It seems now, more than ever, snails have become all the rage in skincare. Even snail eggs are starting to replace caviar!
Though it seems unconventional or even quite gross for some, more people are now coming to terms with all the skin benefits of snail mucin and snails.
The use of snail mucin is used considerably often for K-beauty products. You’ll find snail mucin as an ingredient in most anti-aging creams and serums. You probably know it from seeing the name Snail Secretion Filtrate on your snail products.
To find out what all the hype was about, we did our research on snail mucin. Here’s what we learned:
History of Snails
The history of people, snail mucin, and snails go all the way back to ancient Greece and the Middle Ages. They used crushed snail shells to formulate medicine and also used them to help with bowel movement.
Ancient Romans were even said to have let snails roam freely on their faces because of the noticeable lessening of wrinkles. This is because of the Glycolic Acid and Hyaluronic Acid present in Snail Secretion Filtrate.
Snail Mucin and Snail Secretion Filtrate for cosmetic use made their comeback around the eighties when a group of Chilean workers who handled snails noticed how smooth and soft their hands became after being in contact with the snail mucin. The snail mucin underwent further studies and then was later marked safe for facial use.
This led to the first-ever snail cream made from snail mucin called Elicina in Chile from a Chilean snail. It used Snail Secretion Filtrate and delivered anti-aging benefits that prevented fine lines and wrinkles.
With this, an Italian company also spent a good 9 years developing a machine specifically for extracting that precious gastropod goo which also gave you the skin benefits of snail mucin. Prior to this, snail mucin collection often led to the snail’s death.
Snail mucin vastly grew when it entered the Korean beauty world and now people everywhere are going mad with snail fever. This is especially since it’s rich in Glycolic Acid and Hyaluronic Acid which are highly sought after anti-aging ingredients.
It also contains antimicrobials and copper peptides that help boost hydration.
What is Snail Mucin?
Snail mucin, widely known as snail mucus or snail slime (whichever you prefer), is an external bodily secretion released by snails and mollusks. Snails will secrete this snail mucin or snail slime for one of four reasons:
- In order to move
- Out of pleasure
- Out of agitation
- Or when they’ve incurred an injury
Scientists have observed that they release the most snail mucin and snail slime out of pleasure than anything else, so this means that a happy snail is a productive snail!
The Cryptomphalus Aspersa or the Helix Aspersa (the European breed) is otherwise known to you as the common garden snail from which the snail mucin is extracted.
The snail mucin consists of ingredients like glycoproteins, Hyaluronic Acid, and Glycolic Acid. All of these (especially Hyaluronic Acid) have notable effects on collagen production of the skin.
The nutrient-rich properties of Glycolic Acid and Hyaluronic Acid present in the snail mucin make for a great addition to your skincare routine.
The main component of the snail mucin, Chondroitin sulfate, was revealed to be able to make headway in treating liver diseases, chronic fatigue, and inflammation of the kidneys. It has high affinity to water and is a natural component of our cartilages making it good for joint health.
And that’s mainly why snail mucin and snail cream products are very popular.
What Are the Benefits of Using It on Your Skin?
Let’s talk about what the skin benefits of snail mucin can do. Before you decide to pick up the first garden snail you see and put it on your face in the hopes of looking 5 years younger, let us stop you right there. The snail mucin is collected very meticulously by breeders.
Once they’ve extracted enough from a batch, they proceed to remove impurities from the raw snail mucin, dehydrated, rehydrated with other minerals and nutrients. It is deemed safe to use on your face and then packaged accordingly.
#1 Fountain of Youth for Aging Skin
Clinical studies have shown that the ingredients found in the snail filtrate (like Hyaluronic acid) can treat aging skin cells, irritation, and even burns. Some people can have hypersensitivity reactions to the ingredient which is an adverse effect.
The mucin has actually shown significant improvement in the treated areas. This wonderful commodity is a fountain of youth for many users. It can prevent and fill in any wrinkles or fine lines on your face.
Snail mucin can even enhance wound healing on acne-prone skin and other skin types. This is since its healing properties increases cell turnover to improve skin texture and acne scarring altogether.
#2 Skin Booster
Snail extract has a host of added benefits which include the tightening, hydrating, and evening out of the skin’s tone and texture. Other benefits of snail mucin are that it can also calm redness caused by rosacea and encourage the production of skin collagen.
Dermatologists are declaring it the next best thing. It’s no wonder that cosmetic companies use snail mucin regularly in their products and skincare lines.
This ingredient is also sometimes labeled as Snail Secretion Filtrate on other products. Its high content of Glycolic Acid and Hyaluronic Acid makes it perfect for treating fine lines and wrinkles.
#3 Painless and Inexpensive Facials
Snail facials are nothing new. Spas, plastic surgeons, and derm clinics are constantly coming up with their own versions of snail facials, creams, and treatments. It was not too long ago that the first modern snail facial was offered in Japan.
These days though, many beauty enthusiasts and influencers swear by the positive effects of infusing snail mucin and microblading on the skin. The microneedling process allows the snail mucin to penetrate the skin cells better and give stronger effects.
No need to splurge on an expensive diamond peel when you can get a modern snail facial instead! Also, snail facials are completely painless so you won’t have to endure bothersome pricking anymore.
Where Can You Get It?
From what you’ve just read, your next question might be “Where can I get some?
Luckily for you, they are readily available in stores worldwide and come in a variety of forms. From packets to bottles to creams packed with snail essence, you’re sure to find something for you.
They are prominent staples in Korean beauty stores, which are popping up everywhere even outside of South Korea.
We think it’s your safest bet on finding products that contain snail mucin for cosmetic use. No need to look for them in exotic specialty stores in that seedy part of town you never like venturing out to.
In this digital age, it’s even easier to find a whole slew of them online. Among the popular cosmetic brands include Cosrx, SMD Cosmetics, Mizon, Tony Moly and Benton, for instance. Many of these brands also offer their products in their respective online stores.
How to Add Snail Mucin into Your Skincare Routine?
Having a skincare routine is essential to maintain your skin quality. There’s no denying that there are a million ways to go about it, especially with the popularity of the 10 Step Korean Skincare Regimen.
For best results though, consistency is key. You don’t need a 10-skincare product lineup. You can opt to simply partner snail essence with your other trusted skincare products.
Just make sure to save the mucin as the last thing you put on your face before going to bed to enjoy maximum benefits of snail mucin.
In a Nutshell
The skin care industry’s current obsession with snail mucin doesn’t look like a passing trend. It’s certainly here to stay as the practice has been around for a couple of hundred years.
Not only does it speed up the wound healing process, but it can also even out skin tone and alleviate other skin concerns. It’s a wonder ingredient that reverses skin damage and improves skin elasticity.
Snail mucin has quickly made its way out of our dinner plates and into many present-day skincare products. The once annoying garden pest and appetizing delicacy is now a celebrated facial companion as well.
You can now kiss your wrinkles goodbye and say hello to snail mucin!
September 1, 2021 – Updated article content
August 17, 2021 – Improved article formatting, reviewed and updated overall content
July 13, 2021 – Reviewed and updated article links