Every week at least one press release about some new weight loss thingy that sounds too good to be true plops into my inbox. At this point I usually go back to the PR who sent it and say ‘before I can write about this, I need to try it. And I can’t guarantee coverage but if I don’t try it, then I’m definitely not writing about it anyway’.
At this point one of two things normally happens. I never hear from them again, or they say ‘we’ll only let you try it if you have a firm commission.’ Now that’s fine for things like spa visits, but when you’re claiming miracle results for a product, I want to know if that stands up before I approach my editors – at this point we normally come to a stand off and I never get to try said miracle.
This all happened when the release for Lipolift Pro fell onto my desk. It was touted as a body wrap that permanently removed fat. I sent off my normal ‘prove it’ email – and within minutes I got a reply. ‘Of course, when do you want to try it?’………my jaw hit the floor! It took a while to juggle the schedules but a month ago I found myself virtually nekkid in Vivify Beauty Salon in Chelsea having my stomach measured (always a humbling moment). I lay down and the two and a half hour process began. Yes, this might be a quick fix but it takes a little time to do.
The fact is this is no ordinary wrap. The wrap, it claims, merely increases the effects of two proven high tech body treatments. Ultrasound and radiofrequency.
It starts with the ultrasound. This is designed to basically destroy the fat cells. Your body then naturally excretes the fat via the lymph over the next few days. I’d always been wary about having this done before – free floating fat wobbling its way round my system sounded like a heart attack in the making – but various experts (including two medical doctors) have assured me it doesn’t travel in the bloodstream so I chanced it.
The ultrasound part of the treatment takes 40 minutes. It’s not a relaxing time. Half the area to be treated is intensively massaged constantly for 20 minutes and the device emits and very high pitched whine that grates a bit. By 17 minutes I’d had enough and had to focus on the seconds counting down on the machine. Then we had to move to the other side to repeat the process….yay!
Next up was radiofrequency which tones the skin. It’s a hot treatment and again it doesn’t hurt but like the ultrasound, it’s another 40 minutes of fast skin rubbing which I’d quite had enough of by the end of it.
Finally you get the wrap. This is like a normal body wrap. You’re massaged with their ‘magic solution’, wrapped in film and left to sweat for an hour. Now I have to use the phrase ‘magic solution’ as the company don’t make it exactly clear what’s in it or what exactly it does over and above the ultrasound/radiofrequency itself. They say it breaks down the fat cells walls aiding the body in transporting triglycerides out of the system, but so does the ultrasound so I’d like to have understood more about how much difference it makes to the process. I know they probably want to make things harder for competitors but it’s a shame as it’s that kind of vagueness that makes me doubt a products’ efficacy.
An hour later I’m unwrapped and nekkid again. That tape measure is out and I’ve lost 2.5cm from each of the points on my stomach that we measured. Now I have had wraps before where I’ve seen them fiddle the tape measure on this bit. It’s loose on first measure, tight the second. That didnt happen here. The therapist had also marked the exact place she measured so she couldn’t move it to a thinner bit. When I got home I also rechecked the measurements and got the same result.
I was told exercise over the next few days could boosts results so I did as I was told. And sure enough 2.5cm turned into 5cm over the next couple of weeks. And remained that way.
Oddly I wasn’t as happy as you’d think. Yes my stomach looked a lot thinner, but I was disappointed. Whereas if I’d lost two inches by diet and exercise I’d be thrilled by my achievement, as I’d ‘cheated’ it off I felt it should be more dramatic! That I should be celebrity thin in my bikini!
Anyone wishing to chip into my ‘saving for therapy fund’ just let me know, but this echoes what some plastic surgeons told me recently.They believe one of the reasons lipo is increasing in popularity again is because people are trying non-invasive techniques like this one and finding themselves disappointed by the results and deciding to go down the surgery road to get the dramatic change they want.
I’m not one of those. Anything requiring general anaesthetic, a girdle and surgical drains is a step to far in my book. If I was that bothered about my extra inches or two I’d spend the cash hiring a supertrainer and make myself stick to a diet plan for more than three days rather than undergo surgery. Instead I decided to aim for making choices that wouldn’t reverse this little body gift I’d been given (in the hope they might also spur on a few added changes of their own). Also after spending waaayyyy too long staring at my stomach in the mirror realised that most of my stomach issues would be solved if I actually worked the muscles underneath instead of running past the sit up mats in the gym doing the exercise equivalent of ‘la la la la, I can’t hear you’.
So my verdict. Yes it works. Yes it stays off. But don’t necessarily expect it to solve all your body issues. It’s a good start though. Sadly in the near future large amounts of burritos and Deep Dish pizza will enter my life and I’ll probably undo all the good that was done. Again, anyone wishing to contribute to the therapy fund (or the supertrainer one), just yell!
Lipolift Pro costs from £100 a session and, if my experience is anything to go by even just one shows results. Find out more at lipoliftpro.co.uk,