What is skin slugging?

What is skin slugging?

Dewy, supple and plump skin seems to be an extremely difficult feat to achieve, if not impossible, for those of us with perpetually dry skin. It becomes even more difficult to keep the skin looking moisturized and hydrated during the dry winter months, which remove every ounce of moisture from the skin, leaving it lookimg and feeling dry and flaky, which is why slugging seemed to be an attractive trend when we first heard of it. 

Garnering its fame through Ticktok definitely made us take it with a pinch of salt initially, but after coming across it’s many benefits along with it being highly recommended by dermatologist made us try it out, and we were pleasantly surprised to say the least. Infact, it wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that it revolutionalized our skin, and can very well do the same for you if you too have dry, flaky and eczema ridden skin.

Interested to know more? Keep on reading to find out!

What is slugging?

A K-beauty trend, slugging involves the application (read: slathering) of a petrolatum based ointment, such as Vaseline, onto the face overnight. This helps to combat dryness, hydrate the skin, and repair its moisture and protective barrier. The thin layer of petrolatum acts as an occlusive, locking in moisture and preventing trans-epidermal water loss from the skin. It is similar to the use of occlusives, for wound healing after surgeries as it keeps the wound moist and aids in quick healing. 

How does slugging help the skin?

The top layer of our skin not only determines how our face looks, but also plays a huge role in protecting the deeper layers from damage by serving as a protective barrier. However, it can easily get damaged due to exposure to the sun as well as the frequent use of harsh products and chemicals such as acid peels and scrubs. 

With the balance of the skin being thrown off, it can’t effectively maintain it’s moisture and hydration levels, hence the skin acting up in all sorts of ways. Slugging however can help repair and rebuild the protective barrier slowly by creating moist environment as it seals in moisture. This promotes a more hydrated, supple and plumper skin. 

As the last step of the PM skincare routine, slugging helps to lock in the goodness of the products applied before, allowing them to do their job of replenishing and rejuvenating the skin, in turn promoting clearer, radiant and more youthful skin, with fewer wrinkles, fine lines and blemishes. 

Slugging works exceptionally well for people who have dry and flaky skin as well as those with eczema as the sealed moisture helps to soothe the skin, alleviating any inflammation, redness and swelling. 

What about acne prone skin?

Vaseline itself does not break out the skin as it is non-comedogenic, i.e. it does not settle into the pores. However, as slugging essentially ‘seals’ the skin, it can prevent the natural ois of the skin from escaping, trapping them and stimulating acne. So it’s best to avoid if you’re someone who struggles from frequent breakouts and such.

How to slug?

Step 1: Start with cleansing your face and following it up with a toner.

Step 2: Apply a hyaluronic acid containing serum such as the Leovard Serum to hydrate the skin and lock in moisture.

Step 3: Follow up with a generous amount of a nourishing and moisturizing cream or lotion. The Leovard Multicream, with a list of hydrating and nourishing ingredients, makes a great pick. 

Step 4: Load up your occlusive: Vaseline and apply in all over your face. (Slugging can be done all over the body as well.)

Step 5: Wait for a few minutes and then hop into bed.

How to make the most of slugging?

  • Apply only at night: Unless you don’t mind walking around with a slimy and greasy face, slugging is best done as an overnight treatment.

  • Pair with a hyaluronic acid serum: Applying a humectant before slugging multiples the benefits of slugging manifold as it holds and locks in the moisture which is then sealed by the occlusive, making the skin plumper and supple. 

  • Be consistent: Slugging can not repair the skin overnight. It takes a consistent routine for it to show visible results. According to Darnisha Monson, a licensed esthetician, I’m order to notice results, you need to slug consistently for four to six weeks. 


Although slugging is sticky, greasy and gross as hell, it is definitely worth it and can greatly transform the skin, helping to not only make it more hydrated and supple but also more radiant and youthful.  

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