Plain carbonated water is produced by enrichment of regular water with carbon dioxide. This infusion produces the bubbles that we often enjoy in fizzy drinks. Once all the carbon dioxide (in the form of bubbles) has escaped, the water returns to it’s original state.
In most cases, the addition of carbon dioxide to water reduces it’s pH level to around 5, but this depends on the amount of carbonate dioxides infused into the water. In comparison, regular tap water commonly has a pH in the range of 6-8 (often reported in the upper part of this range) [pubby id=“26338903”].
The Effect of Washing With Plain Tap Water
Investigation into the effect of skin washing on skin surface pH has shown that washing with even water alone can have a significant influence on the skin surface pH level (increasing it’s pH) [pubby id=“9407174”]. And increases in skin surface pH are known to produce a variety of unfavorable consequences for the skin [pubby id=“16864974”].
Washing With Carbonated Water
Due to it’s acidic nature and long history of beneficial reports for a variety of skin ailments, researchers decided to investigate the impact of carbonated water application to the skin.
The result of this investigation revealed that regular rinsing of the skin with carbonated water can beneficially influence the skin surface pH [pubby id=“15309406,27331846”]. And this increased pH was presumed to be primarily responsible for the variety of beneficial secondary effects on skin integrity (as compared to regular tap water), including:
- Decrease in transepidermal water loss (TEWL)
- Improved stratum corneum lipid availability
In conclusion, the authors noted that treatment with carbonated water may result in accelerated clearing time of irritation, higher stratum corneum lipid and ceramides contents and overall improvement of barrier function (as compared to washing with regular water).
Similar Findings from Similar Studies
Though the above is an isolated trial, other researchers have shown similar results treating the skin with acidic mineral water. The most relevant of these findings include:
- Repeated application of acidic spring water can produced significant prolonged reduction in skin surface pH and inhibit bacterial growth [pubby id="11807331"]
- Bathing in acidic hot springs improved symptoms of atopic dermatitis, with marked reduction in staphylococcus aureus on the skin surface [pubby id="9394980"]
- Producing carbonated water at home (with a soda maker) can reduce associated costs and allows the user to manually increase carbon oxide content (further lowering the pH)