Meet The Founder

Algenist have answered all our burning skin care questions

There’s definitely something in the water… Algenist harnesses the cell-regenerative properties of algae to promote smooth, supple and luminous skin irrespective of age. BRAND NEW to Cult Beauty’s shores, this heroically hydrating range is brimming with strengthening, line-smoothing actives and a potent, marine-derived alguronic acid that boosts elasticity, helps promote firmness and unifies tone… We spoke to the brains behind this game-changing range, about why you need {Algenist} in your routine.

{Cult Beauty} Firstly, why algae? It’s at the core of the Algenist range but how did you alight upon its powerful, rejuvenating properties?

{Algenist} Algae is amazing – it’s the building blocks of life, and the lungs of the ocean! This amazing single-cell plant has been in existence for over 1.5 billion years but, roughly seven years ago, a group of world-renowned scientists and algae experts in south San Francisco (the birthplace of the biotechnology industry) were investigating algae from a ‘renewable energy’ angle.

After a suggestion from a world-renowned microalgae expert from Stanford University to explore the regenerating properties of algae, a new platform of algal-based technology arose. This directly gave rise to the discovery, research and development of Alguronic Acid – which became Algenist’s proprietary ingredient derived from the same amazing algae.

Since this technology was previously unseen in skin care and cosmetics, {Algenist} was born – promising visible results in ten days and leveraging the amazing reparative qualities of algae!

{CB} The Alguronic Acid is the brand’s ‘hero’ ingredient but, what exactly is it, what does it do and how (in lay-person’s terms) does it do it?

{A} Algae is one of the oldest and most nutrient-rich plants in the world. It has the incredible ability to survive, thrive, and regenerate in the harshest environments on the planet, like extreme cold, extreme heat and the depths of the ocean. What allows algae to protect itself in these harsh climates is a compound it produces: Alguronic Acid.

In skin care, our patented Alguronic Acid demonstrates significant anti-ageing properties. In a scientific study, Alguronic Acid was shown to double the efficacy of other ingredients in the market (such as vitamin C, retinol, peptides and even vitamin E) plus, on its own, it boosts cell turnover by 55%, helps to minimise free radical damage and significantly improves hydration.

{CB} Sustainability is increasingly important – how do you derive the algae extracts, and do you have an eco-friendly stance?

{A} At {Algenist}, we strongly believe in leveraging technology for sustainability and preserving the planet for future generations. With our rich heritage in biotechnology, we have been passionately committed to unlocking algae, one of the oldest and most nutrient-dense plants on the planet to create clean, safe and results-driven formulas. Our algae is naturally-sourced and sustainably-produced, as are many of our other ingredients that we have used in our products since the beginning.

From the newest innovations in green chemistry and green processing technologies, to the amount of eco-friendly recycled and/or recyclable material in our packaging, we are extremely dedicated to continuing to respect and care for our planet.

{CB} The brand’s mission is to deliver visible, measurable ‘anti-ageing’ results in ten days – what should people expect when they look in the mirror?

{A} When people look in the mirror, they should expect to see an improvement with the naked eye after just ten days of using our product – that’s what we mean by ‘visible results’. We have multiple collections to target various skin concerns from dehydrated skin, to deep lines and wrinkles, to loss of firmness, to discolouration and fatigued skin. A customer who is 55 will not see the same results as a customer who is 25 from the same product, but both will see visible results.

When using Algenist, you can expect to see more radiant, resilient, hydrated and youthful-looking skin, in addition to improvement on the skin concerns you’re targeting.

{CB} Times are changing, and our former obsession with looking ‘younger’ has become a quest to look our ‘best’ for longer – irrespective of age. Who is Algenist aimed at, and do you feel that there’s a ‘shift’ within the industry? How do we prolong our skin’s wellbeing?

{A} In beauty, we have definitely seen a shift toward skin care as wellness: treating the whole person rather than just surface-level skin concerns. Not only are women (and men!) looking to feel their best at any age, but also they are looking to live fulfilling lives, and purchase products that fit into that healthy lifestyle.

A lot of the healthy ingredients that we are seeing grow in popularity in regards to nutrition are what we’ve been incorporating into our products. For example, we use coconut water in our {POWER Pressed Serum} to help recharge and re-energise skin, and we use watermelon extract in our {SPLASH Hydrating Setting Mist} to help lock in hydration. After all, in order to make our skin look its best at any age, it’s important to include healthy foods like these in our diets as well as in our skin care products!

Plus, we’re working on a few things in the lab right now that align with this trend that we’re excited to share with you in 2019…

{CB} There’s also a growing number of men and women who’re grappling with both fine lines and breakouts. What are your top tips for tackling acne while strengthening delicate, easily-upset skin types?

{A} There are a lot of common misconceptions about adult acne that can be treated with products that you likely have at home!

I recommend two important, and often overlooked, steps to help fight adult acne while also targeting the signs of ageing:

First, it’s a common misconception with acneic skin that you should skip the moisturiser step to halt oil production or dry out the skin. It’s actually the opposite. In order to balance your skin’s moisture barrier, you should moisturise especially when you’re experiencing a breakout. This will not only help your skin naturally balance oil production, but also fight the signs of ageing and reduce skin sensitivity. I like to update my regimen along with the seasons – use a lighter moisturiser in the warmer months (like Algenist’s {POWER Advanced Moisturizer}) and a more nourishing moisturiser in the colder months (like our {GENIUS Cream}).

Secondly, it’s important to super-charge your skin care regimen 2-3 times a week with a mask to exfoliate and add detoxifying benefits that can target uneven texture and skin impurities. For those suffering from acne, I like to recommend Algenist’s {PERFECT Clarifying Mask} which contains advanced pore-minimising technology to help absorb excess oil, reduce the appearance of pores and draw out impurities. Plus, it contains micro-exfoliants and red algae extract to soothe the skin while simultaneously targeting firmness and leaving the skin feeling moisturised and soft.

Even if you’re not suffering from adult acne, these two product recommendations are still great preventative tips to include to keep your skin in tip top shape!

{CB} For those new to the range, is there a ‘hero’ product guaranteed to get them hooked on Algenist?

{A} Anyone who hasn’t tried Algenist must try our {GENIUS Liquid Collagen}! It’s one of our newer serums, but it’s definitely grown to be our most popular. The beautiful formula contains the highest concentration of plant-based collagen on the market. It has a unique vegan formula of plant collagen, Alguronic Acid, and 13,000 beads of nourishing Microalgae Oil which restore the skin’s bounce and increase its resilience in just ten days!

Our vegan plant collagen is a new innovative technology created by binding together corn, soy and wheat protein fibers resulting in vegan amino acids that structurally mimic collagen that allows for a functional equivalent to animal-derived collagen.

{CB} We’re also fascinated by the concept of your Pressed Serum. Can you explain how this is different to an ‘ordinary’ serum? Who’s it for?

{A} Algenist’s {POWER Recharging Night Pressed Serum} is a transformative product designed to recharge and re-energise skin. Anyone whose skin feels fatigued can benefit from adding this product to their nighttime regimen. Plus, it smells amazing thanks to nutrient-rich coconut water, one of the key ingredients alongside our patented Alguronic Acid, of course.

It’s a vegan hybrid pressed serum that starts off as a solid. Upon emulsifying a pearl-size amount between fingertips and massaging it into the skin, this pressed serum transforms – melting to counteract signs of fatigue as it visibly minimises the depth of fine lines and refines dulled, uneven skin texture. You’ll wake up to glowing, healthy skin!

{CB} And with summer now upon us (at last!), which Algenist product(s) should no holiday skin care wardrobe be without?

{A} As it heats up, it’s important to make sure that your skin is properly hydrated, and you’re preventatively fighting the signs of ageing caused by the sun. Two products that I cannot live without this summer are Algenist’s {SPLASH Hydrating Setting Mist} and {GENIUS Ultimate Anti-Aging Vitamin C+ Serum}.

The award-winning Setting Mist is a super-fine serum-in-a-mist that contains mineral-enriched sea water and watermelon extract to intensely hydrate and lock in moisture, while forming a light, protective layer to help seal in hydration and even set make up for long-term wear.

Vitamin C is the ingredient to add to your skin care regimen during the summer because its antioxidant properties help fight visible ageing caused by the sun. Luckily, Algenist’s vegan {Vitamin C+ Serum} combines a potent Vitamin C derivative with patented Alguronic Acid and nourishing Microalgae Oil to help visibly brighten skin and minimise fine lines and wrinkles. Not only does this help reverse sun damage, but it also helps to restore radiance – a fantastic addition to a regimen looking to target existing sun damage or early prevention against discolouration.

{CB} The brand is positioned as ‘clean and safe’. With so much inconsistency surrounding the concept of ‘natural’, ‘clean’ and so on, can you demystify what ‘clean’ means for us?

{A} To us, ‘clean’ means using naturally-sourced, sustainable ingredients. At Algenist, we pride ourselves in using only the ingredients that you can feel good about putting on your skin.

Our algae is naturally-sourced and sustainably-produced, and all Algenist products are formulated without parabens, triclosan, phthalates or nitrosamine – no compromise. Every product is also suitable for all skin types, dermatologist tested, non-comedogenic, and hypoallergenic.

{CB} And finally, we have a growing number of customers who want their products to conform to their vegan, cruelty-free stance. Does Algenist comply?

{A} At Algenist, we do our best not only to incorporate vegan formulas, but also to offer unique and advanced high-performance plant-derived ingredient technologies, including the first ever highly concentrated topical plant-based collagen in our {GENIUS Liquid Collagen} and our vegan retinol formula encapsulated with green algae.

Algenist does not test on animals, nor ask others to test on our behalf, unless required by law, regulation, or a governmental authority. As Algenist continues to expand and reach our customers around the globe, our support and commitment to eliminate animal testing is stronger than ever. Therefore, we are proud to share our partnership with the Institute for In Vitro Sciences (IIVS)*, a non-profit research organisation dedicated to adoption and regulatory acceptance of alternative methods to animal testing worldwide. 


Verity Douglas

Verity Douglas

Content Editor

Verity is our Content Editor and a Cult Beauty veteran. Currently on maternity leave, raising Cult Beauty’s honorary ‘word nerd’, Tabitha, she speaks fluent ‘beauty’ and loves nothing more than the marriage of language and lip balm (and cleanser and candles… ad infinitum). Nothing can stop her from quoting Nancy Mitford, treating herself to yet another Bella Freud candle for her desk or buying that pilgrim-esque collared or heavily fringed outfit she’s been eyeing. You can trust her to debunk widespread beauty myths and dispense invaluable advice with ease…