Tonymoly Prestige Snail Lip Treatment Review

This week's review is of Tonymoly Prestige Snail Lip Treatment, which despite its impressive-sounding name, is an unremarkable product that makes a lot of fancy claims but is actually just a lip balm.

Reflective and chrome surfaces are a pain to photograph!
As you may know if you read my blog, I am snail-product obsessed.  So, I picked up this lip "treatment" expecting it to perform the same soothing miracles as my other snail products, but it turned out to be just another lip balm.  A nice one, but indistinguishable from any other regular lip balm, and unfortunately Tonymoly tucked some tiny lies into the product description that the ingredient list doesn't agree with.  Read on for all the gory details!

Full product name: Tonymoly Prestige Snail Lip Treatment
Purpose: As you will see below, it's supposed to be moisturizing, exfoliating, firming, and regenerative.   In reality, it's a lip balm.  That's like calling a spade an "ergonomic manually-powered horticultural processing device" I mean, really?!
Texture: Strange.  Midway between your traditional Blistex and a firm jelly.  See full review below.
Scent/Taste:  Very mild, it is supposed to be lemony but it just smells and tastes like eucalyptus/menthol/whatever is in those generic winter-dryness lip balms, as it contains those ingredients (see below)
Quantity: 12g, a large-ish tin for a balm.  I have lost it in my purse already, so I only use it if I happen to find it.
Availability: I bought mine from this ebay seller  but it's also available elsewhere online.  I have not seen it at any US retailers.
Price: $10-$15, which is expensive for such a unremarkable balm.
Rating:  2/5  I get better results from a $2 tube of balm from a drugstore, so the price:results ratio is terrible.
Repurchase: No, but again that's just because it's so expensive for what it is, there's nothing wrong with it.

Full Review:
If I could rate this on packaging and novelty, I'd rank it at least a 4.  The packaging is has a gorgeous sort of chrome/holographic/metallic sheen, a subtle change in finish to delineate the text and graphics, and it has a pretty pink tin which adds a little luxury to the overall feel of the product.

I mean seriously, how cute is this?

I don't even like pink, but you'll have to trust me that the packaging is even more adorable than you can see in these pictures, because the chrome effect I was talking about just can't translate in photos.

The novelty I mentioned is the strange and fascinating texture of the product. It's perfectly clear, which you can see in this photo.  The only reason there is any sort of obscuring of the bottom is from the sunlight reflecting off the sheen of the product due to the angle I took the photo.

Look how clearly you can see the edges of the embossed circle at the bottom.  It's so clear that it looks like the tin is full of water, which is trippy  because it's got your standard melts-with-the-heat-of-your-fingers type balm, so as I mentioned it's almost like a Blistex-type balm, which are usually translucent at best.

Despite having a melty, oily-type feel under the fingers, it's also like a super firm jelly and resists being picked up with your fingers, but if you try to scoop it with your nail, it just parts around your nail and redistributes along the sides, leaving a trough and no product on your nail. O_O

You can see on the right where it looks like there is a fingerprint, but that's actually where I dragged my pinky nail through it trying to pick some up.  You can see how it just pushed up the product on either side of the "trough" and left me thwarted!

I am really not a fan of tin/tub type balms as I think they're terribly unhygenic (especially if they're rattling around in your purse, the pockets of your winter jacket, or in the cosmic sponge that collects all lip balms, bobby pins, hair ties, and the matching sock) so I recommend using a little spatula to apply it.

Which brings me to the main point: if you have to use a spatula, it's only practical if you are using it at home, and quite frankly, it's not good enough to warrant that kind of use.  I got it because I thought it was a "treatment" as that's what it's named, but it since it has that oily/waxy feel, it sits on top of the lips and doesn't sink well.  I think it would be a good wind protectant if you are, say, horseback riding, skiing, snowboarding, etc, but you would need to reapply often as it goes on very thinly and doesn't build easily.  That's partly because it's so freaking difficult to get out of the jar without a spatula!  I can't imagine trying to reapply with a tiny spatula during any of the above activities ... if you can ski and not drop it, I salute you.

What it's supposed to be for, according to Tonymoly, is this: "Lip treatment containing snail mucus. The best moisturizing & exfoliating & firming skin & regeneration. Transparent and tight balm type of treatment adhere to the lips quickly after applying. Can be used as a lip sleeping pack. Fresh lemon flavor.  6Free: Parabens, Petroleum-based oil, Surfactant, Benzophenone, GMO, Talc."  Sounds worth a $15 price tag, doesn't it?

I don't know how it's "Petroleum-based oil free" because it feels exactly like a firmer, jelly version of Vaseline.  It even acts like a firmer, less effective version of Vaseline!   In fact ... I am having trouble believing you, Tonymoly.  Perhaps one of these ingredients is Petroleum's evil twin:

Click on image for full size


Wikipedia says your "petroleum-free" pants are on fire, Tonymoly:
"Most often, mineral oil is a liquid by-product of the distillation of petroleum to produce gasoline and other petroleum-based products from crude oil. A mineral oil in this sense is a transparent, colorless oil composed mainly of alkanes and cyclic paraffins, related to petroleum jelly (also known as "white petrolatum")."

Now, I personally don't have a problem with Mineral Oil in my products, but please don't lie to me about your products being "petroleum-based oil free" if you use it, y'know?

I was really hoping it would be like a thicker version of the Mizon Snail Recovery Gel aka My Precious, and sink into my lips quickly, bringing all the hydration-plumping and regenerative goodness of snail filtrate to my desert-parched lips.  How is this supposed to be a "lip sleeping pack" if it's so ... non-moisturizing?   I find it wears off before it sinks in, so it's not useful as a pre-lipstick treatment, and it's so firm/waxy that it will lift off pigment from my lips if I try to layer it over even a lip stain, so it's not useful as a gloss/sealant either.

Final thoughts:
Very overpriced, contains mineral oil, doesn't do what it's supposed to do, and not very good for being repurposed for something else.  No snail effect that I can tell, it's just a regular lip balm albeit with super cute packaging.

Leave me a comment if you have a "lip treatment" that actually works, and follow me for updates on upcoming reviews!
All the best,

**Disclaimer: All products reviewed/mentioned in my blog, are 100% purchased with my own money, with a single exception of a press sample I tested & reviewed in 2015 which swore me off of them forever.  This blog contains  both affiliate and non-affiliate links, and clicking the former before you shop means that this blog may receive a small commission to assist in this blog supporting itself.  Please see my Contact Info & Disclaimer policy for more information.

1 comment

  1. Hi have you tried tony moly fermented snail essence? Is it worth to buy?