The tongs are specially designed to hold a snail shell. To grip the snail you press the two sides of the tongs together to open them. Then use them to pick up the snails (escargot). The tongs are held in one hand with the snail open-side up. You pick the snail out of the shell with the small fork held in the other hand. The spring handle ensures the escargot is firmly held regardless of the size, as they can be slippery!