This soothing, water-absorbing algae extract is commonly added to thicken hair- and skin-care products and to help makeup glide on smoothly. It's also found in the filmy coating created by some face masks and peels. Alginic acid, also called algin, is a naturally occurring, edible polysaccharide found in brown algae. It is hydrophilic and forms a viscous gum when hydrated. With metals such as sodium and calcium, its salts are known as alginates. Its colour ranges from white to yellowish-brown. It is sold in filamentous, granular, or powdered forms.
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