The Spermine Facial: What a Dry Hump

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Laura Ling and Euna Lee aren’t the only journalists willing to risk life and limb for a good story. Though it’s not quite on the same level, for this week’s brave journalist movie of the week award, I’d like to nominate myself and Marty Beckerman for gamely going where few serious journalists would willingly go: to a salon for the privilege of getting some sperm derivative known as spermine slathered on our mugs. I first wrote about this headline-grabbing facial a while back, and it’s taken me this long to sufficiently suppress my gag reflex enough to suck it up, and go get my spermine facial.

Independently of one another, but united in our curiosity (or in Marty’s case, his apparent obsession with all thing cock related – watch his video via Gawker) Marty and I each partook of the much talked about Spermine Facial. He went to the fancy Townhouse Spa, I went slumming at Graceful Services.

Because of my exalted status as a serious journalist, I received my money shot facial free of charge, which is about the nicest thing I can say about the whole experience. In addition to the expected space on the sign in sheet for your name and what treatment you’re getting, big bold letters reminded me of the golden rule: “NO SEXUAL ACTIVITY ALLOWED,” which led me to believe that this was the kind of place that is commonly mistaken for that kind of place. My facialist was perfectly nice and competent, but she didn’t speak a lick of English, making it very hard to communicate that a certain part of the facial was causing me intense stinging and needed to be removed immediately; luckily, pain is a universal language and she understood quite quickly.

After almost an hour of facial prep, which was actually very pleasant, the actual spermine application was pretty anti, uh, climactic. It felt like any other cream and smelled pretty good, like toasted almonds and a little fruity – yet another indication that spermine isn’t too closely related to its namesake. I left feeling a little dirty, a little crusty and with the beginnings of a little breakout. So really, this wasn’t all that different than the experience the frat boys tried to sell me on back in college.