Why Venom?!

I get asked daily by my followers ‘why venom’, ‘are we cruelty free’, and ‘is our venom harmful’. These questions, while legitimate, are quite frustrating to me because there is a lot of false information out there as well as a huge shift in consumers attitudes towards ingredients. Now don’t get me wrong, historically there certainly have been ingredients in skin care that ARE harmful such as parabens, lanolins, petrolatum, and so forth (none of which can be found in our formulas!). However, there is a gross amount of misinformation out there in regard to clean beauty, non-toxic ingredients, and what is safe to use.

So, first and foremost to even dive into this, let’s talk about the marketing trend that is clean beauty. I hear about “natural” + “clean” beauty all the time. And trust me, I get it- our name is Intoxicated Cosmetics- how could we fit into this beauty trend? Well first of all I want to make it clear; we don’t give a sh*t about trends. They are called trends for a reason- Not to mention the fact that many of the self-proclaimed clean/ natural beauty brands are in fact not clean or natural. The regulations on these types of label claims are incredibly lax and these claims can be incredibly misleading!

Did you know that YOU are made of chemicals?  Water = chemical. Air = chemical. Antioxidant = chemical. When products claim to be all natural , clean, or chemical free this is simply a marketing trend and does not mean that you will get better results. Preservatives (chemicals) are needed in ALL products to ensure that they will be stable, effective, and can withstand different temperatures. If a product was truly “all natural” it would grow mold- not to mention that natural ingredients are STILL chemical compounds.

So now that we cleared that up, let’s dive into WHY venom. Although not all venoms are the same, and certainly all have different functions, it truly is amazing what science has been able to do! By recreating venoms in a lab, scientists have been able to let venom’s most beneficial compounds shine through while at the same time not including the harmful chemical components AND not harming the ectothermic creatures that have inspired our products. Super cool right? I know.

Okay so back to venom. Let’s start with Snake venom. Snake venom contains neurotoxins that paralyze victims by impacting their neuromuscular function. Botox, of course, also influences the neuromuscular system, preventing it from contracting and therefore causing wrinkles. So applying that thought to skincare, snake venom is more of a dream than a nightmare. Which was exactly the idea behind biochemical company Pentapharm’s biomimetic peptide known as Syn-Ake, which is one of the major workhorses found in our Snake Serum, a synthetic ingredient mimicking snake venom that’s being used in anti-aging skincare. Pentapharm’s motto is "turning nature into life-saving solutions" and who claims that Syn-Ake is a "small peptide that mimics the activity of Waglerin 1, a polypeptide that can be found in the venom of the Temple Viper.'. Pentapharm further promises,  “Syn-Ake has been developed as efficient smoothing and anti-wrinkle care particularly effective against expression lines by relaxing facial muscles.” Long story short, in the realm of anti-aging, this is basically the next best thing to Botox because unlike any other type of ingredient on the market, this superstar enables muscle paralysis.

So speaking of muscle paralysis, lets chat about Snail venom. It’s no secret that snail mucin anti-aging products are a big deal in the Korean beauty world – and rightfully so! Our Snail Serum also contains snail mucin, just a biomimetic version known as Hydraprotectol which is derived from the glycosamiglycans found in snail mucin. This glycolic acid is said to help your cells produce collagen and elastin, which evens out skin tone and smooth its surface. Hydraprotectol provides immediate moisture to the epidermal skin layers, and contains Trihydroxypalmitic acid to ensure in-depth hydration via the reinforcement of the cutaneous barrier. So to start we have that going for us. But now onto the good stuff – Snail’s venom.

Snail Venom Conopeptide, which can be found in our Snail Serum has a muscle relaxing effect, which thereby relaxes the look of wrinkles. You’ll be seeing a lot less of those unwanted facial expression lines – almost immediately. This clinically proven biomimetic peptide smooths out fine lines and wrinkles within literally a matter of days (its perfect for right before a big event - think a big date, wedding, etc!). With this biomimetic peptide based on Snail venom, you will be able to see a visible difference in as soon as three days – some of my clients say that they saw one over night!

Next, bee venom. Unlike our other two serums, our Bee Serum’s active ingredient isn’t a synthetic compound, but actual venom. It, too, is based on legitimate science, as bee venom has anti-inflammatory properties, making is good for acne and capable of being turned into peptides with anti-aging benefits. Bee venom (i.e., apitoxin) is what comes out of a bee’s stinger and every bee sting has around 0.1 milligrams of venom, which causes inflammation of your skin with blood rising to its surface. That immediately signals to your skin to regenerate, producing collagen, which, in turn, creates younger, radiant and plumper skin. While it’s a wonder product — we lose about 1 percent of collagen every year when we get to 20 — we need to ensure bees are treated ethically, which is why we explain exactly how we source our venom in another blog which can be found HERE. But the short explanation is that this process works by attracting bees to a glass pane, which has a small electrical current running through it. The bees are encouraged to sting the glass, leaving behind small traces of bee venom but not losing their stinger, and therefore not dying.

 So, in short, when looking for an anti-aging serum, look no further than venom! It always amazes me how some of the most obvious answers are right in front of us! Who would have thought that nature held the key to such scientific beauty revolutions! And if you don’t believe me, feel free to check out our theory explained by one of beauty’s most beloved gurus – Huda Beauty! You can check out her article here: