Your skincare routine and product choices all contribute to whether your skin is irritated, inflamed, or prematurely aging on the one hand or glowing, healthy, smooth, and hydrated on the other. At the heart of The Beauty of Dirty Skin is the science that healing and nourishing our skin’s “microbiome” is critical to sustain healthy, glowing skin. There are more than one trillion bacteria in the skin, originating from approximately one thousand different species. Our antiseptic cleansing styles and obsession with antibacterial soaps and cleansers have stripped our skin of its healthy bacteria. If your skin’s healthy microbiome is disrupted by harsh cleansers and other abrasive skincare products, this discontent results in breakouts, rosacea flares, psoriasis, eczema, and even sensitive skin. In sharp contrast, when your good bugs are healthy, your skin is, in turn, healthy and radiant. That’s because these essential bugs fight infections, combat against environmental damage, boost our immune system, and keep our skin hydrated and radiant. Even better, the results are lasting. When your skin flora is restored, its health is sustainable.
As I discuss in The Beauty of Dirty Skin, in order to have healthy, radiant skin, we have to keep our natural warrior bugs healthy. I’ve frequently discussed the concept of our healthy skin barrier and “microbiome” — which is the invisible rainforest of microorganisms, primarily bacteria, that are coating your skin right now. So, I know it won’t come as a surprise at this point when I tell you that the health and appearance of our skin is impacted by the health and diversity of our “good bugs.” The question now becomes, how to we keep our good bugs, a.k.a. our skin microbiome, healthy so that our skin is radiant?
I’ve often referred to the term “probiotic”, which refers to the live bugs, or live bacteria. Now, we are starting to focus on an important related term – “prebiotic” – which refers to the food the good bugs like to eat! I actually think the strongest skin-care products emerging on the market will likely be those made with prebiotics.
As I mention above, prebiotics are like the nourishing food that naturally allows healthy, good bacteria to thrive on your skin. Some prebiotics encourage specific healthy strains of bacteria to grow, and others increase the diversity of the bacteria on your skin, which is also very important. When you remove your skin’s healthy bacterial diversity – the rainforest of microorganisms that should be thriving on your skin — that’s when you see problems like rosacea, acne, fine lines, and discoloration. To put it simply, probiotics contain the good guys, and prebiotics contain what the good guys like to consume to ensure their own survival and proliferation.
One of my favorite products in this space is Aleavia’s Restore Soothing Mist. Made with organic coconut oil, Acadian sea kelp – included in this formulation for its prebiotic properties — citric acid and aloe vera, this mist soothes and hydrates your skin with prebiotics that help to bring your skin’s natural barrier into balance. I apply it to the dry or inflamed areas on my skin following my shower. If my skin is extra dry or inflamed, I’ll then use a moisturizer on top for an added layer of hydration. If I’m heading to the beach, I give it a few minutes to absorb and then I apply sunscreen on top. It’s very light and refreshing, feels very soothing and Aleavia has done quite a bit of testing of this product to ensure its efficacy, which is very important to me in making a recommendation to you.
Ideal for the following skin conditions: dry, itchy, irritated skin.
Made with: Filtered Water, Coconut Oil, Acadian Sea Kelp, Citric Acid, Soy Lecithin, Aloe Vera; Certified Organic, 100 percent pure plant-based ingredients; Vegan.
Made without: Free of synthetic fragrance and dyes, chemical and paraben free. I do not find that this product has a scent.
Guest post by Amy Rains of Wholesomelicious.
Dandelion Greens pack a powerful nutritious punch to your berry smoothie. You’ll love the delicious taste of this refreshing smoothie, and the many health benefits. A perfect healthy breakfast smoothie to kick start your busy morning!
I owe this gorgeous looking, refreshing tasting, nutrient dense, and deliciously tasty Dandelion Greens Smoothie to Dr. Whitney Bowe. Let’s get down right nutritiously nerdy on this Friday afternoon and talk two of my favorite topics: prebiotics and antioxidants!
Before we do, did you read my Avocado Truffles post last week?? I introduced you Dr. Whitney. She is one of the most in-demand dermatologists in the country, and specializes in the link between nutrition and proper skin care.
A leader in her field, and author of the brand new book,The Beauty of Dirty Skin. Both this Dandelion Green Smoothie and Avocado Truffles are all part of Dr. Whitney’s 21 day plan; healing the gut through nutritious foods!
Let’s talk a little prebiotics here. We all hear plenty about probiotics, but prebiotics are just as important! All prebiotics are a form of fiber that we cannot digest, but they get consumed by the “good” bugs in our gut to benefit us. As our gut metabolize these otherwise non digestible foods, they produce short-chain fatty acids that help us meet our own energy needs. The more prebiotics we can feed our body, the healthier the gut!! Although not all forms of fiber act as a prebiotic, dandelion greens are one of the best sources and work perfectly in a smoothie or salad.
With the addition of berries, this smoothie is also packed with antioxidants. Antioxidants supply the rich and vibrant pigment of foods. Antioxidants are essential when it comes to radiant, healthy skin! They pack a powerful punch to fight free radicals (highly reactive forms of oxygen that can destroy cell membranes, and other structures including DNA and collagen). You can read more about the importance of antioxidants on healthy skin on Dr. Whitney’s blog post here.
A healthy dose of prebiotics for the gut, a huge boost of antioxidants, and delicious!! Did I mention protein packed, too? I used a scoop of marine based collagen for an additional nutritional boost. Dr. Whitney explains that collagen protein or a plant based protein should be used in place of whey because of its strong link to acne!
I loved this refreshing smoothie 3x this week as a post workout treat. But this works perfectly for a nutritious on-the-go breakfast, or even afternoon snack.
Enjoy my friends!
This post was originally published on April 27th on wholesomelicious.com.