Healthy skin is fundamental to our overall health. As the largest organ in our body, the skin provides a critical barrier between us and the external environment. An underappreciated fact, however, is that for skin to provide this benefit, it is critical that its pH falls within the optimal range of 4.7-5.0. This slightly acidic pH facilitates a healthy microbiome, inhibits the growth of pathogenic bacteria, enhances the skin’s innate immune system, and promotes wound healing. Yet many of the commonly used soaps or antiseptic-based cleansers actually raise the pH of skin, weakening the skin’s defensive capabilities and leaving it more vulnerable to infection and breakdown. In choosing a skin cleansing agent, it is imperative that thought be given not just to how the product removes soils and bioburden, but also to how it impacts the skin’s pH and supports the skin’s innate immunity.
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