At this point, you’re probably already familiar with slugging—the K-beauty practice that involves layering an occlusive balm or moisturizer on top of all your usual skin care to lock in moisture, boost your skin barrier, and enhance the benefits of your other products. Slugging nearly broke #BeautyTok last year and the internet is all about the trend (Well+Good’s Senior Beauty Editor included), saying the moisturizing and skin-softening benefits are positively unmatched.
So when Cocokind launched a moisture-locking balm of its own, I obviously had to try it. The new Ceramide Recovery Balm ($22) promises to reduce dryness and irritation, prevent moisture-loss and support a healthy skin barrier—oh, and it can be used for just about anything, including slugging. I’ve been using it as the final step in my nighttime routine, and here are my thoughts.
What makes the Ceramide Recovery Balm special
If I’m being totally honest, the Ceramide Recovery Balm had me at “ceramides.” Dermatologists have been recommending the barrier-boosting ingredient for ages, and for good reason. “[Ceramides] help preserve the barriers of the skin and lock in moisture as well as shield the skin from pollutants,” Sheel Desai Solomon, MD, a Cary, NC dermatologist previously told W+G.
Dr. Solomon says the ingredient occurs naturally in our skin, but tends to diminish as we age—which is all the more reason to load up topically whenever possible. The Recovery Balm also features oat kernel oil, a natural skin soother, and squalane—a skin-hydrator said to be as good (if not better) than hyaluronic acid—that supports your skin barrier and helps retain moisture, making it a dream for coping with dry, sensitive skin. Consider the fact that it’s fragrance-, mineral oil-, petrolatum-, and lanolin- free, and Cocokind’s Ceramide Recovery Balm already has my old tub of Vaseline beat.
I used about a dime-sized dollop of the balm to slug at night (a little goes a very long way), massaging it between my hands before applying. Besides being fragrance-free, the first thing I noticed was how easily the rich balm emulsified in my hands. Unlike other occlusive balms that feel like rubbing solidified butter on your face, the Ceramide Recovery Balm quickly melted down into a slick oil texture that made it a breeze to apply. This also kept it from feeling too heavy on my combination-leaning skin, which I appreciate.
And since the multipurpose balm can be used pretty much anywhere to tackle dry spots, I slathered the leftovers on my hands, elbows, and lips for extra moisture. I love a moisture-boosting product, but I love a multipurpose moisture product even more.
Fast forward to the next morning, and my skin was velvety soft, and displayed zero signs of congestion or irritation (which is always a concern for my blemish-prone skin). The Ceramide Recovery Balm worked like a plush, comforting blanket on my skin—calming signs of sensitivity (the oat kernel oil and squalane showing up to work) and locking in moisture (as ceramides are known to do) while I snoozed. Another bonus: an unfortunate cluster of inflamed, picked at pimples on my forehead looked less angry and seemed to be on the road to recovery. Which makes sense, because according to Ramya Garlapati MD, a board-certified dermatologist based in Miami, using an occlusive ointment—like the Ceramide Recovery Balm—on skin is essential to healing skin after picking.
What’s more, Cocokind shoppers approve of it, too. Some are even saying that the balm helped treat their eczema, and credit the protective formula with saving their dry skin from the harsh winter weather. “My cuticles are not peeling back, my hands are not cracking and my feet/heels/elbows are more moisturized than ever before,” gushed one Cocokind reviewer. “I also use this on my eczema flare-ups with much relief…This is a staple for me now!”
It’s safe to say that the Ceramide Recovery Balm is a staple for me now, too.