Acne. Here’s one question your dermatologist probably won’t ask you, although they should.


Adult acne is a nightmare. Well actually, acne full stop. Whatever your age, feeling

spotty isn’t great. And even if, like me, you’ve suffered with acne in the past, the fear of it coming back can be overwhelming. It’s one of the reasons why I’m always on the look out for the latest insights into optimal skincare.

I came across a new piece of research about acne that I found really interesting. Were you born by C-section? Apparently, if you answered yes, you’re at a greater risk of developing skin disorders like acne, dermatitis and eczema. It’s all down to your skin microbiome (or lack of). Just like our gut, our skin has its own community of beneficial bacteria that helps protect our skin from infections. We’ve long understood that babies born by C-Section have impaired gut bugs because they don’t experience the pleasure of engulfing the bacteria that lines their mother’s vaginal canal (delightful). Well, according to this study the same can now be said for their skin.

So what should you do if you were born by C-Section and suffer with acne?

Fermented cabbage in burger. Photography by Eaters collective.

It's actually pretty simple.

  • Eat fermented food everyday. Beet krass, sauerkraut, kefir and kim chi. They're a great source of beneficial bacteria that may help to support our own.

  • Take a probiotic. Probiotics supplements provide you with a high dose of beneficial bacteria that can really support your own ecology of skin and gut bugs.

  • Use skincare brands with added probiotics. Just be sure they're made with natural ingredients that won't disturb the natural ecology of bacteria on your skin. I highly recommend Aurelia Skincare.

  • Spend more time in nature. Exposure to bacteria in nature has been shown to help build our microbiota.

  • Practice microbial seeding. If you’re a mum-to-be expecting to give birth by C-section and you're worried about your child's skin health long term, be sure to benefit your baby from microbial seeding. It’s a practice where your infant is swabbed on the body with maternal vaginal microbes to partially restore the skin microbiota.

Kay Ali, Registered Nutritional Therapist & Co Founder of You Need A Nutritional Therapist.

If you're worried about your skin health, Kay can help you. Arrange a complementary call with Kay to discuss how and book a consultation here.

Ref: Prescott SL et al. The skin microbiome: impact of modern environments on skin ecology, barrier integrity, and systemic immune programming. World Allergy Organ J . 2017.

Header photograph by Zulmaury Saavedra
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