You can find seaweed in sushi, salads and even in delicious crunchy sheets, but have you ever tried putting it on your face?
Seaweed isn’t just one plant but a category for over 30,000 known species of sea flora, all loaded with vitamins, minerals and proteins. But its benefits aren’t limited to consumption; seaweed is also a miracle worker when it comes to skincare, helping with exfoliation, hydration and even anti-ageing. And, for those that prefer to take the natural or clean beauty route, seaweed is perhaps one of the most readily available organic ingredients around.
Lydia Sarfati, a New York City-based master esthetician and seaweed connoisseur, explained to Byrdie: ’Seaweed is a very powerful concentration of seawater and is able to uptake minerals by absorption and active transport from seawater.’
Because of these processes, some seaweeds have a dense concentration of vitamins, minerals, amino acids, proteins and lipids, which all pose benefits for the skin
How does seaweed benefit the skin?
As we mentioned, seaweed isn’t just one plant; it’s many. So, it’s no surprise that this ingredient has proven hugely flexible and can tackle a whole range of different skin concerns, from hydration to rosacea to fine lines and wrinkles.
1. Soothes rosacea and sensitive skin
Seaweed has powerful anti-inflammatory properties that can help soothe conditions associated with redness and hypersensitivity, such as rosacea and acne.
2. Regulates sebum production
Seaweed can also be beneficial for those with oily and acne-prone skin by regulating sebum production. Some types of seaweed even contain zinc, magnesium and have anti-bacterial properties that work well for treating pesky pimples.
3. Helps tackle fine lines and wrinkles
4. Exfoliates and brightens the skin
Some types of seaweed, such as Corallina Officinalis, contain detoxifying elements that can help exfoliate dead skin cells. Combined with magnesium and calcium, it can also brighten the complexion.
Seaweed is rich in polysaccharides and fatty acids that support the skin’s moisture barrier and lock moisture into our skin.
Due to its versatility, different kinds of seaweed can be useful for almost any skin type. However, with any new product, patch tests are recommended. And, like most skincare products, results won’t be immediate, so it’s best to use seaweed over a prolonged period of time.
How to incorporate seaweed into your skincare routine
Seaweed extracts are popular in a number of skincare products, from moisturisers and serums to masks and scrubs. Here are some of our favourites: