It’s no secret that skincare often contains some pretty gross ingredients, is it? Things like lanolin, crushed bug shells, fish scales, bee venom, placenta and my personal fave, snail slime, all spring immediately to mind… and then, there’s penis!
Yep. P e n i s.
I’ll give you a moment to digest that.
Watch: More of a video kinda gal? That's cool. We understand. Here's some of the gross ingredients hidden in your cosmetics. Post continues below.
See, I have a sick fascination with some of the more revolting things that people will do in the pursuit of eternal youth. I’m not game to do them myself, of course.
But stuff like vampire facials, eel baths, fish pedicures and hair masks containing bull’s semen fascinate me! It’s like slowing down for a car crash I guess. I don’t want to see... but also, I can’t look away.
I will never forget the moment I read that people were popping foreskin into facials, and like, no one was talking about it?
I had so many questions. Whose foreskin was it? How did they get it? What did they do with it? I was chucking back a beer in the bath at the time, but I immediately fetched the rest of the six-pack from the fridge and proceeded to go down an epic internet hole of grossness.
I then compiled all of my rotten findings into this nasty lil' article for you because of course you want to know too.
So yeah, where were we?
So apparently the er, penis piece, is donated during routine circumcision. No babies are circumcised specifically for this purpose – it’s apparently common practice in South Korea still.
Once collected, it’s popped into a tissue culture and cloned, with one tiny sample going on to generate over a million treatments. The resulting serum (liquified penis, if you will) is rich in growth factors which are at their peak ability to promote cell turnover.
Listen: Just on the whole 'breaking down ingredients' thing, Leigh and Kelly explain the difference between two commonly-mistaken types of Vitamin A, retinol and retinoid on this episode of You Beauty. Post continues below.