Why now? Why is consumer interest increasing in products that work with the microbiome of the skin?
“We were surprised ourselves at how quickly the momentum built up. I think this is the combination of several factors.
“Firstly, the massive progress in the science of the microbiome. It has led to great articles in the media, and started to raise consumer awareness before even products were on the market.
“We also benefit from the growth of the market for gut health and gut microbiome.
“But mostly, I think it just makes a lot of sense. The overclean attitude of the last 50 years doesn’t really work for the skin, and there is more research every day on how it could be linked to the epidemic of eczema, psoriasis, acne and other inflammatory diseases of the skin.
“Hence the interest of creating products that work with the skin and its ecosystem, rather than against.”
Why is Gallinée unique as a brand?
What makes Gallinée unique, says Drage, is that it is one of the first beauty brands for the microbiome.
“It means that we bring probiotic fractions to the skin, but also a lot of prebiotics to feed specifically your own skin microbiome, and postbiotic lactic acid to create the perfect environment for the skin and its bacteria.
“The whole idea is to help support the live ecosystem of your skin. That makes the products quite special, as they will be loved by people with sensitive skin and by people with problematic skin. It is a very new way of looking at skin beauty.”
Can you say a bit about why the continued education of consumers is important in this category?
“We realised from the start that bacteria had a bit of a PR problem. I never saw them like this, as for me they help create a lot of things that are good in life: Bread, wine, cheese. But the current discourse was very hygienist.
“So we decided to show bacteria and the microbiome under a new angle. We teamed up with my friend Kaylene Alder, a London illustrator and created the Microbook, the world first microbiome colouring book.
“I love how it is quite a nerdy colouring book, and that’s exactly what Gallinée is about: happy honest science.”
“We tried to be as exact as possible, which means we had to revise it to reflect the new microbiome calculations from 10% human to 50%.
“We also just released the first ever happy bacteria giftset, for happy bacteria inside and outside.
We collaborated with the nutritionist Antonia Magor who developed a probiotic/prebiotic recipe book included in the set with our three face products. I love this mix of education and fun.”