Thanks to the rich biodiversity found beneath the sea, researchers have long studied marine life and its applications for skincare. “Nature has given seaweed natural methods of defense, protection, and regeneration against pollutants, stress, and other types of aggressions,” says Phytomer’s Lenette Casper. As such, it’s no surprise that skincare manufacturers are keen to tap into such benefits.
“There is significant research that indicates that certain species of algae stimulate the production of glutathione,” says Organic Male OM4’s Michael Bruggeman. “Optimal levels of glutathione in the skin help prevent aging, oxidative stress, sun damage, and act as natural ‘Pac Men,’ detoxifying the skin and mitigating the detrimental effects of pollution, a huge trend since 2016.”
Other promising research is underway at Shannon Applied Biotechnology Centre, an industry-focused research, development, and innovation center. According to Voya’s Emma Roberts, the company is working with the center on a study about the hydration properties of seaweed and how marine algae can act like blood with its ability to purify. While the results haven’t yet been released, they expect to publish them within the next year.
Eminence Organic Skin Care is also focused on the applications of marine-based ingredients. “Working with our product development team and formulators, we discovered that algae could provide a cruelty-free alternative to animal-derived collagen, which is commonly used in skincare and supplements,” says Eminence Organic Skin Care’s Boldijarre Koronczay. “Eminence believes strongly in being cruelty-free while providing the best results from natural, organic, and biodynamic ingredients, whether those ingredients are plants from the land or algae from the sea.