Animal Waste Blended into $5,000 Skincare Products
When it comes to skincare, there are few things women (and men) won’t do to have younger, more beautiful skin. But, even I was surprised to see this skin care brand infusing waste into their 3-step skincare program (no matter how rare and expensive the product may be). That may not even be the worst part – the complete set costs $4,494.
As a friend of mine once told me, “Nobody ever went broke underestimating the taste of the American public.”[For the record, civets are not cats. But they look like cats, they are often referred to as “civet cats”, and honestly “cat poop” makes for a more entertaining story. See below for why the use of civets is not only stupid, but immoral.]
The luxury beauty brand Hermetise is quite literally, thinking outside the (litter) box.
The (Poop) Scoop
Kopi Luwak Anti-pollution oxygen brightening treatment contains kopi luwak, the same cat waste that is used to make some of the most expensive coffee in the world.
Now it’s being used in skincare. According Hermetise’s web site, the Kopi Luwak “clears and protects skin from pollutants and treats skin with advanced oxygen and selected age-defying ingredients which are fortified with 24K gold and the Kopi Luwak infusion. Farmers gather the waste and process it to be infused in Heremtise’s $1,664 facial cream.
Now, you may or may not know that I’ve started making handmade soap (see “a href=”http://AZSoapworks.com” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener”>AZSoapworks.com for some amazing all-natural, responsibly-sourced and organic soaps with incredible benefits to skin). In the time I’ve been developing my skills, I’ve seen just about everything being infused in soap, including shedded snakeskin, caterpillar cocoons, and fine wines. No, we don’t use shedded snakeskin in our soaps, but we do know a few who do and you might be surprised at the benefits of this protein!
But, I’m not totally convinced about the benefits of civet cat waste or 24K gold. Silver? Maybe… but not gold.
According Hermetise’s web site, Kopi Luwak “clears and protects skin from pollutants and treats skin with advanced oxygen and selected age-defying ingredients which are fortified with 24K gold and the Kopi Luwak infusion.
This is obviously bad news for civets.
Why This is Bad for Civets
Where there is greed, there is corruption. Where there is limited demand, there is an increase in the need to take life in order to get more fo the goods. The fact that 24K gold is used in this product is bad enough. Gold mining uses some of the most destructive practices in the world to mine the precious element, not to mention exploiting humans.
It’s not good for civets either…
Now that the demand is so high, civets are being captured from the wild and farmed in deplorable conditions to gather their waste. In the wild, civets would eat fruit, reptiles, and insects. But now, captive civets are fed mostly coffee cherries as their captors anxiously await their waste. Read more about this situation at National Geographic.
So what about the poop? Well, the cat poop comes into play because the Civet cat eats Kopi Luwack coffee beans. Farmers gather the waste and process it to be infused in Heremtise’s $1,664 facial cream.
In the wild, civets would eat fruit, reptiles, and insects. But now, captive civets are fed mostly coffee cherries as their captors anxiously await their waste.
Kopi luwak is the “civet coffee” that is created from partially-digested coffee cherries. This coffee bean has been eaten and defecated by the Asian palm civet.
A cup of kopi luwak, as it’s known, can sell for as much as $80 in the United States. Producers of the coffee beans argue that the process may improve coffee through two mechanisms, selection and digestion.
Researchers from Oxford University’s Wildlife Conservation Research Unit and the London-based nonprofit World Animal Protection assessed the living conditions of nearly 50 wild civets held in cages at 16 plantations on Bali. The conditions are horrid. Civets live in tiny cages and are forced to stand on wire mesh floors so the poop can drop more easily. Access to fresh water is limited (if it’s even available) and there is no variety in diets.
The waste contains anti-aging, firming, brightening and pH balancing benefits. The Anti-pollution Brightening Oxygen treatments list seven key benefits that target a range of skin issues. Hermetise says this line “increases moisture” (cat pee isn’t listed as an ingredient) while it “stimulates blood flow to aid collagen production” (perhaps you’ll be red-faced after smearing cat poo all over your face).
Other Dangers You Should Consider
If the exorbitant price ($5,000 DOLLARS), horrific animal abuse, or smearing of cat poop all over your face isn’t enough of a detriment, perhaps you need to consider the potential for health problems.
There is some pretty convincing evidence that SARS has jumped species and is prevalent in the civet population. This is especially true for captive civets as they tend to be more susceptible to disease.
We don’t get better skin (or better-tasting coffee) from exploiting animals. Personally, we view this entire situation as disgusting and quite frankly, people and manufacturers should know better in this day and age…
If you really feel that you need to purchase this insanely high-priced fad product, . (we would much rather see you spend your money donating to save these beautiful creatures) you can do it at Hermetise.com, or go to Hermetise, 1028 NE 16th Ave., Fort Lauderdale; Green Biotics, The Mall at Wellington Green, 10300 W. Forest Hill Blvd., Wellington; and Royal Beauty Spa, 1662 Collins Ave., Miami Beach. But you could also donate to your favorite jaguar rescue, as the jaguar (critically endangered species) eat civetr cats to live. Wipe out their food source, you wipe out the carnivore.
- “WHO: More evidence of civet cat-SARs link”. CNN. January 17, 2004. Archived from the original on 1 December 2004. Retrieved 2007-08-16.
- “China scientists say SARS-civet cat link proved”. Reuters. 23 November 2006. Retrieved 2007-08-16.
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