Dare to try these 5 bizarre beauty rituals?

Beauty trends are getting downright ugly

Published On: Aug 31 2011 09:46:12 AM EDT   Updated On: Jan 23 2012 02:00:00 AM EST

Since the beginning of time, people have been willing to try just about anything to make themselves feel younger, look more attractive and be more appealing to potential mates.

Women seem especially willing to forgo comfort for beauty. From plucking their eyebrows, to cramming their size 10 feet into size 6 shoes, to having fat sucked out of their body through a giant tube, women seem willing to make whatever sacrifices necessary to look their best.

Beauty rituals have always been associated with some measure of physical pain. But pain seems like a welcome vice compared to the sheer repulsiveness of some of the latest beauty trends.

What has the world come to when people are willing to bask in disgustingness just to clear their pores or condition their hair? Apparently (and frighteningly) it has come to this ...

No. 5: Bird poop facial
Ever wonder how those beautiful Geisha women maintain such smooth and vibrant skin? Well, it doesn't come from your typical moisturizer or mud mask.

Apparently, nightingale excrement is the secret ingredient in the Geisha facial, and celebrities all over the world have adopted the practice of putting dried bird poop on their faces in the name of beauty. In fact, at the New York City Shizuka Day Spa, you can have bird poop rubbed on your face for as little as $180!

While it is true that you can get birds to poop on your car for free, the face is a much smaller target. You would have to stand outside looking up at the sky for hours -- even days -- before you got your whole face covered.

But go to the spa and shell out a couple of C-notes and you can be guaranteed to have your face completely saturated with bird droppings while investing only an hour of your time. Who knew?

Of course, if you think that's weird, check this out ...

No. 4: Sheep placenta

It turns out that sheep placenta -- yes, the afterbirth of a sheep -- can give you clearer, younger looking skin.

Whether it is rubbed on the skin as a cream or consumed orally in capsule form, experts (and celebrities like Denise Richards) swear by its beautifying effects.

Allegedly, by nourishing your skin with sheep placenta, you will be able to rid yourself of unsightly blemishes and create a luminous glow from head to toe. Not only that, you'll supposedly look years younger.

But then again, you are doing this by using a sheep's afterbirth, so, you know, we're just saying. If the gross-out factor doesn't bother you though, then by all means go right ahead and slap some of that sheep placenta all over your body. Who knows, maybe it will actually work.

But we wouldn't make any bets about this next beauty ritual paying off ...

No. 3: Fish pedicure

Nothing will keep you on your toes like a good old-fashioned fish pedicure. How does that work? Well, essentially, you place your tootsies into a big bucket of little fish and allow them to nibble away at your dead and dry skin cells until they have had their fill.

Why is this better than the typical method of removing dry skin for a pedicure? Well according to John Ho, a salon owner in Alexandria, Va., who first brought the fishy pedicures to America from China, it is unique and more sanitary.

Unique? We will definitely give you that one. Sanitary? More like sanitarium. This is just a crazy way to get a pedicure -- and there does not seem to be a whole lot of advantages to it either.

Plus, what about those poor fish forced to eat people's nasty, stinky feet? You gotta feel bad for the fish.

But don't feel bad for people who are whacked out enough to try this next beauty ritual ...

No. 2: Bull semen

Having a bad hair day? Split ends and "dry flyaways" getting on your nerves? Never fear, bull semen is here.

Yes, it is true. The latest trend in hair conditioner is laced with bull sperm. Allegedly, the massive amounts of protein in the semen of a bull, combined with the rejuvenating attributes of the katera root, are the perfect formula for revitalizing unhealthy hair.

This winning combo has even been dubbed "Viagra for the hair." How charming.

Right now bull sperm conditioner is exploding (no pun intended) in the United Kingdom, but it is expected to become a worldwide phenomenon in no time.

And why shouldn't it? After all, the trend in beauty products these days seems to be the more disgusting, the better. And our No. 1 pick is no exception ...

No. 1: Leeches

Remember how in the "olden days" doctors used to put leeches all over someone's skin as a bona fide medical procedure? Well, apparently, the practice is not as outdated as most of us thought.

In fact, actress Demi Moore recently boasted on the "Late Show with David Letterman" about her lovely experience with "leech therapy" during a trip to Austria. According to Moore, "They have a little enzyme that when they are biting down in you it gets released in your blood and generally you bleed for quite a bit -- and your health is optimized."

Yeah, excessive bleeding has always been known for optimizing health.

Of course it is difficult to deny that Moore looks healthy, vibrant and much younger than her years, so maybe she is onto something here. But at what price? Certainly one that is way too high for most of us, based on the "ewwww" factor alone.

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