The skincare industry is always buzzing with new ingredients. Some commonly known and accepted, others, well, a bit weird and intriguing to say the least. One of the latest ingredients to take the skincare world by storm: Snail mucin. When you think of snails, skincare is probably the last thing to come to mind–that is, until now. Yes, those slow-moving, slimy creatures are making their debut into fan-favorite serums and creams and have even garnered attention for their ability to make your skin more hydrated and even more youthful. We tapped board-certified dermatologist, Hadley King, MD to get the scoop on snail slime and whether it’s actually good for your skin.
What exactly is snail mucin?
According to Dr. King, snail mucin is an excretion from the snail. It can often be referred to as snail slime and may be labeled as snail secretion filtrate on ingredient lists. “It’s made up of properties like glycoproteins, hyaluronic acid and glycolic acid, all of which have long-documented benefits for the skin,” says Dr. King.
And while we can thank Korean beauty for bringing this hydrating ingredient stateside, Dr. King says using snail mucin for skin care originated with the Chileans. “In the 1980’s Chileans snailbreeders found their hands to be very soft after handling the snails, leading to the Chilean snail cream, Elicina.”
What are the benefits of snail mucin?
Now that we know what exactly snail mucin is, let’s talk about what it does. While there hasn’t been a significant amount of research or studies done on the effects of snail mucin, there are a few conclusions that can be drawn solely from the makeup of the mucin itself.
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. Dr. King says it also contains zinc which is anti-inflammatory and allantoin which soothes irritation. So, all in all, you can expect skin to be softer, more moisturized and glowing with consistent use of snail mucin.
Are there any negatives to using snail mucin?
As stated above, there isn’t’ a wide range of research available about snail mucin, but Dr. King suggests it’s a pretty well tolerated ingredient. She does warn that “as with any ingredient, allergies are possible.” So, it’s always best to apply a bit to a small area of skin to test for reactions before applying all over your face.
What do you look for in a snail mucin Product?
According to Dr. King, when looking for an effective snail mucin product, you should look for a formula that combines antioxidants or retinol, as well as common skincare staples like vitamin C, glycolic acid and other hydrating ingredients. Most commonly, you’ll find snail mucin in serums or creams and Dr. King says often serums will have a higher concentration of snail mucin and can be used for anti-aging benefits. If you’re looking for more of the mucin’s hydrating properties, opt for a cream. Ahead, a mix of various snail mucin-infused formulas from serums to essences to creams.
1 Biopelle Tensage Intensive Serum 40
dermstore.com $136.00 SHOP NOW
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
ulta.com $21.00 SHOP NOW
If you’re looking for a more affordable price tag, this essence is a must-try. It pairs 96 percent snail mucin with sodium hyaluronate (a form of hyaluronic acid), and arginine (an amino acid), to not only hydrate the skin, but improve texture and tone, too.
3 Mizon All In One Snail Repair Cream
amazon.com $16.90 SHOP NOW
This multi-tasking cream hydrates, brightens hyperpigmentation, diminishes fine lines and wrinkles and even helps to heal blemishes. Plus, it’s a K-beauty favorite so you know it’s good.
4 SMD Cosmetics Saromae Hydrating Snail Secretion Serum
amazon.com $88.00 SHOP NOW
This serum applies like silk. It gives skin a boost in antioxidants and helps increase cell turnover to help keep a youthful glow over time. 5 BENTON Snail Bee High content Steam Cream
amazon.com $15.80 SHOP NOW
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 together. Plus, the cream is lightweight enough to sport day and night.
Source: Women’s Health