Guide to extreme beauty treatments

From salt scrubs and body polish to mud masks and Dead Sea shampoo, the range of beauty products adorning the shelves of your local high street pharmacist is mind-boggling. Yet, we don't bat an eye at the idea of plastering our faces with green goo these days.

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However, if you're looking for something truly indulgent, bizarre or downright extreme, here are just a few of the most unusual beauty treatments on offer.

The gold-plated facelift
Invented by Doctor of Chinese Medicine John Tsagaris, this indulgent facial involves a gold Dermaroller, gold rings that stimulate circulation in the delicate eye area, a gold-enhanced cleanser and, yes... a 24-carat gold face mask. It's not cheap at £400 for a 90-minute treatment but the gold is rumoured to improve skin elasticity and reverse cell damage from the sun and smoking as well as other harmful pollutants.
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The snail facial
Put aside your initial squeamishness and snail gel could give your visage a much-needed boost. First discovered by Chilean snail farmers (we didn't ask how) the moisturising benefits of snail secretions come from the allantoin, collagen and elastin. Some beauty salons provide a treatment involving cleansing, toning and a snail mask which promises to moisturise, plump and soothe the skin. Alternatively you can pop down to Holland and Barrett for a pot of your very own snail slime priced at £20.45.

The piranha pedicure
Okay, so they don't use actual piranhas... it's the tiny toothless Garra rufa fish that do the job. Already popular across Europe, the US and Asia these flesh-eating fish are becoming increasingly popular in the UK. The skin-suckers just can't wait to rid you of the dead skin and unsightly callouses on your feet, leaving your tootsies soft, smooth and sandal-ready for the summer.
Currently available at Appy Feet at cities across the north of the country and coming soon to a city near you.

Bull semen conditioner
For the ultimate in luscious locks, some women swear by protein-rich semen... no bull. The Aberdeen Organic Bull Semen known by fans as "Viagra for hair", the treatment combines the obvious with Katera root for a thickening, moisturising mask which purports to form a protective layer for your hair. As to how ethical it is, or how it's extracted, we wouldn't like to say.
Available from Hari's in London from £55.

Anti-ageing the vampire way
Stimulated Self Serum skin therapy, or S3 as it's known, sounds rather pleasant but the reality is a good deal more scary. Four vials of blood are taken from your arm and then separated into red blood cells, clear serum and platelets with the aid of a centrifuge. Vitamins and amino acids are added - and then the concoction is ready to be injected right back into your face, from hairline to jawline. It's not without a little discomfort but Dr Daniel Sister, who first offered the treatment last year, claims it still beats those painful peels. He claims the serum stimulates DNA repair, heals scars and naturally rejuvenates dry and wrinkled skin.
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Good luck girls!