The ancient process of fermentation is making waves in the skincare world with probiotic moisturisers and fruit fermented serums attracting a lot of attention. Fermented foods such as kimchi and miso are known for their superfood probiotic properties with amazing health benefits for our bodies but, the process of fermentation has now been harnessed in skincare with impressive results.
So, what's this supercharged skincare all about?
Fermentation attracts attention for its powerful ability to break down toxic substances, it is the process in which an ingredient breaks down into a simpler form. Microorganisms like yeast and bacteria usually play a role in the fermentation process, where microbes decompose organic compounds with enzymes in them. Valuable by-products of yeast fermentation can be a blend of vitamins, amino acids, minerals, and organic acids. This is where the cosmetic potential of the fermentation process lies with fermented actives having a winning combination of properties:
- As the molecular structure of natural ingredients are broken down, new elements are formed and nutrients become more concentrated and more easily and rapidly absorbed by the skin.
- Fermented skincare products are nutrient-dense with a powerhouse of antioxidants, peptides and amino acids not found in the raw material. Sugar and fruit acids, which are abundant in naturally fermented ingredients, also help to moisturise.
- Fermentation neutralises irritants (like pesticides) creating a gentle enough product for sensitive and dry skin and, chock-full of anti-microbial organisms, they help to prolong a product's shelf life so there is no need to add synthetic preservatives, paving the way to natural and organic skincare.
- Popular fermented ingredients in skincare include: Ginseng fruit, berries, seaweed, tea, various herbs and flowers and yeast. These natural wonders can strengthen your skin barrier function and give you impressive results. Skincare products with fermented ingredients can be more symbiotic with the skin, mimicking the cell functions and supporting the skin without disrupting the natural process.
- While the intestines produce enzymes, the skin does not so the enzyme process in fermentation is harnessed for skincare to transform the active ingredients to be more easily absorbed and functional, penetrating the skin more deeply and rapidly to boost its natural defence. They may also help to promote the bioavailability of essential minerals and reduce toxicity; protecting and helping skin's cellular renewal.
Get your hit of superfood for the skin with THE CONTOURIST, an ingenious instant treatment that deeply infuses your skin with an advanced fruit ferment based skin-perfecting serum. This transforming sheet mask has been clinically proven to leave skin visibly lifted, feeling firmer and with a reduced appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Prep your cleansed skin with TONING ESSENCE to ensure skin is squeaky clean and ready to drink in the goodness of The Contourist Mask. Consider a facial massage during the 20 minute treatment for an even deeper application of the serum, encouraging cell renewal, reducing puffiness and congestion to give you more glow!
Prebiotic skincare products can go a long way to helping our complexions look healthy but we can boost these benefits by keeping our intestines balanced and include fermented foods in our diets too.
The cultural custom of fermentation has been used for thousands of years in the preparation and preservation of food and drink. Soaking food in salt water allows bacteria to grow which feeds on the starch to generate lactic acid, acting as a natural preservative for the food and producing vitamin b, probiotics, omega 3 fatty acids and enzymes in the process. The presence of live bacteria in these fermented superfoods, known as probiotics, are beneficial for physiological function of our bodies, with the lactic acid bacteria and lactobacillus functioning as gatekeepers, effectively preventing harmful bacteria from growing in our intestines and promoting a healthy digestive and immune system.
Modern diets, high in refined sugars and busy, stressful lifestyles can contribute to dysbiosis, which is the state in which our intestinal flora is out of balance and bad bacteria flourish. A lack of beneficial bacteria allows disease causing microbes to grow causing inflammation in the gut wall. Eliminating refined, high sugar foods and including probiotic-rich fermented foods is thought to bring the gut back into balance and support the immune system.
Including fermented foods in our diet not only helps to destress our digestive system, they can also increase the availability of vitamins and minerals for our bodies to absorb. By boosting the beneficial bacteria in your gut, you are promoting their ability to manufacture B vitamins and synthesise vitamin K.
The gut microbiome can cause changes in how our brains react too. Our gut is lined with neurons that can influence our emotions, feelings and behaviours. Scientists have found that gut bacteria produce many other neurotransmitters such as dopamine and serotonin, which are critical for mood, anxiety, concentration, reward, and motivation.
Fermented foods, plants and fruits not only provide us with powerful yet gentle active ingredients for our skin, they also create and sustain a harmonious and healthy gut which is vital to our physical and mental health and wellbeing.