[removed]Clams![/removed] Today's blog entry at the amazing Beauty Brains site — entitled Can Shellfish Smooth Skin? — ought to be a deft satire of the use of natural ingredients in skin care products, but I think it's for real.

Recent research published in the scientific journal Lipids indicates that extracts from certain clams and mussels may be a new weapon in the fight for beautiful skin. Scientists at the Romanian University of Constanza, obtained lipid extractions from the two organisms and showed that both were able to speed up skin healing and regeneration. According to Cosmetic Design Europe scientists believe that it is the blend of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids that are responsible for the beneficial effects.

No word on how soon this ingredient will make it into your moisturizer but you can bet it will cost a lotta clams.

A cursory glance at the study's abstract reveals, "the extraction of lipids from two different species of molluscs (Mytilus galloprovincialis L., Mediterranean mussel) and gastropods (Rapana venosa, hard-shell clam) … were evaluated in terms of antioxidant and composition properties and their healing properties were tested on skin burns in Wistar rats. Our studies proved that the two lipid extracts contained a relatively complex distribution of compounds, in terms of characteristic indices, polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) and vitamins E and D. The presence of such compounds rendered the extracts very efficient in healing induced skin burns in Wistar rats."

I'm still not convinced this is for real, but I will acquiesce seeing as how it is not April 1st.