While there are many questionable TikTok skincare trends, slugging is actually beneficial for many people. Slugging is a Korean beauty trend that has roots in ancient times. It's based on skin science that delivers deep hydration and restoration to those with a compromised skin barrier.
We forwarded your slugging questions to board-certified dermatologist Jennifer Trent, MD, FAAD, for her expertise. From how to slug to who should slug, read on for everything you need to know about the viral skincare trend.
What Is Slugging Skincare?
Slugging involves the application of an occlusive product on the face at bedtime. You should sleep with it on your face and wash it off in the morning. An occlusive creates a physical barrier on the skin to prevent water loss and inhibit entrance of toxins, irritants, and microbes in order to protect the skin.
How Does Slugging Benefit The Skin?
- Prevents transepidermal water loss (TEWL) that causes skin dryness. What is transepidermal water loss? The term refers to the process of water passively evaporating through the skin and into the air.
- Repairs the skin's barrier to protect against infections and irritation.
- Improves the signs of aging by delivering super hydration over many hours.
- Helps heal the skin by providing a protective barrier and promoting nighttime cell regeneration.
How To Slug?
- Slug if you have dry, irritated or eczema-prone skin.
- Cleanse the face well. We recommend Cleansing Foam (oily skin) or Milk Cleanser (dry skin).
- Apply a hydrating toner, like Gentle Toning Lotion.
- Applying a serum like Hydrance INTENSE Rehydrating Serum helps restores natural hydration with a high dose of soothing Avène Thermal Spring Water.
- Moisturize with a hydrating cream like Hydrance Aqua-Gel.
- Apply a thin layer of an occlusive product, like Cicalfate+ Restorative Protective Cream.
- Slug if you have oily or acne-prone skin.
- Layer on retinoids or acids under Cicalfate+ Restorative Protective Cream.
- Apply occlusive all over the face for combination skin. Only use it in dry areas.
- Apply a thick layer of the occlusive.
Should I Be Slugging If I'm Oily Or Acne-Prone?
It's probably not a good idea for oily and acne-prone skin types to slug with petrolatum. Petrolatum is not comedogenic, but it does trap water and any dirt or bacteria in the skin, which can worsen acne. Also, it may make oily skin feel very heavy and greasy.
How To Slug With Cicalfate+?
Cicalfate+ Restorative Protective Cream helps restore, hydrate, and protect the skin with postbiotic-rich C+ - RestoreTM and Copper-Zinc Sulfate. It can be used twice a day to help lock in moisture without leaving the skin feeling greasy.
The rich, nourishing cream helps restore skin 4X faster1 for visible improvement in just 2 days2.
- (1) Evaluation of visible reduction in appearance of skin treated with Cicalfate+ vs. nontreated skin.
- (2) Comparative study on 20 subjects (18-45 years old) following de-epidermization by Erbium YAG Laser on front surface of forearms. Application of Cicalfate+ for 21 days. 1 semi-occlusive application per day from D1 to D6. 2 open applications per day from D7 to D21. p < 0.0001 vs untreated skin.