Fermentation in Skincare

Explainer: WTF Is Fermentation?

Kombucha for your face? Kind of…

What Is Fermentation?
Fermentation is the chemical breakdown of a substance by microorganisms including bacteria, yeast, and fungi. Fermentation often involves effervescence,
the fizzy phenomena seen when carbohydrates give off energy without oxygen. Because fermentation uses energy, it typically gives off heat.

Does Fermented Skincare Work?
If you’re skincare-curious, you’ve likely noticed a lot of creams with “fermented” ingredients and formulas. But since fermentation is usually aligned with probiotic foods like kombucha, yogurt, and miso soup—and often promoted for gut health, not better skin—it’s natural (and frankly, smart) to be like, “Okay, what? Now you’re just saying words.”

But just like nature-found ingredients like sea fennel and pumpkin can be great in the body and on the body, fermented ingredients can benefit our insides and outsides too. Several studies have found that fermented skincare benefits include less visible wrinkles, a brighter complexion, and even the increased shelf life of an organic beauty product.

How Does Fermentation Work in Skincare?
Because fermentation breaks down ingredients into smaller parts, it makes those ingredients much easier for the skin barrier to absorb. That means you’re getting benefits like antioxidants and vitamins delivered more effectively to your face and body—something especially important with larger molecules, like hyaluronic acid. Fermentation can also create its own additional ingredients like acids, enzymes, and peptides.

What Results Will I Get from Fermented Skincare Ingredients?
Dermatologists and research scientists report that fermented skincare ingredients can help skin fight irritation and redness, which helps skin maintain a more balanced microbiome while better absorbing nutrients into the skin to maximize your complexion’s potential while keeping skin calm and even.

What Fermented Skincare Products Are You Using Right Now?
This month, we’re really into…

Kinship Self Reflect Probiotic Sunscreen, $26
Beauty Kin The Soothing Bar Soap, $17
Fresh Beauty Kombucha Facial Toner, $108
Bio Barrier Nourishing Oil, $118