What You Need to Know About the “Penis Facial”
Hollywood is no stranger to controversial beauty or anti-aging treatments. The latest one making the rounds is the so-called “penis facials.”
Several A-list stars have been saying great things about this new treatment. Among the popular people in Hollywood that have given it a try are Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett and Kate Beckinsale.
What is this treatment about? Is it what you should consider for enhancing youthful looks? This article covers everything you may wish to know about the controversial regimen.
What is the Penis Facial?
Many people got to know about this new beauty treatment earlier in 2018 after an interview Blanchett had with Vogue Australia. She had revealed that she and Bullock received the treatment from Georgia Louise, a New York-based aesthetician.
Sandra, who seemed to have first referred to the treatment as the penis facial, would later (in May) confirm on The Ellen DeGeneres Show that she had it.
But what exactly is this beauty regimen about?
What Bullock and many people call the penis facial is actually called the Hollywood EGF Facial. EGF, in this case, stands for epidermal growth factors.
The origin of these EGFs is traced to discarded foreskins of babies born in Korea. This explains how the use of the description “penis facial” came about.
EGF is a protein – a polypeptide – that can be quite beneficial for having youthful skin. It helps to rejuvenate or regenerate cells in the skin. It is believed to be useful for dealing with skin discoloration and improving overall texture.
Is EGF Really from Penis of Newborns?
According to experts, there are different sources of epidermal growth factors, apart from foreskins. The growth factors can also be obtained from saliva, urine, kidney and even barley.
But most dermatologists believe that the ones extracted from the human skin are the most effective.
It is said that the cells in the EGF serum used for this new facial aren’t exactly from the penis, although there is a connection.
The growth factors are derived from foreskins of newborn babies. Cells are taken from them and copies are made in a lab in Korea.
The new cells are cloned from the original molecule’s connective tissue cells, which are responsible for synthesis of collagen and other vital fibers.
Dr. Rachel Nazarian of Schweiger Dermatology Group explained to the Huff Post that after obtaining the original stem cells from the foreskin of a newborn, scientists can continue to create copies “forever and ever.”
It is this type of cloned cells that are supposedly included in the EGF serum used in this treatment.
What’s the Process Like?
The Hollywood EGF Facial seems to have the approval of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Well, that suggests that it is a treatment you may safely try out. But what’s the process like?
The penis facial treatment is a multi-step routine. It begins with cleansing and a chemical peel involving the use of trichloroacetic acid (TCA).
Next comes microneedling. This involves making tiny holes in the skin. It practically entails creating small wounds with the aim that the healing process that follows would encourage production of new collagen in the skin.
The microneedling that is done enhances the ability of the EGF serum to penetrate well into the skin. This is followed by the rubbing of the skin with an “electrifying,” algae-derived mask to soothe it.
The application of the EGF serum, Louise’s secret ingredient, caps it all.
Does the Beauty Treatment Work?
Penis facial is still a new treatment. Therefore, there is no significant research yet confirming that it works. It’s efficacy for now depends largely on words of mouth.
However, aestheticians who work with EGF say that it offers a very effective means of rejuvenating the skin. This is considering the effect on collagen and elastin synthesis. Reduced production of these structural proteins as people get older is believed to be responsible for signs of aging, such as wrinkles or sagging skin.
A handful of studies available do suggest that the penis facial may be beneficial.
For example, researchers found that injections of stem cells obtained from fat tissue into the skin of mice led to production of growth factors, including EGF. This resulted in increased collagen synthesis, lower cell death, and improvement of wrinkles caused by ultraviolet rays.
However, a major stumbling block to the topical use of growth factors is their molecular sizes. These make it hard for them to penetrate well enough into the skin.
The penis facial integrates microneedling into the treatment process to overcome the barrier of poor absorption.
A Controversial Treatment
As in the case of some other Hollywood anti aging treatments, such as Human Growth Hormone, young blood transfusion and the vampire facial, the EGF facial is a subject of controversy. The use of newborn babies’ foreskins has been described by some as unethical. Others describe the regimen as disturbing.
One of the activist groups that have voiced out against this treatment is Intact America, according to Huff Post.
Georganne Chapin, executive director of the anti-circumcision group, said in an email that Bullock and DeGeneres displayed a total lack of understanding of the treatment’s ethical implications.
If you wish to have a go at this new beauty routine despite the controversy surrounding it, be sure to have at least $650 ready. That’s the minimum Louise charges at her atelier in Manhattan.
The aesthetician had a six-month waiting list as of March 2018, according to IFLScience.
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