What is slugging, the latest beauty trend for more hydrated skin

What is slugging, the latest beauty trend for more hydrated skin

Su TikTok, a new beauty tutorial is registering millions of views thanks to the hashtag #slugging. However, we must not be fooled by the English name, because this technique, now viral, has nothing to do with snails, but simply refers to the shiny appearance it leaves on the skin. So what is it slugging? The mania of spreading petroleum jelly on the face in the evening, before going to bed, as a miracle cure for dry or dehydrated skin.

This new trend that fascinates the web, and above all the Gen Z passionate about unusual tutorials, in reality, is not new at all, that of slugging, in fact, is a practice that dermatologists have always recommended. “Especially when certain pathologies are present, such as eczema, a patina is created with petroleum jelly that prevents the evaporation of water, thus, by remaining more hydrated, the skin is able to reconstitute its natural protective barrier”, explains Corinna Rigoni, dermatologist in Milan. And to those who accuse this technique of being comedogenic (ie the cause of blackheads) Rigoni replies: “The petroleum jelly oils on the market today, although derived from petroleum, are extremely purified and do not risk generating impurities in the skin”. The dermatologist then adds that this operation can only be carried out for short periods of time, three or four days at the most, and that in some cases it must be absolutely avoided. Which? “When you suffer from rosacea, acne, or if you have particularly sensitive skin.”

But not everyone looks favorably on this much loved practice on the web which, among other things, contrasts with new skincare approaches that follow the science of chronobiology, which claims that the skin during sleep needs to breathe to regenerate: ” With slugging, the skin at night has no exchange with the outside, it is asphyxiated, as if it were covered by a plaster that makes it macerate “, explains Stefano Manfredini, director of the course in Cosmetic Science and Technologies of the University of Ferrara, who he adds: “We must also be careful because, if before applying the ointment, the skin has not been thoroughly cleansed, a barrier of petroleum jelly facilitates the penetration into the dermis of smog and fine dust accumulated on the face during the day” . The message is clear: cleansing first of all.

It should be noted, then, that it is slugging not only has contraindications for the skin, but also for the environment: “We are talking about a non-biodegradable ingredient, which once washed off the face, ends up in the drains and then pollutes the water. In addition, being derived from fossil, and therefore coming from a non-renewable source, produces and increases the Co2 in the atmosphere “, says the cosmetologist. However, fans of eco-bio cosmetics, who love to experiment with new cosmetic practices, need not fear, in fact there is also a sustainable alternative to slugging: “Vaseline is used because it is a commonly used product, with a strong occlusive power given by its high molecular weight, but it is good to know that the same result can also be achieved by using a vegetable butter, such as shea, which has the same molecular weight as petrolatum. Certainly more expensive but more eco-responsible towards the planet “, concludes Manfredini.

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