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8 Seaweed Benefits for Skin

How seaweed-based beauty products address a multitude of skin conditions while plumping and replenishing your complexion

Written by: 100% PURE®
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Our obsession with sourcing the very best ingredients can sometimes lead us to unexpected places. Mother Nature offers everything you need to look and feel amazing, so we’re taking a page from the original green goddess’ book and tapping into an under-the-sea beauty ingredient: seaweed.

Kelp, algae, and other seaweeds are unexpected beauty heavyweights from the deep blue that are packed with vitamins and antioxidants that support healthy skin. The benefits of seaweed for skin are why you’ll find them in a variety of our products, from skin care to makeup – you won’t believe what this little sea vegetable can do!


Toner Ingredient Chart
The Benefits of Seaweed in Clean Skin Care

Our love affair with seaweed doesn’t stop at the sushi bar (avocado roll, anyone?). We’re also obsessed with this humble ingredient because of its remarkable ability to retain moisture and lessen signs of aging. If you’ve ever made miso soup, think about how much dried seaweed expands when you let it sit in your bowl. Applied topically, this wonder sea plant helps to effectively hold moisture inside the skin’s epidermis (outer layer), and the bonus is that it’s full of skin-healthy lipids that are easily absorbable.

When dreaming of a life under the sea, we tapped into exactly what makes the ocean so special: its natural source of skin-loving vitamins and minerals. Enter: the Restorative Sea Culture collection. Since seaweed acts as the ocean’s natural filtration system – helping to detoxifying and declutter – we were sure to source our seaweed from unpolluted waters. This helps keep our sea formulas pure and packed with beneficial nutrients, while keeping out any unwanted toxins.

#1: HYDRATING
First up is our Restorative Sea Culture Hydrating Toner: a water-bomb for skin that’s packed with healthy trace minerals from the sea. The benefits of seaweed for skin include humectant properties, helping to pull moisture from the air into your skin. After cleansing, it’s essential to rehydrate skin; this toner is just the one for the job.

#2: PLUMPING
Our ultra refreshing, water-rich Restorative Sea Culture Replenishing Serum was crafted to deeply saturate dry, thirsty skin cells with intense hydration. Harnessing the powder of seaweed polysaccharides and mineral-rich seaweed, this wonder serum helps hydrate and plump your skin for a more supple, bouncy complexion.

#3: ANTI-AGING
The rich and luxurious Restorative Sea Culture Extra Riche Créme is ideal for dry and aging skin types, thanks to its moisturizing, anti-aging, and anti-inflammatory benefits. Shea and bacuri butters deliver deep moisture, while sea buckthorn and Alteromonas (a polysaccharide from the sea) deliver nutrient-rich sea minerals into skin. Some say that Cassia Angustifolia (a polysaccharide from the senna plant) is a more powerful hydrator than hyaluronic acid, holding up to 1,000x its weight in water. It helps to lock in long-lasting hydration in our Sea Culture moisturizer, for plump and supple skin with a lessened appearance of lines and wrinkles.


Sea weed texture

#4: DETOXIFYING
The benefits of seaweed for skin don’t stop at the face – some of our most prized products use seaweed to plump, detoxify, and rehydrate skin all over your body. Take our detoxifying bath salts, for example: they’re not truly salts! They’re made with crystallized sea kelp from unpolluted waters off the Brittany coast of France, and include powerful minerals to help draw toxins from the skin. Infused with essential oils, these bath salts are ideal for renewing and replenishing skin after outdoor exposure or once a week.

#5: PROTECTIVE
Our Pink Grapefruit Seaweed Shaving Cream puts seaweed to work, by keeping skin supple and getting a super close shave. A thick and silky layer of seaweed collagen plumps the skin and protects delicate lipids on the surface of your skin as you shave. The gelatinous layer of seaweed (with aloe vera and coconut oil) can protect skin from minor nicks and cuts that could happen when shaving with water alone.


Seaweed Collagen in Natural Makeup

Now that you’re on-board with seaweed in your skin care routine, it’s time for the big reveal: we’ve been adding seaweed to our natural makeup formulas, too! It might sound like a plot out of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, but we promise this sea creature is totally friendly.

#6: SUPPORTS SKIN TEXTURE
The collagen present in algae works as a powerful anti-aging compound, preventing damage to amino acids in your skin while protecting and reinforcing cell membranes. Recent research also shows that a peptide extracted from the algae, Chlorella vulgaris, stimulates the production of four types of dermal collagen and elastin. In other words, research suggests that seaweed collagen could help to lessen wrinkle depth, stimulate skin renewal after free radical and sun damage, and possibly regenerate damaged tissue.

#7: SILICONE-FREE
Did you ever think that seaweed would be in your natural makeup routine? Well if you aren’t using it yet, you’re going to want to make the switch to our Mattifying Primer. Our silicone-free makeup primer contains our ocean crush: seaweed collagen. This natural formula will leave you with a plumped base and noticeably minimized lines and creases, for the perfect makeup canvas.


Primer Fact Chart

#8: RESTORATIVE
Perhaps most importantly, seaweed collagen is a stellar source of hyaluronic acid: a naturally-occurring acid found in the human body that acts as a lubrication agent for hair and skin. Hyaluronic acid is what makes seaweed collagen a viable alternative to its animal counterpart, type I collagen, which is synthesized from the bones and skin of animals.

Hyaluronic acid boasts all of the same properties as animal collagen, plus it has lower rates of allergic reaction, a better rate of absorption, and is cruelty free. It plays a critical role in skin health, with its remarkable ability to bind to 1,000 times its weight in moisture.

Did you know? 75% of our skin is made up of collagen. Collagen is the major factor in your skin’s overall texture, bounce-back, and youthfulness.


What Are the Health Benefits of Seaweed?

Seaweed is absolutely packed with vitamins and nutrients, beneficial trace minerals, and plenty of healthy fiber. We love seaweed for these naturally occurring benefits for skin, for hair, and for health. Some types of seaweed have even been marked as containing cancer-fighting agents, making them true contenders as one of the healthiest ingredients in the world!

According to the National Ocean Service, “seaweed” is the common name used to identify countless species of marine plants and algae that grow in the ocean, rivers, lakes, and a variety of other bodies of water. They range greatly in size, color, and texture, and can even grow in such large ‘forests’ that they overtake entire regions of beaches and shorelines. The most common colors of seaweed are green, brown, red, and black.

Many informed Californians trace these beaches every day, on the lookout for edible seaweeds that they use to fortify their diets with healthy doses of vitamins and minerals. Harvesting these seaweeds is of course not for beginners, as not all seaweeds are edible; in California you’ll need a license to harvest seaweed for this very reason. An excess of certain seaweeds can even cause adverse reactions such as nausea, abdominal pain, and fever.

If you do know what you’re looking for and you do have a license, you’ll know that some of the tastiest edible seaweed to harvest along the California coast are wakame, nori, and bull kelp.


Kelp Ingredient Chart
Pacific Coast Kelp and Seaweed Guide

We took a walk down to Pico Creek in Cambria, California with our trusty ocean foraging identification book in tow, to see what types of seaweed and kelp were on-shore. To our surprise there were a ton of different species and couldn’t wait to get down to our field identifying!

Kelp and Seaweed Found:

  • “Brown Seaweed” Laminaria Digitata

  • “Giant Kelp” Macrocystis Pyrifera

  • “Red Algae” Botryoglossum Farlowianum

  • “Eelgrass” Zostera Marina Linnaeus

  • “Carola” Callophyllis

  • “Delicate Sea Lace” Microcladia Coulteri

  • “Splendid Iridescent Seaweed” Mazzaella Splendens

  • “Feather Boa” Egregia

MORE FUN WITH SEAWEED:
If you’re looking for more remarkable benefits from seaweed or algae, try one of our ultra hydrating Caffeine face masks. These skin-plumping gems feature seaweed collagen, aloe juice, and green coffee for a soothing, anti-inflammatory, and ultra hydrating treatment.

Seaweed collagen is also fantastic for enhancing shine, hydration, and volume in hair. Try our Moisture Drench Shampoo and Moisture Drench Conditioner for a shower duo that will leave you with deeply moisturized and restored locks. Or you can try the aptly named Kelp & Mint Volumizing Shampoo for thicker, stronger locks. Any which way you choose, seaweed will be the perfect addition to your shower routine!

So what’s the takeaway? When it comes to the vitamin and mineral-packed benefits of seaweed, it’s a no-brainer addition to your natural skin care, hair care, and makeup routine. To reap its remarkable benefits, try one of our seaweed infused natural beauty products – and the next time you’re near the ocean, be sure to say ‘thanks’!

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