If 15 years ago, someone had told you that putting snail mucus on your skin would be a thing one day; you probably wouldn’t have believed it. As weird as it sounds, snail slime is naturally composed of Allantoin, Collagen, Elastin, Glycolic Acid, Vitamins A and C and Antibiotic Peptides, which is great for the perfect skin.
It is one of the latest ingredients to cause a buzz in the skincare industry and we are here for it. Those slow-moving, slimy creatures are making their debut into fan-favourite serums and creams. They have even garnered attention for their ability to make your skin more hydrated and youthful.
Before we go on and on, let’s first understand what it is and why everyone is raving about it.
What is snail slime?
Snail slime (or snail mucin) refers to the excretions produced by snails: They can serve as lubrication, adhesion and protection for the snail, according to Good Housekeeping Institute Executive Beauty Lab Director Birnur Aral.
So, how does it play a role in skincare? Beauty products tagged with snail mucin ingredients actually tend to use snail secretion filtrate, a processed and sanitized version of snail mucin that’s more suitable for cosmetics, says Aral.
The application of snail and slug slime dates as far back to ancient Greece, where “they used the mucus to help reduce inflammation and prevent skin aging,” says Dr Chang. But, it shot to fame in modern times only in the last few years.
“It is suggested to have hydrating, antioxidant, antimicrobial, wound healing and anti-aging properties.” Its use has increased globally, especially with the growing popularity of Korean beauty products, of which snail mucin has been a popular ingredient for over the past decade.
Benefits of snail slime
So – snail slime may not sound super pleasing to put on your face, but this is a hot ingredient in the latest skincare trend, promising to hydrate and repair skincare barriers slime after slime.
It claims to hydrate, heal, and brighten the skin while slowing down skin ageing.
Thanks to the hyaluronic acid in the mucin, it has moisturizing properties that support the skin barrier and help lock in moisture. The glycolic acid helps to stimulate collagen production that not only helps diminish fine lines and wrinkles but it also helps to give your complexion a radiant, youthful glow.
Additionally, it increases skin cell turnover; in simple terms, it may help with mild exfoliation, leaving your skin smoother and free from dead cells. It also prevents the growth of bacteria.
Dr Hadley King, MD, a board-certified dermatologist in New York, says it also contains zinc which is anti-inflammatory and allantoin, which soothes irritation. So, all in all, you can expect the skin to be softer, more moisturized and glowing with consistent use of snail mucin.
Anyone can use snail mucin, especially those with dry, scarred, or pigmented skin.
Best snail slime products
1) Biopelle Tensage Intensive Serum 40
Snail mucin is the first ingredient in this anti-aging serum. Dr King recommends this highly concentrated serum for quick results or to aid in healing after skin procedures.
2) COSRX Advanced Snail 96 Mucin Power Essence
Dr James Y. Wang, a dermatologist and the founder of Metropolis Dermatology, calls this blend of hyaluronic acid, glycerin, and snail mucin one of the best snail-mucin products on the market for its brightening and moisturizing powers, as well as its lighter feel. “While hydrating, COSRX Advanced Snail Mucin is less comedogenic than other formulations,” Dr Wang says of its finer filtration process.
3) Mizon All-In-One Snail Repair Cream
This multi-tasking cream hydrates, brightens hyperpigmentation, diminishes fine lines and wrinkles and even helps to heal blemishes. Plus, it’s a K-beauty favourite, so you know it’s good.
4) Caracol Natural Skincare Day & Night Facial Cleanser Foam
It is widely advised to use this cleanser to remove impurities and pollutants without compromising the skin barrier.
Emily Perrone, a production coordinator and skincare obsessive, says she uses this cleanser to clear up sun spots she picks up from spending most of her free time outdoors. Within two months of consistent use, she says it noticeably softened the hyperpigmentation and made her skin glow like she “came back from a really good vacation.” This cleanser is packed with rosemary, aloe vera, and sage and restores skin elasticity while calming irritation.
5) Snail Bee High Content Steam Cream
A blend of snail mucin, bee venom and hyaluronic acid help to soothe, balance and hydrate the skin with each use. The ingredients were blended together with steam so their effectiveness is stabilized when mixed. Plus, the cream is lightweight enough to sport day and night.
6) LA PURE Korean Face Mask – 10 count
For an even tone and brightening, Dr Corey L. Hartman, the founder of Skin Wellness Dermatology, recommends this La PURE mask, which contains glycolic acid. According to the brand, La Pure also contains almost seven times the amount of snail-secretion filtrate found in most other masks on the market. The higher concentration means that skin can rejuvenate faster, allowing you to see results more quickly.
Advanced Snail 92 All-In-One Cream from COSRX
The cream utilizes a combination of soothing ingredients to help naturally enhance a healthy glow. You may use this face moisturizer to diminish signs of ageing, acne and dryness. Crafted with snail secretion and adenosine, this day cream triggers cell turnover, helping to refine skin texture and plump for a more youthful complexion.
It has no known side effects yet. However, if you have a known allergy to snails or molluscs in general, you should refrain from using snail mucus.
Whether or not you are allergic to snails, conducting a patch test before application is recommended. Apply it to a small portion of your forearm and leave it on for 24 hours. You may apply it to your face if you do not see any adverse reaction.
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