By now you’ve probably heard that your gut is home to billions of microbes, but did you know that your skin has a microbiome too? Recent research has revealed just how important of a role your skin microbiome plays, for the appearance of your skin and your overall health. Modern life can be tough on your skin microbiome, but there are certain ways to nourish it and achieve that healthy glow!
Wait, back up. What's my skin microbiome again?
Your skin microbiome is the collective community of bacteria that live on the surface and in the layers of your skin. We often think of all bacteria as a bad thing, but good bacteria actually help to fight off infection, heal wounds, and keep acne at bay. They also function as the interface between your body and the environment. Your skin acts as a physical barrier that protects against harmful pathogens while providing a home to the good bacteria. Similar to those in the gut, your good skin bacteria carry out essential roles that defend us from germs and keep us healthy.
So the bacteria on my skin is good?
Dr. Kara Fitzgerald says, “From what we can tell, a healthy skin microbiome protects against infection in much the same way a good gut microbiome does, by crowding out overgrowth of pathogenic organisms”. The typical modern lifestyle is full of things that can hurt the skin microbiome; Stress, pollution, antibacterial beauty products, and unbalanced gut flora can all negatively impact your skin. It’s important to keep your skin microbiome healthy; it aids in skin healing, limits exposure to allergens and UV radiation, minimizes free radical damage, and keeps your skin plump and moist.
How to nourish your skin microbiome
Luckily, there are things you can do to nourish your skin microbiome. Skin’s optimal pH level is around 5, so using skincare products that promote a healthy skin pH can be very beneficial. Prebiotic skincare is an emerging trend which focuses on prebiotic ingredients that feed the good bacteria in the skin microbiome. Seaweed is a popular skincare ingredient since it’s a great source of polysaccharides that provide prebiotic benefit to the skin.
Keeping stress levels in check, staying hydrated, exercising and eating well are all things that benefit the skin microbiome (in addition to the rest of your body!). Limiting your use of antibacterial soaps, preservatives in topical products, and other harsh chemicals also helps keep the good bacteria in your skin alive and thriving.
How does my gut health affect my skin microbiome?
Arguably, all skin issues are influenced by the gut microbiome and gut health in general. Your cells talk to each other, and a balanced gut microbiome sends out healthy messages to the rest of your body. This impacts the appearance of your skin, and has even been linked to curing conditions like acne and rosacea.
Keeping your gut healthy is a great way to improve your skin microbiome as well as your overall health. Avoiding your trigger foods, taking a good probiotic, and consuming prebiotic fiber like KAIBAE Baobab Fruit Powder regularly are all ways to support your gut and in turn help your skin microbiome flourish.
The not-so-secret key to healthy skin
We all want to have clear, healthy skin. It’s becoming evident that the skin microbiome is essential for good-looking skin, as well as our overall health. Be mindful of the products you use, do your best to live an active lifestyle, and eat healthful foods. Take care of your gut and skin microbiomes, and they will take care of you!