Think Kombucha Is Only Good For Drinking? We’re Spilling the Skincare Tea

If 2017 was the year of turmeric latte, then 2018 is the year of kombucha. The once-hard-to-find fermented tea drink is now everywhere from health stores to restaurants.

So, what is it? It’s simple: kombucha is a fermented tea that contains living probiotic bacteria. Drinking it is thought to help improve gut health by balancing the microbiome, which is the collection of natural microorganisms that live inside our bodies, explained dermatologist Joshua Zeichner, MD. “When there is an overgrowth of unhealthy bacteria, it can promote inflammation of the bowels,” he said. “By restoring a healthy gut, you can reduce inflammation throughout the body, including the skin.”

It’s worth noting that the usage and overall benefits of kombucha in skincare products tends to be a little different than that of drink form. “Because of preservatives needed to maintain the shelf life of skincare products, there will not be any live bacteria in these products,” Dr. Zeichner said. “However, they may contain bacterial extracts that can help promote a healthy skin microbiome, which is useful in treating a variety of skin conditions including eczema, acne, and even aging skin.”

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So go ahead, sip the tea — and check out these kombucha–infused beauty products.

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