2014's 7 Weirdest Skin Care Trends (Plus Which to Skip, and Which to Do)

We've all tried a beauty trend or two that seems a bit questionable, but 2014 may prove to have some of the oddest yet. From oil pulling to bee venom, here are some of the year's oddest skincare fads so far.

1. Bee Venom Facial Products

Thank Kate Middleton for this one: bee venom is supposedly one of the Duchess's skincare secrets. The venom is purported to have anti-aging properties including signaling the body to produce more collagen and calm inflammation. The ingredient has since been included in facial creams, masks, and serums. However, don't run to the nearest hive just yet; the jury is still out on whether or not bee venom is actually a miracle ingredient.

2. Salmon Enzyme Skincare Products

Dr. Perricone and Restorsea have spearheaded this odd trend. Perricone's Blue Plasma uses salmon roe enzyme to supposedly increase cell turnover and luminosity in skin, while Restorsea says a similar enzyme keeps skin at the peak of youthful-looking health. Considering the benefits of eating salmon, we wouldn't be surprised if adding the products to your skincare routine has a few added benefits, as well.

3. Oil Pulling

This mouth washing-reminiscent cleansing craze allegedly helps to clear up acne, but the process by which it's achieved is questionable. Oil pulling is said to remove toxins and other detrimental filth from your mouth by gargling oil for up to 20 minutes, at which point the oil is spit into the sink, and the participant gives her teeth a solid brushing. If this is actually all it takes to cure acne (and get whiter teeth along the way), a whole host of other may be in some serious trouble. Not everyone is convinced that the practice is beneficial, however.

4. Snail Facials

Unless you're one of a rare subset of people who enjoy slimy textures, the snail facial may not be for you. The unpleasant-sounding treatment is comprised of one or several snails which are placed on the face and, in moving around, secrete mucus which supposedly dissolves dead skin and increases moisture. Scientists are reportedly skeptical of the facial's real value, but are looking into the possibility that the mucus supplements the skin's natural hydration. We may just stick to our favorite moisturizer.

5. Eating Clay for Improved Skin

We're well-versed in the benefits of cleansing clay masks. But Shailene Woodley called attention to the new trend of consuming clay for its skincare benefits. Apparently, clay pulls toxins from the skin and the body, which suggests that eating the substance may also prove beneficial. However, removing essential metals like iron from the body by eating clay is reportedly unnecessary, and on occasion, the clay itself may be harmful to the consumer. Perhaps hold off on this one and reaching for some vitamin-rich root vegetables instead.

6. Fish Pedicures

Technically fish pedicures have been around for quite some time, but The Bachelor reminded us of their existence. The somewhat cringeworthy pedicure consists of dipping one's feet into a pool of water, where a school of live fish will remove (read: consume) the dead skin from one's feet. Oddly ingenious? Perhaps, but several states have banned the practice due to mistreatment of the fish, and potentially unsanitary conditions for the customer.

7. Charcoal Skincare

Out of 2014's skincare trends, charcoal masks and skin cleansers may be the ones with the most science to back them up. Charcoal has a proven ability to absorb toxins when applied to the skin, which makes it a skincare goldmine for a lower cost than, say, that expensive serum which promises to get the city grime off your face… somehow. They make look a little weird slathered on, but that black stuff can actually do some wonderful things for your skin.