This Non-Toxic Skincare Brand Will Transform Your Skin
Jun 11, 2020
Restorsea Skin Care Founder, Patricia Pao Sits Down With Beautytap
Restorsea is the highly coveted, luxury skin care collection adored by countless celebrities and touted by revered dermatologists around the world. Patricia (Patti) Pao created this results-driven line featuring an extraordinary proprietary ingredient, Aquabeautine XL®. Released by salmon fry at the time of hatching, this enzyme functions as a safe and highly effective skin exfoliator that targets only dead skin cells while hydrating the skin.
Recently, I had the honor of speaking with Patti via Zoom, where she shared Restorsea’s inspiring story and answered questions that will mesmerize skin care consumers and professionals alike.
Restorsea Products Are:
- Suitable for all skin types
- More effective at reducing brown spots than glycolic acid
- Approved for post-procedural use, including peels and laser treatments
- Free of parabens, phthalates, silicones, sulfates, PEGs, and mineral oil
- Non-toxic, science-based, clinically-tested, and clean
Q. Restorsea’s proprietary ingredient, Aquabeautine XL® has an intriguing back story. How did you discover it?
I had been doing a lot of business in Norway but hadn’t been outside of Oslo until my clients insisted that I visit Bergen because of its natural beauty. They took me on a 12-hour hike that, while stunning, left me searching for a way to get out of the next day’s excursion because I wasn’t exactly in the best shape. As we were driving the next morning, I spotted a building that housed a hatchery that was famous for synchronized salmon hatching. My clients graciously cancelled the hike, so I could tour the hatchery instead.
While there, I noticed that the workers’ hands looked much younger than their faces – a benefit of prolonged contact with the hatching water. It turns out that the water contained an enzyme that not only helped the baby salmon hatch, but it also had exfoliating, hydrating, and anti-aging properties.
That set the wheels in motion, and I obtained the enzyme from Professor Walther, who patented his filtering method but hadn’t discovered how to formulate with the enzyme without denaturing it. He gave me 2 ½ pounds of the enzyme and I discovered how to successfully use it in skin care. That’s how Restorsea was born.
Q. Who did you create these products for and what did you hope they would achieve?
Honestly, I created them for myself. I suffer from rosacea, hyperpigmentation, and have really oily skin – the kind with cystic acne blemishes that dermatologists inject with cortisone to relieve. I needed something that would address all three conditions but wouldn’t make me break out. Those skin conditions and goals are pretty universal.
Q. Which products did you initially create after determining how to utilize the enzyme without denaturing it?
Restorsea Day Cream
The Rejuvenating Day Cream was our first product, and we spent millions of dollars studying it because we wanted to make sure that it really did reduce hyperpigmentation and redness while improving skin clarity, texture, and firmness, and it did.
I also believe that every person needs a good eye cream, so we created our Revitalizing Eye Cream. The skin around the eye is 50% thinner than the rest of your face and endures a lot of abuse, which is why it’s the first area to show signs of aging.
Q. There’s an interesting story behind the Revitalizing Eye Cream. Didn’t it play a role in raising money from your angel investors?
It’s one of the reasons I was able to raise my first $20M. The man who became my co-founder and business partner had dark circles, and I told him I thought I could help him with them. He said, “You know, Patti, that’s not a very nice approach when you’re asking someone for money.” I said, “I know, and I don’t want to waste your time, but I actually want to help you.” I gave him a lab sample, and he called me two weeks later and said, “I’m in.”
Q. Why did you choose to create a clean, non-toxic product? Isn’t that more challenging?
Honestly, I would be dishonoring Norway if I didn’t make products with safe, naturally-derived ingredients. While parabens may be the most effective way to prevent bacterial growth in skin care products, they’ve been found in cancerous breast tissue, so, I wanted to create paraben-free products. We did preservative efficacy challenge testing (PET) using honeysuckle as a preservative, and no bacteria grew, so we knew our system worked.
Q. Have any of Restorsea's products achieved a following that surprised you?
The Reviving Cleanser developed an unexpected cult following. Every product I make has a purpose. I created the Reviving Cleanser because I needed something extremely gentle that would remove makeup without stripping the skin’s essential oils. It’s also why I made that cleanser sulfate-free.
Q. Since Restorsea’s enzyme is living, how stable is it, and how should the products be stored to retain their effectiveness?
For each product, we created the enzyme’s own little house to allow it to live. Our products remain shelf-stable for four years if unopened, and three years once opened. For best results, you should use them within 12 months of opening.
All of our products are stored in a temperature-controlled environment because the enzyme deactivates at 117 degrees Fahrenheit. This is why we ship all products via FedEx, and I follow up with everyone to make sure they receive them.
Q. Did you pick specific ingredients because they would enhance or complement the enzyme’s potency?
Actually, I worked backwards. I didn’t start out thinking about ingredients. Instead, I focused on what I wanted each product to do. In the case of the Reviving Cleanser, I wanted something that would brighten, hydrate, and create that lit-from-within glow, but cleansers don’t stay on your skin long. The songyi (mushroom) extract solved that dilemma because it doesn’t need prolonged skin contact to brighten it. For hydration, we chose Kalpariane, a brown algae (alaria esculenta) that is known for its hydrating abilities. And, we also included the most stable form of Vitamin C to impart antioxidant benefits.
Q. One last question about ingredients. Many of us buy products based on where key ingredients appear on the label. Is this the best way to determine a product’s effectiveness?
Not really, especially when it comes to enzymes. Just like brewing beer, you only need a teeny piece of the enzyme for it to work. With one kilo of enzymes (that’s less than 2 ½ pounds), we can make 350 products because the enzyme is so concentrated.
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Restorsea Body Butter
Restorsea Neck and Decollatage Treatment
Tracy Ann Teel is a full-time freelance writer and the owner of Finesse Writing and Editing LLC. She’s a tutorial writer for San Francisco Globe’s beauty platform, FierceLeague.com, covering everything from skin and hair care to makeup and nail art. She writes for skincare companies, dermatologists, and cosmetic surgeons, and proudly taught at her MFA alma mater, the University of California Irvine, as a member of their adjunct faculty in English. She’s been a textbook reviewer for Prentice Hall, been recognized three consecutive years in the Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers, and has written professionally for 30+ years. Her poetry chapbook Such Dust was published by Finishing Line Press, and her work has appeared in Alaska Quarterly Review, Rattle, Pearl, Kaleidoscope, and Lake Arrowhead Life.