Breaking out after Wild Resilience? That shouldn’t happen. Here’s what you need to know.

Breaking out after Wild Resilience? That shouldn’t happen. Here’s what you need to know.

Wild Resilience™ Active Phage Serum by Ellis Day Skin Science is a groundbreaking, but extremely gentle, skincare product that fights breakouts and blemishes and improves the health of your skin at the microbiome level. Because our proprietary Cutiphage™ target and kill only the bad bacteria, Wild Resilience doesn’t harm healthy skin microbes or have any harsh, drying ingredients that can lead to flakiness, redness, and irritation. In fact, of all the people who have now tried Wild Resilience for themselves, over 99.5% reported positive results and did not experience any negative side effects!

However, a tiny percentage of Wild Resilience users (less than 0.5%) did have a negative reaction to the product, usually in the form of new breakouts. The Ellis Day Skin Science team takes unusual responses very seriously, so even though these reactions were rare, we wanted to get to the bottom of this issue. Therefore, we interviewed our users who experienced these new breakouts after using Wild Resilience to see if they had anything in common. Interestingly, they did: they all used a lot of skincare products, tried new skincare products often, or both! 

Every time we apply a product onto our skin, we are affecting not only our skin cells, but our skin microbiome as well. Our skin, like the heart or lungs, is an organ, and it is also populated by a large community of microorganisms. When we use a lot of products, especially a lot of new, different products, we are asking our skin and these microbes to do more work as they react to an ever-changing array of skincare ingredients. This common trait among these users might suggest that their skin and their skin microbiome are being overstimulated and need a break. In this case, we would suggest simplifying your skincare routine to include only a gentle cleanser and moisturizer for a few days before adding Wild Resilience back into your routine. 

We also took it one step further and asked two of these individuals to provide us with swabs from their skin. We used a technology known as DNA sequencing to identify the microorganisms in their skin microbiomes and compare the results with those obtained from healthy skin, in order to figure out what might be causing their breakouts. From these studies, we made two key observations: 1. One individual had a very high number of Pseudomonas bacteria on their skin and 2. The other individual had a very large amount of mold and fungus on their skin.

For most people, the facial skin microbiome is composed mostly of Cutibacterium acnes bacteria. These can be beneficial, neutral, or harmful. By targeting the bad strains, Wild Resilience allows the good strains of C. acnes, as well as other good bacteria, to grow and flourish. However, there are some skin conditions NOT caused by C. acnes and this is what we think may be going on in the few users who reported breakouts after using Wild Resilience. 

One of these conditions is called Gram-negative folliculitis. It is a skin condition that sometimes looks like acne, but it is caused by different bacteria, including - you guessed it - Pseudomonas! This condition can develop in those with acne after long-term use of antibiotics or after exposure to improperly-treated pool or hot tub water. However, because our Cutiphage are so specific, they do not kill Pseudomonas bacteria or other bacteria that cause Gram-negative folliculitis. Therefore, Wild Resilience would not be recommended for individuals with this condition. Fortunately, there are effective treatments for Gram-negative folliculitis, so you should definitely see a dermatologist if you think you may have this condition. 

Similarly there is another skin condition known as fungal acne, which is caused by an overgrowth of the skin-resident fungus, Malassezia. As the name suggests, fungal acne can look like regular acne — although it is typically more uniform and is often itchy. Importantly, because it’s caused by a fungus, standard acne treatments won’t work and can even make it worse. Over-the-counter antifungals may help in the short term, but if this is something you think you may be experiencing, seeing a dermatologist is definitely your best option. 

At Ellis Day Skin Science, your wellness is our top concern, and we formulate our products with only clean and proven-safe ingredients. But, everyone’s skin is different, and there is always the chance that someone will have an unusual reaction due to the uniqueness and state of their skin microbiome. . For those with very sensitive or extreme “problem” skin, finding out the underlying causes and identifying which skincare ingredients are potential triggers is the key step towards making empowered and informed skincare choices.

If you have any specific questions about using Wild Resilience in your own personal regimen, please email us at We’re happy to help!



  1. Del Rosso JQ, Silverberg N, Zeichner JA. When Acne is Not Acne. Dermatol Clin. 2016;34(2):225-228. 
  2. Fitz-Gibbon S, Tomida S, Chiu BH, et al. Propionibacterium acnes strain populations in the human skin microbiome associated with acne. J Invest Dermatol. 2013;133(9):2152-2160. 
  3. Grice EA, Kong HH, Conlan S, et al. Topographical and temporal diversity of the human skin microbiome. Science. 2009;324(5931):1190-1192.
  4. Grice EA, Segre JA. The skin microbiome. Nat Rev Microbiol. 2011;9(4):244-253.


About Ellis Day Skin Science



We believe that modern skincare must be grounded in true microbiome science. We believe the answers are in the wild, natural world, which includes the surface of your skin. 

At Ellis Day Skin Science, we pioneer natural phage-based products that target and kill bad bacteria associated with inflammation, damage, and aging, and enable good bacteria to flourish. By doing so, we aim to reset your microbiome for optimal skin health.

We use cutting-edge science to leverage nature, creating products that are just as kind and conscientious as they are effective, so that all can feel empowered with balanced, clear, radiant, and resilient skin.

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