A VERY Posh beauty secret… 320 sheep placenta facials: Just when you thought you'd heard it all along comes Victoria Beckham's stem cell and gold flake serum
10:48 GMT, 20 May 2012
Even in a town obsessed by youth, Victoria Beckham’s latest beauty treatment is sure to raise eyebrows – provided they have not been paralysed by Botox.
For the former Posh Spice has become a devotee of the latest Hollywood fad – facials made from sheep placenta and gold flakes.
The 38-year-old regularly visits Beverly Hills dermatologist Dr Harold Lancer for the afterbirth ‘fixes’ that are said to harness the power of the sheep’s stem cells.
Looks: Victoria Beckham last November in New York and arriving at an Oscars party in West Hollywood, California earlier this year
And the 320-a-time treatments are just the latest in a long list of bizarre beauty fixes that Mrs Beckham endures in her quest for eternal youth.
The mother of four is reported to be a devotee of a ‘nightingale poop’ facial made from the excrement of a rare bird found only on the Japanese island of Kyushu.
And she is also said to slather on night cream containing bee venom in an effort to plump up her epidermis.
Historically, nightingale droppings were used to remove stains from silk garments in Japan, while geishas used them to whiten their skin.
Top product: Dr Harold Lancer's Cellular Advance Stem Cell Gold Serum
Dr Lancer, who works out of luxurious offices in Rodeo Drive, is keen to ensure his placentas come from only prime New Zealand livestock, claiming: ‘These sheep are completely untouched by the modern world.’
He added: ‘It is very important as they have no impurities in their system whatsoever. The stem cells we harvest are amniotic cells, which means no harm is caused to the animals.
‘The stem cells are preserved because they are full of rich nutrients that fight free-radical damage to the skin and make it more radiant.’
After the cells are extracted, they are flash-frozen, then mixed into a gel containing gold flecks and other ingredients, which is spread over the face.
A spokeswoman for the doctor confirmed that Mrs Beckham has been a regular patient for ‘several years’.
She added: ‘Victoria is a devotee of Dr Lancer’s products and is someone who always wants the latest and best in anti-ageing treatment.
'She has had the stem cell facial several times already. She visits the office every two weeks when she is in town.’
Mrs Beckham has tweeted about her love of Dr Lancer’s products, including his 70-a-tube skin moisturiser Nourish.
Her 90-minute placenta facials start with a regular exfoliation.
The face is exposed to steam, then red LED light from a handheld device, which opens the pores, before the gold-flecked gel is applied.
Dr Lancer – whose other clients include Jennifer Lopez, Kim Kardashian, Renee Zellweger and Charlie Sheen’s ex-wife Denise Richards – says: ‘The LED light dilates the blood vessels and makes the skin more receptive to the stem cells.
'Stem cells are a buzzword in today’s world but not everyone understands what they do.’
He claimed the protein-rich cells ‘give significant nutrition to the skin’, adding: ‘The stem cells interact with your own cells, basically telling them to wake up, produce collagen and stimulate new cell growth. Gold particles are included as gold helps to diffuse the stem cells and acts as the transdermal delivery system to help it work into the skin.’
After the gel, the beauticians run a galvanised metal probe over the skin ‘to ensure the product penetrates deeply’.
Just the tonic: Dr Lancer's plush Beverly Hills clinic
Finally, oxygen is added ‘to continue to enhance activation of the stem cells and stimulate the skin’.
Dr Lancer claimed: ‘The treatment provides instant results. Patients report decreased wrinkles and a glowing complexion.’
However, some dermatologists have questioned whether the placenta treatment actually works. Dr Robin Ashinoff, an associate professor at New York University, has previously said: ‘It’s probably the LED that’s doing it.’
Dr Lancer says the stem-cell treatment has become his top-selling facial.
Others who swear by the health benefits of placenta include fashion designer Donatella Versace. A 2010 biography told how she presented favourite models with jars of cream made from animal afterbirth ingredients.
Stem cells are the building blocks of life. They can reproduce themselves and ‘differentiate’ to become specific types of tissue cell.
For this reason, they are the subject of intense medical research, although the use of human embryonic stem cells has proved controversial.
Mrs Beckham’s spokeswoman declined to comment on the placenta treatment.