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Live Snails as a Skin Care Treatment?

A new beauty fad has become popular in Japan. A salon offers its customers facial treatments using live snails to promote healing to damaged skin, with the goal of a healthier and more youthful complexion. Snails are placed on the client’s face and allowed to roam freely. A worker remains present to reposition any snails that come too close to the client’s mouth or eyes.

Once the snails have completed their meanderings, a facial massage is given to rub in the slime trails left behind by the snails. Treatment is completed with application of masks and creams that also contain snail mucus.

Japan isn’t the only country to consider the skin care benefits of snail mucus. A snail farmer in France extracts snail mucus to sell to manufacturers of beauty products. He has contracts with several cosmetics labs and a major cosmetics company to provide certain amounts of snail mucus to be used for skin care products. Several beauty products available on the market already contain snails and snail mucus and are targeted to relieve certain skin problems.

Snail mucus is rich in antioxidants and contains an ingredient called hyaluronic acid, which is present in many sought-after beauty treatment products. Hyaluronic acid can help the skin retain moisture, plump up the skin to create a fuller appearance, and reduce the appearance of scarring.

The drawbacks are that this procedure is only available in a handful of areas around the world and can cost clients hundreds of dollars for a one-hour session. Although snail mucus does contain beneficial ingredients, is there evidence that enough hyaluronic acid is available in these treatments to give any noticeable benefits to the client?

Rather than travel halfway around the world for what may be unproven methods, there are many more conventional treatments for more youthful skin available much closer to home. Med spas and cosmetic surgeons offer an array of non-surgical cosmetic treatments that have been found to be extremely effective in dealing with a variety of skin issues. Chemical peels and laser peels can be performed to remove damaged surface layers of skin and help reduce the appearance of any fine lines or scarring that may be present. Other treatments – including cosmetic injections and laser skin resurfacing – have also proven to give patients ways to improve skin firmness, enhance tone and complexion, and achieve a more youthful appearance.

We offer a comprehensive selection of non-surgical cosmetic treatments here at Pinsky Plastic Surgery. If you have questions about your options, or if you would like to schedule a consultation, please contact us today.