Skincare Slugging: The Beauty Trend Used for Eczema Skincare
Slugging is the process of sealing the skin with an occlusive agent, usually petrolatum-based, overnight. The process is great for hydrating the skin and it is not just limited to the face – it can also be used on other body parts such as the lips and ankles and is an excellent treatment for eczema skincare.
Slugging has recently skyrocketed in popularity due to viral social media apps and has been approved by dermatologists as it can quickly heal dryness and eczema, trapping the moisture in the skin. Petrolatum is commonly found in ointments such as Aquaphor, CeraVe, Vaseline, and other topical creams. The occlusive nature of it means that it seals the hydration and does not allow it to escape.
Can everyone use slugging?
Slugging works for people with a specific type of skin. Those who have oily and acne-prone skin should avoid slugging as it can cause even more irritation. Slugging is more suitable for people who suffer from dry skin. People with oily skin can try “selective slugging” which involves treating specific dehydrated or eczema-prone spots on the face or body. There are also other options such as lavender essential oil for eczema if slugging is not suited to your skin type.
How is slugging done?
If you’re not familiar with slugging, this is the process:
- The first step is to properly cleanse and dampen the face as you would normally. Make sure your skin is free of any makeup or other pollutants as slugging seals literally everything into your skin while you sleep.
- This is an optional step and following it is not necessary. If you want, moisturize your skin with a gentle serum or moisturizer of choice. This is generally recommended as the point of slugging is to seal the moisture into the skin. Hence, moisturizing is good and can be of any type including hyaluronic acid, glycerin, and aloe vera.
- Seal in the moisture with a layer of Vaseline or any other petrolatum-based ointment. It is important to ensure that only a thin layer of ointment is applied. Wait for the ointment to set before you go to bed.
What are the benefits of slugging?
Slugging forms an occlusive layer over the skin and forms a protective barrier which keeps the skin hydrated. It repairs the skin by keeping the skin barrier intact and minimizing the trans-epidermal water loss by trapping moisture. Depending on your skin type, it might be the answer to “"how to get rid of eczema”.
Slugging is different from moisturizing as when you moisturize, you leave the skin exposed when using any other products such as rose body butter. The moisture and hydration slowly evaporate and leaves the skin dry if not moisturized again. Slugging traps the moisture into the skin and does not allow it to escape as petrolatum-based ointments are occlusive and form a seal over the skin.
How often should slugging be practiced?Skincare often comes down to the skin type of an individual and their personal preference which makes it difficult to recommend a one-for-all routine. For people that have excessively dry skin, they can try slugging frequently. For people with oily or acne-prone skin, only targeted slugging should be practiced. Skincare for eczema face needs to be delicate to ensure that you do not irritate the skin.