When it comes to bizarre beauty treatments, the new “snail facial” certainly is slimy! Making headlines today is the new treatment from Tokyo that involves snails crawling all over the face. Snail mucus is said to have anti-aging properties, help soothe inflammation and heal damaged skin—especially from sunburns. But what do the experts really have to say about this new, peculiar treatment? Dr. Oscar Hevia,–renowned cosmetic dermatologist with over two decades of experience and his own skincare line—weighs in:
Photo: Sirichai Asawalapsakul / 123RF Stock Photo.
Does snail slime really have anti-aging properties, soothe inflammation and heal damaged skin?
Maybe it’s not ALL hype. According to Dr. Hevia, there have been a variety of studies using the common garden snail (Helix aspersa). He explains, “researchers found that after three months, those who were in contact with snails on their face did show improvements on their skin’s appearance. Additionally, studies examining the snail secretion have found antioxidants and other factors that can promote wound healing in skin cells in the laboratory.”
But snail secretion isn’t the only way to give your skin the antioxidants it needs! According to Dr. Hevia, “generally speaking, certain plant-derived antioxidants have also been shown to promote wound healing, for example, the extract from the red mangrove.” So don’t go running for the snail treatment just yet!
Should readers consider this treatment?
Dr. Hevia reveals his final thoughts on the snail facial. “Although the snail facial may be a ‘pleasant’ experience for some, studies would suggest it is unlikely there will be any significant skin changes with just one treatment.” ■