Body wraps serve unique purposes, and it’s important to understand the difference between detox, hydrating, and slimming wraps so you get the experience you want. First, body wraps always start with some kind of exfoliation. At the very least, there will be a dry body brushing. However, a dry body brushing is not nearly so effective as a body scrub. Because you want the product they put on your skin to be able to penetrate the skin as deeply as possible, make sure the body wrap includes a body scrub first.
With their ability to condition, detoxify, tone and tighten skin, and take inches off a person’s frame almost instantly, it’s hardly any wonder body wrap spa treatments are a steadfast celebrity favorite.
If you’ve never enjoyed a spa day or break, or you’ve simply yet to experience a beautifying body wrap, you might be unsure what to expect. This page defines the treatment and explains what generally happens during a body polish, its health and beauty benefits and the different types available at spas.
What is a body wrap?
A body wrap – also known as a ‘body cocoon’ or ‘body mask’ – is a spa treatment created to enhance the health and appearance of skin, and/or reduce body measurements. A nourishing oil or mineral-rich formula is applied to the spa guest’s limbs and torso before they are wrapped in cotton, mylar bandages or a plastic film. This promotes the extraction of dirt, toxins and excess water from the skin.
While most wraps are performed on the entire body (minus the face and genital area), some – such as cellulite and bust wraps – are applied to certain areas alone.
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 featuring detoxifying algae, seaweed, mud or clay can help rid the body of toxins through metabolic skin cell stimulation. As your largest organ, detoxification of the epidermis can have a significant effect on your health and overall well-being
Temporary inch and/or weight loss: Wraps with detoxifying ingredients teamed with firmly wound bandages will see you sweat out any excess water and toxins, and also tighten your skin. This can temporarily improve the contours of your body and see you lose a dress size or two
Dead skin removal: Wrap treatments comprising an exfoliation stage will see dead skin cells lifted, providing you a smoother complexion top-to-toe and a flattering glow. You can choose to enjoy a body polish before your wrap if exfoliation is not included as part of your treatment
Intensive moisturization: The vast majority of wraps comprise moisturizing ingredients to hydrate, nourish and smooth your skin for improved condition
Relaxation: Once you’re fully wrapped by your esthetician, you’ll be left to relax for up to 30 minutes. This will provide you with valuable – and rare – mental and physical downtime
Types of body wrap spa treatments
While there are countless body wrap treatments available at the 500+ venues we represent nationwide, these are some of the most popular variants:
Algae body wrap: Similar to – and sometimes confused with – seaweed body wraps, this treatment sees a nourishing, warmed algae applied to your skin to jumpstart cell metabolism and aid detoxification
Bust wrap: This treatment sees a tightening and firming serum applied to the bust region before wrapping, to tone and moisturize sagging or loose skin resulting from the ageing process, or rapid weight loss
Cellulite treatment wrap: These wraps aim to boost circulation to help flush toxins away from your skin and underlying fat cells, for a smoother, bump-free appearance. Generally, these wraps target the bottom, hip and thigh area alone
Chocolate body wrap: The ultimate treat for chocoholics, this heavenly scented body wrap sees cocoa-rich formulas applied to your skin. Chocolate is known for its anti-ageing, toning and softening qualities
Frigi thalgo body wrap: Those with excess fluid retention in their hip and/or thigh region will benefit from a chilly ‘frigi thalgo’ (meaning ‘cold richness of the sea’) marine algae body wrap, which also targets cellulite and gives tired legs a new lease of life
Herbal body wrap: This dead skin cell-eliminating treatment sees a selection of herbs – chosen for their nourishing properties – blended with essential oils and steeped in very hot water. Cloth sheets are then soaked in the solution before application around the body
Inch-loss / slimming body wrap: Specifically designed to better contour your body through cleansing, toning and tightening of the skin, inch-loss wraps are often enjoyed by women before an important event at which they’d like to look their best. Up to 10 inches can be lost across the body, though results from one-off treatments are usually temporary
Mud / clay wrap: Say goodbye to excess water, impurities and dull pores – a layer of therapeutic mud or clay is lightly massaged into your skin before wrapping begins, to cleanse, detoxify and firm you head-to-toe. Therapeutic muds and clays have anti-stress properties and the wide availability of these wraps mean they’re a popular choice for spa guests
Oil body wrap: These body wraps are formulated to moisturize dry and/or dehydrated skin. A single – or mix of – aromatic essential oil is warmed and sandwiched between your skin and the applied mylar bandages
Paraffin body wrap: Bandages are seldom used as part of this unique, skin-softening body wrap – warm paraffin wax is simply brushed directly over your body, creating its own seal once dry. The heat from the wax can help to reduce muscle pain and soothe arthritic symptoms
Parafango wrap: A mixture of cold therapeutic mud (‘fango’ in Italian) and warm paraffin wax are combined to create a body sauna and stimulate your lymphatic flow, helping your skin rid itself of toxins and excess water more efficiently
Thalasso (seaweed) body wrap: Like mud wraps, thalasso (meaning ‘sea therapy’) body wraps are available at the vast majority of spas. A combination of seawater, seaweed and/or algae is used to refresh, hydrate and firm your body