A MULTIFACTORIAL APPROACH
When we speak of microbiome safety, it means taking the skin microbiome into account and using ingredients that are gentle on the microbiome. The skin microbiome has special properties to support and improve our health.
Everything starts with the selection of the right ingredients. We start by screening ingredients and compiling a database of them. The selection phase only looks at the impact of ingredients on the epidermis, but we take it one step further: we also consider their effect on the very first protective layer, the skin microbiome.
Based on our strict requirements, we keep track in these databases of the effect of these ingredients on the bacteria living on our skin. We also noticed that the most microbiome-safe ingredients are also known to be gentle on our skin.
THE IMPORTANCE OF PROPER PRESERVATIVES
Preservatives are used to keep bacteria from overgrowing in a product so that it has a long shelf life. Most solve this by adding a lot of preservatives to make them easy to store. As a result, we quickly forget the major impact they have on our skin bacteria. Because microbiome safety is a top priority, we are doing everything we can to change that!
First and foremost, we want to prevent bad bacteria from getting into the product. On the one hand, this can happen during the production process, so before you use the product. To avoid this in every possible way, we monitor the production process meticulously and at the same time work extremely clean to prevent contamination. On the other hand, pathogens can get into the product after you have opened it through contact with the environment. The choice of packaging plays an important role here: tightly closed packaging or even airless packaging minimises the risk. Airless packaging is a pump system that seals everything off so that not even ambient air can penetrate.
Next, we determine the minimum concentration needed to keep the product protected. This differs per formulation, so we thoroughly research the ideal concentration. In some cases, it is not even necessary to add a preservative, thanks to the lower pH of our products. The primary purpose of the low pH is not to disturb the pH of the skin or to restore the balance of the microbiome to a healthy one. Since a lower pH is very difficult for some pathogens to grow in, it also helps to preserve the product better without having to add anything.
Finally, there is the choice of preservative system: thanks to our patented method, we use preservatives that are only active in the product but become inactive as soon as they come into contact with the skin. In this way they protect the formulation in the jar, but do not affect our skin microbiome.
EVALUATION OF THE
Just as we pre-screen our ingredients, we also extensively check whether the final formulation meets our strict criteria. We bring the formulations into contact with micro-organisms, under conditions that correspond to use in practice, and check how it affects the growth of micro-organisms. In addition, we specifically test each product for compatibility with our lactobacilli, so that even our products without probiotics can be perfectly combined with all our other products. In this way, we can certainly guarantee the effectiveness of the lactobacilli!
We deliberately choose to take microbiome safety into account at all levels, because adding one ingredient is clearly not enough to ensure microbiome safety. If the rest of the formulation does not allow the microbiome to remain intact, the added ingredient will have no impact.
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