The use of snail slime to improve skin dates back to ancient Greece, where Hippocrates, the famous physician, reportedly prescribed crushed snails and sour milk as a way to rid the skin of inflammation. In more recent times, the use of snail creams started when Chilean farmers who handled snails for the French market noticed their skin was visibly smoother. Nowadays, it is the secreted slime discovered by these farmers that is harvested to produce snail cream, not crushed up snails. Korean cosmetic companies caught wind of this unique discovery, formulated it for skincare and people in Korea went kinda crazy over it. 

So, does Snail Cream Make Wrinkles Escargot Away? Helix aspersa muller glycoconjugates may sound like something Mary Poppins would say, but the real definition is simple: snail slime.  More specifically, this is the snail slime that is the main ingredient in the natural cosmetic aptly named “snail cream.” Now, slime probably is the last thing you’d want to put on your skin, but snail cream is actually used as a beauty aid and is thought to reduce inflammation and redness, stimulate skin regeneration, and lock moisture into the skin.


When snails are agitated, they excrete a thick fluid as a means to protect themselves. It may sound odd to use something like that on your skin, but remember that humans and most other animals also excrete oils as a way to protect their skin. In fact, the oil your body excretes to moisturise your skin is made up of lipids, sebum oil, and dead skin cells. As a snail protects itself, the slime that is excreted from its body is packed with nutrients like hyaluronic acid, glycoprotein enzymes, antimicrobial and copper peptides, and proteoglycans. All of these nutrients are already commonly added to beauty products and are thought to provide many benefits to skin.

The science behind snail slime as a viable beauty cream is mostly derived from lab studies where the effects of the slime have been tested on a variety of cell cultures. In these studies, research suggests that snail slime will stimulate the production of elastin and collagen, increase fibronectin protein production, and stimulate increased proliferation of fibroblasts. While all of these traits could be beneficial for skin, there have yet to be significant cosmetic trials or research into how snail slime actually affects the skin, and how long those effects last. In fact, there haven’t been any significant clinical trials on how a specific beauty product containing snail slime actually works on this skin – just the slime itself.

One of the main difficulties in conducting clinical trials on the benefits of snail slime is that the market has not fully figured out how to guarantee the results of testing. After all, if snail creams are to be effective, then the slime has to have a consistent concentration of the various chemical compounds, but this is difficult to guarantee. Because the success of trials leans heavily on the quality of snail extract used, the concentration of slime and the way it is excreted and processed, test results can sometimes be misleading. Some companies that manufacture snail creams do choose to keep a steady supply of their own snails so they can better regulate the extraction and formulation of the slime.


Skin care professionals recommend that if you are using snail cream for the very first time that you should begin so in small quantities, applying to specific, limited areas of the skin. The reason for this is it will allow you to better check for any allergies or skin reactions you may have to snail cream.
It’s also important to note that it’s not uncommon for those with very sensitive skin to experience a rash or breakout in the first few days of using snail slime cream, however, for most people this passes within 2-3 days. If you do have sensitive skin or allergies it’s always best to consult your doctor before using a new product to be on the safe side.

With some snail creams you may also want to consider using an additional product for moisturising as, despite the natural moisturising benefits of snail slime these alone might not be enough if you suffer from dry skin. Snail slime should yield noticeable results and improvements in your skin within the first 2 weeks, after being used consistently, twice a day. However, don’t expect those historic scars and skin problems to disappear overnight.

Missha is a leading Korean snail cream brand, known for their use of high quality, natural products at a relatively low price compared to some of the other snail cream brands out there. They utilise all-natural, organic plant extracts and the latest in cosmetic manufacturing technology to bring you an expansive range of products that are made to the exceptional standards Missha is famed for.

The brand was established back in 2000, coinciding with the launch of Korean beauty website Beauty Net, and opened their first physical retail store in 2002. Since it’s inception, Missha has grown to become one of Korea’s best know and most love cosmetic brands that is now available in over 330 stores worldwide.


Missha’s most popular snail cream is their Missha super aqua cell renew snail cream product line. This cream has to be my favourite snail product from the line because it contains 70% snail extract. It's also a really light, gel texture that immediately feels cooling and absorbs easily. The cream's fresh cucumber scent is sweet and subtle. The packaging is sturdy, and the cream comes in a pretty golden jar—although in a perfect world, this would come with a hygienic pump. 

Snail Extract, Dimethicone, Glycerin, Ethanol, Baobab Tree Extract, Bis-PEG-18methyl Ether Dimethyl Silane, Arbutin, PEG-11 Methyl Ether Dimethicone, Deep Sea Water, Tocopheryl Acetate, Adenosine, Centella Asiatica Meristem Cell Culture, Ethylhexyl Isononanoate, Hydroxyethyl Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Carbomer, Triethanolamine, PEG-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, PPG-26-Buteth-26, Caprylyl Glycol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Disodium EDTA, Xanthan Gum, Perfume 

As you can see, it contains Snail Slime Extract that treats troubled skin, wrinkles, loss of elasticity, and uneven skin tone. Concentrated Baobab Tree Extract and Deep Sea Water activate the moisture storage capabilities of skin to relieve dryness. I’m just going to highlight again the  Star Ingredients…

*Snail Slime Extract – Contains proteins, glycolic acids, and elastin to help prevent scarring and promote skin healing. This cream is 70% snail slime extract.

*Botanical Stem Cell Extract – Botanical Stem Cells are a popular skincare hype ingredient right now. Unfortunately, hype is all it is. Plant stem cells can’t even help other plants; they can only help the plant they’re derived from. They definitely can’t influence human cell growth. They are not harmful, but they aren’t helpful either.

*Baobob Extract – Possesses essential fatty acids Omega 3, 6, and 9, as well as Vitamins A and E.

*Phytoncide Water – A plant-derived essence with antibiotic properties.

*Portulaca Oleracea Extract (Common Purslane Extract)  also added to the star list, which contains essential fatty acid Omega 3, as well as Vitamins A, B, and C. It also contains antioxidants, including alpha lipoic acid. It’s been used as a healing ingredient in Tradition Chinese Medicine for centuries

*Arbutin - which is a plant-derived skin lightener that helps reduce hyper-pigmentation. 

Again, snail mucin is not the  gooey slime that you may think it is. It's an extract packed with nutrients such as hyaluronic acid, glycoprotein enzymes, antimicrobial and copper peptides, and proteoglycans, all ingredients commonly used in beauty products and proven to be beneficial to the skin. These ingredients have been seen to stimulate the formation of collagen and elastin (i.e. anti-ageing), repair damaged skin, and restore hydration. Today, the mucin is collected by harmlessly agitating the snails so they excrete the thick fluid, meant to protect themselves. As odd as this sounds, humans secrete oils to protect our skin too (hello sebum)!


The Super Aqua Cell Renew Snail Cream is a perfect gel cream moisturiser for me. Really good for those people who doesn’t want greasy moisturisers in the day time. Performance wise, it’s a wonderful, non-greasy texture, successfully reduced appearance of hyper-pigmentation. I love light, gel textured creams because they don't clog your pores easily. Quality is top notch, contains some great actives as well as a very high percentage of snail mucin (70%), but also contains a few potential irritants and one “buzz” ingredient (botanical stem cells).

The fragrance is very strong, but I really love it! It has a fresh, floral scent, a lot of jasmine to it! Like I said, kinda smell like cucumbers too! I actually wouldn’t mind a perfume that smelled like this moisturiser! For anyone who is sensitive to fragrance should probably steer clear. Fragrance can also be an irritant for some people, so those people would probably want to avoid this product as well.

To me, it does the work —it moisturises, nourishes, and protects my skin, keeping it healthy, firm, and strong. The light gel texture absorbs well while leaving a dewy finish and subtle fresh scent. It’s also free of Parabens, dyes, and mineral oil. Overall, I really love Korean skincare products that have snail mucin on it! I've noticed a big difference in texture, moisture and fading of my scars ( along of course with all my actives/acids, it's a perfect combo)! I'm glad the love of snails products are quite popular nowadays in the US and in the UK!

You can get this Missha Super Aqua Cell Renew Snail Cream at Sokoglam, here.

Have you tried any beauty products with snail mucin? 


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