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TikTok skincare hack: should you give slugging a go or say 'hell no'?

Our beauty editor weighs in on this viral beauty trend

03 March 2021 - 06:00 By nokubonga thusi
Vaseline is being touted for its moisture-boosting properties by TikTok beauty influencers.
Vaseline is being touted for its moisture-boosting properties by TikTok beauty influencers.
Image: 123RF/Govindji Patel

Good ol' Vaseline has been used as body, face, everything moisturiser in SA for years.

So we were intrigued to see that this household staple is having a major skincare moment thanks to a Korean beauty hack called “slugging” going viral on TikTok.

Slugging simply involves applying a layer of an occlusive formula — a moisturising agent that prevents moisture loss by creating a protective layer on the skin — as the last step of your skincare routine before going to bed.

The idea is that preventing water loss promotes a more hydrated, glowing skin.

Vaseline/petroleum jelly is said to be best for the job, but you could also use something highly hydrating like Eucerin’s Aquaphor.


As Vaseline sits on top of the skin, it has always been great for locking in moisture as well as forming a protective layer. So if you're struggling with dehydrated skin or have a compromised skin barrier, this trend could be worth a try.

If applying facial oil at the end of your skincare routine doesn't help to combat dry skin, slugging could be a very helpful alternative. It could also work wonders in winter, when the skin needs all the help it can get to stay hydrated.

That said, it's definitely not an everyday step — only add it to your skincare routine when needed.

Those who have acne-prone skin should steer clear of slugging as Vaseline may clog pores and leave the skin too greasy, which could further aggravate acne.