Urine facials: What are they and do they work?

A bizarre beauty trend has seen people wiping urine on their faces in a bid for clearer skin.

Also known as urotherapy or “pee facials”, the at-home treatment involves a person collecting their urine, dabbing it on a cloth or piece of cotton wool, and wiping it across their face. It is then left to dry and rinsed away with water.

Those who swear by the treatment say it clears the complexion, tightens pores like a toner, and can treat psoriasis, eczema, and acne. Urine from the morning is said to be the most potent, as it has stayed in the body for a long period of time.

Pee facial devotees claim that the urea and uric acid in the liquid does everything from exfoliate the skin, to help the body absorb nutrients usually lost in the toilet bowl.

But experts aren’t convinced, and those who have tested it haven’t had the cure-all results they’d hoped for.

A writer at Thrillist who tried urotherapy found that the method irritated her skin, and caused a reaction similar to nappy rash.

Dr Sejal Shah, a dermatologic surgeon based in New York, warned against using urine on the face because it can cause reactions, and it isn’t effective enough to take the risk.

”Urine is primarily water and there’s very little urea in it. It contains less than 5% and actual skincare products with urea contain 10 per cent or more,” she said.

Instead, other natural products like tea, apple-cider vinegar and tea-tree oil are better alternatives, Dermatologist Dr Neal Schultz told Refinery 29.

And, let’s be honest, they’re a lot less gross.