In fact, what Whitlock does believe is healthy is restoring good bacteria to our skin that our ancestors enjoyed long ago and that has slowly been stripped away by excessive cleaning. To prove his theory, he helped found AOBiome, a company based in Cambridge, MA.

“We’ve confused clean with sterile,” says Jasmina Aganovic, the General Manager of Consumer Products at AOBiome. She says as humans, we need to reconnect with our environment. “We’ve taken the dirt out of our lives. We don’t spend as much time outdoors as we used to, even little children,” she explains.

To add a little dirt back into our lives, AOBiome has created Mother Dirt, specifically the AO+ Mist containing live bacteria that is sprayed directly on the skin twice a day. It has no odor and feels like water.