We won’t lie: nothing will get results like a clean diet and regular exercise, but for additional sculpting, the ever-evolving toning treatments now available at your local spa or clinic can go that extra inch… or should we say drop that extra inch. From the latest Velashape treatment, favoured by Kim K, to the phenomenon of the Shrinking Violet Wrap, we know where to get the most cutting-edge, dress-size-dropping treatments in the UAE.
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THE TREATMENT: VelaShape III
TIME: Approx 30 minutes per area
COST: From Dhs1,800 per treatment (a course of three fortnightly treatments is recommended, followed by maintenance treatments)
Kim Kardashian and Demi Moore use VelaShape to sculpt their curves and reduce cellulite. The latest update, VelaShape III, is Ahlan!’s favourite body-contouring treatment currently on the market.
There’s no downtime or significant discomfort – some actually find its massaging stimulation quite relaxing. It combines infrared light, radio frequency energy and vacuum techniques to deep-heat fat cells, their surrounding connective tissue and the underlying dermal collagen fibres. This results in the growth of new collagen and elastin, causing localised reduction in skin laxity and volume, plus an overall improvement in skin structure and texture.
The treatment is safe and effective for all skin types and colours, with no reported side-effects.
Lotion is applied and the machine’s hand-held attachment is passed over the fatty areas being treated – it can be applied to upper arms, thighs, back and stomach – and it feels like a deep-tissue massage with suction.
Afterwards, skin will be warm and a little red – a visible sign of improved circulation – and a day or two afterwards muscles may feel like they’ve had a mild gym workout.
Skin will feel instantly smoother and firmer, and, in clinical studies, patients reported a reduction of 1cm to 3cm, with greater reduction showing as the course progresses. INFO: Available at American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery Hospital, Building 73, 26th Street, Healthcare City, Dubai, 04 423 7600, aacsh.com
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THE TREATMENT: Shrinking Violet Wrap
TIME: Two hours for first and last treatment (with measurements); 90 minutes for all others
COST: Dhs650 for one session (a course of five weekly treatments is recommended)
It started with UK socialites such as British glamour model Danielle Lloyd and TOWIE star Abigail Clarke posting images of themselves in cling film. Then the Shrinking Violet Wrap craze grew and grew, and has been causing a buzz across the globe, with leading spas adding it to their menus and promoting its natural inch-loss benefits.
The full-body treatment starts with being measured around legs, waist, hips, chest and upper arms. Marker pen is used to leave guidelines for post-treatment measurements, leaving you covered in ink dots, so it’s a little messy – best not wear white on the day of your treatment in case of
The body is then dry-brushed for a few moments and the lauded Shrinking Violet oil formula is applied before your whole body is wrapped in cling film. You may feel like a vacuum-packed chicken, and it can get a little itchy in there, but the oil feels rich and nourishing and smells lovely, containing juniper, lavender and cypress, plus the key ingredient, phospholipid. This combo is said to break down fat so it can be eliminated via the liver in a process known as lipolysis.
Clinics will ask you to abstain from alcohol, caffeine and fatty or processed foods for one to three days prior to the treatment, and some ask that you continue this diet three days after the treatment. In reality, you will could lose inches doing this alone, but apparently the purpose isn’t to fake results, but rather to get your liver in optimum shape to enhance the lipolysis.
Our tester lost a 2cm from each thigh and 0.5cm from some other areas, including the waist and hips. Tape measurements aren’t an exact science, and it’s hard to notice a couple of centimetres of fat reduction from anywhere – it doesn’t equate to dropping a dress size – but perhaps an entire course of treatments would have a visible effect, and ahead of a red-carpet event, when you need to squeeze into an extra tight LBD, this may be the quick-fix you’re looking for.
INFO: Available at The Nail Spa, Ibn Battuta Mall, 600 544001, thenailspa.com
TRY THIS AT HOME!
Shrinking Violet products are available for home use. You can buy the Mrs Hippi Cellulite Oil in the UAE (overseas you can even get the custom jumpsuit to wear in place of the salon wrap). We like this idea as it’s more cost-effective and you can watch TV in the comfort of your own home while the oil works its magic – or just moisturise and go! The formula is gorgeous and you’ll love applying it to your skin.
INFO: Mrs Hippi Cellulite Oil, Dhs650 from The Nail Spa
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THE TREATMENT: The Slimming Ceremony
TIME: 75 minutes
COST: Dhs650 (a course of six to 12 treatments is recommended)
If you want an all-natural but still substantial sculpting session, the Slimming Ceremony at The Spa at The Address Dubai Marina is a firm-handed results-focussed 50 minutes that will put your body through its paces.
It begins with lymphatic massage of the legs, combined with rigorous tapping and rolling movements – you can really feel the blood rising to the surface of the skin to nourish it. Next, the whole body is toned through the application of Chinese suction cups.
This type of cupping therapy is favoured by the A-list, several of whom have been photographed with the tell-tale rings on their flesh, including Jennifer Aniston, Justin Bieber and Gwyneth Paltrow. The suction is said to mobilise blood flow to where it’s most needed. With this treatment, combined with targeted massage, its aim is to reduce fluid retention in the stomach and legs, activate metabolism and make you feel energised and refreshed. It’s the perfect pick-me-up for when your whole system is feeling a little sluggish.
INFO: Available at Address Dubai Marina, 04 436 7777, theaddress.com
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THE TREATMENT: 45-Minute Slim Shot
TIME: 45 minutes
This non-surgical body-shaping treatment focuses on ‘liquefying’ fat cells and eliminating them from the body through lymphatic drainage. With most slimming and toning treatments you have to follow a course, often on a weekly basis, to see results – but who really has time for that? Luckily, this is a treatment that you only need to do once to see results, and you don’t need to return for another one to two years! Suitably impressed, we had to try it.
Measurements were taken for comparison before and after the treatment. You can only choose one body part, so our tester went for the stomach. With a pen, the therapist marked the areas she was going to ‘shoot’ – so far, so Nip/Tuck! Then thermal and mechanical pulses were administered to the trouble area, liquefying those fat cells. It’s not uncomfortable – all that’s felt is a slight tingling, but it can be a little messy, with a lot of
As for the results, our tester lost 3cm around the upper abdomen, 2.5cm around the middle and 2.5cm on the lower abdomen – pretty impressive! Immediately after treatment, skin felt tighter too – and apparently the process continues to produce results for up to three months!
INFO: Bionix Body Designers, 205 B, Falcon Building, Al Mina Road, Bur Dubai, 04 352 0705, bionixbody.com
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THE TREATMENT: GentleMax Pro Laser Hair Removal
TIME: 10-90 minutes (depending on area)
COST: From Dhs1,000 per treatment (generally a course of four to six treatments every six to eight weeks is recommended)
Once your body is in optimum shape, removing fuzz is the final touch. The GentleMax Pro is designed to be less painful for patients, and, unlike earlier hair-removal lasers, this one eliminates the risks previously associated with ethnic or darker skin tones, such as post-treatment pigmentation – it can be used on any skin colour, though it’s not suitable for sun-exposed tanned skin (there’s a difference, and you must avoid any exposure to the sun for at least two weeks prior to undergoing the treatment).
It’s recommended you shave a day ahead of the treatment for maximum effectiveness. Immediately before your session, the area being treated will be partially numbed with an anaesthetic cream for 20 minutes. The laser is then passed across the skin, emitting a frequency of light that targets the follicles to disable regrowth.
Before and after each laser pulse, a cryogen spray cools the top layer of skin to further reduce pain caused by the intense bursts of heat. At worst, it will feel like being snapped with a rubber band – particularly in more sensitive areas such as the bikini line. For areas such as the underarms and legs, the discomfort is mild.
Most people notice an immediate reduction in hair growth after one session, especially where the hair is fine. More dense areas require more treatments, but the best part is that the issue of ingrown hairs, associated with shaving or waxing, usually vanishes after the first or second session.
INFO: Available at American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery Hospital, Healthcare City, Dubai, 04 423 7600, aacsh.com
TRY THIS AT HOME!
IluminageTOUCH is an FDA-approved hair-removal device designed for home use, available online. It employs Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) and Radio Frequency (RF) energies – the same technologies used in salon treatments – and gives permanent reduction in hair growth. For best results, treat hirsuite areas seven times, once a week over a period of six weeks. Periodic touch-up treatments are recommended as needed. You simply pass the hand-held device over the area to be de-fuzzed while wearing the safety goggles provided. The sensation is so mild there’s no pain, and you can even use it on your face!
INFO: Dhs2,462, en-ae.citrusstv.com