Yes. You have read that correctly. I have been applying snail goo [or mucin as it’s called] to my skin in the form of a moisturiser.
I didn’t know much about snail mucin before I researched it for this blog post but it is really interesting but maybe a bit icky.
What is snail mucin?
You know that silvery trail left behind by a snail? It’s that! It’s what helps keep a snail moist and prevents it from hurting its underside when it travels over rough ground.
Never in a million years would I have thought that this would be a good ingredient in skincare but it is made up of so many antimicrobial properties that it’s a no brainer.
It is widely considered that snails were used as a topical treatment in Ancient Greece because their slime was known for its healing properties. The French have used mucin in their skincare since the 18th Century and Chilean farmers were the first to notice that snail mucin healed the cuts and grazes on their hands.
What is snail mucin made up of?
Snail mucin has natural antimicrobial properties meaning that it keeps bacteria living on your skin at bay – hence fewer breakouts. A lot of people claim that it helps with their acne breakouts because of this.
The mucin also contains glycolic acid. I use this acid as part of my nighttime routine to keep my skin clear so I know all about how wonderful it is. Glycolic acid exfoliates the skin by removing dead skin cells and unclogging pores, therefore preventing breakouts.
Hyaluronic acid is also present in snail mucin and this helps to create a moisture barrier, whilst working to keep your skin plump.
How do you harvest snail mucin?
Ok, this is where things get a little murky.
Back in the day, snails were put under stress in order to gather the mucin – think of it like when we are placed under stress, we sweat. It’s kind of like that – very basic!
I was assured by the company that produces the product that I was using, that no snails are harmed in the harvesting process. I assume that they use the techniques of some other companies whereby they place the snails in a darkened room and allow them to roam over a netting type material that aggravates their undersides, causing them to produce more mucin. This has not been confirmed.
My skincare regime
Ok, a bit of disclosure for you first. I have pretty decent skin. It’s definitely a combination of genes [my Granny was fairly line free and so is my Mum], not wearing much makeup, I have never smoked and I have a vampireish fear of the sun.
I am in my mid 30’s so obviously there will be some signs of ageing starting to occur. I have some fine lines here and there but I think they could be a lot worse.
My skincare regime in the morning is a lot better than at nighttime [although I’m working on that!]
After I have washed [sorry, should say cleansed] my face, I apply triple hyaluronic acid all over, then a vitamin c serum and finally a moisturiser.
The Snail Mucin product review
I have been using the day/night moisturiser from Yeouth Skincare as found here.
It is a day/night cream but I have only used it in the day because I use a sleep oil at night. I have found it really light on my skin which is what I want in a moisturiser. I hate the creams that feel oily and thick on your skin – not for me at all.
This product is…slimey I suppose. That’s the texture. Almost gel-like. It disappears on the skin really quickly and I do not find it sticky at all. It has a bit of a weird smell – not overly strong at all but not completely fragrance free. Best thing about it is that it does not pill on my skin and on the occasions I have worn makeup, it doesn’t fight against it.
The product blurb says that it is packed full of powerful natural, nourishing and hydrating active ingredients that deliver results by boosting elastin and collagen production. Not only does it contain snail mucin, it also contains hyaluronic acid [moisturiser], green tea [antioxidant] and peptides [amino acids].
Honestly, it’s great. My skin is definitely softer and I believe that my fine lines have got fainter but this could be the effects of my hyaluronic acid that I use in step one after cleansing. My skin is definitely clearer – I don’t really get spots but always get the hormonal one and this hasn’t been as bad! The best thing about it for me has been the texture. I have loved using it and I’m quite glad that a little goes a long way.
The bad news is that whilst I love it, I am not sure I would buy it.
Why, I hear you cry? I have banged on about how great it is and I am sure it is my skin’s best friend in the time that I have been trying it, but I am not so sure about the ethical merits behind it. The company has given assurance that the snails are not killed or hurt in order to extract their slime, but they must be put under some sort of stress in order to secrete that particular mucin. Yes, I know it’s ONLY a snail and I’m all for using more natural products [as natural as this can be!] but I am just not sure how comfortable I am with that when surely a lab could create something with similar properties?
That being said, it is a really lovely product.
What do you think? Would you try snail mucin?
I’d love to know your thoughts. Let me know in the comments.
As an aside – I was going to pose with a snail slithering down/up/over my face. Thank god our garden snails were hibernating because I later read up that the common garden snail i.e. one that hasn’t been living in a lab and under sanitised conditions could actually carry e-coli!
Disclosure: I have collaborated with Yeouth Skincare before on a gifted basis in exchange for a review. All opinions are my own.