According to gastroenterologist Dr. Roshini Raj, probiotic expert and founder of Tula, the ideal beauty and wellness routine will actually include both. In fact, it was the profound healing effect oral probiotics had on her gastroenterology patients that inspired her to research the idea of probiotics embedded into skincare.
“I began to research the topical benefits of probiotics and uncovered research that probiotics have a proven ability to soothe and calm skin inflammation,” Raj explains. “I noticed that my patients’ skin looked significantly calmer and clearer, and I could tell they were feeling better before they had the chance to tell me!”
As far as how probiotic skincare products actually work their magic, Raj says it really comes down to strengthening the skin barrier’s natural defenses so our complexions can more efficiently hang on to essential hydration and slowly but surely feel smoother and healthier to the touch. But your oral probiotic can help improve your skin, too. Yes, a daily probiotic vitamin or supplement can reduce gastrointestinal symptoms like bloating and gas, but it can also help calm the skin and increase the skin’s moisture levels.
“We have trillions of bacteria living on our skin, which can help fight infection and inflammation,” Dr. Joyce Imahiyerobo-Ip, founder of Vibrant Dermatology, tells us. “When this microbiome is disrupted, inflammatory indicative symptoms like acne and eczema can occur or flare up. Ingesting probiotics helps to improve the diversity of our native gut flora, which ultimately helps to ward off total-body inflammation and skin inflammation. And, when applied directly to the skin, probiotics help to soothe redness or irritation while also protecting our skin from troublesome skin infections such as staph aureus.”