Fat Chance It’s the Fountain of Youth: Update

One of the world’s most valuable industries is rejuvenating cosmetics. This business is estimated to be around £6.4 billion in the United Kingdom alone. The average British woman will spend £186,000 on cosmetics in her lifetime, and a large proportion of this will be on anti-aging creams. These creams are largely based on essentialist beliefs that including various youthful ingredients like fetal tissue or mulched placenta will “rejuvenate” aging skin. Another belief is that human fat makes the best soap which according to experts is “pure baloney.”

Peruvian Police Display Bottles of Human Fat Extracted From Murder Victims

What else could have motivated the gruesome murder and harvesting of human fat by a Peruvian gang? The gang confessed to five murders where they hacked off the head and limbs and disemboweled poor peasants and then hung the torsos on meat hooks suspended over candles to melt the fat. The fat they harvested was apparently to be shipped to Italy, via intermediaries, where it would end up being used in expensive skin-softening beauty creams.

Experts are skeptical at the police reports but I could well believe that this gang were misguided. Remember Tyler Durden’s raids of liposuction clinics in “Fight Club?” If the gang had, then they would have probably realized that one of the few things that western society is not in short supply of is fat. Rather, it’s kidneys and livers they should have tried to sell rather than throwing them away

Update: Well it turns out that this story has been a hoax. Reuters just released this report that the police officer in charge has been fired for cooking up a story based on local superstitions.


Filed under Essentialism, In the News

10 responses to “Fat Chance It’s the Fountain of Youth: Update

  1. podblack

    …agrhhshshrhhshhs eeeewwwww arrrrhhhhggghhhh! *puts every lotion in the basket and throws it promptly in the bin in utter icked-out-ness* 😦

    (oh, should it read ‘few things that western society is NOT in short supply of is fat’?)

  2. A little too reminiscent of the Holocaust soap myth for me.

    • brucehood

      I looked that story up… I had forgotten about it and had some vague recollection hearing about it as a child. Now I hear it is a play. thanks

  3. These Peruvian dudes were way off course.

    They should have gone round Disneyland with a bag of sweets and a big net.

  4. Bruce,
    Sounds far-fetched enough to be an urban myth, but in line with the youth obsession so as to be believable.

    I wonder how that would be listed on the ingredients: essence of corpus adipo?

    May I just add, yuck.

  5. Richard

    ‘The average British woman will spend £186,000 on cosmetics in her lifetime.’ Really? Where did you get that figure from? It works out around £50 per week, year in, year out. I doubt that many of the (British) women I know spend – or need to spend – anywhere near that much. Or am I naive?

  6. Richard,
    I don’t know how much British women spend on these concoctions, but my share of the annual total more than quantifies that estimate as being fairly accurate.

    However, I do draw the line at human fat. I have enough of my own, thank you.

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