Each year, it seems we learn about the benefits of a new ingredient that’s enhancing our beauty products. Argan oil, coconut oil, and now…algae! Algae—otherwise known as kelp or seaweed—is showing up in every beauty product from basic face cream to shampoo. Algae has been around forever, but it’s just recently that cosmetic companies have started to recognize the natural beauty benefits of this organism. In addition to being extremely hydrating, algae softens and brightens skin, fights inflammation, and has loads of minerals, antioxidants and omega-3s, which help fight aging. Ready to incorporate algae into your beauty regimen? Here are our favorite algae-infused beauty products.
Your face will drink up this ultra moisturizing mask, ideal for those with dry skin. Avocado and apricot-kernel oil hydrate while Japanese algae repairs skin and prevents future dehydration as well as signs of premature aging. Reviewers rave that this mask leaves skin dewy, silky soft, and moisturized without feeling greasy. You can even use it on your hands and feet.
So many acne-fighting products dry out skin, and while you don’t want to add oil to irritated skin, you still want to keep skin hydrated. The red algae in this acne-fighting gel allow skin to stay moisturized without clogging pores.
San Francisco-based line Algenist uses Microalgae Oil, which “is clinically proven to keep skin hydrated five times more after 24 hours than untreated skin.” Algenist products also contain Alguronic Acid, a powerful anti-ager produced by microalgae. Give this line just 10 days to see results, the company promises. Their Algae Brightening Mask ($59) is a user favorite for its brightening, smoothing, and hydrating benefits. The mask incorporates both micro and macro algae to exfoliate and even out complexion. The Complete Eye Renewal Balm ($65) is a best-selling rich eye cream that hydrates, minimizes fine lines and wrinkles, and reduces puffiness. Users noted an improvement after just a few days.
Organic blue-green algae is one of the best sources of vegetable protein. Add that to your hair along with shea butter, aloe, vitamins and minerals, and you’ve got an amazing hair treatment. Use this mask when your hair is feeling damaged from chemicals or weather. It strengthens the hair shaft, thus helping prevent split ends and breakage.
This vita-bead infused daily facial moisturizer includes oxygen and microalgae for radiant skin. It’s lightweight and perfect for summer, and can be used day or evening. The scent is fabulous and the consistency feels like whipped butter. Mmmmmmm.
An Allure “Best of Beauty Award Winner for Best Facial Moisturizer,” Fresh’s lightweight daily moisturizer promises to keep skin hydrated for 24 hours. The addition of blue-green algae helps to preserve collagen and elastin.
7. Anthony Algae Facial Cleanser ($36)
This gentle, paraben- and phthalate-free cleanser contains algae extract to moisturize and purify skin, while helping prevent the look of wrinkles. It works well on all skin types.
Dujour Magazine recently raved, “From firming to plumping to calming, this is an incredible moisturizer.” It’s ideal for those with sensitive skin, rosacea or eczema, but even if your skin isn’t particularly sensitive, you’ll love using this healing cream. Hawaiian red marine algae alleviates redness, ginseng rejuvenates tired skin, and rose hip extract provides antioxidants that leave skin luminous.
More beauty products to try: