10 Totally Bizarre Beauty Treatment Ingredients (PHOTOS)

Maressa Brown | Mar 26, 2015 Beauty & Style

breast mllk bottledBreast milk has many wondrous uses, but when a spa in Chicago called Mud made headlines recently for offering it as a special add-on for their "Breathe" facial, jaws dropped all over the country. After all, why on earth would you wittingly fork over extra bucks to have another woman's breast milk mixed into your beauty treatment? Hey, it's not THAT bizarre!

After all, breast milk contains lauric acid, known for its acne-fighting properties! And there's a lot of anecdotal evidence that it can address eczema and eye infections.

More from The Stir: 7 Weird Beauty Treatments Too Creepy for Most Women

Plus, there are certainly ingredients in other beauty treatments that are even more eyebrow-raising! Here, 10 of the most shocking.

Which of these would you use without batting an eyelash?


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  • Bee Venom


    Image via iStock.com/bo1982

    If you've bought a lip gloss with "plumping" properties, there's a chance it contains real bee venom. Research shows it actually has merit: A study published in the International Journal of Advancements in Research & Technology found bee venom contains "at least 18 pharmacologically active components including various enzymes, peptides, and proteins," which makes it sound like it totally belongs in your skin treatments, right?

  • Placenta


    Image via iStock.com/eldemir

    You've heard of placenta pills, right? Jen Aniston was rumored to be taking them, because placenta has a lot of growth factors and proteins that boost collegen production and make your skin youthful. Some dermatologists even use sheep placenta in their facials. Or how about a placenta hair mask? Placenta -- usually from a sheep or a cow, actually, not a human -- is thought to have properties that make hair smooth and shiny!

  • Snail Mucus


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    One headline-grabbing spa in Tokyo called Clinical Salon actually uses live snails in their facials, because their mucus slime supposedly contains mucin, a group of proteins that are packed with amino acids and antioxidants that will make your skin nice and slimy ... err, gorgeous!

  • Hay


    Image via iStock.com/martb

    Hay that we think of animals eating or farmers using on their land isn't exactly the first thing that comes to mind when you think relaxing spa experience, right? But at an Italian Spa in South Tyrol, you can get a treatment that involves hay -- naturally enriched with alpine herbs -- being heated and then wrapped around you for 20 minutes. It's supposed to improve circulation and ease aches and pains. Interesting ...

  • Foreskin


    Image via iStock.com/DOUGBERRY

    Foreskin in your skincare treatments? Sure, why not! Fibroblasts from foreskin are used to grow and cultivae new cells, so that's the excuse behind why it serves as an ingredient in various cosmetic creams and collagens. One example: SkinMedica, which sells for over $100 for a 63-oz. bottle, and was made famous by Oprah.

  • Cultured Human Skin Cells


    Image via iStock.com/unaemlag

    Other skin cells -- maybe not from foreskin, but still, from human skin -- may be cultured and crop up in skincare products, like those from the brand Neocutis.

  • Bug Shells


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    Wonder where that stunning red hue in your lipstick stemmed from? Oh, perhaps an insect shell! Carmine is an ingredient in many cosmetics which is made of crushed insect shells. True story.

  • Bird Excrement


    Image via iStock.com/doug4537

    Also referred to as "guano," its used in skin treatments, because it contains urea which is said to moisturize and an amino acid called guanine. The combo is supposed to do a rejuvenating number on your visage, but ... ewww.

  • Blood


    Image via iStock.com/AzmanJaka

    "The Vampire Facelift," made popular by none other than Kim Kardashian in 2012, actually uses a woman's own platelet-rich plasma instead of chemical fillers! It may look pretty scary, but hey, it (supposedly) works.

  • Oil From a Shark's Liver


    Image via iStock.com/qldian

    Although many companies say they've phased it out of their products, squalene -- oil from a shark's liver -- has been used in cosmetics for years, because it's prized as a natural moisturizer. But being that sharks are endangered, let's hope manufacturers stick to other natural ingredients that have the same effect!

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