Fiddy Snails: The FAQs I Get the Most — & Not All of Them Are About Skincare
For one, what’s the deal with Sexy Radish and the quokkas? (That should be her backup band, btw.) Jude Chao of Asian beauty blog Fifty Shades of Snail (aka Fiddy Snails) is here to answer your most compelling questions.
So I’ve been in the skincare blogging game for several years now, long enough to have built up my own personal list of frequently asked questions. And because I haven’t exactly curated my online presence to focus only on skincare, not all of those questions pertain to skincare. When EIC Anna asked me whether I’d be willing to write up answers to some of my more personal FAQs, I jumped at the opportunity. This will be fun!
Where does the name Fiddy Snails come from?
Back in 2015, I named my blog Fifty Shades of Snail in tribute to my deep, passionate, and possibly slightly unhealthy love of snail slime skincare. Then one day, my wonderful friend and now-boss Chel over at Holy Snails called me Fiddy Snails on Twitter. The name stuck.
How do you make sheet masks fit so well?
I get asked this question so much that I made an Instagram video to demonstrate it! It boils down to a couple of things.
View this post on Instagram
One, the sheet mask has to be made of a very soft and pliable material and generously saturated with essence. That way, the mask clings and conforms to the contours of the face instead of bunching up and hanging off of your face. Some Korean sheet masks with these qualities are the Steambase Ginsengberry Premium Lifting Masks that I recently reviewed, and Wonjin Effect’s Medi Hydro Vial and Medi Energy Infusion masks.
No matter what material your mask is made of, you can improve the fit in a couple of ways. You can cut extra slits in the sheet to fix tenting around the nose or between your eyes. If the mask is too long for your face, you can cut it in half straight across the middle, then apply each half separately, overlapping the halves in the middle so that the mask fits the length of your face better.
Finally, once the mask is on, take the time to smooth out any wrinkles or air bubbles. The more tightly the mask fits your skin, the better the results will be in the end.
What’s the deal with the Sexy Radish?
First of all, Sexy Radish is life.
But he is a radish of considerable mystery.
At some point last year, someone sent me screenshots of a Japanese blog post featuring a bizarrely suggestive, seductively posed daikon radish plush. I don’t remember why they thought I would get a kick out of it, but they knew me very well, because I got a really big kick out of it. I shared the screenshots in the long-running Snailcast group chat. There, Chel got such a kick out of it that she went on eBay, found the biggest possible sexy daikon plush available, and had it sent to me.
The radish came tightly vacuum sealed in a plastic package about the size of a typical throw pillow. I carefully cut the plastic and watched in awe as the plush and fluffy three-foot-long alluring daikon exploded from its plastic prison. I then welcomed Sexy Radish into my life and into my bed. The rest is history.
What’s the deal with you and quokkas?
I love all animals. I especially love really cute animals. And I’m not sure nature makes animals cuter than the perpetually smiling quokkas of Australia’s Rottnest Island. These cheerful-looking marsupials brighten my day so much that I’ve followed the #quokkas tag on Instagram, befriended famed quokka photographer and advocate @cruzysuzy, and made a Rottnest Island quokka vacation sponsorship one of my top priority Influencer Goals.
View this post on Instagram
The thing is, behind their jovial exteriors, quokkas are kind of ruthless, and that really resonates with me. Just consider this story of the unconscious quokka that journalist Kenneth Cook put in his backpack and tried to bicycle off with:
“After a few minutes of bumping along at breakneck speed, the quokka began to revive, and blearily climbed out of the backpack, claws first.
“Afraid to turn around in case he lost control of his bike, Cook sped onward. The quokka grabbed his neck and began shrieking in his ear. The bike kept going. The shrieking quokka sank its teeth into Cook’s earlobe and hung there, dead weight, like a large, furry earring. Disoriented, the journalist steered his bike off a cliff into the ocean. Surfacing, he looked around and found the quokka standing on the shore, glaring at him and snarling.”
(Source: Mental Floss)
That is a mood.
How old are you?
Legally? 39. Mentally? Probably about 12 or 13.
How did you get into beauty blogging?
In a past life, I was a tech journalist. Not a very good one, so don’t bother trying to look up any of my work, because it isn’t worth reading. The work did pay well, giving me enough discretionary income to finally begin exploring the wonderful world of skincare. I started on Reddit’s r/skincareaddiction, followed a bread crumb trail of intriguing comments about snail slime skincare over to r/AsianBeauty, and got hooked immediately.
At first, I just read others’ posts and comments and tried to learn. As I got more comfortable with the concepts and began experimenting with products myself, I started writing my own posts, product reviews, and tips. I found that people seemed to like my content, which got me thinking that I’d rather own it and have more control over formatting and things like that, rather than allowing Reddit to own what I wrote.
I started my blog right at the time when K-beauty was beginning to trend in the U.S. Good timing helped it blow up quickly. As you can tell, it changed my life. Beauty blogging has allowed me to weaponize two of my interests — beauty products and public attention — and use them for the greater good of all our faces. It’s perfect for me.
Have you ever had plastic surgery?
Not above the neck, no.
What do you think about microneedling/dermarolling?
I think microneedling can be an amazing thing if done by a licensed professional in a reputable clinic, but I am against dermarolling at home. Those are actual needles that are piercing the skin of your face, and there’s no way at home to ensure that they are properly and truly sterilized.
On top of that, it’s my understanding that the condition of the dermarolling tool is critical. If even one of those many little needles is bent, it could cause permanent scarring. It’s way too risky. Also, that sh—t hurts! Get it done by a professional and follow their directions for aftercare.
Are you Korean?
And those are some of the most common questions I get asked that don’t have to do with helping troubleshoot skincare routines or choose products! I hope you guys found this enlightening. I’m off to cuddle the radish before getting back to work on our normal programming: an article about acids.
Do you have any other questions for me? Let me know in the comments!