People all over the world have different ways of taking care of their minds, bodies, and souls. It seems like almost anything can be made into a facial, whether it be gold or chocolate. If we’d just take a look around the world, we’d find that people have all sorts of interesting ways of improving their health and beauty, often offered by their local spas and medical centers.
Smiles Tv has collected some of the most surprising and unexpected health procedures you’ll find around the globe.
1. Snail facials in Thailand
When using slime from live snails, the snails essentially do the work for you by spreading their mucus and giving you a facial massage. While this treatment is gaining popularity at spas in Thailand, similar treatments using snails date back to ancient Greece.
If you were scared of getting stung by bees when you were little, it might surprise you to know what you were missing out on. Apitherapy involves treatments that use all products coming from bees, including bee venom. This treatment can be used to aid with multiple sclerosis, arthritis, infections, and shingles. Some people also use apitherapy to get over a fear of bees. Do make sure to be aware of your allergies before you try this.
3. Peruvian dolphin therapy
Many different types of animals are used in therapy treatments. In Peru, swimming with dolphins at marine parks has been used for speech, occupational, and physical therapy. Women expecting children also use this treatment. The dolphins reportedly nudge the woman’s belly and release a high-frequency sound that is said to stimulate the baby’s brain.
4. Snake massage in Israel
Ada Barak’s Carnivorous Plant Farm and Spa in Israel offers a massage service that also makes use of our animal friends. Around a half-dozen snakes slither around a person’s body, essentially giving them a full-body massage, including the face. The snakes are supervised during the treatment and clients claim that they help with migraines and sore muscles.
5. Californian & Dutch placenta facial
For people with skin issues, ranging from acne to psoriasis to rosacea, placentas are used throughout the world as the ultimate treatment. In the Netherlands, Dutch soccer players have even been known to treat torn ankle ligaments using horse placenta.
6. Beer spas in Europe
A nice warm bath can always help soothe aches and pains, but people have been finding different alternatives to water. In Germany, Austria, and the Czech Republic, many hotels and spas offer people the chance to soak in beer. The treatment can help with skin issues, stress, and even increase cardio activity!
7. Volcanic sand bath
You may have heard of mud baths, and even sand baths, but did you think something from a volcano could be used as a spa treatment? Not only does this treatment use volcanic sand, some traditional bathing areas, such as the Yamakawa Sand Baths, are actually heated by nearby volcanoes. Sand baths take place within the comfort of a spa. Think hot spring, but you don’t have to get your feet dirty.
People use heat to treat themselves when they are sick (hot soup, hot tea, warm blankets), so using the cold to treat themselves was the obvious next progression. Cryotherapy is simply any treatment that uses freezing or near-freezing temperatures, although a well-known form of it involves sitting in a cold tank. Supposedly, staying in this tank can improve your mental health and prolong your life, but, as this is a relatively new treatment, these claims are not necessarily confirmed.
9. Hay treatments in northern Italy
The Hotel Heubad in northern Italy offers a spa treatment that involves covering a patron in wet, fermented hay. The idea comes from centuries of farmers sleeping in hay, only to wake up filled with energy. Allegedly, the treatment helps with muscle cramps, stiff joints, and even obesity.
10. Equine Reiki in Australia
Reiki is a pseudoscience involving supposedly sharing “life energy” among people, often using touch. A growing trend in Australia offers a variation of this practice using horses. Essentially clients lie on a massage bed or sit in a chair while horses move around them in order to share their energy.
11. Kati Basti
A perfect massage makes you feel like clay or dough in somebody’s hands. So, why not get a massage using real dough? In this practice a person has dough, that was made with black lentil flour and shaped into a circle, placed on a cramped area, normally the back. The dough is heated and medicate oil is then poured into the area, making it a little “well.” The practice also involves herbal steaming to finish it off.
12. Cured meat therapy in Italy
People like meat. People like the smell of meat. Using the smell of fine Italian meats as a treatment is just common sense. Hosteria da Ivan in Italy offers a salumoterapia salon, in which cloth napkins are placed over someone’s head, allowing them to inhale the smells of meat on a plate. The restaurant also offers prosciutto wraps and mortadella masks, as well as food you can purchase simply to eat.
13. Ramen baths in Japan
Ramen is so iconic it had to be made into a spa treatment. Yunessun Spa House, a spa theme park in Hakone, Japan, allows patrons to soak in a giant ramen bowl that is said to boost metabolism and improve the skin condition, all just using pork broth. The broth is real, but health concerns mandated that synthetic noodles had to be used, according to this video.
14. Goat yoga
They say to never let others walk all over you, but baby goats are clearly the exception to this rule. Goat yoga, at its most basic, is just conducting yoga sessions amid the company of goats, especially baby goats. Some of the goats are known to crawl or walk on people during the sessions, giving them a massage. With the goats essentially serving as a therapy animal, the practice is said to help with stress and anxiety.
15. Fire cupping
This traditional form of Chinese acupuncture involves heating glass cups and placing them on a client’s back, creating suction on the person’s skin. The treatment is said to aid with a variety of issues, from muscle cramps to the common cold. Be warned, however, that the treatment can cause circular bruises on the skin from the suction.
What did you think of these treatments? Would you try them? Let us know and also share any unusual health or beauty treatments from around the world that you’ve heard of yourself.
Preview photo credit susannah_slocum / Instagram