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Testing 3 Top Products from Holy Snails: a Favorite Brand of the Asian Skincare Community

3 Holy Snails Products Reviewed by ChristinaHello

Holy Snails, a brand that has been around the block for ages, has been an icon in the skincare community for a long time.  Starting off as a blog back in 2014, Holy Snails was birthed through a Redditor on the Asian beauty forum, along with the help of Jude from Fifty Shades of Snail, who created the quirky name inspired by her username on Reddit Sharkus_Reincarnus.

They started from a place of needing a product that had 5% Niacinamide and 3% N-Acetylglucosamine, both of which had research to back up its reduction of hyperpigmentation, redness, and signs of aging.  When those ingredients didn’t satisfy their skincare cravings, they continued on and added Sea Kelp Bioferment, Green Tea, Licorice root, Hyaluronic acid as some of their base ingredients.  With the success of founding product, Shark Sauce, they have since created many spinoffs including double shark, sunfish serum, Hanbang shark, and even monthly specials like Spooky shark, and Rose gold shark.

All of their products are cruelty-free and made in the USA.

Holy Snails Double shark - $11

Looking for maximum spot-fading, PIH-lightening power? With a double dose of niacinamide (10% instead of the 5% offered in Shark Sauce), Double Shark rapidly tackles hyperpigmentation without irritating skin. This lightweight and fast-absorbing formula hydrates and softens while it brightens."

$11 for 7 mL or $34 for 30 mL - BUY NOW

All the Holy Snails Shark Sauces come in this plastic squeeze bottle with a needle-like tip.  The lid is a little hard for me to twist off because of the child safe lock.  It might just be me, but I always have troubles opening up child safe locks even as an adult.  After you have opened it though, you don’t really have as much problems twisting off the cap. 

The serum is somewhat jelly-like but gets almost watery like when massaged into the skin.  My skin instantly feels more hydrated and I had no problems with irritations.  It absorbs into the skin effortlessly with almost no residue left over.

I have used this serum for more than a month now and saw that my blackheads didn’t return as quickly as before.  Normally my blackheads would cultivate all over my nose in less than a week of extraction, but this double shark kept it relatively clean for more than 2 weeks which is quite impressive.  With the sea kelp bioferment in the ingredient, it definitely kept my skin hydrated and somewhat plumped throughout the summertime.  During the summertime, I have to change my routine from being heavy and thick to something lightweight due to comfort.  This serum was the perfect product to maintain everything.  I can’t say if the Niacinamide helped fade my hyperpigmentation just yet, so I will have to keep using it.

Holy Snails Hanbang Shark - $11

Holy Snails is inspired by K-beauty, and what’s more K-beauty than hanbang (traditional Korean medicine-inspired) skincare with a brightening twist? Hanbang Shark soothes and brightens skin with a combination of traditional herbals and modern clinicals, for a one-two punch of radiance-boosting power."

$11 for 7 mL or $34 for 30 mL - BUY NOW

No scent detected

When I first got both of these bottles, I was quite alarmed at how small the Hangbang version was.  I honestly did not think 7 mL and 30 mL would be such a drastic difference, but let’s do a bit of math to see if it is better value to get the larger bottle or not.

$11/ 7mL= $1.57 / mL

$34 / 3mL= $1.13 / mL

So it is definitely more of a value if you were to get the bigger bottle but if you want to sample a few versions of the shark sauce, 7 mL would sufficet since it took only a pea size amount for my entire face anyways.

This Hanbang 7mL comes in the same squeeze bottle with the needle-like tip and the child safe lid.  I do actually find myself a few times losing the bottle in my stash because it is so small.

The texture is the same as the double sauce, with its lightweight gel texture that absorbs into the skin quickly and leaves no heavy residue.  This one is also very easy to layer with other skincare products.

Even though the ingredient for the Hanbang Shark Sauce includes Ginseng extract and Centella extract as some of their star ingredients, I honestly didn’t see much of a difference in terms of results with this version and the double shark.  Both serums have niacinamide, Sea Kelp Bioferment and Licorice Root extract, but this hanbang one has a few more fancy ingredients like Ginseng Extract, Horse Chestnut Extract, Chamomile Extract, Ginger Root Extract, Goji Berry Extract and of course Centella.  I think if I were to use this product for a longer period of time, I might be able to tell a difference?  But this product might be better suited for my mother who is in her 60’s.  I’m not saying this product isn’t a good product, I’m just saying if you want to buy a Shark Sauce, maybe choose one or the other but I don’t think you need both.

Holy Snails Sheepish Lanolin Lip Balm - $6.50

Lips are especially prone to dryness because the thin, delicate skin of our lips doesn’t produce its own oils. Lanolin, the key ingredient in Sheepish Lanolin Lip Balm, is nearly identical to our skin’s natural moisture and keeps your kisser soft without stickiness or an oily residue."

$6.50 (0.15oz) - BUY NOW

There is fragrance added to this and it smells like warm vanilla sugar.  No sheepish scents and smell-o-scale: 6/10 in terms of how strong the scent is and it does linger after application.

I’m actually a lip balm fiend and have tried a lot of lip balms.  For me to determine if a lip balm is good is if the hydration lasts even after the lip balm has worn off.  I have used lip balms in the past that actually make your lips drier in the long run *Chapstick cough cough*.

Lanolin is an  ingredient that has a molecular structure that mimics human skin oil, which makes it very easy to penetrate the skin and keep it hydrated. I love that this lip balm only has 6 ingredients, all of which are recognizable.

I do have a problem with this lip balm, which happens on certain days.  If you live in a very cold environment, you might find this lip balm to be too firm or stiff.  One time, I used this lip balm when it was too firm and it actually split my already dry lips in the middle.  This lip balm does take time to warm up, but when it does, the moisture lasts a long time on your lips.  My lips after the product had absorbed into my skin, feels softened for the whole day.  The texture is very lightweight on your lips and leaves your lips with a subtle natural glow but not glossy.

Overall I think Holy Snails definitely made their splash in the skincare community and continues to do so with its staple Shark Sauce.  If there was one product I would want to repurchase in the future, it would definitely be the double shark with its 10% niacinamide.