16 Wild (And Sometimes Dangerous) Things People Have Done In The Name Of Beauty

September 13, 2019

Real talk: feeling beautiful isn’t always easy. In fact, it’s actually pretty darn hard. Everyday we’re inundated with images on social media of “the perfect” person, and it can leave us feeling less than stellar.

Am I thin enough? Is my hair shiny enough? And, why can’t I perfect the liquid winged eyeliner? It can become exhausting. In the pursuit of beauty, we’ve probably all tried tips that are not only ridiculous, but maybe borderline insane.

We’re definitely guilty of a trying out a few dangerous beauty trends. We may or may not have tried everything from Nair in the early days of middle school, to drinking a shot of apple cider vinegar every morning as an adult. (Hey, if it works for Jennifer Aniston, it could work for us.)

We’ve all heard the old adage that “beauty is pain,” but some trends are just dangerous. We’re all for trying a new eyeshadow color, or tying to incorporate healthy changes like an organic shampoo, but don’t let the quest to look good ruin your life. Beauty should be fun! And you should find the products and styles that make YOU happy.

Regardless of what peer pressure, social media, or even your friends and family tell you, you’re beautiful just that way you are. Yes, it might sound cheesy, but trust us, we know it’s true! Don’t believe us?

Well, let’s take a look at some of the absolutely crazy and dangerous beauty trends out there, and you just might thank us later.

Lemon Juice In The Eyes

It’s as painful as it sounds.

Back in the early 2000’s, a wild new beauty trick hit the scene. Girls on Youtube were claiming that you could naturally lighten your eye color by squeezing lemon juice into them.

Many people over the years have tried various methods to lighten their eye color: surgery, lasers, and colored lenses. But, by far, lemon juice is the most dangerous.

Like, could make-you-go-blind level dangerous.

Yes, really. Lemon juice is extremely acidic, and it might temporarily narrow your pupils, but it will definitely not permanently change your eye color. In reality, it will lead to extreme stinging, bleeding, and with prolonged use, blindness.

While the citrus has many other health benefits, please-please-please keep it far away from your eyes.

Tapeworms

It’s hard to even describe just how gross this is.

In possibly the grossest diet trend of all time, people throughout history would purposefully eat tapeworm eggs. The idea is that you can go ahead and eat whatever you want whenever you want, and the worm will help you out by consuming all those bad calories on your behalf (well, actually, all your calories).

Low-cal and low-nutrient.

The worms aren’t too worried about which calories they help you consume, so the results can be pretty deadly. Needless to say, this method is incredible dangerous since they can’t be controlled and often lead to severe brain damage. They are also illegal in several countries.

“Toe-besity” Surgery

Getting off on the wrong foot.

We all have that “one” thing that we obsess and stress over. In our minds it’s our biggest flaw and everyone always notices our huge (not actually though, but in our minds) imperfection.

Well next time you think about fixing yours, keep in mind that some people are opting into a surgery to make their toes thinner.

No, we didn’t realize it was possible either.

The surgery is highly debated in the podiatry community since it is relatively invasive and purely cosmetic. The procedure involves shaving down the bone and removing some fat to make the toes appear leaner.

Beyond Ouch.

If done right, it is supposed to be completely “safe,” but definitely seems like a pretty big risk to be taking. Also, who actually notices anyone’s toe ‘fat’? If you really aren’t sure about your feet, see if you can find a nice closed-toe sandal before you decide to sand-down your toes.

Eyelid Trainer

Somehow it is even scarier than it looks.

One of the most disturbing trends to hit the scene in the last couple years is the eyelid trainer. The device is designed to help “reshape” double eyelids gradually over time without the need of cosmetic surgery.

While this might go without saying, the device isn’t safe for prolonged eye use and can eventually lead to vision problems.

Cryotherapy

“I said burr, it’s cold in here!”

Is there anything worse than being cold? Just ask anyone sitting in an office, there is not. But if you can stand the cold for just a couple of minutes, cyrotherapy might not be so bad.

The procedure “exposes the body to temperatures colder than negative 200 degrees for two to four minutes.” AKA, uncomfortably freezing.

Why would anyone do that?

It’s been used in a lot of places since the ’70s to treat serious medical conditions like multiple sclerosis, but it has now swept like wildfire across Western countries. It found footing in the U.S. as a treatment for professional athletes to help muscle relief.

What does it really do, and is it worth it?

Other benefits are said to include weight loss, clearer skin, and more energy. While it’s not going to kill you, keep in mind the treatment has yet to be regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. So you might want to wait a bit before deciding to “chill out.”

Vampire Facials

Not for the squeamish.

The vampire facial, AKA the platelet-rich plasma facial, or PRP, is making waves for it’s, er, unique methodology. Blood is, of course, chock full of platelets, so just imagine what they could do to rejuvenate your poor skin? And it works by using your own blood. Yes, we’re serious.

Just a few drops?

Basically, here is how it works: A doctor draws blood, spins it in a centrifuge, and then injects it back into the skin or applies it topically. If that doesn’t sound like some mad scientist business we don’t know what does.

Why are people getting it?

According to experts like Joshua Zeichner, the treatment, “improves skin tone and texture, smooths fine lines, and even promotes hair growth.”

The process is supposed to completely rejuvenate the skin, but comes at a price – it’s really painful. Kim Kardashian tried the facial and admitted it was “really rough and painful.”

Waist Trainers

Are they too good to be true?

The answer is yes, they are too good to be true. Despite the advertisements, the waist trainers don’t really deliver on their (or their celebrity endorsers’) promises.

According to scientists, they’re useless.

A few years ago, celebrities started advertising waist trainers as one of their big workout secrets on how to get a “perfect body.” Everyone from the Kylie Jenner to Lily James admitted they wore one while working out to amp up their results.

The only problem? They don’t help much at all.

Also, they can do some major damage.

A waist trainer is essentially a corset that sucks in your stomach and causes extra sweat, and allegedly a tighter core. But, the reason corsets fell out of fashion is that while the holding in looks flattering, it can cause vital organs to permanently shift, leading to medical issues.

Exercise physiologists like Ashley Fugler agree that it’s not helpful.

She even said the garment would “make it difficult to breathe normally,” which definitely isn’t good for the body. It also has shown no benefit to strengthening the core any faster.

We don’t know about you, but we already have trouble breathing during workouts, so we’ll pass on this one.

Apitherapy

Hint: It involves bees.

You read that right, bees. Apitherapy is an ancient practice that has resulted in a new controversial beauty trend. The process is basically getting stung by a bunch of bees. Not exactly our idea of fun.

Dermatologists admit there could be some benefits.

According to dermatologists, other bee related products like honey, royal jelly, and pollen all have significant health benefits, but apitherapy takes it one step further. Is it worth it? Hard to say. It really might be better to just stick with the topical creams, unless you don’t mind some deep stinging.

And it’s starting to garner a big celebrity following.

Gwyneth Paltrow has admitted to trying the practice and says it helped her reduce redness and inflammation in her skin. It can also be help in reducing skin scarring, as long as the bee sting is directly on the scar. (Ouch.)

According to dermatologist Jeannette Graf, M.D., rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis (MS), and other nerve based diseases can “greatly benefit from bee venom,” though the science behind the procedure isn’t really there yet.

If you’re going to try this trend, please make sure you’re not allergic.

Clear skin is nothing to literally die for. There are other ways!

Detoxes

We’ve all tried one.

One beauty fad that has really taken over the last decade has been the detox. The idea is that you limit or restrict your intake of particular foods and replace what you eat to “cleanse” your body and start fresh.

Is there any one of us out there who hasn’t tried at least one that we’d hope would have miraculous results? (Any one? Hands up if you haven’t.)

Yeah, that’s what we thought.

The idea of a quick diet that yields amazing results is definitely appealing. As if you can shed months of poor eat decisions in under two weeks thanks to some apple cider vinegar?  Also, there are now so many varieties you can essentially build the one that works best for you.

There’s a detox for everything it seems.

Some of us just cut out sugar and dairy and go the Whole 30 route, others take it one step further and go full on juice cleanse which forgoes solid foods entirely. There has also be a rise of the detox tea which is supposed to fully cleanse your digestive system.

So, do they really work?

Well, no. The idea of cleansing your body of toxins at its core doesn’t make sense. What do we think the body is storing? Also, we promise it’s nothing that is the sole reason for your current weight.

The good new is, the body doesn’t routinely ingest dangerous toxins into the body – also organs like the liver and kidneys take care of detoxing for you.

Literally it’s what they are built for.

According to the National Center For Complementary And Integrative Health, there “isn’t any convincing evidence that detox or cleansing programs actually remove toxins from your body or improve your health.”

Unfortunately, the only reason you may lose weight fast is because you’re severely depleting your caloric intake.

Cupping Massage

Effective, but painful.

We all love a good massage every once in a while. Normally it’s a relaxing experience filled with deep tissue work that finally works out our tense muscles. (Hey, we’re shoulder-clenchers over here.)

But, sometimes if a massage if particularly effective in the long run, it tends to be more painful than meditative.

Enter: the cupping massage.

Cupping is an ancient Chinese practice that is rooted in the belief that poor energy and health problems are correlated with stagnant blood. The practice is super common and safe, just not the comfiest. It works by lighting a match and using glass or silicon cups to create pressure and suck your skin inward.

We promise it’s less creepy than it sounds.

The pressure causes blood to be drawn to the area, normally at different pressure points along the back, and increases bloodflow. According to doctors, the practice can “relieve muscle tension, improve circulation, and reduce inflammation.”

Nothing is ever easy huh?

The only downside? There will definitely be some very intense bruising after, and some soreness. *Sigh*

Lip Plumping

It’s all about the pout.

Unless you’ve been living under a rock the last few years, it’s hard to deny the popularity that full lips has gotten. Lipsticks, liners, and glosses have all take over the beauty scene with a fervor, even Kylie Jenner launched a wildly successful cosmetics brand based around long lasting lip color.

Needless to say, with a new beauty trend comes the more extreme methods of getting big lips, and we’re not talking about over-lining.

Lip fillers might be the most extreme.

It’s not secret that tons of celebrities get a little extra help when it comes to their full-lipped look. For years, collagen injections and lip fillers have grown in popularity. It’s not just collagen injections any more.

You can get the plump, for a price.

Juvaderm, Restylane, and Volbella are all major brands that promise different results. The procedure isn’t invasive and the results can last six months to a year.

The downsides are minor bruising, and also it will cost you a pretty penny. Try upwards of a thousand dollars.

Lip plumper tools and products are much more affordable.

If you’re looking for a more uh, “natural” way of plumping up your pout, there are non-cosmetic surgery options. Lip plumping tools are starting to hit the market and promise a quick way to amp up your look for a special event. Most are relatively easy to use and just involve a suction on the lips.

Another big option is glosses with collagen in them that temporarily add plump to the lips. Be careful though, too much collagen use can cause your skin to stop naturally producing as much, leading to premature aging.

Whatever you do, don’t try the Kylie Lip Challenge.

In 2015, the “Kylie Jenner Lip Challenge” hit social media and caused a frenzy. The challenge was to make your lips look like Jenner’s by placing your lips in a plastic bottle and sucking to create a vacuum.

The effect was slightly bruised lips and swelling that lasted a few hours. According to Dr. Francesca Wexler, the results could be dangerous. It can cause, “trauma to the lips, breaking of blood vessels, and cutting of skin that requires stitches.”

Jenner wasn’t a big fan of the challenge.

While Jenner has been open about her insecurities related to her lips, she went online and said she absolutely didn’t support the challenge. She said, “I’m not here to try and encourage people/young girls to look like me or to think this is the way they should look.”

Anti-Wrinkle Face Masks

Age before beauty?

If there is one secret the whole world wishes it could crack, it might just be how to look young forever. Something about perfect glowing skin is the one beauty trend that is timeless and we all strive for.

So, how do we achieve this look? Well, one answer might lie in face masks. And we’re not talking about your everyday drugstore stick-ons.

No, we’re talking about the big guns.

LED, magnetic, and mud masks have taken over the skincare realm and are becoming the new en-vogue trend. According to dermatologists, like Joshua Zeichner, these masks use science to trick the skin into reproducing cells faster.

He said, “magnets have long been used in healthcare, especially to help improve would healing. Many anti-aging treatments have roots in similar methods.” Basically the quicker the skins ability to heal itself, the younger we look.

Mud Baths

Somehow it’s luxurious to sit in a pile of mud?

Mud baths have been around since the dawn of time. And unsurprisingly the benefits definitely outweigh any, let’s just say gross, side effects.

According to Lili Talakoub, M.D., most mud baths are made using volcanic ash, which helps to balance the skins natural pH. It not only is great for skin, there are anti-inflammatory benefits and increased circulation throughout the body.

Natural Hair Masks

How does one get perfect hair? Asking for a friend.

One thing that can hands down make or break a day, is good hair. Why is it just so hard to manage? In our quest for perfect hair we have definitely tried our fair share of serums, shampoos, and masks. Also, it can be tempting to want a more organic solution.

With that said, we have read tons about foods that supposedly create amazing results.

Eggs, mayonnaise, and olive oil anyone? Well, for those of you who have tired, we’re sorry. We have too.

What about keeping it simple?

There’s also the classic apple cider vinegar approach, which might be a little less risky if you’re trying to avoid the oil-slick results with olive or coconut oils.

And for those who haven’t tried the oil and egg route trust us, just don’t.

Egg yolks cook in hot water leading to a big old mess, and mayonnaise and oil will leave your scalp greasy for weeks. Do us all a favor and just go the organic product route.

 

People have been using questionable tactics to remain beautiful throughout time.

Modern beauty trends can be dangerous, but they are no where as harmful as some of the beauty practices of ancient times. Did you know the Ancient Egyptians used lead-based cosmetics to line their eyes? If you want to learn more, check out these dangerous ancient beauty practices.