20 Controversial Cosmetic Procedures Making Waves in Beauty

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1 Bird Poop Geisha Facial

Bird Poop Geisha Facial

The Bird Poop Geisha Facial is an unusual and intriguing beauty treatment that draws inspiration from the traditional practices of Japanese geishas. Geishas, known for their porcelain-like skin, historically employed a range of unique skincare methods, one of which involved using a cream made from nightingale droppings. This cream, believed to contain natural enzymes with revitalizing properties, was applied to their faces to maintain their skin’s luminosity. Today, this practice has been adapted and modernized in select high-end spas and beauty centers. During the Bird Poop Geisha Facial, sanitized and specially processed bird droppings, typically sourced from nightingales, are mixed with other ingredients to create a facial mask. The mask is applied to the client’s skin and left on for a short duration. While the idea of smearing bird excrement on one’s face may sound unorthodox, proponents of this treatment report a post-facial glow and smoother skin texture. Despite there being some disagreement about its efficacy, those who are interested in the allure of traditional Japanese skincare rituals and are willing to pay a premium for them continue to seek them out.


2 Dangerous Skin Bleaching Trend

Dangerous Skin Bleaching Trend

Skin bleaching, a concerning trend involving the application of actual bleach to the skin to address issues like redness, skin lightening, and acne clearance, raises red flags among experts. While some may resort to this practice in the pursuit of clearer skin, it poses significant health risks. The use of dangerous chemicals, particularly hydroquinone, a legal but controversial ingredient in the United States, has alarmed skincare professionals. Hydroquinone’s links to potential cancer risks have led to its ban in Europe and Japan. Instead of such hazardous methods, experts advocate the use of skincare products containing natural alternatives to hydroquinone, such as licorice or bearberry extract. These ingredients serve as potent, skin-soothing antioxidants that can even out skin tone, fade dark spots, and hold the highest safety ratings on environmental databases, emphasizing the importance of safer, more responsible skincare choices.


3 Bee Venom Masks vs. Botox

Bee Venom Masks vs. Botox

Bee Venom Masks, touted as a “safer” alternative to Botox, have surged in popularity and are considered the beauty secret of prominent figures like the UK’s Duchess of Cambridge and Duchess of Cornwall. These skincare products, although relatively expensive, claim to trigger a unique reaction in the skin, making the body believe it has been stung or injured. This purportedly leads to increased blood flow, collagen production, and repair in the treated area. The bee venom itself is harvested through a process involving a “harmless” mild electric current that encourages the bees to sting a glass pane. While there has been a broader movement to explore the use of bee venom in treating various ailments, including multiple sclerosis and arthritis, scientific tests have generally found its effectiveness to be limited. It is important to recognize that the use of bee venom comes with significant risks, particularly for those with allergies, who may be vulnerable to severe reactions like anaphylactic shock.


4 Magic Erasers for Self-Tanning Trend

Magic Erasers for Self-Tanning Trend

Magic Erasers, hailed by some beauty enthusiasts as an unconventional solution for self-tanner streaks, are raising eyebrows among experts for good reason. Typically designed as cleaning sponges to combat household stains, these sponges are not intended for cosmetic use. Their abrasive nature, coupled with the presence of chemicals ill-suited for skin contact, should deter anyone from scrubbing them onto their skin. Dermatologists and skincare professionals caution against this practice, as it can lead to a range of adverse effects, including rashes, itching, skin irritation, and even rare but severe allergic reactions like anaphylaxis. The Magic Eraser, while effective for household cleaning, has no place in your skincare routine and should be left far from your skin.


5 Face Slapping for Beauty

Face Slapping for Beauty

In 2012, Tata, a Thai masseuse with a San Francisco address, introduced face slapping as an unconventional facial firming technique. Billed as “completely safe” and rooted in Thai traditions, Tata employs precise slaps to unlock one’s hidden beauty potential without resorting to invasive techniques or chemicals. Tata, one of only ten students personally trained by renowned face slapper Kung Khemika, asserts her pride in bringing this unique practice to the western hemisphere. For $350, Tata started offering a “face firming” slapping massage, targeting specific areas such as eyebrows, cheeks, or the forehead, claiming to reduce wrinkles and enhance skin firmness. Results from a single 15-20 minute session can reportedly last up to six months, and with the full course, the effects may extend up to a year. While the practice resembles tapotement, a technique used in Swedish massage to stimulate blood flow, it is relatively novel for facial rejuvenation. For those seeking frequent treatments, a money-saving package of four sessions within a month is available for $1,000, with Tata Massage accepting cash payments only.


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6 Coolsculpting and Its Drawbacks

Coolsculpting and Its Drawbacks

Coolsculpting, the so-called “cool” solution for fat reduction, is promoted as a non-surgical alternative to traditional liposuction and invasive procedures. This technique, based on cryolipolysis, involves freezing fat cells while sparing other tissues. The body will eventually break down and absorb the frozen fat after several hours of freezing in the fat-prone areas. It does, however, come with a list of caveats. First, it’s not suitable for everyone; only those with small, protruding fat deposits need to apply. Second, there are knock-off versions that have emerged on the market, offering the experience of sitting in a glorified freezer as an alternative. And last but not least, users have reported significant pain during the procedure.


7 Risks of Brazilian Blowout

Risks of Brazilian Blowout

The Brazilian Blowout, a renowned hair straightening treatment promising smooth and frizz-free hair, has gained immense popularity in the beauty world. However, worrying health risks taint its reputation as a hair-repairing solution. High levels of formaldehyde used in this treatment have raised red flags with the FDA, leading to strong health warnings. Potential issues include allergic reactions, toxicity, and asthma attacks, even with treatments labeled as “formaldehyde-free.” Given these health concerns, experts advocate safer alternatives, such as hair conditioners, for achieving beautiful hair without the associated risks of formaldehyde exposure, emphasizing the importance of health and safety in the pursuit of sleek locks.


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8 Eyelid Transformations with Glue

Eyelid Transformations with Glue

In the pursuit of rounder, more traditionally “western”-looking eyes, some individuals, particularly in Asian communities, have explored unconventional and often dangerous methods for altering their eyelids. While surgery might be a more sensible option when performed by professionals, many have ventured into the realm of do-it-yourself eyelid transformations. Enter eyelid glues and tapes, which are used to create a new eyelid crease, pushing it partially behind the eyeball with, unbelievably, a plastic fork. Yes, you read that right—a plastic fork. The process is not only risky but also time-consuming, taking up to two hours. Long-term use of these products can result in sagging and drooping eyelids, exacerbating the very issue they were meant to correct. Unfortunately, despite the glaring downsides, these unconventional methods continue to find popularity, even to the extent of being marketed to younger audiences.


9 Preparation H for Puffy Eyes

Preparation H for Puffy Eyes

TikTok has seen its fair share of beauty hacks, some more questionable than others, and the recent trend of using Preparation H under the eyes to reduce puffiness is no exception. This unconventional practice involves applying a product designed for hemorrhoid treatment to a completely different area of the body. While the trend may be gaining traction, it’s essential to understand the potential risks and heed the advice of experts. Preparation H is primarily formulated to relieve itching, burning, and discomfort associated with hemorrhoids, and its ingredients may not be suitable for the delicate skin around the eyes. The skin around the eyes is sensitive and requires gentle care. Instead of resorting to such unconventional practices, experts recommend more traditional methods, like getting sufficient sleep, staying hydrated, and using dedicated skincare products designed for the under-eye area. While TikTok trends can be entertaining and informative, it’s essential to prioritize the health and safety of your skin when experimenting with beauty hacks.


10 Rib Resection for a Slimmer Waist

Rib Resection for a Slimmer Waist

The quest for the perfect body often takes people to extremes, and one such extreme is rib resection surgery, a procedure where individuals opt to have their lower floating ribs partially or completely removed to achieve a more slender waistline. What may sound like a bizarre urban legend is, in fact, a real surgical option that has been used to create a more defined and narrower waist. While this procedure was initially designed for specific medical situations, some have turned to it as a way to achieve their desired appearance. In the past, the famous Broadway performer Anna Held underwent this risky surgery in 1900, seeking a slimmer figure at a time when such procedures were far less advanced and considerably riskier.


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