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Top 10 Most Extravagant Face Creams

TNS Recovery Complex

When you're talking about expensive cosmetics, it's hard not to mention the $250 Tissue Nutrient Skin (TNS) Recovery Complex. In the past, it's been championed both by Oprah and Allure magazine, and it seems to be pretty effective.

But it's also well-known because of the rumors surrounding its active ingredient: Some have claimed that TNS Recovery Complex contains human foreskin.

Macabre? The truth is a little more complicated. In reality, one of TNS's ingredients is NouriCel-MD, which is SkinMedica's name for a blend of growth factor proteins and collagen that is designed to trigger certain activities in cells. These growth factors, most notably one called human fibroblast conditioned media, are believed to have anti-aging properties, and can be grown and cultured from a variety of sources, including human skin, placentas and foreskin [source: Euringer].

So what does all this mean? Cosmetics companies are notoriously secretive about their methods of production, but we can definitely say that TNS doesn't contain human foreskin as its main ingredient. What it does contain is an ingredient that may at one point have been grown in a lab using fibroblast cells from human foreskin as a starter.