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Tapping into the sea's myriad of spa treasures

Whether you are religious or not, the healing and meditative powers of water and the ocean are well documented. It can be something as simple as taking a barefoot walk on the beach, the coarse sea sand gently massaging your feet, or being whisked to a state of relaxation by the soothing repetition of waves breaking on the shore, but there can be no disputing the natural health-giving and restorative properties of the ocean. And when it comes to skincare and wellness products, look no further than the sea for a treasure trove of inspiration.

Since ancient times, the mineral-rich black mud of the Dead Sea has lured spa seekers from all over the world for its famed ability to rejuvenate and repair skin. But you don't have to travel to the Middle East to harness the powerful and dense nutrients of the sea. Various international cosmetics companies manufacture Dead Sea-inspired mud masks and sea salt treatments promising a vast range of health benefits, from removing toxins and improving internal skin moisture levels to reducing acne and other skin conditions, and even relieving aches and pain associated with chronic illnesses.

Another buzzword in the world of marine wellness is seaweed. This super veggie of the sea has long been a culinary delicacy, but just might be the ingredient your skin health arsenal has been missing. Seaweed is packed with high concentrations of vitamins, minerals, amino acids and antioxidants and holds a wealth of health benefits for skin and hair. Its rich antioxidants make seaweed a potent weapon against skin ageing and damaging free radicals in the body. Seaweed or algae body wraps are all the rage on the spa scene, with such treatments typically combining warm seaweed with essential oils to hydrate and detoxify skin and boost metabolism. It is said to be a firm favourite of celebrities like Victoria Beckham and Nicole Kidman!  

Collagen is also a staple in skin rejuvenation and recently marine collagen, a fibrous protein made from the scales or skin of saltwater fish, has been making a splash in anti-ageing skincare technology. It has been proven to have superior bio-availability, which means that it enters the bloodstream faster that other types of collagen, making it very effective for cosmetic use, particularly in improving skin elasticity, moisture and slowing the formation of fine lines and wrinkles.

Consumers are increasingly looking to naturally derived and bio-active products in every sphere of life, and the industry is no exception. And with so many marine-based extracts and products yet to be discovered, a torrent of exciting new skincare and wellness products seem certain to make its way onto the market in the not too distant future.