OSEA Review: The Most Hydrating Skincare For Summer
This review is not sponsored and contains the author’s personal experience. The Good Trade was gifted this product. The Good Trade editors endorse products we’ve personally researched, tested, and genuinely love. Learn more about our methodology and business model here.
I recently saw a trending Tweet in which a woman asked the Twitterverse one thing they wished they would have known before turning 30. “Skin care,” read the majority of responses. “Invest in skin care. And don’t forget your neck!”
It took me nearly 30 years, too—to finally become religious about a daily skincare regimen. Before that, I spent too many nights forgetting to wash my face or, worse, slathering up with toxic “cleansers” that left my skin anything but clean or clear.
Even in my 30s, it’s been a struggle to find one brand or regimen that I can truly count on. After trying most of the “clean” skincare products at Target and spending too much money on buzzworthy collections, I’ve learned that what works best for me is twofold.
“I need formulas I can trust—ones that make my skin feel nourished and cared for—with truly clean and effective ingredients.”
First, I need simplicity in the number of products I have on my vanity. Too many products feel overwhelming, and I end up skipping them altogether. I also need gentle ingredients, as harsh chemicals irritate my skin. While I enjoy using a mask or red light device once a week, I need simple staples I can confidently reach for in the morning and before bed. Most of all, I need formulas I can trust—ones that make my skin feel nourished and cared for—with truly clean and effective ingredients.
Enter OSEA (pronounced Ohhh-Seee-Uhhhh), the skin and body care brand I’ve been using (and loving) religiously for the past few weeks. Founded by Jenefer Palmer in 1996 and based in Malibu, California, the team there has been creating “clean, seaweed-infused skincare that respects the natural world and makes skin look and feel its absolute best.”
That’s right—seaweed is the star ingredient in OSEA Malibu products. “Seaweed is a naturally rich source of vitamins, minerals, amino acids and antioxidants,” says Palmer in an interview with Credo Beauty. Benefits range from firming skin to moisturizing and protecting it from pollutants.
“Benefits (of seaweed) range from firming skin to moisturizing and protecting it from pollutants. ”
I’ve definitely noticed some of these benefits myself, especially during winter weather which, while not freezing in Los Angeles, is exceptionally dry and dehydrating on my skin. All of OSEA’s products deliver on the promise of next-level hydration and softer, more supple skin—from the face moisturizer to the body butter and oil (reviewed in detail below).
Additionally, OSEA is firm in its commitment to sustainability and environmentally friendly packaging. Shipping is plastic free, and the majority of products come in glass bottles; they even offer a recycling program option for LA locals to return their empties and receive credit toward new products.
Most notably, OSEA’s formulas are incredibly gentle—like really gentle. Better yet, they actually work. You can forget artificial dyes, synthetic fragrances, nanoparticles, heavy metals, and so much more. Everything is science-formulated with safe, vegan, gluten-free, and nature-forward ingredients—though this doesn’t mean a compromise on efficacy. OSEA uses active ingredients at clinically validated levels, and the team conducts clinical and sensory testing to prove it.
“Everything is science-formulated with safe, vegan, gluten-free, and nature-forward ingredients—though this doesn’t mean a compromise on efficacy.”
Now, for the actual products. This isn’t a complete list but a few of my favorites and the brand’s bestsellers. OSEA was also a reader-favorite brand in our 2022 survey.
To find the OSEA products that will work best for you, take their skincare quiz here.
Ocean Cleanser ($18–$48)
This is my go-to gel cleanser every morning! The light citrus notes help wake me up and offer a boost of energy. Two to three small pumps are plenty to cover my neck and face and gently exfoliate my skin. My face always feels refreshed and soft after just a few minutes of this.
Key ingredients include undaria seaweed (rich in antioxidants and nutrients), bentonite (to unclog pores), and a blend of jojoba and sesame oils for added moisture.
Seabiotic® Water Cream ($54)
I was skeptical about this product’s claim to deliver 72+ hours of deep hydration, but it’s a real winter hero. This moisturizer is both weightless and extra moisturizing all at once, and I find myself touching my cheeks throughout the day, amazed by how soft they feel. It’s also free from fragrances or oils, so it doesn’t irritate my skin (or eyes) or leave my face feeling greasy. I use this after the cleanser for a simple morning routine.
Key ingredients include undaria seaweed (rich in antioxidants and nutrients), squalane (weightless moisture), bisabolol (soothes dry skin).
This pink algae mask puts me in such a good mood. I use it like clockwork on Sundays. Is it the warm color? The fresh minty scent? The clean ingredients? There isn’t anything not to love about this formula. It clarifies and decongests pores while offering a gentle tingle, making me feel like it’s working!
Key ingredients include bentonite (a natural smectite clay to draw out impurities), trio of sustainably sourced red seaweeds (mineralizing and nutrient-rich).
Historically, I’ve been one to focus all my skincare efforts on my face, leaving my limbs sad and dry in the winter months. That is until I began using some of OSEA’s body care products. This body scrub is perfect for use in the shower or bath—or on your hands for added softness. It doesn’t feel harsh or abrasive on my skin; rather, it’s soft, velvety, and a bit like sugar. It truly melts. Oh, and it smells like a spa.
Key ingredients include red clay, shea butter, and a combination of New Zealand solar salt, pink Himalayan sea salt, and Red Hawaiian sea salt
Undaria Algae Body Oil ($78)
I’ll be honest: I was skeptical about all the praise for this body oil. I’ve tried other body oils, which always stain my sheets and leave my skin greasy. Not this one, though. OSEA’s body oil absorbs quickly and, after application, it only takes a few moments for my skin to dry and become soft to the touch. I’ve used this almost daily to hydrate my parched skin during the winter months.
Key ingredients include Undaria Algae (soaked in barrels of oils to infuse the vitamins and minerals), White Lupin (Flower), botanical oil blend (replenishes moisture).
Sea Minerals Mist ($18–$38)
I love a good misting product. And this one is perfect for mid-day hydration or packing along in my gym bag. It’s cooling, refreshing, and leaves my face with a dewy glow. The perfect winter pick-me-up. In the summer months, I’m going to take OSEA’s recommendation and store chilled for heat relief.
Key ingredients include Undaria Pinnatifida extract, dead sea salt, aloe vera leaf juice, chlorophyll.
Vagus Nerve Pillow Mist ($32)
Saving the best for last, this is my favorite product from OSEA—but only by a little because I love, love, love everything from this brand! Still, the pillow mist is a scent I dream about throughout the day until it’s time for bed. As for how it works, the vagus nerve activates the body’s relaxation response and helps regulate stress. The mist helps with sleep and creates a calming environment—I use it often for naps too, or when I just need help relaxing. Two spritzes are plenty, meaning the bottle literally lasts forever. This also makes for a wonderful gift.
Key ingredients include a blend of calming oils (lavender, rosemary, lime, and more).
Learn more about OSEA and see the entire collection of skincare and body care products on the website. Also note that many items are sold in sets or bundles for added savings. For the products you love most, you can also subscribe and save 10%!
Kayti Christian is the Managing Editor at The Good Trade. She has a Master’s in Nonfiction Writing from the University of London and is the creator of Feelings Not Aside, a newsletter for sensitive people.