“A study by the Norwegian University of Science and Technology found that taking probiotics during pregnancy decreased the chances of a baby being born with eczema by nearly half,” says Shann.
“The good news is that with kefir, unlike chemical medications, all the side effects are beneficial.”
Use simple food swaps to improve your skin health
Simple food swaps can also help with skin issues. Eating good fats, like walnuts, salmon and avocado can reduce inflammation and help to speed up healing. F
resh fruits and veg, especially dark green leafy vegetables, are also key to support the good bacteria in your gut.
You could also make your own skincare saviours to use alongside kefir. These can combat specific issues or simply soothe your skin, and they’re easy to make at home – all you need are some containers, a blender and some good raw ingredients, many of which can be found in your kitchen cupboard.
If you like your porridge smooth, chances are you’ll have some fine oatmeal to hand. This is incredibly soothing for the skin. It has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties and will soak up excess oil to help treat acne.
Ground almonds are great for gentle exfoliating, and also provide oils beneficial for the skin. Almonds also contain vitamin E, which is rejuvenating and soothing.
Meanwhile, sea salt is perfect for adding to olive oil to make a facial scrub to remove dead skin cells and get that glowing feeling. The citrus oils found in lemon or orange juice can act as mild astringents for oily skins, while raw extra virgin coconut oil can be used as a moisturiser for face and body (as well as an intensive hair conditioner).
Mix up a rejuvenating facial oil
Sooth your skin with this simple recipe – it’s especially easy to make at home. Facial oils are excellent for restoring the hydrolipidic film, a light protective layer that covers your skin. Plant-based oils nourish the skin’s layers, and you can add a drop of essential oil to make your own bespoke oil for however you are feeling.
- 50ml sweet almond oil
- 50ml roship oil
- 2 drops of lavender oil
- 2 drops of rose oil
- 1 drop of frankincense oil
Mix the rosehip oil into the sweet almond oil to make your base, then add the other oils. Pour into a small glass bottle and use sparingly – it smells divine!
3 ingredients that can irritate your skin
It can be difficult to know the origins of the products used in our skincare routine. “There’s no need to use synthetic ingredients on our skin,” says Rebecca Martin, creator of Conscious Skincare handmade products. “There are always alternatives. Nature, as usual, can offer something just as good – I use a vegan-friendly version of hyaluronic acid made from recognisable natural ingredients, such as brewer’s yeast.”
Many chemical skincare ingredients are actually known irritants; these include sodium laurel sulphates, artificial fragrances, parabens, preservatives and phthalates. It’s easy to identify them on labels – look for products that don’t contain them.
In the quest for calming our irritated skin, even for babies and children, one factor that’s often forgotten is the water we use to bathe in. It’s full of chlorine, which is extremely drying for the skin. An easy fix is to use a filter. The Sensitive Skincare Company make a de-chlorination filter that fits onto a shower attachment, or a ball to hang from your bath taps to filter as you go.