Curious About Slugging? Here Are 4 Derm-Approved Products If You’re Looking to Try TikTok’s Viral Beauty Trend


Your nana’s secret to 24/7 hydrated skin has gotten Reddit’s and TikTok’s seal of approval – it’s called ‘slugging,’ and it involves slathering your face with a layer of petroleum-based products like Vaseline over your skincare products before retiring to bed.

The objective of making your face look like the opening scene of a surrealist movie? To amp up your skin’s moisture levels and wake up glowing and reborn.

Sound like something your skin desperately needs? Here’s a detailed guide on living the slug life and the products you need to hop onto the slugging train.

What is Slugging?

Petroleum jelly for slugging skincare

Slugging is a skincare trend that involves greasing your skin with a heavy-duty occlusive (Vaseline or other petroleum-based products) as the last step in your nighttime routine to avert transepidermal water loss.

The petroleum jelly forms a slimy film over your skin, so you look dewy and glossy in a slippery, sorta-sluggish way.

The trend has been there for over 150 years, but it recently popped up on Reddit’s Skincare Addiction thread, credited as a K-beauty skincare staple. It has also been trending all over TikTok, with beauty enthusiasts touting its immense benefits.

Despite all the buzz, several dermatologists have gone on record and recommended it to anyone looking to keep their skin hydrated and skin barrier protected (which is a significant pillar in K-beauty philosophy).

The trendiness of the technique is definitely the products used and the aspect of slathering your skin with jelly until it becomes extra slimy. But, the importance of slugging is essentially protecting your skin barrier, with a cheeky moniker on top.

Who Is It Perfect For?

Since you’re using a heavy occlusive, slugging is ideal for individuals with super-dry skin or sensitive skin conditions. The technique is vital for these skin types since it helps prevent water loss, allowing your skin to kickstart repairing your skin barrier.

If you have oily skin, AVOID slugging like a nasty plague. Even if your product is non-comedogenic (it won’t clog your pores), the occlusive environment can trap dead skin cells and oil, triggering breakouts.

How Should You Do It?

Got the slugging bug? Here’s how to do it correctly:

  1. Cleanse – since slugging seals everything into your skin, you need to ensure your skin is super clean. You can use some of these facial cleansers to do the trick.
  2. Tone – if you have super dry skin, you want to avoid toning with an astringent (it can severely strip your skin of essential oils). Instead, reach out for tea tree oil, witch hazel, or a super gentle chemical exfoliator – whatever makes your skin happy
  3. Hydrating Serums For the Win – the thing is, slugging won’t give you the desired results if you don’t pile on hydrating products (an occlusive doesn’t infuse your skin with moisture. It just keeps it sealed in). So, reach out for super-hydrating elements like hyaluronic acid or an aloe-infused serum, and you’ll be glowing like Chrissy Teigen.
  4. Optional: Moisturizer – slugging is just an addition to your nighttime routine. So, you need to perform all steps as usual. Plus, an extra layer of moisturizer can be incredible for those with super-dry skin
  5. Time to Get Slimy – to slug like a pro, melt your occlusive of choice into your palms, then slowly roll them into your face. Ensure to let the product sit for a few minutes before getting into bed, lest you’ll mess up your pillowcase.

What Products Should You Use?

Here are some of the product recommendations for slugging:

Vaseline 100% Pure Petroleum Jelly, $2

Ask your grandmother, and she’ll tell you this is a skincare OG! It is 100% pure petroleum jelly and backed by almost every dermatologist on the planet.

Cetaphil Healing Ointment, $16

Many TikTok sluggers love this product for its potent combination of super-hydrating shea butter, petroleum jelly, glycerin, and vitamins B3 and E.

CeraVe Healing Ointment, $19.65

You’ll read numerous reviews and recommendations of this healing elixir on Reddit. It contains the skincare powerhouse –hyaluronic acid, the moisture-retaining queens – ceramides, and the occlusive champion – petroleum.

Aquaphor Healing Ointment, $13.74

Beauty aficionados recommend this healing ointment containing 41% petroleum jelly while still creating a breathable barrier.

There you have it! An insider look into slugging.

Our take on it?

We back every skin barrier supporting technique. So, if slugging helps seal in and build on your moisture levels, we’re game!

However, you might want to go for a modified version of the petroleum jelly – a product that can feed your skin with essential nutrients, protect your skin barrier and give you that dewy, glowy look you’ve always dreamt of!



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