A new skincare craze has swept across Korea, now Japan and soon the rest of Asia and possibly the rest of the world will follow. Mark my words: THIS IS HUGE. The new miracle ingredient is, sit down and take a deep breath – snail slime.
What the Snail?
What makes snail slime so special? The simple explanation is that snail skin is made up of the same structural components of human skin such as collagen, elastin, water holding molecules, etc. Since snail slime is what protects and restores the damages caused by sun radiation and the coarse surfaces they have to slither on, it can have the same regenerative effects on human skin too.
The scientific explanation is that snail slime contain glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) that tightly bind copper peptides. Copper peptides not only degrades wounds and scars, but also has the ability to stimulate collagen production. GAGs are a family of carbohydrates that play an important role in maintaining connective tissue between cells so the skin always looks more tight. They also include the composition of hyalorunat, a compound that keeps the skin moist.
In short, snail slime has the ability to assist in breaking down acne scarring, promote collagen synthesis, and moisturise the skin.
History of Snail Cream
Snails were recommended for skin care as far back as 400 B.C when Hippocrates, considered the father of medicine, produced the earliest known snail cream with milk and crushed snails to treat skin redness.
In 1980, a Chilean family that sold snails to Europe for food purposes discovered that the handling of the snails softened the workers’ skin. Another 15 years of scientific analysis and formulation later, the first modern snail cream was developed.
Snail cream increased in popularity in Koea in 2009, the trend reached its peak in 2010, and now it has spread to Japan and I believe the rest of Asia would follow suit.
So Which to Es-car-GET?
I got dizzy when I researched this – believe it or not there are just sooo many snail creams now! Below are the ones I read about the most:
1. Elicina Snail Cream 40ml - The original snail cream, containing 80% snail extract.
2. Etude House Darling Cream 50ml - Contains 73% snail extract.
3. Elishacoy Skin Repair Snail Cream 50g – Contains 91% snail extract & Phyto-TP.
4. It’s Skin Cream D’escargot 60ml – Premium priced snail cream containing 20% snail extract. 70,000 units sold in its first month of launch.
5. Missha Super Aqua Cell Renew Snail Cream 47ml – Contains 70% snail extract, botanical stem cell, Baobab Tree ingredient and Deep Sea Water Complex.
6. Tony Moly Intense Repair Live Snail Cream Set 45ml – Contains 70% snail extract and is available in cream/eye cream set.
7. Secret Key Snail + EGF Repairing Cream 50ml – Contains 75-80% snail extract and EGF. Also available in clear gel version which is good for oily skin.
This list does not even come close to scratching the surface of the hundreds of snail creams in the Korean market. In addition within each brand mentioned there is an entire range of snail slime products – sheet mask, serum, eye cream, BB cream.
Whilst the thought of snail slime may be stomach-churning for some, it doesn’t really bother me. I mean, we eat snails and the slime is incorporated into a cosmetic formulation, so it’s not like having live snails on your face. Out of the 7 brands I will most likely give Elishacoy and Secret Key a try.
What about you? Would you put snail cream on your face?
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