A moisturizing practice that seems at once easy and extreme, Slugging is the K-Beauty skincare trend of coating your face in Petrolatum or Vaseline to prevent transepidermal water loss (TEWL), thereby retaining maximum hydration.
What is Petrolatum?
Petrolatum is a highly effective occlusive moisturizer, meaning it forms a protective, impenetrable barrier on the skin’s surface. Not only does Petrolatum trap moisture in the skin, it also prevents harmful bacteria and allergens from entering and doing damage. Nothing in, nothing out.
How Slugging Affects Skin
The reduction of TEWL makes it easier for the epidermis to continue its normal function—a great thing for overall skin health and hydration. We see this powerful protection in wound healing as well, as Petrolatum is often used to seal off injuries from water, air, and environmental pollutants. When skin is properly hydrated, it is also less likely to scar. In theory, these same restorative principles apply to Petrolatum in skincare.
In practice however, while Petrolatum may lock in existing hydration, it doesn’t deliver any additional moisture. And just as moisture can’t escape, neither can excess oils and bacteria. That makes Slugging with Vaseline problematic—but we have a solution.
Slugging the Erno Laszlo Way
When you practice Slugging the Erno Laszlo way, even greater skincare benefits are revealed. Think about it: Vaseline is 100% Petroleum jelly with no other actives. Here’s what you get by Slugging our way:
- Intense moisture
- Benefit of other actives
- Unmessy application
- Breathable hydration
- Won’t clog pores
Slugging is recommended for dry to very dry skin types, including the eye area. It’s best done as part of your nighttime ritual.
Which Erno Laszlo Products Are Ideal for Slugging? We Asked Our Skincare Experts:
Soothing, intensely-nourishing balm rescues skin stressed by harsh environmental factors
Mattifying moisturizer delivers hydration by replenishing fatty acids and balancing skin’s pH
All-purpose 24-hour cream protects skin’s natural moisture, even in extreme weather
Intensive hydrating eye cream saturates skin with easily-absorbed moisture and nutrients
Anti-aging serum-oil hybrid that hydrates and plumps, evening texture and renewing luster
In the end, the benefits of Vaseline for face moisturizer are not entirely without merit. But the premise of Slugging is truly effective when you use thoughtful products formulated for hydrating the face. Give skin extra nourishing ingredients, get real, radiant results.
I started using the active phelityl cream in my 20’s and later added the 3-9 Repair Balm to my ritual every day. I’m using other EL eye repair creams and products, but swear by the active phelityl. I also added the firming cream with the blue lid which is so luxurious. I’m now 76 and have great skin. Thank you Erno Lazlo!