The Benefits of Seaweed for Skin
The beautifully clear waters surrounding the Isles of Scilly have been a huge pull to rooting me on St. Martin’s, making a home and growing a family on this unique archipelago twenty-eight miles off the coast of Cornwall.
For me, sea swimming has been a way to find some time for myself as a busy mother of two, to reconnect with nature, to create some headspace and come home to my heart. It’s where Phoenix & Providence began, with a desire to bottle the post sea swim skin glow.
Why does your skin feel so soft after swimming in the sea?
Ocean water has a high mineral content, like magnesium, calcium, selenium and zinc, which makes it a wonderful treatment for skin. Salt water gives the skin a natural detox, as it not only cleans the pores, it helps absorb toxins and excess oil.
The antibacterial and antimicrobial qualities of salt can help a variety of skin conditions and inflammations, such as eczema, dermatitis and psoriasis.
Our Rejuvenate Seaweed Bath Salts can be a lovely way to enjoy the benefits of bathing in salt water at home, and a tad warmer than a dip in the ocean!
Why use seaweed in skincare?
Seaweed has long been used in beauty treatments, from the age-old Irish tradition of bathing in seaweed, to the modern day seaweed spa body wraps. Understanding how beneficial seaweed can be for all skin types led to this ingredient being at the core of Phoenix & Providence skincare.
The ingredients used are natural, organic, and kind to the environment, all seaweed is harvested by hand and the products made with love, sharing the island ethos of intentional living.
Benefits of seaweed for your skin
Seaweed skincare benefits for sensitive and rosacea skin
The anti- inflammatory properties of seaweed are beneficial for sensitive skin and skin prone to rosacea. Rich in minerals such as zinc, magnesium and selenium, seaweed can help soothe redness and repair skin. Seaweed is also a rich in iodine known to help skin cell regeneration.
The Phoenix & Providence skincare products formulated for sensitive skin are free from essential oils. Whilst essential oils are a natural ingredient and widely used in organic skincare, they do contain irritants that are not suitable for sensitive skin.
You can find out which seaweed skincare products for sensitive and rosacea prone skin are recommended here.
‘I cannot recommend highly enough all P & P products. I have to be careful what I use on my skin following extensive and aggressive cancer treatments. Phoenix & Providence is the best and the gentlest I have used. Seaweed has such healing properties and it shows. My skin is lovely and soft and supple, I would not use anything else now!’
Seaweed skincare for benefits acne prone skin and hormonal skin flare ups
Seaweed can benefit acne prone skin, and skin prone to hormonal flare ups, due to its anti- bacterial qualities and ability to help maintain sebum control.
Acne can be experienced at any age and the tendency can be to use skin- stripping products. Phoenix & Providence skincare is gentle, natural, and effective, formulated to balance and nurture to skin’s microbiome.
You can find a product guide for seaweed skincare suitable for acne prone skin here.
“I’ve been using Phoenix & Providence skincare all week in the evening before bed since we got back from the islands, I suffer with awful acne but haven’t applied foundation for a few days now, coincidental? Don’t think so!’
Seaweed skincare benefits for maturing skin
Seaweed is packed with essential vitamins, that help improve skin tone, texture, and elasticity. High in Vitamin C, these natural antioxidants promote collagen production which help plump skin and smooth fine lines.
Find out which Phoenix & Providence seaweed skincare products are suited to maturing skin here.
Seaweed skincare benefits for dry skin
Seaweed contains essential fatty acids that help maintain our skin’s barrier. Seaweed is also rich in polysaccharides such as alginic acid, which help to lock moisture into our skin.
Find out which Phoenix & Providence seaweed skincare products are suited to dry skin here.
‘Phoenix & Providence products are absolutely divine! Smell amazing, so spa like and luxurious, and leave your skin feeling nourished and cared for.’
Charlene Scott, beauty therapist
A holistic approach to skincare
Phoenix & Providence has been created for softer skin and a clearer mind, to take time for yourself, creating a sense of ritual with products that inspire presence and inner peace. Each product is paired with a simple breathing exercise devised by yoga teacher Morag Hensleigh, to infuse a sense of mindfulness and calm into everyday living.
For more seaweed bathing ritual inspiration, head this way.
‘Best way to end the week and take some quality me time, is a dry skin massage using the heavenly Nourish Body Oil before soaking in a bath infused with relaxing scents and seaweed from the P & P salts, that transport me to the peace and tranquillity of St. Martin’s...’
Seaweed foraging on the Isles of Scilly
The seaweed used in Phoenix & Providence skincare is foraged from the shores of my island home, just one hundred metres from where the products are made.
Different varieties of seaweed
The beautifully clear waters of the Isles of Scilly are home to rich and diverse marine life and one of the only places in the UK you can find seagrass beds. As well as providing a habitat for secretive seahorses and snake-lock anemones, seagrass can absorb and hold up to thirty five times more carbon than the equivalent area of rainforest.
Alongside marine life and seagrass you can find an abundance of seaweed. Many different varieties can be found around the islands from the long strands of sugar kelp growing in deep waters, to the delicate fronds of feather weed and the favoured edible varieties of sea lettuce and purple laver. The variety of seaweed I harvest is Bladderwrack. Bladderwrack is in plentiful supply at low tide meaning it can be sustainably sourced without any concern of over harvesting.
Method of seaweed harvesting
I harvest the seaweed using scissors, trimming the plant to allow regrowth, and transport the bladderwrack home using my trusty wheelbarrow. As I use this method of harvesting seaweed on the Isles of Scilly the Marine Management Organisation confirmed I do not need a license. Only if I use mechanical means of harvesting the seaweed, such as with a quad and trailer, would a seaweed harvesting license be required.
The bladderwrack seaweed is dried on my purpose-built seaweed drying racks. The drying process can take anywhere from a couple of days to a week depending on the weather conditions. I have learnt that it is important to remove the seaweed from the racks at the optimum point of dehydration having been caught out by the morning dew on more than one occasion!
The dried seaweed is infused for a full lunar cycle in cold pressed organic oils. This method was inspired by the age old practice of herbal maceration. Herbs are dried and infused in a carrier oil for a period of time, allowing the oil to soak up the herb’s constituents. The active constituents in plants are the chemicals that have a medicinal effect on the body.
In the case of my seaweed infusions the cold pressed oils are soaking up all the beneficial properties of the seaweed. Seaweed is packed with vitamins K, B, A, and E, that help improve skin tone, texture, and elasticity. High in Vitamin C, these natural antioxidants promote collagen production which help plump skin and smooth fine lines. Packed full of humectants seaweed is also beneficial as it helps skin hydrate and retain moisture.
After one month the seaweed is drained from the oil, leaving behind a beautifully nutrient rich ingredient base for all Phoenix & Providence skincare.