The Good The Bad, & The Ugly of Snail Mucin Eye Gel Explained

The Good The Bad, & The Ugly of Snail Mucin Eye Gel Explained

What is Snail Mucin?

   Snail mucin, also known as snail secretion filtrate, is a popular ingredient in skincare products, particularly in Korean beauty regimens. But, the term ingredient is a misnomer, it doesn't emphasize what makes snail mucin so great. As the name implies, it is derived from the slime of the cornu aspersum, a.k.a. the common garden snail. However, studies have tested other snails. For example, the Helix aspersahas, white jade snails (Achatina fulica), and helix aspersa maxima have similar benefits for the body, not just the skin. It contains a mix "[...]of properties like glycoproteins, hyaluronic acid and glycolic acid, all of which have long-documented benefits for the skin,” Dr. Hadly King states in Women's Health. Furthermore, snail mucin contains, "natural vitamins A and E, antioxidants that can reduce inflammation and signs of aging, and there are peptides that boost collagen production," adds Elizabeth Bahar Houshmand, a fellow of the American Academy of Dermatology.

   These components contribute to a variety of skincare benefits such as anti aging, and hydration. While, scientists have not fully decomposed what the ingredients of the healing properties in snail mucin are yet, synthetic version are being developed. The reasons include economic, and quality control issues that halts growth and new discoveries. Since, snail farming is an arduous process, it costs more to get the snail mucin. In addition, the quality may vary depending on what they eat. To offset this issue, brands are infusing other ingredients, such as, niacinamide, adenosine, hyaluronate, and tea tree oil.

The Benefits of Snail Mucin

   Snail mucin by itself has been used by the ancient Greeks for inflammation. But not until the 1980's Chilean snail farmers noted that handling snails have resulted in softer hands and minor cuts that have healed faster. Since then, studies have been conducted to further understand the benefits of snail mucin, not only for your skin.

   Studies have found that snail mucin, besides bio relevant benefits such as, hydrating, and anti aging properties, has many other bio benefits. This includes, wound repair, antimicrobial, and may prevent cancer. Plus, it is known to reduce inflammation, and sun damage.

How Snail Mucin Helps Improve Hydration & Moisture

   Within snail mucin, there are many skin friendly ingredients. Those targeting moisture and hydration include hyaluronic acid. Where hyaluronic acids are a type of glycosaminoglycan (GAG). These polysaccharides have a unique capacity to bind and retain water molecules. study treated mice with wounds, the results concluded that hyaluronic acid helped stimulate collagen III and sped up wound recovery. Where collagen III helps with elasticity. In addition, a study published June 2021 in Dermatology and Therapy, concluded that the experiment immediately improved hydration by 134%..

How Snail Mucin Helps Improve Anti Aging

   In a study, the E. desertorum mucin demonstrates improved antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects in mice with intestinal inflammation and testicular damage, suggesting its potential as a supplementary material due to its cost-effectiveness.[1] While, this was injected into the mice, it shows the potential benefits. These antioxidants, protect the skin against damage from free radicals and environmental aggressors like pollution and UV radiation. Which can help prevent premature aging. While, at the same time, helping heal the skin. As snails avoid bright sunlight and their mucin acts as a skin barrier and adhesive, they also require antioxidants and anti-inflammatory protection.

Does snail mucin help with dark circles? As it stands, it has all the ingredients and properties to do just that.  While, it may not be for this purpose, in a study conducted in 2015, concluded that using cream containing snail mucus effectively reduces wrinkles, improves skin elasticity, restores dermal density, and tightens the skin after 4 weeks of application. 

How Snail Mucin Helps Improve Wound Repair

   Snail mucin can heal minor cuts, but did you know that it can also have other potential uses such as sealing skin wounds? Professor Wu Mingyi and his team discovered a natural biological adhesive from snail mucin to heal wound. The problem is that there was no ideal way to seal a wound, especially for diabetic patients. But, professor Mingyi where the extracellular matrix remodeling phase of tissue repair has a very similar composition of snail mucin.

   But in regard to the natural healing, allantoin comes in. It is a highly praised ingredient in the skincare world, renowned for its multifaceted benefits that cater to a wide range of skin needs. Its inclusion in formulas is not just a trend but a testament to its effectiveness in nurturing and healing the skin. Let's delve into the various benefits that allantoin offers.

Heals Minor Injuries: Allantoin is known for its healing abilities. It aids in the repair of minor cuts, scrapes, and other superficial skin injuries by promoting cell regeneration through the growth of connective tissues, bones, and cartilage. It also offers a moderate antioxidant and anti inflammatory effect. This accelerates the healing process, making allantoin an excellent ingredient for improving the skin's resilience and recovery. It isn't surprising that this is naturally included in snail mucin. But, that's not all, other benefits include:

Hydration: Allantoin is a potent moisturizer that helps the skin retain water, thus ensuring it remains hydrated and plump. By enhancing the skin's ability to hold moisture, allantoin prevents dryness and keeps the skin looking and feeling soft and supple.

Reduces Itchiness: One of the notable properties of allantoin is its ability to soothe the skin. It effectively reduces itchiness, which can be a symptom of various skin conditions such as eczema or general skin sensitivity. Its calming effect helps alleviate discomfort and makes it an excellent ingredient for those with sensitive or irritated skin.

Improves Texture and Appearance: Over time, allantoin can significantly enhance the overall texture and appearance of the skin. By promoting the shedding of dead skin cells and stimulating the growth of new, healthy ones, it helps in smoothing the skin's surface. This contributes to a more even complexion and reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

Soothing Properties for Dry Skin: Particularly beneficial for individuals with dry skin, allantoin's soothing properties help to alleviate the tightness and discomfort associated with dryness. By providing essential hydration and supporting the skin's natural barrier, it ensures that dry skin feels nourished and comfortable.

   Another ingredient for wound healing includes, glycoproteins. There is one study published in 2021 that experimented with burned mice, where the ones with in the study with snail mucin recovered faster than those without it.

How Snail Mucin Helps Improve Caner

   Snail mucin could potentially protect against melanoma, a.k.a. a serious skin caner. Where there were many studies with signs of success, inching towards a solid solution. But, this is in its infancy and more studies will have to be conducted.

What Makes Eye Gels Preferred?

   As we have a better understanding of snail mucin, it isn't difficult to see why we prefer snail mucin eye gels. It could be a reusable silicone like material with the formula sold separately, foil, or hydrogels with ingredients infused into it. But, the hydrogels or gel patches are best due to its convenience, comfortable material, and instant results. In combination with other skin friendly ingredients, it will brighten and reduce that puffy tired look.

Are There Any Disadvantages In Snail Mucin

   It is still a new ingredient in the skincare industry, and more so in the discovery of new and novel ways to utilize its full abilities. With that said, there are no known side effects, besides allergies and sensitive skin types. But even that, there are patch tests and ways to avoid potential hazards such as avoid snail mucin if you are allergic to shell fish. As such, there are unknowns, with its various benefits that cross link to many fields such as cosmetics/skincare, medical and biologic uses. With that said, it is sure to be a part of not only one facet of life.

Studies have shown that positive results in snail mucin wound healing effects.  Some benefits include, reducing inflammation, and the adhesive properties allows the skin the heal properly. In addition, the "adhesion energy of more than 1000 J m−2, far stronger than most commercial tissue adhesives." stated in an article in the nature communication


Key Takeaways:

   Snail mucin is like a magic ingredient, it has many benefits and then some. Most of all, there isn't any known side effects unless allergies are part of the equation. With benefits such as, hydrating, and anti aging properties. It has benefits outside of skincare including, wound repair, antimicrobial uses, and positive strides to cancer research. Addressing some anti aging issues such as reducing inflammation, and sun damage.

Remember, while snail mucin has some fantastic benefits, it's not a miracle cure-all. Always keep your expectations realistic and listen to your skin. If something isn't working for you, it's okay to try something else.


  1. Ibrahim, A., Morad, M., El-khadragy, M., & Hammam, O., 2022. The antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects of Eremina desertorum snail mucin on experimentally induced intestinal inflammation and testicular damage. Bioscience Reports, 42.