Getting Nerdie With The Skin Nerd: How Probiotics Help The Skin

The Skin NerdIf I said maybe three years ago that probiotics may be what you need to stop your persistent redness or the odd spot, everyone would have told me that I was bananas and not in a good way.

In 2018, probiotic skincare in both topical formulations and “nutraceutical” supplements is everywhere. In my opinion, probiotics in skincare is not a fad that we will move away from.

Incorporating probiotics into people’s skincare routines has helped myself and the Nerdettes at The Skin Nerd online consultancy change lives.

It actually makes perfect sense when you break it down to brass tax.

How does inflammation in the gut effect the skin?

As ‘hoomans’, we are covered and filled with bacteria.

Both our gut and our skin have incredibly complex ecosystems made up of many different types of microorganisms that essentially make sure that everything is working like it should.

When there is an imbalance of bacteria in the gut, it causes inflammation which can cause inflammation of the skin. In the words of the great Diana Ross, you’re in the middle of a chain reaction.

This connection between gut flora and the skin is known as the gut-skin axis.

Studies have shown that those with rosacea are more likely to have a bacterial overgrowth of the small intestine and those who have inflammatory gut conditions are generally more likely to also have an inflammatory skin condition along with it.

An imbalance of bacteria in the gut can cause inflammation of the skin. In the words of the great Diana Ross, you’re in the middle of a chain reaction.

This is why taking probiotic supplements is so important, especially for those with rosacea, eczema and even severe congestion.

How can probiotic supplements help?

Our balance of gut bacteria is altered through daily life. Medication that we take regularly can upset the delicate ecosystem of your gut, specifically antibiotics, as can stress and not sleeping properly.

By taking probiotic supplements, you can help to repair the balance of bacteria in your gut and thus stop the gut inflammation from occurring in the first place.

Now, it sounds a bit wishy-washy but I have seen people try everything when it comes to topical skincare and see little effect and then introduce a probiotic supplement once or twice a day and see a phenomenal difference.

image via Total Beauty

How does topical probiotic skincare work?

Your skin also has its own microbiome separate to that of your gut. Seeing as your skin is not protected by fat, tissue and… skin, it is a lot easier for its natural bacterial balance to be harmed.

Bacteria are what make up the skin’s acid mantle, its protective Tupperware lid layer, that stops bacteria and viruses from attacking the skin.

It is a diversity of skin bacteria that is thought to battle eczema, rosacea and acne so topical probiotics are like fertiliser for the beneficial bacteria that may help to stave off breakouts and flare-ups of these conditions.

Bacteria are what make up the skin’s acid mantle, its protective Tupperware lid layer, that stops bacteria and viruses from attacking the skin.

Probiotics aren’t only beneficial to those with “problem” skin. Topical probiotic skincare can reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkle and speed up the skin’s processes of reparation.

I’m sure your mind has wandered to the 4-pack of Activia in your fridge… There is no point applying probiotic yoghurt like a mask as the molecules of yoghurt are simply not small enough to penetrate the skin. You will just smell funny when it warms up.

What you really need are probiotic products like those from Biofresh and Gallinée.

Gallinee Probiotic Facial Foaming Cleanser
Gallinée Facial Foaming Cleanser

Gallinée is actually a fully probiotic brand and their products also contain prebiotics, which are like food for probiotics, and a postbiotic in the form of lactic acid.

It was created by Marie Drago, a doctor of pharmacy who worked with skincare brands for over 15 years and decided to find a way to get probiotics into skincare.

The Foaming Facial Cleanser (€16.45) is a soap-free cleanser that contains probiotics and lactic acid, which helps with exfoliation AND hydrates the skin at the same time and it is fabulous.

I truly believe it could be used by anyone as it is so gentle whilst still being effective.


 
So if you’re someone with reactive skin, dehydrated skin, dry skin, mature skin or someone with an inflammatory skin concern, probiotics, both internally and externally, are a skincare trend that is definitely worth a go for you.

Is there anything on the planet more enticing than the draw of a healthy gut AND healthy skin?!

Jennifer Rock is the founder of The Skin Nerd online skin consultancy and online cosmeceutical skincare store. If you’re interested in having a consultation with one of her expert Nerdettes, click here for more information.

You can follow Jennifer on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat (@theskinnerd).