You probably know that taking a daily probiotic is a good way to support a strong immune system, but did you know that applying a probiotic to your skin can help balance and hydrate it? That’s right. Certain probiotics can do just that!

When there is an imbalance of bacteria in your digestive system, it can result in changes to your skin. Too much “bad” bacteria in your gut, for instance, can lead to dry and irritated skin even resulting in conditions such as acne, rosacea or eczema.

Given the growing number of chronic skin conditions, research into the gut-skin connection and skin microbiota has increased over the past decade.

A 2016 study on otherwise healthy subjects with diagnosed dry skin found that daily application to the skin of a certain Lactobacillus strain for four weeks led to improved skin barrier function, resulting in less water loss and more hydrated skin.

A 2017 article published in Dermatology Practical and Conceptual concluded that diet may impact rosacea via a gut-skin connection and that individuals with rosacea may benefit from a healthy gut microbiome and eating a fiber-rich (prebiotic) diet.

Another study found that topical probiotics could be useful for treating acne and reducing skin redness.

In addition to topical probiotics, eating probiotic-rich foods or taking a daily oral probiotic containing Lactobacilli or Bifidobacterium could also support healthy skin. Check out our post on oral probiotics here.

Try these:

Life-Flo Probiotic Skin Cream. This hydrating cream for face and body contains Lactobacillus plantarum, clinically-shown to boost hydration and improve signs of aging.

Andalou Naturals Probiotic +C Renewal Cream. Apply this brightening cream with a probiotic complex plus vitamin C and other skin-supporting ingredients daily to the face and neck area.

Karen MorseKaren Morse, MPH, is a freelance health and nutrition writer. In her free time, she enjoys Pilates, exploring nearby hiking trails and cooking up fresh, seasonal eats in the kitchen. Her work has appeared in Clean Eating, Weight Watchers, YouBeauty.com and others.