Body wraps are all the rage these days. You may have even seen TV commercial billboards touting the miraculous slimming benefits of these treatments. Women arrive at the spa in the morning and leave an hour later, suddenly three dress sizes smaller and completely cellulite free!
What is a body wrap?
A body wrap, also known as a ‘body cocoon’ or ‘body mask’, is a non-surgical spa treatment or DIY home treatment created to improve the health and appearance of the skin and reduce body measurements. A nourishing oil or mineral-rich formula is applied to spa guests’ limbs and torso before being wrapped in cotton wool, bandage or plastic wrap. This promotes the removal of dirt, toxins, and excess water from the skin.
While most wraps are done all over the body (minus the face and genital area), some, like cellulite and breast wraps, are applied only to certain areas.
For a garden-type body wrap, you lie on a massage table and scrub with an exfoliating scrub, in the variety you choose from the menu (most spas offer a few options). After rinsing off in the shower, the therapist applies the ingredients of the wrap (perhaps seaweed, mud, clay, or a herbal or fruit product) to your body, covering it with a layer of plastic wrap. When it’s all wrapped up, you may be more covered with sheets, towels, and heated blankets. And then they’ll leave you alone to relax and sweat for about 30 minutes to an hour.
So those are the facts, but the bottom line is where fantasy (and ads) start to separate from reality. Spas want you to believe that you will come out of your wrapper like a cocoon, a butterfly completely relaxed, hydrated, detoxified, without cellulite and noticeably thinner. But, if you’re familiar with the phrase ‘too good to be true’, and we think so, you probably won’t be surprised to learn that the results probably won’t be that dramatic. Experts especially caution that you shouldn’t expect medical results for conditions like arthritis.
As long as you don’t expect to permanently lose 10 pounds and 3 inches from your waist, body wraps have some benefits. No one will argue that it feels very comfortable to be bundled up and left to relax in a dimly lit room for half an hour or so. Your skin will most likely feel soft and supple after slathering it with moisturizers. And you could lose some water weight and see an improvement in your cellulite, but be prepared for the results to subside after a couple of days.
So without further ado, here are five benefits of body wraps. Just be sure to take any spa claim with a grain of (sea) salt.
What health and beauty benefits does a body wrap treatment provide?
The pampering experience of a body wrap can provide multiple benefits, depending on the type chosen:
• Detoxification: body wraps with detoxifying seaweed; algae, mud, or clay can help the body eliminate toxins by stimulating the metabolism of skin cells. As your largest organ, detoxifying your epidermis can have a significant effect on your overall health and well-being.
• Temporary inch and / or weight loss: wraps with detoxifying ingredients combined with tightly rolled bandages will help flush out excess water and toxins, and will also tighten the skin. This can temporarily improve the contours of your body and cause you to lose a dress size or two.
• Removal of dead skin: enveloping treatments that include an exfoliation stage will see dead skin cells lift up, giving you a smoother complexion from head to toe and a flattering glow. You may choose to enjoy a body polish before wrapping if exfoliation is not included as part of your treatment.
• Intensive miniaturization: the vast majority of wraps are composed of moisturizing ingredients to hydrate, nourish and soften the skin to improve its condition.
• Relaxation – Once you are fully wrapped by your esthetician, you can relax for up to 30 minutes. This will provide you with real and valuable physical mental downtime.
• Removes dead skin and hydrates: Dead skin is something no one wants to remain, it makes your skin look dull and prevents your body from absorbing moisture. While you sweat during most types of body wraps, not only are toxins removed from the body, but dead skin is loosened as well.
• Improves elasticity and regeneration of the skin: over time, the skin loses the ability to stretch and return to normal; This causes stretch marks and wrinkles, but depending on the type of body wrap, many anti-cellulite wraps contain antioxidants, essential fatty acids, and vitamin A, all of which can help rebuild skin elasticity. It also makes your skin more supple by increasing blood flow to the surface, regenerates damaged skin cells, produces collagen to firm and tone the skin, and reduces the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines.
• Reduces cellulite and helps tone skin: Body wraps can help shape skin to be smoother and softer by directly diffusing vitamins and minerals. Also, if cellulite is a problem, an algae wrap can help reduce undesirable marks left on the skin.
• Increased metabolism: during the wrapping time, increased perspiration (which can consume a lot of energy) and circulation, a sign that the metabolism has increased, resulting in the loss of centimeters, excess water from the fat cells and the release of excess toxins.
• Anti-aging: soft, hydrated and detoxified skin is the result of an anti-cellulite body wrap. Skin free of toxins, reveals a softer, smoother, more radiant and youthful skin.