Weekly Dud: COSRX Advanced Snail 96 Mucin Power Essence

My heart aches with saddness... as I begin this post

My heart aches with saddness… as I begin this post

The Intro: Feel free to skip if this isn’t your first rodeo

This isn’t the first time I’ve spoken about dud products. I made a #weekofduds post on my instagram about this product and others that I tout as being:

Products I bought because I thought they would work well and I wanted them to work well but in the end they didn’t.

I’ve seen many an unliked or unloved product get advertised as being terrible, awful and worth less than nothing. Now I’m sure there are some products out there that are formulated terribly for human skin, but I tend to side more with the group that says hey, not every ingredient or formulation will work for every single person #reality. Some ingredients do well for dry skin, others do well for those with cystic acne and some may only target blackheads. I think simply adding “YMMV” (your mileage may vary) at the end of a post without some thought as to why it worked well or didn’t for you is not useful. That’s why I have my profile on my side bar, but I will try to ensure I put my skin type and concerns in review posts from here on out. Reading a glowing review without knowledge of a person’ s skin type, issues or sensitives may find you buying a product that won’t work for you at all. Which is what I’ve done many times over. Now I’m a little more cognizant of ingredients…. but its pretty evident from my Instagram that packaging lures me in strongly as well.


minimalist. love it.

My skin type

  • Dry Skin
  • Non- Sensitive (literally have not reacted to hundreds of products over the course of my lifetime)
  • Concerns
    • blackheads around the chin and on nose
    • The occasional pimple
    • inhibiting wrinkle formation
    • preventing cancer
    • forgetting to take my vitamins

Why did I buy this?

In the spring of 2015 memebox offered a COSRX box which included the BHA which I really wanted to try and the Snail 96 essence which I wanted to jump on since at some point on r/asianbeauty someone shared an email from COSRX outlining their humane snail treatment in collecting the mucin. I believed it involved luring them to crawl over mesh to get to some lettuce and using the mucin on the mesh aaaand making sure they had healthy snail diets. And even on their box it says that this essence is created from nutritious, low-stimulation filtered snail mucin. So I was sold on humane treatment alone.

Here’s memebox’s blerb

Snail mucin is scientifically and dermatologically proven to be highly effective and beneficial when it comes to skin cell regeneration and repair. COSRX’s Advanced Snail 96 Mucin Power Essence contains 96% of snail secretion filtrate blended with other nourishing herbal extracts. Problems like acne, sun damage and scars need skin cell regeneration which this highly-concentrated essence offers. It repairs the skin from within and gives the skin proper moisture and nourishment for its full recovery. Expect smoother, softer and healthier skin with this premium snail essence!

What’s In it?

Here’s the link to CosDNA

Ingredient Function Acne Irritant Safety
Snail Secretion Filtrate


‧Viscosity Control
Butylene Glycol

1 0

Sodium Hyaluronate

‧Moisturizer 0 0

0 0


0 0
Ethyl Hexanediol

Sodium Polyacrylate

‧Viscosity Control

‧Viscosity Control 0 1


How did I use this?

After patch testing this product which for me takes between 12-24 hours of applying it to the sensitive skin of my neck and jaw I proceeded to use this as the one and only essence of my routine

look at that string

look at that string

Per-Cosrx instruction you’re meant to

  1. On the forehead and the nose, lightly touch so as not to cause heaviness
  2. On the cheek, spread a generous amount and rub enough to soak into the skin
  3. For under eye area, tap as if playing the piano, to make the skin absorb the essence.


And if you’re familiar with hyaluronic acid then this won’t really be a new sensation to you


Although for me and my old phone it’s hard to capture the delicate stringiness which just sort of ends up looking like a cervical mucus assessment.


ah yes, my favorite type of photo… the one that barely tells you anything

I used this for about a month and then continued to experiment with it as a spot treatment and here’s what I found based off of it’s claims… and this is probably where

  • Does it regenerate skin?
    • Did it help my acne heal faster? no, it didn’t seem to benefit my acne as either a whole face or spot treatment.
    • Did it help my sun damage (per memebox)? No I think for me I’m not yet seeing a lot of sun damage pop up so I didn’t see anything
    • Did it help acne scars (per memebox)? I’m assuming this is for hyperpigmentation and no I didn’t see an improvement in PIH.
  • What about moisture?
    • Did it make my skin Smoother? No not really
    • Did it make my skin Softer? Maybe a little bit, adding it under a thicker moisturizer pretty much gives the same effect as putting straight hyaluronic acid on the skin…. so it plumps a little but doesn’t give that additional healing benefit that I saw from other users.


So who might this work for?

Well even though this product didn’t work for me, it IS one I commonly recommend people to try out if they’re looking to try a snaily product and are in need of something that can help retain some moisture in the skin. Plus the minimal ingredient list makes this one compatible with a lot more skin types/concerns. Based off my observations (aka anecdotal evidence) I’d say if you’re looking for the following

  • People of dry/combo/normal/oily skin who might have some dehydration or who are looking to boost their moisture
  • People experiencing inflammation and inflammatory types of acne seem to really benefit from this product
  • People who have skin on the sensitive side that are looking for minimal ingredients

So if you’re one of these people you might want to check it out! I got mine from memebox as aforementioned and if you’ve never shopped this link saves you 20% off your first order (more deets in my Discounts section)

What did I learn?

Well it didn’t break me out which is always nice. It basically serves the same purpose as a hyaluronic acid serum would in my routine which is why I’ve turned away from it for snazzier things. But if you’re interested in what Snaily goodness worked for me, it’s the Tony Moly Intense Care Snail Ampoule


I had to order it on eBay from Korea, but it was the first snail product that really helped heal my acne faster


I’ll review this later, but I felt like I should at least show that there IS snail out there that I like and that works for me since in the US it’s not that common of an ingredient (if you’re not into imported beauty that is)



  1. Robin Toski

    I ordered this from Soko Glam and love it. Along with a Hyaluronic cream, cleaners and moisturizer, so far so far good for m, going on 3rd week. Dry, dull, and in need of hydration is my skin. Again, not all things that glitter are gold for everyone….
    Thanks as always for your insight, love to learn.

  2. Emma

    I use Cosrx Advanced Snail 96 Mucin Power Essence purely as a moisturiser because everything else (even ones made for acne-prone skin) tend to break me out, I’ve found it works well enough for that purpose but beyond that, I can’t say I’ve seen any improvement to acne-scar pigmentation and I don’t really have any sun damage so I’ve no idea if it’s helpful for that.

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