By Sarah Jio
By now you know that probiotics are our friends—the wonderful friendly bacteria that help boost gut health and overall immune system—but did you know that probiotics + skincare is not just the latest newfangled match-made-in-heaven, but also a real thing? Hold up, skeptical readers—yes, we’re with you. We’ve watched the parade of probiotic-based beauty and wellness products with a cautious eye. And they’re everywhere—from serums to toothpaste. We might not have all the answers (just yet), but we can point you to a brand that matches real science with results.
Alright, allow me to introduce you to your new skincare go-to, Mother Dirt.
I know, I know, the word “dirt” in skincare is a little off-putting, no? But here’s the thing: Do you know where all these billions of beneficial bugs come from? Our ancestors could tell you, and the answer is soil. Now, we’re not advocating for DIY backyard mud masks (good Lord), but there’s truth in this stuff, and it’s the very thing our great, great, great, great grandmothers knew and lived by. Today? Not so much. To be frank, our soil sucks, and it’s no secret that the conventional (and even organic) foods we eat are grown in less-than-optimal soil (code for: you’re not getting all the beneficial microbes that your ancestors were getting).
This is where forward-thinking companies like Mother Dirt come in. Two years ago when I was dealing with an annoying season of hormonal acne that seemed to erupt on my chin at precisely the moment when I had some sort of big public event to attend (surprise!). Back then, I panicked and searched for every remedy on the interwebs. My desperation led me to a multitude of products (someday I’ll tell you about my husband’s opinion on the sulfur cream I plastered on my face, and let’s just say it wasn’t positive). But then I found Mother Dirt’s multi-purpose skin spray, which I hastily put in my Amazon cart and ordered. It is used for all kinds of skin ailments, from redness, dryness, or oiliness(!), and most importantly, for me: pesky skin issues.
Those days are a pre-Covid blur (I mean, can any of us actually remember life-pre Covid?), but I remember spritzing my face with that beloved spray morning and night and it got things back on track, and by that, I mean, less drama on the chin.
I was able to try out Mother Dirt’s Latest and greatest, and get the scoop on what makes their products so buzzy. First, the basics: What’s in this stuff? Formulated by MIT scientists, the all-natural skincare line is focused on restoring and boosting your skin’s existing “ecosystem” (aka, microbiome).
Where a lot of other skincare products take the harsh route and actually break down your skin’s protective barrier, Mother Dirt does not.
Their spray, AO+ Restorative Mist, is formulated with something you’ve probably never heard of (me either!) called AOB (Ammonia-Oxidizing Bacteria) that’s been scientifically proven to balance the skin’s microbiome to boost tone and radiance, reduce fine lines and wrinkles, and more. You already know that I’m a fan of their facial mist, but I was so excited to learn that they have more products to geek out over, specifically their three-step system, which includes the following:
Formulated with prebiotics from chicory root and rose water, this gentle cleanser removes impurities, without stripping your skin. I used it last night, and my sensitive skin adored it!
I’m a huge fan of hardworking serums, and this one seems to pack a powerful punch. It contains ingredients like squalane and linoleum acid to nourish and soothe skin.
And, the best for last—spritz this on for a blast of skin-saving goodness. Formulated with 3+ billion CFU’s of live, active probiotics, this stuff is a match for your toughest skin issues. (A little side note: It’s a good idea to keep this facial spray in your refrigerator to preserve the lifespan of all those lovely, friendly bacteria.)
And there’s more to love: Mother Dirt makes shampoo, conditioner, and, I hear, a natural deodorant that actually works (sign me up!).
Sarah Jio is a journalist and the New York Times bestselling author of 11 books published by Penguin and Random House books. To learn more about her work, find her at www.sarahjio.com or www.instagram.com/sarahjio.