Want To Look Younger? Just Close Your Eyes And Put Some Snails On Your Face

Slow and steady wins the face, I mean race.

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Did you know that Thailand is one of the world's top spa destinations?

The World's Best Spas 2014 Winners List

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So it's no surprise when the latest beauty craze is birthed out of Thailand. Say hello to snail facials, which is dubbed the "next big thing" in beauty.

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That this latest addition to the global beauty and wellness craze – snail facials – should surface in the hills of northern Thailand is only natural. This south-east Asian country ranks among the world’s top spa destinations, with massage treatments of every description offered around just about every corner. Other members of the animal kingdom are also enlisted, including fish, at some 4,000 pedicure spas.

The AP agrees, calling snail facials the “next big thing” in beauty.

In the United States, injecting snail serum could set a customer around USD300 per shot

New Yorkers are paying $300-350, per session, for snail serum injections these days. At least that’s what a Fox affiliate says.

But thanks to two enterprising Frenchmen in Chiang Mai, they have started a snail spa using real snails and only charge USD30, a steal compared to what customers pay in the United States

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Appropriately, given the French passion for these gastropods, the spa was started last year by two Frenchmen who had imported 100 of them from home. The colony now boasts more than 30,000, munching on chemically free carrots, cabbage and aloe on a certified organic farm.
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'We take care of the snails as if they were our family, our babies. You can see they look very good,' says Luc Champeyroux, one of the partners, gently applying one to his forearm. He does confess to eating escargots ('but not mine'), plans to breed some for the table and is currently experimenting to produce 'the perfect snail caviar.' A chosen few get plucked from the farm for duty at the spa, where I opted for the 45-minute Snail Spa Celebrity Course. For $30, it's a bargain compared to the $200 customers must shell out at Tokyo's Ci:z.Labo, a beauty salon where snail massage made its debut in 2013. Spas have also opened in China and London, and the French duo are expanding to Bangkok next month.

This unusual facial method is said to date back in the times of Ancient Greece, where the great physician Hippocrates used crushed snails to aid skin inflammations

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While the facials are new, concoctions made from snail mucus are said to date back to ancient Greece, when the great physician Hippocrates reportedly crushed snails and sour milk as a cure for skin inflammations. In recent times, the French have turned this essence of escargot into assorted creams and lotions.

Champeyroux, a manager in France's nuclear power sector before falling in love with Chiang Mai some years ago, says his all-natural line of snail products, Coquille, acts against burns, acne, stretch marks, scars and aging. The two women next to me concurred.
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Taksaphan na Pohn, a 22-year-old recent university graduate, said she had earlier tried laser and other techno-treatments but after some research decided that “natural therapy” was better. She said snails helped clear her acne when she was stressed during her studies.

“My face is firmer and softer,” she said. “But you don’t get immediate results. It shows gradually.”

However, there are dermatologists who question the credibility of the therapy, stating that there are not enough research to prove those claims actually work on the skin

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The fluid, exuded by snails when under stress, is known to contain beneficial nutrients and antioxidants, but Bangkok-based Dr. Dissapong Panithaporn and other dermatologists say that there has been no significant scientific research on how these actually work when applied to the skin.

Well, if this isn't up to your fancy, how about getting massaged by some elephants instead?

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