You’re probably already familiar with the benefits of probiotics and lactic acid. But how about fermenting superfoods like mushrooms, green tea, wasabi, sea kelp, black soy, for your beauty routine?
If you’re looking to hydrate, plump and minimize lines and wrinkles, consider adding a fermented skincare product to your regimen. Packed with nutrients like vitamins, amino acids, polysaccharides, and beta-glucans, these natural wonders can strengthen your skin barrier and give you stunning results.
What is fermented skincare?
Originally a Korean beauty trend, fermented skincare is having a moment all around the world. Basically, just like wine, beer or kimchi fermented into foods to promote healthy gut bacteria, ingredients like yeast, milk, fruit and plants are fermented into beauty formulas.
The goal of these new products is to nourish the body while improving our skin microbiome via more absorbable and more nutrient-dense ingredients. As fermentation breaks down substances, the smaller the molecules, the deeper they penetrate into the skin.
Just like fine wine, fermentation uses yeast in a natural chemical process to secrete enzymes,” says Caroline Chang, MD, a board-certified dermatologist at The Rhode Island Dermatology Institute to Real Simple. “The natural process of fermentation creates a higher concentration of beneficial ingredients like probiotics, vitamins, and antioxidants, and allows these key natural ingredients to be more potent. This not only helps fight free radical damage and protect against UV damage, but it can also help produce amino acids, which are the building blocks of peptides to combat fine lines and wrinkles.
The fermented ingredients also have anti-inflammatory properties. Thanks to the fermentation process, they become rich in enzymes, which are able to soothe and prevent skin inflammation. Basically, the enzymes eliminate the “bad bacteria” the skin may contain and replace them with “good bacteria”, this, in turn, helps to preserve the skin balance.
What are some of the best-fermented skincare ingredients?
Some niche brands already offer — and in some cases have long offered — cosmetics based on fermented ingredients, but the giants of the sector are also starting to gradually adapt to meet new customer demands. Indeed, fermented beauty is one of the top trends that’s predicted to boom in 2022, as revealed by projections from trend forecaster WGSN.
In the meantime, it’s already possible to try out this new generation of cosmetics thanks to the Gallinée brand, a specialist in prebiotics, whose hair cleansing cream is enriched with fermented rice water. Otherwise, look for Innisfree and its fermented soy masks, or Whamisa, a true specialist in the field.
There is a growing desire for potent ingredients that are clean, safe and have a longer shelf life – explains Clare Varga, head of beauty at WGSN-. Recent education around gut health and the benefits fermented foods and beverages have on the skin’s microbiome have accelerated the acceptance of fermented skincare and consumers are increasingly adopting this inside out approach to beauty. Fermented beauty products are also more sustainable alternatives in manufacturing due to boosted product longevity.
However, regardless of the beauty brand, you will opt for, always look for the right fermented ingredient for your skin first. Here are the most common ones.
Fermented red ginseng
According to a study published in the Journal of Medicinal Food, the active compounds in fermented red ginseng may fight wrinkles better than those in unfermented red ginseng, giving you smoother skin with minimal irritation. The benefits are linked to antioxidants and Lactobacillus brevis, a live bacteria found in some fermented foods.
It can boost the production of Hyaluronic Acid on our skin. This natural human-type Ceramide is said to be the “closest to the human skin ceramide,” a component in the skin’s outer layer that is responsible for preventing moisture loss. Over time, as ceramide is lost, the skin has the potential to become dry and discoloured with pronounced signs of visible ageing.
Fermented black rice
With an ability to brighten your complexion, fermented black rice can improve overall radiance. Plus, antioxidants work to protect your skin whilst reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Considering fermented black rice has more antioxidants than the much-loved blueberry.
Also known as Chilean Wineberry, offers antioxidants including anthocyanin, polyphenol, and flavonoid. The benefits of this ingredient include anti-ageing, skin regeneration, a brightening effect and anti-wrinkle functions.
Again quite popular theses are basically probiotics, when applied topically, they help maintain a healthy skin barrier, preventing concerns like dry skin, irritation, and even eczema.