The future of beauty is…bacteria? Gallinee’s founder Dr. Marie Drago explains


By Redzhanna Jazmin

The future of beauty is…bacteria? Gallinee’s founder Dr. Marie Drago explains

Here are three things Dr Marie Drago believes: You shouldn’t double cleanse, you should be washing your hair less, and you should be keeping your skin’s microbiome happy. Take from that what you will, but upon hearing this, we just had to learn more about the reasoning behind this controversial philosophy.

In our skincare-savvy day and age, we’re all about revolutionary scalp care for healthy hair and doubling down on active ingredients in pursuit of perfect skin. Naturally, hearing Dr Drago’s philosophy seems counterintuitive.

Enter: Skinimalism and the low-poo movement. These movements have taken the beauty industry by storm (though skinimalism really is just an age-old practice repackaged as a trend). Skinimalism, in particular, calls for a complete pare back of your routine to encourage healthier skin, and one brand is expertly riding the waves of the movement.

Don’t over-cleanse and don’t over-treat—that’s the Gallinée way. What do they suggest you should do instead? Well, just as you would introduce probiotics into your diet to foster a healthy gut microbiome, Gallinée urges you to do the same for your skin’s microbiome. To learn more about the burgeoning bacterial revolution, we spoke to Dr Marie Drago, the founder of the pro-probiotic brand:

What inspired you to make the jump between pharmacy and cosmetic science?


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Pictured: Dr Marie Drago

“After my pharmacy studies, I went directly to work for the cosmetic industry. I’ve always been fascinated with making and using beauty products. My mum tells me that I was trying to make perfumes by putting flowers in water when I was little. Pharmacy studies helped me to get much better at making products!

“The inspiration for Gallinée came about because I was under very heavy treatment for my autoimmune disease, which wasn’t really working. I started looking into the science of it and found out about the microbiome and how taking care of my good bacteria helps with my condition.

“I stopped my treatment and switched to a probiotic and prebiotic-focused diet—which I am still on—and it was such a revolution. That’s when I thought, ‘If consuming probiotics and prebiotics can do so much for our gut, why is no one taking care of the bacteria on our skin?’

“Because the idea was so new, I couldn’t find any science on it, so I called my university and they told me to submit my thesis on the effects of probiotics on the microbiome. I went back to school, 15 years after the end of my studies, and researched for my thesis—which is now the basis for the formulations of Gallinée. Here at Gallinée, we believe that you are a planet. You are made up of human cells and of billions of bacteria living together in perfect harmony. If you look after them, they will look after you.”

Could you define microbiome skincare for our readers?


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“Microbiome skincare is a branch of beauty that not only considers the skin, but also the live ecosystem that lives on it: the microbiome. This microbiome, these good bacteria, are your first line of defence and can also help build the skin barrier, reduce inflammation and protect against the bad bacteria that causes acne and eczema. So, it makes a lot of sense to take care of this microbiome.

It is the generation after probiotic skincare, where the idea was just to bring good bacteria to the skin. Microbiome skincare put your own live good bacteria to work, helping them to give you back the best skin ever!”

What are the differences between probiotics, prebiotics, and postbiotics?


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“Probiotics are just another word for good bacteria. In cosmetics, they are usually gently killed by heat. Prebiotics are the nutrients for good bacteria alive on your skin. I find it so interesting, as it’s really putting your microbiome to work. We use a lot of them in Gallinée products. Postbiotic is a new concept: a produce of good bacteria that has a positive impact on the microbiome. At Gallinée, for example, we love lactic acid: it is made by lactic acid bacteria and creates the perfect environment for your microbiome.”

What are the unique advantages of including probiotics, prebiotics, and postbiotics in your skincare routine?


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