I remember as a teenager growing up on the farm in New Zealand washing my face with whatever was in arms reach, which was often hand soap sitting right by the sink. “What’s the difference?” I thought, “ No worries mate, soap is soap, right?”.. so lather it up and wash those pimples away?”.
I was so wrong about many of the assumptions of my youth (and some that followed in adulthood :-)), and it turns out that this assumption about proper skin care was also not quite true. Hand soap, as well as dish soap and many other surfactant foaming cleansing agents, are alkaline solutions which, when mixed with water, work wonders for lifting oily messes from greasy pots and pans. This is a wonderful thing when it comes to dirty pots and pans, but what about our delicate facial skin? Do we want to lift all of the oils from our skin? Heck No!
To answer this question properly, we have to talk about the acid mantle – a part of the landscape of your body that you may have never heard of, but is doing a very important job for you right this minute. The acid mantle is a thin layer of oil secreted by the sebaceous glands that sits on the surface of the skin. It has a pH of around 4.5 to 5.5 meaning it is slightly acidic on the pH scale. This thin layer of acidic oil prevents the growth of harmful bacteria and pathogens by creating an environment in which harmful bacteria cannot proliferate. It also prevents water loss, keeping skin hydrated, and is important to the enzymatic function of the skin.
The typical pH of most supermarket branded cleansers range from 9-10, so they are very basic, but your skin prefers an acidic pH around 5.5. Already, this is weakening the strength of your skin barrier, but also the low pH encourages the growth of bad bacteria. For example, the strain of bacteria known to cause acne (propionibacterium acnes), thrives in a high pH environment, so using soaps and surfactant cleansers could be contributing to or even worsening your acne. Not only have you just washed off all the good bacteria, but now you might encourage bad bacteria which are typically thriving on your high pH skin environment and there is no good bacteria to crowd them out or prevent them from over-reproducing. Numerous studies such as this one, are in agreement that there is a strong correlation between pH and good skin bacteria playing a large role in maintaining healthy skin. Not only that by you are also damaging the protective layer of the skin by removing too much of your body’s natural oils, which is what holds your skin cells in the proper arrangement to create an effective barrier. Imagine a brick building where the bricks are your skin cells and the mortar in between the bricks are your body’s natural oils. Now imagine the mortar crumbling away due to wear and tear and the bricks becoming uneven. That is how surfactant and highly ph cleansers are affecting your skin barrier when too much of your natural oils are being stripped away. The worse part is that they can change the Skin PH, for quite some time after using them, making it difficult for your skin to repair itself. When the skin surface is too alkaline – as after washing with cleansers, the skin gets dry and sensitive, which can lead to fine lines and wrinkles, dullness, and even eczema sooner because your skin is having trouble staying hydrated.
So, how do you take off all of the dirt and excess oil that accumulates throughout the day without stripping away the healthy oils? The answer is to use a cleanser that doesn’t strip the skin. Acidic cleansers (like our Manuka Biotic Face Cleanser infused with manuka oil) usually have a pH just slightly higher than the natural pH of the skin which takes off all of the dirt and grime of the day without stripping all of those lovely oils and without disrupting the natural pH of your skin so your acid mantle can keep doing what it does best- keeping skin hydrated and protected.
Beyond keeping your skin balanced and protected, getting your skin to the correct pH level pays off in other ways. Using Manuka Biotic’s Face Cleanser, followed by Manuka Biotic’s Light Day Cream allows the goodness of the ingredients to be absorbed by your skin. It makes sense: If your skins natural moisture barrier is healthy and functioning as it should, it can soak up your products more effectively and efficiently (as well as keep the bad stuff out).
This organic acidic manuka oil Face Cleanser is pH perfection, supporting the skin’s natural balance of protective oils. Many overly alkaline cleansers strip the skin of the acid mantle, a protective layer of oils. Our Face Cleanser is formulated not to interfere with the skin’s barrier in any way leaving the skin soft & smooth while gently washing away dirt & impurities.
This manuka oil infused Light Day Cream is perfect for sensitive skin. It takes down redness and inflammation almost on contact. This formula also leaves out anything that could possibly make your skin flare up. Our Light Day Cream leaves the skin super hydrated and dewy!
The number one reason why your skin’s acid mantle is acidic. An acidic ph is NOT bacteria-friendly, which is important. Because when you raise the ph up several notches, bacteria suddenly find the perfect environment to proliferate and thrive. That means hello pimples and acne. Don’t believe us! A 1995 study tested the impact of cleansing on acne-prone skin. Scientists asked patients with inflammatory acne lesions to use either soap or an acidic face cleanser for three months. The results? Only one month later, the group using soap had way more lesions than before. The group using an acidic cleanser had the opposite result: they had fewer lesions than before! In other worse: high pH soaps make acne worse while acidic cleansers (like our Face Cleanser) help clear acne up.
The reason? As this study shows, when you wash your face with soap, propionibacterium acnes (the bacteria that causes acne) proliferates. You have a lot of those nasty buggers on your skin. But when you switch to an acidic manuka oil face cleanser, the amount of propionibacterium acnes bacteria on your skin falls down significantly.
So cleanse. Hydrate. You’re Skin will Thank You! We Promise!
Why Manuka Biotic®?
- We use the worlds only certified organic Manuka oil.
- All our products contain potent antibacterial, anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory properties to help soothe and repair the skin.
- Our products are 100% New Zealand made.
- Our products are made using natural ingredients and are FREE from:
- Sodium Lauryl Sulfate & SLES
- PEGs, PABA, EDTA
- Added fragrances & colouring
- Mineral Oils
- Propylene Glycol
- Animal testing or animal derivatives
Manuka Biotic® is natural skincare for the whole family, giving you access to the potent power of Manuka Oil