what’s a placenta facial?

There are many different types of skincare treatments available today and it can be hard to decipher which are actually legitimate. The skincare industry is changing daily, always finding new and improved ingredients to help eliminate impurities and signs of aging with instant gratification. A new treatment that has surfaced recently is the so-called “Placenta Facial.”

Image courtesy of www.thetimes.co.uk.

Image courtesy of http://www.thetimes.co.uk.

The placenta is the membranous vascular organ that develops during pregnancy in mammals. The placenta is full of nutrients, amino acids, minerals and proteins that the body loses after childbirth. Some mothers feel it is important to consume their own placenta to allay postpartum depression and promote breast milk production, as well as replenish and rejuvenate the entire body after the birthing experience. This practice is called “placentophagia.”

If the placenta can do all of this by ingesting it, why not use it as a topical skin treatment? Animal placenta, mainly sheep, is used for this treatment. A placenta extract is loaded with stem cells that allegedly have the ability to repair every single type of cell in the body. When applied to the skin, it revitalizes skin cells by producing increased levels of collagen, protein and elastin.

The treatment begins with cleansing followed by some form of exfoliation, such as microdermabrasion or superficial peel. The sheep placenta extract that can be blended with ingredients such as hyaluronic acid is placed on the skin and microcurrent helps to push the product deeper. Then, red light therapy is performed to bring more blood and nutrients to the surface, and boost collagen production.

Many celebrities have grabbed onto this new fad and swear it keeps them looking young; but is it the placenta that is really working to get rid of those fine lines and wrinkles — or could it be the professional exfoliation ridding the skin of dead, dull surface layers along with the red light therapy?

Animal-derived skin cells are very fragile, and must be fed and preserved at the proper temperature for them to survive. An alternative scientific stabilization process has not yet been found that can allow this to happen when the stem cells are placed in a jar with other ingredients. Also, the Food and Drug Administration states that the use of placenta extract may be hazardous, and is subject to restrictions and warnings.

Although growth factors and antioxidants are a major part of placenta extract, there are better proven, and much less expensive ways to give your skin a healthy glow.

Have you heard of the “Placenta Facial”? If so, what are your thoughts? Please share below or on the PCA SKIN Facebook Page.


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