Does The Skin Microbiome Help Sports Recovery And Performance?

72% of athletes in a pilot study said their skin condition improved

Athletes are always looking for ways of improving their performance and recovery. It is for this reason many opt for a healthy diet and take sports supplements. However, until now they have often overlooked their skin microbiome. Could it be the missing piece of the puzzle in sports recovery and performance? 


28% said that in just two weeks, they noticed their muscle stiffness and recovery improve after doing sport. This result is significant because of the short time period within which the study was conducted; changes in whole body health issues such as muscle stiffness are normally long term processes. 

“28% said their muscle stiffness and recovery improved - this is a very high number for just two weeks of use.”

13 out of the 18 (72%) people who completed the study noticed an improvement in the softness of their skin. For such a short trial, this is very encouraging. After years of using every-day cosmetics, rebuilding the skin microbiome is a long term project.

2 of the 18 (11%) patients saw an improvement in their sleep quality. As this is a very important part of sports performance, this result in just two weeks is also very promising. Sleep quality could be affected in a number of ways; for example if your skin health is better, you may be more likely to have a deeper sleep. Also, if your muscles feel more soothed and recover quicker after excercise, this could also improve sleep quality. 

89% said they would look into using skin supplements for sports recovery and performance in the future. 

Study Design

18 high performance scholarship athletes used new generation skin supplements on their skin for two weeks. 9 were men and 9 were women. 

Each participant was briefed before the study and told to try and minimise use of other cosmetics as much as possible, because they often contain large amounts of synthetic chemicals that can damage the skin microbiome. For some people it was difficult to fully reduce use of all other cosmetics, so we advised to minimise as much as possible, and to gradually lessen the amount. 


The vital role of the microbiome in whole body health, including muscle growth and repair, means that it could be the missing piece of the puzzle for many health problems. 

However, there is a long, long way to go to fully determine how the skin microbiome affects sports recovery and performance, and many longer, more in depth studies must be completed. 

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