What the Heck is Slugging & Do You Need to Do It??


In the ever-evolving world of skincare, new trends and techniques are constantly emerging. One such trend that has gained popularity in recent times is "slugging." No, it has nothing to do with actual slugs (whew!), but rather, it refers to a skincare practice that promises to leave your skin feeling soft, supple, and radiant. 

So what is Slugging exactly?

Slugging is a skincare technique that involves applying a thick layer of occlusive moisturizer as the last step in your nighttime routine. The term "slugging" is derived from the idea that the thick layer resembles the trail left by a slug (charming, I know). The goal is to create a barrier that seals in the skincare products you've applied earlier and prevents moisture loss, ultimately leaving your skin deeply hydrated.

woman with long black hair looking at herself in the mirror holding a jar of erin's faces tamanu balm barrier salve to use for slugging

So how do you do it?

  1. Cleanse and Treat: Begin your skincare routine with a gentle cleanser to remove impurities from your skin. Follow it up with any water-based serums or treatments that target specific concerns, such as acne, hyperpigmentation, or fine lines.

  2. Hydrate: Apply a layer of your favorite water-based moisturizer to provide initial hydration to your skin. This step ensures that your skin is adequately moisturized before sealing in the goodness with the slugging technique.

  3. Slug Time: The key step in slugging is to apply a thick layer of an occlusive moisturizer or a petroleum jelly-based product. Common choices include Vaseline or Aquaphor but if you'd like to go petroleum-free we're big fans of our Tamanu Balm Barrier Salve. Gently massage the product into your skin, focusing on areas prone to dryness.

  4. Overnight Magic: Leave the occlusive layer on overnight, allowing it to work its magic. The thick barrier locks in moisture, preventing it from evaporating and leaving your skin feeling soft and nourished.

What do I get out of doing it?

  1. Intense Hydration: Slugging provides an extra layer of hydration, making it especially beneficial for individuals with dry or dehydrated skin.

  2. Barrier Protection: The occlusive layer acts as a barrier, protecting your skin from environmental stressors and preventing water loss.

  3. Enhanced Product Absorption: By sealing in the products applied earlier in your routine, slugging ensures that the active ingredients are absorbed more effectively.

  4. Smooth and Glowing Skin: Regular slugging can contribute to a smoother and more radiant complexion, leaving you waking up with a healthy glow.

You can do it as needed - 1-2 times/week or as often as you like.  

So what do you think?  Are you going to start slugging??? 


  • Cynthia Whitman

    I feel like this would lead to hundreds of pimples! Just the thought of anyone putting Vaseline on their whole face! My dentist put some just on my lips today & I immediately got 2 pimples on my chin! I’m sure your product is way better, but I can’t believe this is a thing!

  • Erin’s Faces

    Kim – great question! You can absolutely apply the Tamanu Oil to deliver hydration and it IS occlusive so it’ll help hold that hydration BUT the Tamanu Balm is MORE occlusive because of the beeswax which makes the formula thicker. As such, to me, it provides a richer hydration if that makes sense. I hope that helps – feel free to ask a follow up question if you have one!

  • Kim Sullivan

    Probably a good idea, especially here in dry Colorado! Would Tamanu oil also work for slugging?

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