Fad or must-try skin hack? We take a deep dive into slugging, the beauty trend that’s currently all over social media.

You would be excused for thinking ‘slugging’ sounds like a Gardener’s Question Time segment about dealing with pesky critters in your herbaceous borders. And yet it is, in fact, the latest skincare routine to sweep all the social channels. So what is it? Slugging, quite literally, leaves your skin with a thick layer of slimy jelly – reminiscent of a slug trail – and is reported to lock in moisture and leave skin bouncy and hydrated. But is this one-step simple skincare hack a fad or worth the hype? We look at the benefits, the routine and the best products to use when slugging.




@bootsuk Not yet clued up on slugging? ???? Here’s the lowdown on the TikTok skincare trend that’s still going strong ???? #bootsuk #beauty #skincare #sluggingmethod #skincaretips #slugging #skincareroutine ? original sound - Boots UK


You would be excused for thinking ‘slugging’ sounds like a Gardener’s Question Time segment to deal with pesky critters in your herbaceous borders, yet it is in fact the latest skincare routine to sweep social channels that quite literally, leaves your skin with a thick layer of slimy jelly - reminiscent of a ‘slug trail’. Reported to lock in moisture and leave skin bouncy and hydrated, is this one-step simple skincare hack a fad, or worth the hype? We look at the benefits, the routine and the best products to use when slugging…

What is slugging?


Originating in the K-Beauty community, the appeal of slugging (189m Tiktok hashtag views and counting) is in the simplicity and affordability of the routine. It involves, after all, just one inexpensive product in one step.

So how does one ‘slug’? The simple premise is to finish your evening skincare routine with a thick layer of occlusive, such as petroleum jelly, to lock-in moisture and prevent TEWL (transepidermal water loss) which occurs naturally as water evaporates through the skin and is accelerated dramatically overnight.

Which Skin Types Is Slugging Good For?


Frequency of slugging depends on the hydration of your skin. Dry to very dry skins could benefit from daily slugging, while oily or acne prone skins are best to avoid. While slugging itself isn’t comedogenic (pore clogging), it will seal in any residue of make-up or bacteria onto the skin that can cause breakouts.

How To Add Slugging To Your Routine


The key to slugging is the steps prior to the final ‘slug’. Cleansing skin to ensure it is prepped and super clean is imperative, followed by hydrating formulas (such as hyaluronic acid or glycerin) applied to damp skin to really attract moisture into the skin. Finally, as a skin shield to keep that hydration locked in while you sleep, slather skin with your slugging step. A housekeeping tip; add a towel to cover your pillow – slugging can be a messy business.

How Does Skin Feel Come Morning?


Because the slugging layer has acted like a greenhouse, keeping moisture in, skin should feel bouncy, hydrated and dewy. Follow with your normal morning skincare routine and reap the glowy benefits!

7 Of The Best Products For Slugging



Eucerin

Aquaphor, £9


A great high-street option for slugging. Designed to support the skin’s natural regeneration process, it’s the best option for sensitive skin with glycerin to hydrate and chamomile extract to soothe. Buy it here.


Vaseline

Dry Skin Healing Balm, £6


An intensive balm-texture that absorbs quickly, featuring glycerin, pro-lipids and Vaseline jelly to protect the skin’s moisture barrier. Buy it here.


La Roche Posay

Cicaplast Baume, £14


A tube found in many a make-up artist’s kit, this multi-purpose balm repairs and protects with vitamin B5 and Madecassoside, a herb known to aid the renewal of the skin’s epidermal layer. Buy it here.


Cerave

Healing Ointment, £18


With three essential ceramides and hyaluronic acid, this non-greasy formula is super gentle on dry skin. Perfect for your final slugging step. Buy it here.


Dr Jart+

Ceramidin Cream, £30


Skin will immediately feel comforted with a layer of Dr Jart+ Ceramidin cream. Apply in a generous layer for supple, smooth skin when you wake. Buy it here.


Lanolips

101 ointment, £10.99


With over 50 global beauty awards, Lanolips medical grade lanolin ointment is a natural alternative if you don’t want to use a petroleum-based jelly. A super intense balm that can hold 200 per cent its weight in moisture, it is the perfect slugging layer for deeply moisturised skin. Buy it here.


Embryolisse

Lait-Creme Concentrate, £14


Rich in fatty acids and vitamins, Lait-Creme Concentrate from Embryolisse has a milk texture but leaves a satiny film on skin to lock-in moisture and restore natural glow. Buy it here.


By Lydia Mansi
July 2022

Lydia Mansi

Lifestyle Editor

Lydia is an all-round lifestyle guru, tireless champion of women in business and our resident expert on beauty.

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