In the world of strange beauty, last week’s snail mucus is this week’s donkey milk, and donkey milk is yesterday’s horse oil. How on earth does anyone keep up? The answer to that appears to be simple: if you’re in the business of beauty, you come up with the most bizarre idea for skin care treatments and then you sell them to whoever is daring enough to try ’em out. How else do you explain people melting gold on their faces or taking something called a “sound bath?” We’re not making any of this up – they’re real, and they’re so strange:
Around the world in 11 wacky beauty treatments
The Geisha Facial, New YorkThis is widely known as the bird poop facial, because the special ingredient is powdered nightingale droppings. Shizuka, the space in New York that created it, calls this the Geisha facial because apparently they knew the secret powers of a steaming Number 2. It'll cost you $180 for an hour at New York's Shizuka spa, though, and who has the time to track down their own nightingale poop?
Benefits: Claims to brighten and heal damaged skin. Shizuka NY
Beer Bath, Czech RepublicIf you find yourself in Central Europe, you can treat yourself to a beer bath. It'll cost you $97 (for two!) for 70 minutes. Sounds delicious. Hiccup.
Benefits: Lucni Bouda claims the beer spa "ensures perfect harmony of the organism and lets the mind release positive thoughts." Yes, that is certainly a thing beer does. Lucni Bouda
Cinderella Lips, U.K.Loved Cinderella as a kid? Ever dream that you might one day be her? Well, with "Cinderella Lips," you can have a very temporary snippet of her life: her anxious dependency on watching the clock! The procedure takes about 20 minutes for $93 and the newer and fuller lips only last 24 to 48 hours. After time runs out, the saline solution dissolves and you're back to your old lips! Your face is her pumpkin carriage!
Benefits: Fuller lips for a short period, maybe?Disney
Hay Bath, ItalyIn Italy, you can take a bath in dry hay. Sounds uncomfortable and yet she looks at peace?
Benefits: According to the spa, "mountain hay from 1800m altitude with many different herbs relaxes your tired muscles and strengthens your immune system." Who knew?Berghotel
Hay Soak, ItalyBut if you just want a normal bath, like you would get at a regular space, you won't get that at Berghotel, either. The spa also offers the wet version of their hay bath, except this soak is full of St. John's Wort oil and hay flowers.
Benefits: $97 buys you the opportunity to sit in a soup-like bath that's allegedly effective against colds, and great for mental and physical exhaustion. (So, a bath?) Berghotel
Sound Bath, CaliforniaOver in California, you can bathe in...sound. No, really, it's called a sound bath.
Benefits: Integratron says that sound baths are "60-minute sonic healing sessions that consist of 25 minutes of crystal bowls playing live." The experience is said to make you very relaxed, and allegedly the sound is "nutrition for your immune system." Integratron
Breast Milk Facial, ChicagoIn Chicago, breast milk is the not-so-secret ingredient in Mud's $50 facials. Well, if it works for babies?
Benefits: There are no studies lauding breast milk as a miracle treatment for sensitive skin, but Mud claims the lauric acid found in the milk is good for acne-prone skin. Universial Pictures
Solid Gold Facial, TorontoEquinox Spa offers a 24-Carat gold facial, which means if you're in Toronto, you can get this one. Obviously, it's expensive ($165 for 50 minutes).
Benefits: According to Equinox, a 24 carat gold mask is used for "maximum hydration, smoothing and radiance." The facial also uses gold powder and silk extract to "moisturize, hydrate, lift, firm and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles."YouTube
Snake Massage, IsraelAt Ada Barak's "Snake Spa" in Israel, guests spend $80 for the chance to have non-venomous snakes crawl all over their naked bodies.
Benefits: Um, apparently relaxation, but...Getty Images
Vampire Facials, EdmontonVampire facials occur when a dermatologist draws blood from your body and injects it into your face. This procedure, known clinically as Selphyl, was launched in 2009 and can now be found everywhere, like Edmonton, Alberta.
Benefits: For $900 to $1500, you can get this non-surgical treatment. Some say it's like an instant face-lift, but many professionals consider it hack science.Kim Kardashian/Twitter
Snail Facials, ThailandYep, people will pay to have live things crawl all over them. Like $30 for a snail facial in Thailand, which is just as irksome as a snake massage.
Benefits: Chiang Mai’s snail spa believes that helix aspersa müller glycoconjugates – or snail mucus – can smooth out wrinkles and help slow down the aging process. Getty Images