Are there any nooks and crannies of society that Korean beauty isn’t burrowing into?
The e-mail marketing firm MailChimp, famous for its promos during “Serial” podcasts, has boarded the K-beauty bandwagon by sponsoring a SnailPrimp pop-up on Sunday at the Ace Hotel Los Angeles offering 20-minute facials using products packed with snail extract. “The use of snail extract in cosmetics has been gaining ground in popularity in the Korean beauty market for a few years…We want to help popularize the trend in the U.S.,” said Mark DiCristina, senior director of brand marketing at MailChimp.
While most companies associated with the word mail might want to avoid a connection to snails, MailChimp is embracing the slow creatures wholeheartedly. Guests booking the SnailPrimp services will be greeted by tanks full of snails on the hotel rooftop, where they can enjoy a snail-themed cocktail. Aestheticians performing the services will slather skin with snail cleanser, snail toner, snail mask and snail cream. To do so, they will wield applicators that have hard plastic shells for tops and nonallergenic, odor-free makeup sponges for bottoms that are meant to simulate the experience of snails crawling across guests’ faces.
“Snail cream deeply nourishes and heals damaged and irritated skin, but people shouldn’t expect an overnight miracle. Like other skin-care treatments, it will likely take some time and repeated use to make a difference,” said DiCristina. “But it should help your face feel younger and fresher than it did before.” He elaborated that snail mucin is teeming with substances regularly found in skin-care products such as glycoprotein, proteoglycans, hyaluronic acid, and antimicrobial and copper peptides.
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SnailPrimp is only a one-day event, and MailChimp doesn’t have any plans to repeat it. But if its espousal of “Serial” and K-beauty is any indication, the firm clearly has a gift for spotting major pop-culture phenomena. DiCristina called it a lover of “weird, beautiful things.” The next thing may not be so mucus-y.