The Moisturizer's Skin-Care Benefits and Risks

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Before snail mucin became a K-beauty trend, it was used to treat inflammation in ancient Greece. Discover the surprisingly skin-friendly ingredients in snail mucin, its contentious harvesting method, and how to incorporate it into your skin-care routine.


What Is Snail Mucin?

Snail mucin, also known as snail mucus or snail slime, is a natural excretion produced by snails to protect them from stressors. Snail secretion filtrate, according to supporters, provides antiaging and antioxidant benefits and has been used as a topical skin-care ingredient in Korean beauty products.


A Brief History of Slugging

Slugging (the use of snail and slug slime as a beauty product) dates back to Hippocrates (c. 460 BCE to c. 375 BCE), who prescribed crushed snails for inflammation. Breeders in Chile who raised snails for the French dish escargot noticed that handling the snails made their skin softer in the 1980s. The first packaged snail cream was created by the Chilean company Elicina.

Snail mucin eventually became a common ingredient in Korean skin-care products. It is now a worldwide skin-care trend.


How Is Snail Mucin Harvested?

The snail mucin found in beauty products is not the slime that snails use to glide effortlessly across the ground, but rather a type of mucus that snails produce when they are stressed.

Commercial producers of snail mucin extract the mucus by stressing the snails, either by prodding them with something sharp or feeding them salt water. The slime is collected and purified by the producers before being used in skin-care products.


4 Snail Mucin Benefits

Snail mucin contains essential chemicals and proteins that assist snails in recovering from shell damage and, in turn, can assist your skin in regaining its youthful glow. Snail mucin is said to have the following benefits:

1. Antiaging properties: Snail mucin contains glycolic acid, a chemical exfoliant that promotes collagen production and speeds skin cell turnover, reducing the appearance of fine lines.

2. Even skin tone: The copper peptides in snail mucin can help treat hyperpigmentation (dark spots), acne scarring, and inflammation-induced redness. Copper peptides also aid in the normalization of bacteria levels, which helps to limit acne breakouts in acne-prone skin.

3. Moisturization: Allantoin and hyaluronic acid, two moisturizers that soothe dry skin and help repair the skin barrier, are responsible for the hydrating effects of snail mucin.

4. Wound healing: Snail mucin contains antimicrobial peptides that kill germs and microbes, accelerating wound healing.


Side Effects of Snail Mucin

Despite the fact that many dermatologists agree that snail mucin is a safe, gentle, and effective ingredient that most skin types tolerate well, the lack of research on the ingredient means no one is certain about potential side effects.

Before applying snail mucin-based products to your face, perform a patch test on a small area of your forearm if you have sensitive skin. If you have pre-existing skin conditions or are unsure about using snail mucin, consult your dermatologist.


How to Use Snail Mucin

Snail mucin products come in a variety of forms, including moisturizers, eye creams, serums, and sheet masks. Look for formulas that include additional skin-beneficial ingredients like retinol or vitamin C.

Mucin can be taken once or twice a day, in the morning and evening. Snail mucin is effective when applied to clean skin, layered with other skincare products, or used as a final moisturizer.

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