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Slugging: What It Is & How to Add Slugging to Your Skincare Routine

Slugging: What It Is & How to Add Slugging to Your Skincare Routine

Would you slather a thick layer of heavy-duty occlusive ointment over your face as the last step in your skincare routine? You may want to after learning more about TikTok’s “slugging” trend. From deeper hydration to a youthful, glowing complexion, slugging skin offers major benefits. Learn more about slugging, what it is, and how to add it to your nighttime skincare routine.   

What Is Slugging? 

Slugging is a moisturizing technique that involves applying a thick occlusive product such as Wonder Milk Buttery Botanical Jelly as the last step in your skincare routine to help lock in your other serums and moisturizers. As you might imagine, your face looks pretty wet and shiny by the end, emulating the residue left behind by a slug. Hence, the name “slugging.” We know it sounds kind of icky, but we promise the results are worth it! 

Slugging is particularly common during colder months or for those with very dry skin when it’s necessary to lock in as much moisture as possible. But intense hydration isn’t all you can expect. Keep reading for more slugging skincare benefits. 

The Benefits of Slugging Your Skin 

Imagine putting on the thickest moisturizer you own. All night long, your skin is able to drink up all that extra moisture and you’re likely going to wake up with baby smooth skin that glows from the inside out. And that’s not all... 

By slugging, you can expect:  

  • Increased hydration 
  • This is to be expected with such a thick occlusive product. 
  • Improve barrier function 
  • Slugging prevents surface water loss. 
  • More efficacy of your other products  
  • By trapping your serums beneath your slugging product, it encourages your serums and active ingredients to penetrate your skin more effectively. 
  • Softer skin 
  • The extra moisture plumps up the skin to help reduce fine lines and wrinkles. 

Is Slugging Good for Your Skin? 

Yes! Slugging is proven to protect against moisture loss, improve skin hydration, and increase the efficacy of the products you’ve layered underneath. While slugging your skin can offer some amazing benefits, it’s important you’re mindful of your skin type and the products you're using when slugging. A common concern is whether slugging is comedogenic or not. And rightfully so! Sealing your pores with a thick occlusive product seems like a disaster waiting to happen for those with blemish-prone skin—but slugging is more nuanced than that. See what we mean with our product recommendations and our step-by-step guide. 

How to Choose the Best Products for Slugging 

When it comes to skin-slugging products, the occlusive layer is easily the most important. While most people on the internet are using Vaseline or other petroleum-derived products, we suggest trying our Buttery Botanical Jelly, an alternative to petroleum jelly that’s made with nourishing goat milk, vitamin A & E, and shea butter. We call it Wonder Milk because it truly does it all! 

Because we only use Clinically Kind® ingredients in our skincare products, we wanted to create a jelly-like multipurpose ointment that didn’t include any of the harmful byproducts found in petroleum jelly. When used as the occlusive in your slugging routine, this clean Botanical Jelly seals in the good and locks out the bad. 

Step-by-Step: How to Slug Your Face 

Finally, the part we’ve all been waiting for. The slugging routine! Now that you know what slugging is, the benefits you can expect, and which products to use, it’s time to break down the steps. 

Before starting any skincare routine, it's necessary to clean your face and remove any excess oil, makeup, and debris. Doing so ensures you won’t trap anything in your pores once you put on the occlusive. And because the whole point of slugging is to lock in everything that you put on your face, you want to start with a really clean canvas. 

Next, apply your skincare as usual. This can include toners, exfoliants, or serums. See our tips below to get the most out of your slugging routine. 

And finally, you’ll apply your occlusive of choice. 

To reiterate, the steps are simply: 

  1. Cleanse 
  2. Tone or exfoliate 
  3. Treat 
  4. Moisturize 
  5. Apply occlusive 

Our Top Tips for Slugging Skincare 

There are a few things you can do to make sure your slugging routine is giving you the most benefits.  

  • First, be sure you’re using non-comedogenic skincare products. This includes the occlusive you use. 
  • Second, look for products with hydrating ingredients like aloe, plant-based glycerin, and hyaluronic acid. These can be applied as serums, toners, or moisturizers before your occlusive. 
  • Thirdly, apply the above products onto damp skin to further enhance water retention. 
  • Fourth, you should aim to do your entire slugging routine about 30 minutes before getting into bed. This lets your products fully seep into the skin before falling asleep. 
  • Finally, slugging can be messy. Try placing a towel over your pillowcase before going to bed or keeping your hair back with a sleeping cap or high bun. 
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Slugging Skin FAQs

Now that you’ve heard all about slugging and what it can do for your skin, here are the answers to some FAQs you might still have: