6 Beauty Products that Qualify as Torture
You already know that beauty comes with a price that you pay both in money and pain. Plucking, shaving, waxing, minor surgery - none of it is fun. But for some, it's downright murder.
Or at least torture, anyway.
Frostbite the Fat Away
Statistically, if you're reading this there's a fair chance you not only have love handles, but also all sorts of fatty lumps around your body that don't have amusing names. Maybe you've even considered going under the knife, because it'd be nice to be free of the fat and not have to, you know, do a bunch of sit-ups or whatever. But what if there was an alternative to all those nasty surgeries and liposuctions? Look no further, friend!
It is called coolsculpting, and it's exactly what it sounds like: completely cool. Literally, in this case, because this is mainly due to the fact that they freeze the fat within your body with a controlled frostbite.
They'll let any one wear a lab coat these days.
Coolsculpting is based on the little-known method called cryolipolysis: the art of freezing your lard while you're otherwise very much unfrozen. The idea is that under carefully controlled conditions, your subcutaneous fat cells are more vulnerable to the effects of cold than the non-lard tissue surrounding it.
The actual procedure goes as follows: Fat areas are pressed between two freeze plates for a couple of hours. During this time, your fat cells freeze over. This in turn should cause them to harmlessly break down and become reabsorbed by the body over the course of two to four months.
Alternatively: a goddamn salad.
Sound fine? Well, actually it sounds more like Sub-Zero from Mortal Kombat had gotten tired of ripping opponents' spines out and decided to give something back to the community the only way he knows how. Still, it's better than knives, right? Unless of course there is a catch.
Ha, of course there is! Actually, there are three:
1) It's a fat-removing surgery where they don't allow fat people. The coolsculpted area needs to be pretty protruding, yet small enough to safely freeze. That means the process is restricted to small lumps and thigh fat concentrations -- maybe love handles, tops.
"We can freeze off some of that finger fat, though."
2) As with everything expensive ever in the history of mankind, the coolsculpting process has its cheap knock-off alternatives. As with practically nothing else, though, these knock-offs take the ball and run with it, all the way to goo goo land. There are copycats out there who market sitting in a glorified freezer for extended periods of time as coolsculpting and also a totally safe thing to do of in every possible way.
Oh yeah, and 3) According to at least one user review, and the reality show star you see in the first image in this entry getting the procedure on camera, coolsculpting hurts like hell.
Shape Your Eyes With Glue, Tape and Forks
As we've mentioned before, many Asian people have developed something of an issue about their distinctively creased "monolid" eyelids and are willing to do quite a lot to appear more round-eyed. Way the hell more round-eyed.
WHAT'S WRONG WITH YOUR FACE?!
While quite a few rely on surgery for this, many choose even stranger, scarier, more dangerous paths. Yes, surgery is actually one of the saner options for eyelid shaping -- at least it's done by professionals. For those of us with a more DIY mindset, there are glues and tapes.
Yes, someone took a look at the monolid problem and decided the best way to fix it would be to apply the same methods one would use to fix, say, a broken chair. All that is missing is a six-pack, a hammer and a bunch of rusty nails.
Eyelid glues and tapes are used to stick the lid crease partially behind your eyeball with a goddamn plastic fork, like you can see happening in the first image in this entry. Notice anything wrong with that? Yep, it's everything. Everything is wrong with that. If there was a sound effect that went with that picture, it would be a plop, followed by frantic screeching.
Actually, you know what? We have it on video:
Yet numerous young Asians are doing it to themselves every day. Oh, by the way, did we mention it can take up to two hours to glue your lids correctly? Or that long term use of eyelid glues and tapes can make the skin of your lid sag and droop, thus only worsening the problem for which you started using that damn glue to fix in the first place?
Using this same logic, Cracked has donated several hundred blowtorches to help fight the spread of wildfires in California.
But what the hell, let's continue using them. In fact, let's package them for kids! For beauty! NEVER TOO EARLY.
Slim Your Face With This Terrifying Mask
Another thing that is apparently a big issue in Asian countries, particularly Japan, is wide faces. The leaner the face, the prettier it is considered, which sucks for those who were first in line when faces were given and decided to go for quantity. After all, the shape of a person's face is extremely difficult to change.
And then there are the products.
You can lose weight and look like a movie monster. Two birds with one stone!
Now, knowing how they approach the beauty industry approached the eyelid "problem," we don't blame you if you are right now bringing your hand to your face and grimacing in anticipated horror. In fact, we recommend it heartily.
Meet the Face Slimmer. It's a constrictor mask that is designed to squeeze the user's face until it becomes two sizes smaller. While you struggle in its vice-like grip and gulp for air from its next-to-nothing sized airholes, you will also quickly find yourself drowning in your own sweat as the mask doubles as a facial sauna.
Or you could just go the full monty ...
As a side effect, the Face Slimmer makes you look like Hannibal Lecter. You know, like all good beauty products should.
Shape Your Nose and Mouth With Stretching Tools
Have you ever felt that your nose leaves something to be desired, yet feel that a nosejob would be too drastic a solution? Well, now you have options! Horrible, horrible options, true -- but options nevertheless.
In this case the "option" we'd recommend is a "mortar."
For instance, if your nose is too flat and button-like, the HanaHana Nose Stretcher promises to sort it out.
All you have to do is stick a device described as a "super strong clothespin" on your nose (over the nostrils, because otherwise it would be just stupid) daily! This will stretch out the cartilage of your nose with some serious force, until you have reached that Pinocchio look you've always coveted.
But does it really work? What do you mean "does it really work"? How could a product that costs a whopping $7 possibly not work?
For those who want to attach stuff to their noses in the name of beauty, but for some reason find the HanaHana a bit too in your face, we present NoseSecret -- the instant nosejob.
It's completely invisible, and you can apply it any time you like. Just a minute in the bathroom and your profile will be completely changed!
It should probably be mentioned at this point the said change is achieved by sticking plastic rods up your nostrils. Nostrils, for those uninitiated, are often used for a little thing called breathing. Logic would dictate that it would be a bad idea to stick small pieces of plastic in them, what with all the sudden indrawn breaths, sneezes and nostril flares. But seeing as someone buying these is already at the "sticking small objects up my nose" stage we take it that they and logic are no longer on speaking terms.
"Why does this hurt so much?"
And what if it's your mouth that's the problem? Why, simply pick up the Slim Mouth Piece. It's a relatively simple looking device that at first glance seems to be a sort of spring loaded Chuck Norris Total Gym for your mouth.
Hey, that's actually a pretty sensible invention! Training your mouth muscles to give your mouth a stronger, fuller look seems like the first good idea on this whole list. And it would be. But that's not what the Slim Mouth Piece is for.
Despite its mindfreak of a name, it's not supposed to make your mouth slimmer and more petite. It's supposed to make your pie hole wider ... to make your face appear smaller. Narrow faces, remember? Wait, if we make our mouth bigger, how are we going to resist the temptation to just shove larger food in there?
"A few more months, and I'll be able to eat a Turducken in one bite."
Get Thinner By Cutting Out a Rib
Face it: Surgery is an integral part of the beauty business. People want it, so other people perform it. But there are surgeries and then there are surgeries. Boob jobs and tummy tucks are so common nowadays that even their sternest opponents are grudgingly coming around. And while most of the people that are pro-surgery are fine with this socially accepted nippery and tuckery, there are always a few who decide normal procedures are for losers and go straight to the source with their girth issues.
What is this "source," then? Why, our own lard-ass skeleton of course!
Put down the fork, fatass.
Rib resection surgery -- or the partial or complete removal of lower floating ribs -- is more than just a Marilyn Manson urban legend. Originally a rare procedure performed in special conditions to gain access to the internal organs of a patient, it was found to make the waist seem much slimmer than usual.
You can probably guess what happened next. Yes, someone took a look at a surgery that sounds more like a horror movie villain's modus operandi than an actual medical procedure and thought, Hey, that would be the perfect way for me to look a few pounds skinnier!
Still, it could be worse -- the first person to allegedly have had the operation for beautification purposes alone was the Broadway performer Anna Held. With all the comfort and convenience life-threatening surgery could offer you in 1900.
"Thank God for laudanum!"
Get Taller By Breaking Your Legs
Despite all the cosmetic procedures out there, there's one thing, however, that you simply can't change: Your height. Except, of course, if you're willing to let doctors break your legs and put a medieval torture rack on them.
Welcome to the wonderful world of cosmetic leg breaking.
Above: The only cure for a Napoleon Complex.
Formally known as limb lengthening surgery, it's a surgical procedure that can add up to three inches to your height. Alas, that's where the good things end. The actual process reads out like something Kevin Spacey would do to you if being tall were a deadly sin.
First the doctors slice open your legs and saw your thigh bones in two. Then they graft a bunch of metal rods and screws in the middle of the bones and link them to cumbersome metal braces outside the limbs.
And that's the fun part.
After they stitch you up and you've mostly stopped screaming, they hand you a little remote control which, with the push of a button, makes the steel rod inside you expand by one millimeter. This will enlarge the bone gap within your legs, literally tearing the femur apart and thus stretching each leg by force.
Sure, it's weeks of agony. But at least he'll be able to reach the top shelf in his kitchen soon.
Oh, and you need to push the button yourself. Did we mention that?
Once a day, every day, you must inflict horrible, horrible pain upon yourself in order to gain those extra inches. This lasts for up to three months. After that, you're looking at another surgery and a rehab period of up to six months. During which that pain we mentioned earlier is still very much with you.
Although the Western countries seem cool with leg stretching, it tells something about the safety of the procedure that China -- the creator of the procedure and the pioneer country in cosmetic foot mauling -- actually freaked out and banned it. And when China thinks your surgery is a wee bit too painful and dangerous, it would be best to listen.
"Foot-binding is one thing. But leg-lengthening? That's crazy."
If for some reason or other you want to increase your height so bad that this sounds like a good idea: please, please at least take care to be extra nice to everyone for a long time before the surgery. And -- even though the pain will be overbearing -- never, ever lash out at anyone during the process. Someone might get tempted to sneak that remote control from you while you sleep and see if they can turn you into Stilt-man. We're just saying.
AAAAAHHHH!! DAMN YOU, STEVE!
For more terrifying procedures, check out The 7 Most Pointlessly Horrifying Plastic Surgery Procedures and 8 Terrifying Instruments Old-Time Doctors Used on Your Junk.