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Are fermented products the next big thing in the beauty industry?

2023 has just started and we already have a beauty trend that’s become all the rage- fermented skincare products. The term ‘fermentation’ might be familiar to many, but it’s time to dig deeper into the benefits of the same, and furthermore, we have two experts stating a few facts about these products along with a few recommendations.

The beauty industry is no stranger to witnessing new trends, innovations, and atypical ingredients crawling onto the bandwagon. From the mushroom boom to skin minimalism, the beauty industry sure has come a long way. And if you’re a beauty enthusiast I’m sure you might’ve had your skincare shelves all stacked up by now, courtesy the several trends that were under the spotlight in 2022. But it’s time to empty some space already as 2023 is warming up to take over the beauty block with the latest inventions. Speaking of which, one such fresher is fermented skincare! Fermentation techniques sure date back to the aughts, but it is now that it’s getting the due recognition. Fermented skincare products consist of natural ingredients such as herbs and other organic elements which in turn later get transformed into prebiotics contributing to healthier and naturally glowing skin. So, if you’re still wondering what all benefits fermented skincare products hold, well then we have a few experts with all the answers you’re looking for.

Experts share their thoughts on the advent of fermented skincare products

Dr. Sravya C. Tipirneni, Consultant Dermatologist, Cosmetologist & Trichologist at Manipal Hospitals in Bangalore

“When anyone thinks of fermentation, the first thing that comes to mind is curd, wine, or some dish rather than skincare! But of late, fermentation is being used for skin products by harnessing the potential of microorganisms (like bacteria) in a laboratory to form useful compounds. The source of products can be natural (not only plant-based) like fermented mushrooms, fermented ginseng root; fermented rice extract, etc. which have antibacterial, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory properties, to name a few”

When asked about the benefits of these products Dr. Sravya claims ” Not only are these fermented skin-care ingredients better at absorption, but they also are claimed to be better in their potential when compared to their regular counterparts. Apart from that, fermentation is helpful towards the skin microbiome by providing probiotics or postbiotics (like enzymes, peptides, and acids) which aid the skin barrier along with reducing the chance of skin inflammation or sensitivity”

“Nonetheless, if one is interested to give such products a try, it would be best to first understand what their underlying skin concern is to be addressed first. Then, if possible, consult a board-certified dermatologist for the issue to find a product that is useful and effective and mostly does not cause a hole in your pocket”

​Dr. Manas​​i Shirolikar, Consultant Dermatologist and Founder of an Online Consulting Brand

“Simply put, fermentation is a process by which larger Ingredients are broken down by microorganisms to make smaller compounds. When larger molecules are broken down by the fermentation process, they are more likely to penetrate the skin. This means that the actives won’t sit on the surface, but will actually act deeper in our skin – providing more benefits! And it’s not just absorption, some products can even become work better after fermentation! Fermentation can result in the formation of acids, enzymes, and peptides which can reinforce the skin barrier and reduce irritation. Lactic acid, a super well-known skincare ingredient, is produced from fermented milk”

Furthermore, she adds, “unfortunately, we still require a lot more evidence on fermentation in skincare. There have been small, isolated studies showing benefits but more data is needed to really understand how the skin care ingredients are beneficial. In 2007, a study in Dermatologic Therapy found that fermented yeast extract could help diminish the signs of skin aging by improving collagen synthesis”

Hero Image: Courtesy Shutterstock Featured Image: Courtesy Skii/IG

Are fermented products the next big thing in the beauty industry?

Jhanvi Duggal

Lifestyle Writer

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