A statement from the state’s attorney general says an investigation into Ramos de Ruiz began in 2019 after “at least two of the salon’s clients contracted HIV” after receiving a “vampire facial,” which removes and re-inserts a client’s own blood into their face — with micro-needling. The process is supposed to refresh the skin.
“The New Mexico Department of Health in August 2018 learned a person with no risk factors for HIV had contracted the bloodborne infection after getting a ‘vampire facial’ at the VIP Beauty Salon and Spa,” the statement reads. “The DOH, the New Mexico Regulation and Licensing Department, and deputy director of Boards and Commissions inspected the VIP Spa the following month.”
They learned that Ramos de Ruiz did have a cosmetologist license, but it had expired in 2013.
“Ramos de Ruiz told them she does breast and buttocks sculpting, cellulite treatments and ‘vampire facials,'” the statement says. “Inspectors found ‘numerous health code violations and unsafe infection control practices,’ including unwrapped needles, blood being dumped into the kitchen sink and unlabeled syringes beside food in the refrigerator.”
The investigation also led to the discovery of “foreign and American prescription and ‘dangerous’ drugs, and medical products that required an order from a licensed physician.”
Inspectors say that the needle used to extract a client’s blood and put it back in their skin was not properly cleaned or disinfected between clients.
Ramos de Ruiz was ordered to stop the procedures in late 2018.
Then, in February 2019, a second person had contracted HIV after receiving “vampire facial” treatments from Ramos de Ruiz, according to authorities.
Both clients tested positive for the same strain of the HIV virus.
She is now facing charges of racketeering and fraud, as well as five counts of practicing medicine without a license, six counts of money laundering, four counts of tax evasion and seven counts of willful failure to collect and pay taxes.