At first sight, the wonder of Okinawa is clear: pristine, white-sand beaches line each lush, verdant island in this archipelago located about 400 miles off the southern tip of Japan. The islands are abundant with vibrant hibiscus, orchid blossoms and eye-catchingly colorful birds. In addition to its natural beauty, Okinawa’s residents are famous for their health, vitality and happiness that extends into their long lifespans.
But deeper into the network of Okinawa’s islands are quiet lagoons and the precious coral reefs beneath the surf, where the secrets to its luminosity lie. Seaweed and marine algae, a dietary staple in Okinawa, grow rich in minerals and vitamins. One variety of red algae, known as Betaphycus gelatinum, is especially prized by locals and called “treasure from the god of the sea.” On festival days in Yaeyama district, bundles of this red algae are set as temple offerings. In daily life, it is even used while washing hair and cleansing skin and is essential to keeping skin supple and luminous from the inside and out.
Once I came across this exceptional, yet simple ingredient in the Miyakofuzoku Kewaiden, the first written account of classical Japanese beauty rituals, the Tatcha Institute and I began to research the science behind its benefits for the skin. Okinawa Red Algae is a vital source of Beterhelin, a natural polysaccharide which enhances skin’s barrier function. It also replenishes skin’s natural moisture reservoir and moisture-retaining abilities.
Our Luminous Collection combines this secret from Okinawa’s seas and the timeless wisdom of Japan’s beauty rituals with new innovations in skincare. Rich in hydrating Okinawa Red Algae, every item in our Luminous Collection leaves skin with a dewy, youthful glow. I’m honored to bring you a small piece of Okinawa’s glowing beauty, and it is my hope that you enjoy these treasures in your daily rituals.