Lately, there has been great focus on the human microbiome, or the collection of bacteria and other microorganisms that live in various regions in the body, such as the skin, mouth, nose, gut and vagina. From studies showing associations between the gut microbiome and mental health to microbiome seeding from mother to infant during natural birth, science is continuously shedding light on the importance of having a good balance of microorganisms in the body. Dysbiosis, or the imbalance of harmless and not so favorable microorganisms, has been shown to cause a myriad of issues, including anything from bloating, diarrhea or constipation to yeast infections and even anxiety and depression. The surge in probiotic supplements over the years is testimony to this raised awareness about the human microbiome, but the skincare industry has been slow to catchup. I have not come across many brands that focus on the skin’s microbiome and Esse Probiotic Skincare is of these few. We coexist with bacteria and our skin needs a healthy microbiome to balance sebum production, clear up and strengthen its barrier against elemental factors and inflammation, which in turn slows ageing.
‘Esse’ means ‘to be’ in Latin – what a wonderful name to base an organic, vegan, cruelty-free and carbon neutral brand. Esse Probiotic Skincare focuses on promoting a healthy microbiome through the use of probiotics and prebiotics, or food for good bacteria, in its products.
I have tried several products from Esse Probiotic Skincare over the past couple of years and if I had to chose one hero product it has to be their Repair Oil. Great for all types of skin, it keeps my hormonal acne at bay and heals any active pimples fast without scarring. I love using it at night to wake up to clearer, brighter skin.
Their Light Moisturizer is great for combination to oily skin, especially in humid weather. It absorbs fast into the skin without leaving any residue or feeling heavy. It actually leaves the skin feeling moisturized and matte.
The product is dense so only a small amount is needed to cover the entire face. Also, the size is very generous so a jar can last a few months with daily use.
The Makeup Remover is creamy and removes waterproof eye makeup and lipstick so easily, without irritating or pulling on the skin. On the contrary, it leaves it feeling more moisturized.
Foundation is the brand’s organic, probiotic foundation with SPF 30. It is supposed to be for all skin types but I did feel it made my combination to oily skin look dewy, and I prefer more matte finishes. I think it is better suited for dry to normal skin types. Their shade range needs to be more inclusive – I have it in two shades, 5 and 6, because 5 was too light and I hoped mixing in 6 would darken it, but that just throws off the undertone. I have light to medium, sometimes tanned olive skin and I’ve never been lucky with foundation matches, so not holding it specifically against the brand, more against the cosmetic industry as a whole. Then again, the fact that I can’t find a good foundation match just deters me from using one and opting for spot concealing instead, so maybe it’s not so bad after all!