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Do snails hold the secret to youthful skin?

It's becoming pretty popular to use snail slime in beauty products.

snails on hydrangeas

If you thought the idea of fueling up with crickets or sipping ant-rimmed mojitos was a little hard to swallow, this beauty trend may not be for you.

Snail sludge, or mucin if we’re getting fancy, is the latest do-it-all ingredient being hailed as the brass ring of beauty, according to New York Magazine“The slime or mucus secreted by these little mollusks that helps protect their exposed bottoms against cuts, bacteria, and UV rays contains a potent combination of elastin, proteins, anti-microbials, copper peptides, hyaluronic acid, and glycolic acid—all known beauty enhancers,” Beth Landman reports.

Which is why consumers seeking a youthful glow are forking over hundreds of dollars for beauty products and services containing the slimy ingredient, eight of which the magazine bravely tested. (And then showered off a lot?)

If all this has you fired up to book that $300 escargot facial, we recommend doing so at a snail’s pace. “I’m not sure if the active ingredients are in high enough concentration or get absorbed deeply enough to have a positive effect on the skin,’’ dermatologist Howard Sobel, MD, told the magazine.

In the meantime, maybe give one of these less slimy (and vegan) trends a try? —Sarah Sarway

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