Probiotics are live microorganisms that support the growth of a healthy microbiome. Our body is host to a trillion microorganisms that keep it healthy, flourishing and protected against harmful bacteria – probiotics are vital in maintaining that balance.
Oral and topical probiotics can help support the bacteria in and on our body while supporting immune function, nutrition absorption and digestion. If taken orally, they can help ease symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and leaky gut syndrome.
Some studies have found differences between men's and women's microbial communities and have noticed that certain probiotic strains respond differently as well. Based on this hypothesis, probiotics for men should be designed to support their specific health needs and communities.
1. May Help Improve Certain Skin Conditions
Skin conditions like psoriasis, eczema, and rosacea are believed to respond to inflammation in the body. Some studies believe that specific probiotic strains can help control inflammation and minimize the symptoms of these skin conditions.
Certain probiotics can also help boost the skin's production of ceramides or fats that help trap moisture in the skin, keep acne-causing bacteria levels in control and help ease symptoms of dry skin.
Further research also suggests probiotics can feed healthy bacteria to regain the skin's pH and microbiome to protect against free radical damage. While more research is still needed, current evidence suggests probiotics can help fight skin aging and possibly skin cancer.
2. Protect the Skin Barrier
Studies show that probiotics can help strengthen the skin’s barrier by protecting it from environmental pathogens trying to feed on the excess sebum on the skin. Probiotics can help balance the skin’s pH levels to help strengthen the skin barrier and protect the body from free radicals and external aggressors. All of this is possible thanks to the probiotic’s power to interfere in the population of harmful bacteria, maintaining its levels.
Probiotics can help restore the skin’s microbiome by reducing inflammatory bacteria levels and help treat many inflammation-induced skin conditions. Since probiotics help boost ceramide production and maintain moisture levels, they can help soothe and calm the skin and control symptoms of inflammatory conditions.
The American Academy of Dermatology praises probiotics’ strength in calming and soothing irritated skin. It signals the immune system not to attack the beneficial bacteria being applied to the skin, thus outnumbering harmful bacteria.
3. Balance the Skin Microbiome
Not only do oral probiotics help restore the gut microbiome and repopulate our digestive system with healthy bacteria, but they can have the same effects on the skin. As you may know, the gut-skin axis constantly sends information from our digestive system to our skin and vice versa.
Probiotics can help restore a diverse skin microbiome with balanced good and harmful bacteria levels. A healthy microbiome supports proper oil production, hydration, and protective mechanisms to fend off pathogens and free radicals.
Topical probiotics also balance and restore the skin microbiome.
4. Promote Hair Growth
Hair density is another studied benefit of probiotics for hair showing promising results in early studies. Researchers noticed an increase in 70% of hair follicles; this might be a reaction to raised androgen hormones from probiotic signals. Since male pattern baldness is often attributed to hormones, researchers believe probiotics could help restore hair loss.
Probiotics can help nourish the follicles and surrounding blood vessels, the only part of our still alive hair. By driving away inflammation and strengthening your immune system, they can help prevent hair loss while stimulating hair growth.
While probiotics in hair care products are relatively new, one Korean study shows promising results. After 16 weeks of using a rice water formulation rich in probiotics, both men and women reported hair growth and improved hair density.
5. Fight Scalp Dryness
Consumption of Lactobacillus can reportedly help reduce dandruff and reduce scalp itchiness and greasiness over time. Dandruff affects close to 50% of the adult population, and it’s characterized by a weakened skin barrier that results in a flaky scalp.
Oral and topical probiotics can help restore skin barrier functions and support the skin’s immune system. Probiotics can also help improve immune function to fight against fungal infections that can trigger dandruff. These changes can effectively help control dandruff and clinically reduce the onset of grease, dandruff and dry scalp.
Another study found that probiotics can also improve scalp skin health and fight conditions like seborrheic eczema, often caused by excess oil. We can help control oil production and calm eczema triggers by increasing moisture content.
Oral and topical probiotics are worth a try! Oral probiotics are more common and found in pill form or in some yogurts and other foods. Putting together a skincare routine using live and active probiotics may be a bit harder to find. Make sure your probiotic product needs to be refrigerated. Try our starter kit, The Peacekeeper, that features our AO+ Restoartive Mist with live and active probiotics.