Are the Remains of Aborted Babies Used in Cosmetics?

Are the Remains of Aborted Babies Used in Cosmetics?

By |2020-07-21T14:25:18-04:00June 16th, 2020|Categories: Abortion|Tags: , , , |

womens cosmetics makeup bag; are there cosmetics that use aborted fetuses

From time to time we hear stories alleging that American abortion mills are selling aborted babies to major cosmetic companies so that they may be “rendered” for their collagen, the main protein component of connective tissue.  This rumor is persistent and seems to have a life of its own, but there is no proof that there are cosmetics that use fetal tissue ― at least, not in the United States.

Pro-lifers have never documented any cases of collagen from freshly-aborted babies being used in cosmetics in the United States.  However, human collagen from placentas is used extensively in surgical procedures, particularly cosmetic surgery and the treatment of severe burns.  A number of cosmetic companies also use placentas in their beauty products.

A normal full-term human placenta weighs two pounds, about one hundred times more than a preborn child aborted at eleven weeks.  Placentas from cows, goats, sheep and, yes, humans are used in many cosmetics, but there is nothing illegal or immoral about this practice.  Hospitals and slaughterhouses commonly sell bulk placentas to pharmaceutical companies and cosmetic companies, which then extract hormones and proteins from them for use in hair care products, which supposedly make hair stronger and shinier, and lotions, which are advertised as making skin smoother and suppler.1

It is true that cell lines from babies aborted long ago are currently being used in certain vaccines in the United States.  The use of these vaccines by doctors and patients is morally licit, since the production of the vaccines is based upon living cell lines, not babies aborted recently.  We are therefore not cooperating directly in abortion, although we should exert pressure on the pharmaceutical corporations to make vaccines from other sources.

But the situation regarding vaccines is different from that of cosmetics.  Vaccines can be life-saving; cosmetics are not.  Vaccines are used in the service of humanity; cosmetics serve only human vanity.  Hence, we have an obligation to oppose the disgusting practice of using aborted fetal tissue in cosmetics.

European Cosmetics That Use Fetal Tissue

The marketing term “cosmeceuticals” combines the words “cosmetics” and “pharmaceuticals,” and refers to products that are applied topically like cosmetics, but supposedly have medical properties that affect the skin like cosmetic surgery.

One of the companies producing “cosmeceuticals” is Neocutis, a 2003 spinoff from the University Hospital of Lausanne, Switzerland, whose U.S.-based subsidiary is located in San Francisco.2  Neocutis uses additives made from patented processed skin proteins (PSPs) derived from a cell line that originated with an aborted 14-week old Swiss baby boy.  Its skin creams are used for psoriasis, eczema, and for anti-wrinkle (anti-aging) treatment.  Neocutis’ own website is coy about what exactly PSP is, revealing only that it is “a nourishing protein blend including Cytokines for state-of-the-art revitalization.”

Many women who use products by Neocutis do not seem to care that some of its products are derived from an aborted baby.  One reviewer enthusiastically recommended the Journée Biorestorative Day Cream, concluding, “If the thought of smearing old fetal cells on your face makes you cringe, just think about what it could do for those expression lines.”3

In terms of disintegrating respect for human life, Europe is usually at least a decade ahead of the United States.  The use of large quantities of aborted children in cosmetics is an example of this rule.

topographical map europe with country names

In the mid-1980s, several investigations in England and France found that abortion clinics were selling the bodies of aborted babies to cosmetics companies for use in their products.  These companies advertised that their products could rejuvenate the face, skin and hair, and prominently mentioned the fact that various fetal organs were used in the making of the creams.

As one example, Madame Renée Ibry’s Henri Chacon Centre, one of several such clinics on the French Riviera, advertised a California Esthetiqué line of cosmetics.  The advertising pamphlet for this line of products reads in part:

We know that young cells applied to old tissues are able to regenerate them.  These cells are all the more effective if they are living.…Exclusively taken from fetuses these cells, no longer independent, do not carry antibodies under any circumstances….Absolutely natural, this product is made for use at home.…Epidermal circulation is activated, coloring is pinker and fresher, texture is finer, blotches disappear, undoubtedly deeper lines or wrinkles are lessened, skin is transformed, elasticity and tone are retrieved.

Madame Ibry’s products came in two varieties ― “Red Stick,” made from the aborted baby’s spleen, liver and thymus, and “White Stick,” made from the baby’s intestinal membrane and tissue.4

Although this type of practice is relatively rare in Western Europe, the story is different in the East….

Horrific Abuses in Russia

What follows might seem to be material taken from a particularly inept science fiction pulp novel, but it is absolutely true.

Moscow’s youth-obsessed wealthy are investing not only in yachts and bulletproof Mercedes these days, but also in treatments that allege that they will reverse the aging process and cure any known disease.

The poorer cities of Ukraine are at the epicenter of a growing practice involving the “harvesting” of aborted children from young women and girls.  To begin with, obstetricians in Donetsk and Kharkiv receive kickbacks to tell pregnant women their preborn children are horribly deformed, even when they are perfectly healthy.  They refer these heartbroken women to abortionists, who pay them £100 for their fetal remains ― but also offer them much more if they will delay their abortions until the late second or early third trimester.  Sergei Shorobogatko, one of the people investigating this practice, says, “When a doctor wants a fetus [to sell], he tells a girl there is a medical reason for an abortion later than 12 weeks.  A special procedure extracts it with the placenta.”

The shadow of a sad woman sitting on balcony alone

The abortionist then sells the bodies of the babies to one of several Russian corporations for up to £5,000 each, depending upon their gestational ages.  These corporations cut the babies apart, grind up their various organs, then dilute the resulting paste and sell it to Moscow beauty salons for “fetal beauty therapies” that allegedly “take ten years from your face.”  Some of the salons even claim that their injections can cure such conditions as Parkinson’s disease or Alzheimer’s.

These treatments cost an average of about £10,000, but this is no impediment to rich women (and men) who will do absolutely anything they can to hang on to their youth ― regardless of who suffers or dies as a result.

Incredible as it may seem, these salons are flourishing despite the fact that every step of this process is entirely illegal under both Ukrainian and Russian law, and the women who receive these treatments are aware of the treatment’s source.  This is more vivid evidence that the pro-abortion mentality has no regard for either human life or the laws of God or man.

From a strictly medical standpoint, one problem is that the process that extracts stem cells from a human fetus is extremely expensive, and it is believed that the beauty parlors merely inject their clients with nothing more than a grisly puree of fetal tissue extracts, untested for purity or diseases, to save money.  A number of Russians have died or have been mutilated as a result of these cosmetics that use fetal tissue.

Professor Vladimir Smirnov, Director of Moscow’s Institute of Experimental Cardiology, said, “We are talking about a huge, corrupt and dangerous trade in dubious therapies.  The authorities have never licensed any medical specialist to administer injections of stem cells.  These methods are totally experimental and illegal.”5

A 2005 inspection found that there were 41 clinics offering this kind of “therapy” in Moscow alone, and it is believed that there are even more operating now.

Under Communism, millions of Ukrainians were purged by planned starvation, and those who lived suffered not only from the effects of this genocide, but from pervasive corruption as well.  Such violence and injustice can profoundly change a culture, and its effects are difficult to reverse.  This means that the country is unfortunately very susceptible to this kind of activity.  As one reporter plaintively said, “They used to say we were selling Ukraine.  Now we are selling Ukrainians; moreover, in parts.”


woman facial treatment cream

While we have no evidence of American-made cosmetics that use fetal tissue, the situation is very different in Europe. If you buy from Neocutis or companies that engage in similar practices, direct your money elsewhere.

The horrible “fetal beauty” practice is an embarrassment to our society, and we must oppose it.



[1]  To discover what is in your favorite brand of cosmetics (if you dare!), see the Skin Deep Cosmetics Database.

The practice of ‘placentaphagia,’ the act of eating a newborn baby’s placenta, has been common in many societies throughout human history for nutritional and ritual purposes.  According to those who have tried this rather exotic dish, placentas can be boiled in saltwater, fried in butter and garlic, stir fried with vegetables, or sauteed in wine or spices.  For those who really want to know, a human placenta smells like liver when it is cooking and tastes like liver or kidney (Karen Janszen.  “Meat of Life.”  Science Digest, November/December 1980, pages 78 and 79).

[2]  Victoria Evans.  “Commercial Markets Created by Abortion.”  Ethics and Medics (National Catholic Bioethics Center), August 2010.

Lesley Ciarula Taylor.  “Fetal Cells in Skin Cream Stir Anti-Abortion Fury.”  The Toronto Star, November 6, 2009.

The products in question are Neocutis’ Journée Bio-Restorative Day Cream with PSP® Broad-Spectrum Sunscreen SPF, Bio-Cream Riche Bio-Restorative Skin Balm with PSP, BioGel Bio-Restorative Hydrogel with PSP, Bio-Serum Intensive Spot Treatment Bio-Restorative Serum with PSP, BioCream Bio-Restorative Skin Cream with PSP, and several others (Neocutis’ website and Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep Cosmetics Database).

[3]  Copley.  “Neocutis Journee Biorestorative Day Cream for Anti-Aging and Anti-Sun Benefits.”, May 22, 2009.

[4]  Alan MacDermid and James McKillop.  “Britain Linked with French Foetal Beauty Cream.”  The Glasgow Herald, March 5, 1983, page 1; report by Claude Jacquinot in the April 8 and April 9, 1981 editions of the Gazette du Palais.

Due to these concerns, several pro-life leaders appealed to the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to launch an investigation to see if such practices were occurring in the United States.  In its 1985 response, the FDA said:

We have received numerous inquiries from concerned individuals and organizations about the use of collagen in cosmetics.  Although several of these inquiries have alleged that the source of collagen in cosmetics is from aborted fetuses, none of the inquiries have been able or willing to provide specific concrete information to indicate that this is, in fact, the case.  We have no other indication that human fetal material is used as a source of either placental extract or collagen (Dr. Jack Willke.  “Are Fetal Bodies Used in Cosmetics?”  National Right to Life News, August 22, 1985, page 3).

[5]  Clare Chapman.  “Aborted Babies Used in Russian Anti-Aging Fad.”  The Scotsman, June 21, 2005.

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About the Author:

Brian Clowes, PhD
Dr. Brian Clowes has been HLI’s director of research since 1995 and is one of the most accomplished and respected intellectuals in the international pro-life movement. Best known as author of the most exhaustive pro-life informational resource volume The Facts of Life, and for his Pro-Life Basic Training Course, Brian is the author of nine books and over 500 scholarly and popular articles, and has traveled to 70 countries on six continents as a pro-life speaker, educator and trainer.


  1. Avatar
    Susan Roelle June 25, 2020 at 3:42 PM - Reply

    Dear Sir; your article is very informative. That being said, there is one thing that I must disagree with you on and that is the fetal cell lines being used in the vaccines. It does not matter that they were from a baby aborted many years ago. They still came from that baby who was murdered in the womb. It can in no way be “morally licit”. Those cells still came from a human baby. Jesus said: “let your yes be yes and your ? be no. Anything else is from the evil one”. There can be no compromise on certain issues. If you condone the use of the cells in one area you condone them in all areas. There is no way they can be morally used in vaccines, but not cosmetics. It is immoral to use them in any situation. If I am wrong may God forgive me, but I don’t think I am. Thank you for hearing me out. God Bless you, Father Boquet and all at HLI.

  2. Avatar
    Sean Connolly June 25, 2020 at 3:55 PM - Reply

    Thank you, Dr. Clowes, for delineating the licit and the gruesome practices, as well as the foolish vultures who subscribe to the latter. May the light of Christ (since reason so often escapes those who tout it) shine upon all to take the moral high ground before more harm is done.

  3. Avatar
    Trg June 25, 2020 at 5:17 PM - Reply

    Thanks for this informative article. I will never take a vaccine again even if it had no aborted cells. They contain harmful chemicals and some are contaminated with retrovirus from animals. No wonder people are so sickly and get cancer early. God gave us an immune system. Take care of it and build it up with organic food, exercise and supplements like vitamin C and D.

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    kathleen stadler June 25, 2020 at 10:12 PM - Reply

    I do not see how using aborted babies from an older group is more allowble than in cosmetics..Children of God say and I agree that cell lines of babies aborted long ago is just as wrong as from living ones today..
    Let’s be pro life all the way..please..use from any aborted baby is wrong..All Abortion is wrong .

  5. Avatar
    Jamilla Smith July 21, 2020 at 4:59 AM - Reply

    The age of the cells used is irrelevant. They are all children of The Most High.
    I am forever impacted after reading this article, and can never turn a blind eye. Ever again. The voice-less needs to be spoken for. I am thankful to have come across this website, but so heartbroken to know the hearts of humanity. God bless you all. Let’s stand for what is right in the eye of the Maker.

  6. Avatar
    Carol Shapiro September 4, 2020 at 11:08 PM - Reply

    I was really offended by your statement saying that using cell lines from aborted babies is morally acceptable in vaccines.

    • Avatar
      HLI Staff September 9, 2020 at 10:26 AM - Reply

      Carol, We are very sorry to have offended you. I think you may have misunderstood the statement. To be clear, it is not morally acceptable to develop cell lines from aborted babies. However, the question of how closely do vaccine users cooperate in the evil of abortion is one the Church has considered. When no alternative is available, vaccines originating from cell lines that decades ago used fetal tissue and are regenerated and sustained in a laboratory today are permitted to avoid risks to personal health, and indirectly, the health of the community as a whole. We also have a moral duty to actively fight the evil of using fetal tissue from aborted babies in the development of vaccines until morally acceptable alternatives are available. There is more information in this related article: Thank you for raising the question.

  7. Avatar
    Jacob September 15, 2020 at 9:45 PM - Reply

    Please look into the guidelines in the USDA that allow a certain amount of human DNA in our foods. Our fast food business are buying the cheapest form of collagen to use as a binder for soy used in hamburgers. They claim it is animal sourced and not from aborted babies, but if so then why are they continuing to fail test results which show large amounts of human DNA in the hamburgers. Many here are turning a blind eye to this or are in denial because it is just too horrible to accept in spite of the evidence that has been swept under the rug repeatedly. Thank you for your valuable time. Much respect to you and your Holy work dear sir.

  8. Avatar
    Patricia Maiuzzo September 28, 2020 at 8:39 PM - Reply

    This is horrible! What is PSP?

  9. Avatar
    María Angélica Pérez Ferrada September 29, 2020 at 5:14 PM - Reply

    I have read a lot of things about important companies that produces creams using cell lines from aborted babies, but I dont know if this product (Perfeccionist CP + R of Estee Lauder) is in this list or not… Its a great cream, I hope it was not created in this way… but I dont know…

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