Don't worry -- you don't have to down vinegars like Miranda Kerr and Gwyneth Paltrow to get clear skin and that youthful glow. The newest batch of fermented skin care products, loaded with fruits, herbs and plants, will give you all the anti-aging benefits of kombucha without the sour taste in your mouth.
"Through fermentation, skin care ingredients avoid the harmful heating process that often occurs during manufacturing and makes active ingredients far less effective," says Melanie Palm, M.D., MBA, founder and director of Art of Skin MD in Solana Beach, California. In other words, since this health trend has crossed over into beauty, we can now feed our faces with super potent ingredients that are not only more easily "digested" by our skin, but better equipped to fight environmental stressors and signs of aging. Here, we present some of the best batches of fermented, anti-aging brews for wrinkles, dullness, saggy skin and everything in between.
For Uneven Skin That's Lost Its Glow
Each disposable sheet mask is infused with white ginseng and individually fermented for two weeks for some serious brightening that seeps deep into the skin.
"Fermented skin care products are the most natural and traditional way to restore 'good' bacteria to the skin to reduce inflammation because they are much more easily and efficiently absorbed into the skin," says Hilary Burns-LaRiche, education and marketing manager at Sulwhasoo. (By contrast, probiotics that are eaten have to make it past stomach acid alive to have any benefit.)
For Parched, Thirsty Skin That Needs a Lift
The black tea in this firming mask isn't the usual stuff you brew. It's a ferment (aka kombucha) that's loaded with antioxidants. According to Fresh co-founder Lev Glazman, the elixir reenergizes the skin's cells. This moisturizing cocktail also features other skin-improving (and refreshing-sounding) ingredients, including lychee seed extract to support natural collagen and jicama root juice for extra hydration. Translation: it plumps up skin and helps prevent sagging.
Fight Acne and Wrinkles With One Fell Swoop
Our skin rarely has one problem at a time, and treating pesky adult acne and breakouts along with fine lines, and wrinkles can seem like an impossible feat. Luckily, this lightweight moisturizer has all your bases covered. It contains cinnamon extract to reduce lingering redness, lentil seed extract and witch hazel to tighten pores and control excess oil production and a kombucha and collagen compound to smooth away fine lines and wrinkles.
For Skin That Needs Some Serious Rehab
Give stressed skin the spa treatment with this silky gel cleanser. Fermented sea minerals penetrate the skin to replace trace elements, while algae encourages cell regeneration, grapefruit seed extract tones the skin and aloe vera soothes irritated skin.