How Vampire Facials Are Currently Linked With An Increase In HIV Cases
With changing beauty trends in the makeup and healthcare industry, we see a new rise in exciting and unique methods to preserve youth and stay current. One of the most interesting – and potentially dangerous – new ways to keep your skin looking ‘healthy’ is a controversial facial cleansing method.
When looking at the newest and best ways to stay young and fresh, sometimes we go to the extreme to try and give our best foot forwards. One of these methods is an obtrusive cleansing ritual for your face. Let’s see how this beauty trend works and why it would be best to stay away.
What is a vampire facial?
Facials are usually known for being beneficial to your skin and your overall health. Known for unclogging pores, scrubbing away dead skin cells, and helping remove impurities, people around the world turn to facials to help clean your skin and look brighter and fresher. However, some cleaning methods are more abrasive and intrusive than beneficial when looking younger and fresher.
A vampire facial is a method that extracts some of your own blood, separates the plasma from the blood, and then re-injects the plasma back into your skin. Plasma is the liquid portion of blood that makes up 55% of blood platelets. The method of taking out plasma and reintegrating it into your body is supposed to give you a fresher and younger look – the keyword here is “supposed”.
This may seem scary and crazy – and it pretty much is. However, what is even more alarming is the popularity and use of this facial when people want to look younger. Just like Botox has taken off in recent years and injecting your face with fillers has become commonplace, especially in places like Los Angeles or Beverly Hills, the world as a whole is constantly reminded that people will do anything – and everything – to retain youth.
Along with fillers, Botox, and surgeries, people strive to undergo more drastic measures to keep their youthful appearance. Just like everything else in the world, people want the newest and greatest trend. Like hot yoga taking over the fitness industry a few years ago, people wish for whatever will work the quickest and the best.
Unfortunately for many people’s health and long-term skin health, vampire facials have become the latest trend. Not only is this potentially not effective and harmful, but it has been shown to increase the rate of HIV transmission due to the use of needles and blood transfusions. Since these facials involve blood and needles, the rate of HIV infection has skyrocketed from the clients and the employees performing the facials, especially if they are not appropriately trained.
If a certified plastic surgeon gives you a vampire facial, your risk of contracting HIV is much lower. However, if you use a back-door clinic to save money and time, you may find yourself at increased risk of getting a potentially dangerous bloodborne illness due to the misuse of needles and blood.
Are vampire facials safe?
Simply put, no. Vampire facials require the proper use of needles and blood – a combination that must be only done by certified professionals with hours of practice. However, just like anything – mistakes can happen. This means that an untrained professional who claims their proficiency in vampire facials can be lying.
A study done in 2018 shows the risks associated with vampire facials. After two cases of HIV transmission were documented after this type of facial treatment, the correlation between this beauty treatment and injection-related HIV contamination was traced. Transmission of bloodborne diseases is extremely high if the needles are not sterilized and the person getting the vampire facial has HIV.
Others who visited the spa for vampire facials were ‘urged’ to get HIV testing, but it was not mandatory or compulsory for those who wanted this vampire facial. Despite the risks, vampire facials can be safe if you go to the right place – but very harmful if you do not.
Who can do vampire facials?
If you choose to get a vampire facial, you may find that you have a wide selection of places to choose from – however, this does not mean that all options are good options. Choosing the cheapest and quickest method of the vampire facial usually means the person is not certified. Make sure when you decide on who will do your facial that you choose a board-certified and qualified professional who knows the proper sterilization techniques, pavers protective equipment, and has experience doing this type of treatment in the past.
Although you may find many spas and beauty centers in your area offering vampire facials, be wary about choosing the loser’s option. You will often find it much safer to get one from a board-certified plastic surgeon or dermatologist familiar with handling the skin, blood, and bodily fluids.
Does a vampire facial work?
Arguably the most crucial question regarding vampire facials and the dangers associated with this treatment is, does the treatment even work? Vampire facials are popular today in dermatologist offices and local spas, but they might not even have the effectiveness to make the potential risks worth it in the long run.
Unfortunately for those wanting a vampire facial, the research is insignificant and insufficient when proving whether this HIV risk treatment is worth it. Studies have been done about the effectiveness, but the results are minimal, showing this type of facial is not beneficial for those who want to appear younger.
When looking at the positives and negatives of a vampire facial, it is often considered not worth it. Since you can potentially contract HIV from misuse of blood or needles, it may be potentially harmful to pay for this type of treatment at your local spa or dermatologist’s office. People interested in this facial should do the proper research on finding a board-certified professional who knows the techniques and steps to safely do this procedure.