Given the title, you’re probably wondering: what in the Jeffrey Dahmer is going on here? And we’re thinking the same thing. While TikTok can be an excellent place for discovery, it can also be a terrifying place to encounter strange trends. Recent examples of the latter include using period blood as a face mask.
Despite its bizarreness, the menstrual mask has garnered some interest, with many putting the eww factor aside. In fact, the #periodbloodfacemask has over 3.5 million views on TikTok.
What Are Period Masks?
As the name implies, a period mask involves collecting period blood in a menstrual cup and applying it to the face. Those who follow the unusual beauty trend claim that while it’s strange, smearing blood onto their face has many advantages. They say that their skin has become clear and glowing since they have received nutrients from their blood.
Regardless of what these unquestioning TikTokers may believe, no scientific proof supports these claims. In fact, a dermatologist created a follow-up video explaining why it’s bad for your skin, and possibly unsafe.
As Dr. Joyce explains in her video, there are several reasons why people shouldn’t participate in this new facial trend. The first thing she mentions is that the menstrual blood used is not collected in a sterile manner. Therefore, bacteria, sweat, and other things in the blood are of concern. If you have an infection “down there,” you could transmit bacteria and viruses from your genital region to your face, she says.
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Dr. Joyce also denies that it is possible for a menstrual face mask to be similar to a PRP treatment, which Kim Kardashian made popular by posting her bloody face on social media. “Period blood contains red blood cells but also white blood cells, platelets, bacteria because of contamination, sweat, shed of endothelial cells, dead skin cells,” she says.
Unlike this DIY facial, the so-called “vampire facial” is a skincare treatment made of platelet-rich plasma. “We’re actually extracting blood in a sterile way from your veins and then spinning it down to only collect your platelets, taking out only red and white blood cells,” Dr. Joyce says. Although it sounds similar, vampire facials are done in a clinical setting, without the contaminants. Self-collecting and administration should never be attempted.
There is no cosmetic benefit to using menstrual blood on your face, it is not recommended, and it could even be dangerous. With so many great, safe, and clinically proven skincare options available today, you can skip this cringeworthy beauty trend.