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 By Dan Fryda

Over exposure to the sun without protection leads to wrinkles, brown spots and eventually the potential of cancer.  The simple truth is that physical blocks work best, this includes clothing and especially hats.  As far as SPF products are concerned, those with mineral blocks such as micronized titanium dioxide or zinc oxide (as opposed to nano) provide the safest form of protection for anyone who is about to spend hours exposed to the sun and the elements.  Spa Technologies’ Eco Defense Daily Moisturizer SPF 25 offers safe organic sun protective moisturizers that avoid harmful chemicals. 


DNA Damage

Comet Assay Test:

DNA showing damage

The DNA on left is like a comet having a ball and a “tail” of damaged strands of DNA.  The DNA on the right shows normal healthy DNA that has been repaired by plankton enzymes.


Even with a solar protective shield, there may be some damage from sun exposure.  Harmful rays can disturb the bonds of DNA to create malformed strands called dimers. The body’s repair mechanisms attempt to correct the damage, but it’s a long process.  Marine plankton contains enzymes that can correct that damage within 2-4 hours of application.  These ‘photolyase’ enzymes are remarkable in that they are dormant until exposed to sunlight which stimulates them to repair DNA. Tests conducted on human volunteers by Heinrich Heine University in Germany provided strong evidence to support this claim, where biopsies from human volunteers revealed a 50% improvement within two hours.  These enzymes are found in our Marine Repair Cream.


Brown Algae Polyphenols

Marine algae refers to all of plants that dwell in the oceans, from microscopic plankton that create the vast “meadows of the sea” to giant kelp that grow 6 inches a day and can attain a length of over 180 feet.  Within their seawater environment they are constantly exposed to strong ultra-violet radiation and harsh climate conditions. These marine plants have evolved a network of defense mechanisms to defend their DNA including anti-inflammatory polysaccharides, super antioxidant vitamins and polyphenols, DNA repairing photolyase enzymes and a concentration of vital minerals all working in synergistic balance.


Marine algae like laminaria and fucus offer a vast treasure of antioxidants that defend our skin’s cells from the attacks of ultra violet radiation as well as free radicals and pollutants.  Laminaria is a giant kelp found in the North Atlantic and harvested off the coast of Iceland and Brittany.  Living in pristine conditions, this kelp is renowned for its wealth of polyphenols—one of nature’s most powerful antioxidants.  Research conducted at Ohio State University and the University of South Carolina suggest that brown algae polyphenols harvested from laminaria provide strong anti-carcinogenic properties in the treatment of skin cancer.


Beta and alpha-carotenes provide additional antioxidant protection and give this kelp its characteristic brownish green coloring.  Of the carotenoids, astaxanthin is the most powerful and has been described as nature’s sunscreen (click here to learn more about astaxanthin). Other antioxidants found in our seaweed include super lutein, lycopene, vitamin C, vitamin E and fucoidan.  These are supported by ions of minerals and trace elements to neutralize free radicals before they can damage nucleic DNA.


Nature’s Anti-Inflammatory Remedies

For those who experience mild sun burn and redness, marine algae provide anti-inflammatory actives.  Omega-7 fatty acids, marine polysaccharides and astaxanthin help to relieve the discomfort of over-exposure to the sun.  The lab at Spa Technologies has formulated seaweed-based mists, gels and aromatic essential oils to cool the skin and restore it to a normal tone.


So allow yourself to safely enjoy the sun (always wear protection!) with the knowledge that the ocean provides us with an “eco-defense” against environmental aging factors.


All of Spa Technologies products include the algae extracts described above, but below are a list of products made specifically to aid the skin in recovering from over exposure to the sun:


Marine Cooling Mist: A soothing aromatic mist rich in botanical essences and seaweed extracts that relieves inflammation and nourishes dehydrated skin.


Marine Repair Cream: The ultimate anti-aging moisturizer with optimal concentrations of active ingredients in one product. Seaweed extracts, hexapeptides, marine peptides and antioxidants restore nutrients and make skin look firmer and fuller. Marine Repair Cream helps turn back the clock on aging skin for noticeable wrinkle reduction.


Oxygen Renewal:  A triple layered approach to anti-aging.  Each bottle contains a concentrate of actives that address all aspects of cellular health.  Astaxanthin is found in the topmost ‘oil’ layer where it works to reduce inflammation and defend your skin’s DNA in association with Omega-7 and omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin C and vitamin E.  The middle layer has mineral-rich seaweed extracts, polypeptides and hyaluronic acid for super moisturization.  The bottom layer is pure Liquid Oxygen to boost cellular metabolism and collagen synthesis.


Astaxanthin O2 Calming Gel:  This oil-free formula is deep orange reflecting the high levels of astaxanthin.  Ideal for sensitive skin, it supports normalizing conditions such as dermatitis and rosacea.  It is hydrating and non-greasy.


Skin Calming Booster:  Like Astaxanthin 02 Calming Gel, Skin Calming Booster is ideal for treating symptoms of rosacea, eczema and skin irritations. Along with the use of astaxanthin, it’s effects are boosted by the addition of a 10% Liquid Oxygen solution, micronized silver and omega-7 fatty acids.  Application on skin under the Omegaceuticals Repair Serum helps to normalize skin complexion providing fast relief.


Night Repair Serum:  A unique blend of essential oils, Liquid Oxygen, botanical butters, astaxanthin, vitamin C and an omega-complex to help repair skin damage and lock in moisture.


Sensitive Oil: Astaxanthin is supporting by a cast of lavender, neroli, omega fatty acids and vitamin C to reduce inflammation and increase skin hydration.


Hydrating Oil C&E:  Roman chamomile, lavender and clary sage aid in skin healing with the support of omega-fatty acids and vitamin C.


Regenerative Oil:  Ylang Ylang, rosemary and vetiver work on skin regeneration with the support of omega fatty acids and vitamin C.


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