole ranges with probiotics as main ingredients.
Feeding good bacteria with prebiotics
Prebiotics are non-digestible food constituents (fibers) that stimulate certain bacteria in the intestinal microbiota. They are beneficial for the health of the gut – and the health in general. They are also are good for our skin and have been used in the form of supplements for many years now. Beauty brands like Biossance or Algenist now offer prebiotic skincare products that will feed the skin flora. It is usually recommended to combined them with probiotics to further strengthen and feed good skin bacteria.
Adding bacteria by-products with postbiotics
Skincare products containing postbiotics are made to nourish and nurture the skin flora. Produced during the fermentation process, postbiotics include probiotic cell fragments, chemical by-products and ‘waste’ from the dead probiotic bacteria. In skincare, postbitotics can translate to vitamins (B and K), some amino acids, naturally antimicrobial peptides, some enzymes and peptides or organic acids (such as lactic acid). Their presence is essential to create a good flora environment and make sure bacteria can flourish as they are supposed to.
If microbiome skincare has gained popularity over the years, it is mainly because it is science-backed and has had proven positive effects on other areas like digestive health. It also is a concept that is quite easy for consumers to understand and goes hand in hand with the wellness trend that keeps on gaining more and more importance.
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