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The strange new fad

Thursday, July 12, 2018

A bizarre new facial is taking Hollywood by storm. Dr Shuba Dharmana has more

The louder you shout the louder you have your presence felt’—at least that’s the mantra Hollywood is following for now.  Touted as one of the most controversial facials and known for its attention-grabbing name, ‘Penis facials’ seem to be making all the news there with celebrities and elite rushing to slather on some of that goodness that promises make their wrinkles disappear and regenerate their skin like no other.

Designed by Hollywood’s most famous facialist Georgia Louise, the facial probably gets its name because of the EGF (epidermal growth factor) used in the facial that is sourced from the foreskin of Korean babies! It’s also been said it could be because of the strange ‘sperm’-like smell of this procedure!

There is medical science behind the procedure, which is why the well heeled crowd of LA are flocking towards it. The procedure followed by the facialist apparently uses a TCA peel followed by micro-needling, which is then followed by a sheet mask and an epidermal growth factor serum. TCA gives great results for photodamaged skin and fine lines and micro-needling works to induce collagen synthesis for smoother firmer looking skin.

There is still some confusion and not enough light shed on the usage of epidermal growth factors. Topically applied on intact skin it is not known to be beneficial but using on wounds or healing tissue has shown regeneration and increased cell turnover effects. Basically what this means is when it is applied to the wound it provides the signals for the cells to regenerate themselves. This means thicker, tighter, smoother and more radiant supple skin.

Whilst this is great news, this is a relatively new discovery and it should be used with caution. There have been studies linking its use with psoriasis and irritation possibly because of the increased cell turnovers. The clinical studies have shown benefits but the subjects have not been followed up long enough to know its cancer-causing potential.

‘A rose by any other name… ‘the original name given to this facial by the way is ‘The Hollywood EGF Facial’ as mentioned on their website. If you can pardon the wild name and you are willing to undergo treatments that use serums with products we do not yet completely understand, you have found your elixir of beauty, at least temporarily.

So if you have got your eyes set on this lux treatment, this can set you back by $650 for a session!

Dr Shuba Dharmana is a Dermatologist and Medical Director, Lejeune Medspa, Bangalore

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