Out With the Old: Seaweed Wraps Upgraded

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Algae-based applications don’t begin and end with seaweed wraps, as popular as they may be. “New processing techniques and testing methodologies allow for unique algae species and more precise algae molecules to be utilized in skincare, making algae one of the most exciting ingredients for formulations,” says CelleClé Skincare’s Ashley Stowers. “Due to their versatility and multiple benefits, algae is one of 2017’s top global trends in skin and bodycare.” Here, product formulators dish on their current favorites, cutting-edge techniques, and exciting future prospects:

“Marine collagen that has been freeze-dried provides excellent moisturization and brightening properties. It’s a highly effective ingredient to include in sheet masks, which are a huge trend in skincare right now.”
—Janel Luu, CEO, Le Mieux Cosmetics and PurErb

“Top research teams are now capable of extracting interesting molecules that will benefit not only the skincare industry but also other industries like pharmaceutical and food, too. Researchers expose specific species of algae to heavy stress, such as lack of UV light and oxidants, which will help to give us answers on how algae are defending themselves against environmental stresses and how they have survived for millions of years.”
—Philippe Allouche, M.D., head of creation and co-owner, Biologique Recherche USA

“There seems to be a great movement toward various types of microalgae-derived active ingredients. Microalgae are particularly attractive as both natural and sustainable sources of skincare compounds: They offer unlimited biosynthesis capabilities thanks to their genetic diversity and stress-management strategies, and their ancestral defense and repair mechanisms are now becoming available for the next generation of skincare products. There are probably more than one million different species of microalgae, with a genetic diversity greater than the vegetable and animal kingdoms together—it’s a universe to explore for solving pressing skincare challenges.”
—Melanie Timms, director of marketing innovation and education, CBI Laboratories