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Snail Mucin For Skin: Best Kept Korean Secret

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During the 80s, farmers in Chile producing edible snails seemed to have softer hands and healed from cuts faster. That is when we realised the benefits of snail secretion. Now before you think that snail mucin is nothing but the slimy trail that snails leave behind, stop right there. Snail Mucin is not that nor is it made by killing snails. Let’s understand why K-beauty is relying on it and how we use it!

What is Snail Mucin?

The scientific term for Snail mucin is Cryptomphalus aspersa. You’re most likely to see it in the ingredient list with the term ‘Snail secretion filtrate’, ‘Snail essence’. It is the slimy liquid that snails produce when they are under stress. The source becomes questionable to all those who want cruelty-free skincare. But there are companies who are dedicated towards producing snail secretion filtrate without torturing or killing the snails. For example, Cosrx produces Snail secretion filtrate by letting the snails walk on a mesh net in a dark and quiet place. After 30 minutes, snails are taken back home and the mucin is collected. There are many other means to ensure that just for the goodness of our skin, snails aren’t harmed. Having said that, Snail Mucin is not a vegan ingredient. 

To know more about the difference between Vegan and Cruelty-free, click here.

What are the benefits of Snail Mucin?

Snail mucin has multiple benefits due to which it makes it to the the list of being one of the best Korean ingredients. Due to its intense hydrating property, one

1. Hydrates

Snail mucin draws in water to your skin just like Hyaluronic acid leaving you with intensely hydrated skin. This will help you repair the skin barrier and promote healing, regeneration of the tissues. Well hydrated skin is the key to glass skin just as K-beauty highly promotes!

2. Boosts Collagen production

Snail secretion filtrate contains growth factors which is why it helps you boost collagen production. Collagen is the key to prevent early ageing and promote well-ageing.

3. Exfoliates skin

An old study conducted on 15 women who applied 8% Snail mucin every day and 40% Snail mucin every night for three months showed 40% improvement in pigmentation due to the presence of Glycolic acid in the mucin. Glycolic acid can exfoliate your skin and even acts as a humectant which helps you deliver these results.

4. Speeds up wound healing

Due to the presence of Vitamins and Minerals like Manganese, Copper Peptides, etc in Snail mucin, your skin heals faster. A study apparently proved that it does fasten healing of open wounds and burns.

5. Soothes irritation

Snail mucin, along with other goodies, also has Allantoin that soothes irritation. This is why it also sits perfectly for individuals who are suffering from Rosacea, Eczema, Psoriasis. However, please consult a dermatologist before using this as a treatment for the same.


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How to include Snail Mucin in your skincare routine?

They can be included in your AM and PM routine. They do not cause photosensitivity nor do they interfere in the activities of an active ingredient when layered with it.

You can use it as an essence or use it as a replacement to your moisturiser in case you want to avoid heavy layering while travelling. It absorbs quickly into your skin so wearing it as a part of your skincare routine before going for makeup can work fine without disturbing your makeup setting.

Sublime picks Cosrx Advanced Snail 96 Mucin Power Essence to wear under your makeup. The consistency is sticky but once it absorbs, it leaves you feeling fresh.

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In your PM routine, along with essence, add a Snail Mucin-based moisturiser too. Our pick is Cosrx Advanced Snail 92 All In One Cream. It has a sticky texture with gel-like consistency. Works perfectly with essence to wake up with plump, repaired, and smooth skin!

Which ingredient can we layer with Snail Mucin?

Snail mucin can be layered with any ingredient since it does not interrupt the activity of actives. It is a gentle ingredient that can be paired with the fussiest of the ingredients. We’ve picked up a few combinations that we think you must try.

1. Vitamin C

It works well to fade pigmentation and even reduce scars since it boosts the collagen production. This combination will work well together to give you that glass skin finish due to intense hydration from Snail Mucin and brightening effect from Vitamin C. 

    Learn more about Vitamin C here.

    Sublime picks Martiderm Photo Age 15% Vitamin C with HA 5 Ampoules starter pack comes in Amber shaped sealed ampoules to prevent oxidation (you will have to break the glass ampoule to use it), the formula is non- greasy/ sticky, gives intense hydration. Best used if you are tar-getting hydration and anti-oxidation at the same time.

    2. Retinol

    Retinol is one of the fussiest skincare ingredients that cannot be layered with just about anyone. But when one pairs Retinol’s ability to diminish fine lines and wrinkles with Snail mucin that can heal, soothe irritation and hydrate your skin, it can give you baby soft skin. We love this combination!

      Know more about Retinol here.

      Sublime picks Deconstruct Retinol & Peptide Serum- 0.2% Retinol + 1% Peptide Serum that is just perfect for beginners. Layering this Snail mucin is sure to give you plump and smooth skin the next morning.

      This is an image of Deconstruct Retinol & Peptide Serum- 0.2% Retinol + 1% Peptide Serum on

      3. Acids

      The light concentration of chemical exfoliants like AHA and BHA are often found in toners. Right after using an acid-based toner, if one uses Snail mucin, it will stop the irritation that acids can give you. If you’re of sensitive and acne-prone skin type, you must opt for this combination. 

        Learn more about exfoliating acids here.

        Sublime picks Dr. Sheth's Neem & BHA Spot Clarifying Serum. This combination is the gentler way of getting rid of blackheads.

        This is an image of Dr. Sheth's Neem & BHA Spot Clarifying Serum on

        4. Niacinamide

        Niacinamide is just what you need to brighten your skin and reduce pigmentation. But if it is paired with Snail Mucin, it'd be able to deliver the results sooner. This combination can strengthen your skin barrier and hence helps you with the overall skin health maintenance. Learn more about Niacinamide here.

          Sublime picks Suganda 5% Niacinamide Serum. If you have a damaged skin barrier then trust this guy to do it’s job with Snail mucin in just a couple of days.

          This is an image of Suganda 5% Niacinamide Serum on
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          Does Snail Mucin have any side effects?

          It does not. But having said that, the ingredient is not much researched. To certain individuals, they may be allergic to Snail mucin and due to lack of research, we do not have much information on this. So one must always patch test before using Snail mucin.

          Ideally, the ingredient suits all skin types.

          The takeaway

          Snail mucin is the star ingredient in the Korean beauty industry. Snail mucin hydrates, boosts collagen production, heals wounds and even soothes irritation. Given its simple but effective method to give glass skin a finish, we are not surprised that it is touted as one of the best Korean ingredients. This one ingredient definitely has a place in our skincare vanity.

          -Divya Salvi

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