Body Wraps For Weight Loss 2023: Types, How It Work & Safety Tips

Sevginur Akdas

Updated on - Written by
Medically reviewed by Kathy Shattler, MS, RDN

body wraps for weight loss

There are no shortcuts in health and nutrition. You need to evaluate everything that promises to help you reach your desired goal quickly in a detailed way.

For example, you cannot lose all the weight you gained over time in just a few weeks or months with pills, supplements, oils, or the consumption of any specific food. Reaching your goal weight requires a caloric deficit, exercise, and a healthy lifestyle. Scientifically speaking, rapid weight loss is not sustainable. 

It is possible that such products will support the healthy weight loss process you achieve through diet and exercise, along with the vitamins, minerals, healthy fats, or other bioactive components your supplements contain. But the main actors are a healthy diet and exercise. 

You can even lose weight without exercise if you follow a balanced, calorie-restricted weight-loss diet. Exercise is also a huge supporting factor in the weight loss process. Body wraps for weight loss are another popular product. You can see that it is applied in many spas and beauty centers. But what does science say about it? Let’s examine.

What Is A Body Wrap?

Body wraps are the application of a creamy texture prepared with various ingredients to the body, especially the body’s abdominal region, and covering it with a plastic or thermal blanket or wrapping it with a similar cloth. Prepared creams are generally a mixture of herbal extracts.

In many spa and beauty centers, this application can be made specific to different areas of the body, or you can prefer a full body wrap application. It is an application primarily used for removing cellulite and toxins from the skin, cleaning it, and moisturizing the skin’s surface. However, it has recently started to be marketed as a weight loss aid due to its sweating effect.

Types Of Body Wraps

There are body wraps on the market that promise the following effects:

  • detox wraps.
  • moisturizing wraps.
  • anti-cellulite wraps.
  • tight wraps for weight loss.
  • relaxing wraps.
  • infrared body wraps.
  • heat wraps.

You can see many products like these in the market. However, although it has the external effects of creams, such as moisturizing, relaxing, and smoothing the skin, other effects are somewhat difficult to observe.

So why do people claim it helps them to lose weight?

Body wrap treatments that claim to promote weight loss are usually thermal wraps. This type of wrap triggers sweating and water weight loss by releasing heat in your body. However, water loss is insufficient for calorie burning.

After applying the body wrap, your skin can feel smooth and soft. However, you should not expect long-term effects on fat cells and healthy weight loss after body wrap applications. 

How Do Stomach Wraps Work?

Many people complain specifically about their belly fat. Or, when a condition is associated with edema in the body, the belly becomes swollen first in many. The reason for this swelling can be fat accumulation, menstruation, or digestive system problems.

However, stomach wraps for weight loss affect neither abdominal fat nor do they improve the digestive system. 

Therefore, sweating on the skin removes a limited amount of toxins from the body. This can only lead to a visible change in the skin. For this reason, some think that it can be effective in the appearance of cellulite. However, reducing adipose tissue without creating any calorie deficit in your diet is impossible.

Since it is tightly wrapped, indigestion and gas problems may occur in the abdomen. Therefore, make sure that you do not eat before applying this treatment. However, you can consume a limited amount of fruit so that your blood sugar does not drop.

How to Use Body Wraps

There are several steps depending on the wrap type:

Exfoliation:  Not all body wrap treatments include this step. If you use a wrap comprising a peeling effect, first, your spa therapist will promote dead skin cell removal with dry brushing or a gentle scrub. After exfoliation, you will need to rinse off these dead skin cells. 

Application and Wrapping: Your spa therapist applies a thin layer of the body wrap formula to your body and wraps each area in plastic wrap material or cloth. When you are fully wrapped, they may put on you some heated towels, which are used in the heat wrap treatment to promote sweating and pore opening.

Relax: Your spa therapist may leave you alone for your relaxation for up to half an hour, or they may stay and give you a head massage. 

Unwrap And Rinse: After that certain time, you are unwrapped and rinsed off.

Moisturization: At the end of the application, you can apply the final moisturizer or body oil to soften the skin.

Hydration: You need to be hydrated as soon as possible after this treatment because heat makes you lose too much water. 

How Do You Know If You Are Dehydrated?

Dehydration[1] occurs if you lose more water than you drink. Your body needs enough water to carry out its normal physiological functions. If you do not replace the lost fluids, you will become dehydrated and affected physiologically.

Thirst isn’t always a reliable early indicator of the body’s hydration needs because many people don’t feel thirsty until they’re already dehydrated. To prevent this, drinking water each couple of hours throughout the day is beneficial, even if you do not feel thirsty. The situation is similar in the application of body wraps. Even if you do not feel thirsty after the application, you should drink water.

Other markers of dehydration include:

  • Less frequent urination.
  • Dark urine.
  • Tiredness.
  • Dizziness.
  • Clouding of consciousness.

How To Make Homemade Body Wraps For Weight Loss

Actually, you can’t prepare such a body wrap at home because body wraps do not provide you with a healthy weight loss,[2] only a state of dehydration from excessive sweating. 

But you can prepare homemade body wraps for your skin to be smoother and softer or for stress relief. You can make your own wrap by using glycerin, honey, aloe vera, or several oils such as coconut, olive oil, peppermint, lavender, almond, etc. 

When you prepare your homemade body mask for a body wrap, you can get a clear elastic bandage to wrap your body. Some people heat this bandage before use. You can use safety pins to keep these bandages wrapped when you wrap your body.

Since this is a spa treatment, you can prepare yourself for a pleasant and comfortable treatment environment. You can turn on soothing music and light candles. You can also use fragrant and relaxing essential oils. This can help you experience a pleasant spa application at home and remove stress from your body.  

Safety Tips Before Trying Wraps For Weight Loss

Before using, check if the wrap has any herbal ingredients, whether you have an allergic response to them and whether it is safe for you.

Since these products will wrap your body tightly, this compression can cause problems with blood flow or cause an uncomfortable feeling. You may loosen the wraps a little if there is serious discomfort.

If you use these wraps on your waist area, it can cause digestive problems and indigestion. In addition, it may be beneficial not to make this application after meals to avoid pressure on the stomach. You may feel more comfortable applying a body wrap on an empty stomach.

Keeping some mixtures used in body wraps on the body for a long time will not benefit your skin health. Especially since it is a spa treatment, when you relax, you may not notice how time passes. Therefore, if you apply it at home, you can remind yourself that the body wrap treatment period is over by setting an alarm on your phone. This can protect you from some of the side effects of body wrap, such as burning sensation, itching, and redness in the skin.

Stay Hydrated 

Since wraps make you sweat, you should consume plenty of water to replace body fluid loss.

If you see weight loss on the scale or lose inches after the applications, be aware that these numbers can come back probably after you drink water and consume a normal meal.

If you use body wraps in expectation of weight loss, you may be disappointed because healthy eating and adequate exercise are the only proven way to lose weight.


In summary, you shouldn’t use such an application for fat loss. The best way to achieve weight management is through a healthy diet. Supporting[3] the diet with cardiovascular exercises such as jogging, walking, cycling, and resistance training makes weight loss even easier. Body wraps have no proven effect on weight loss and fat burning. The differences you may see are likely due to body water loss.

There are no healthy wraps for weight loss. However, this application can take place in your life as a relaxing experience. There is no known harm as long as it does not cause any allergic reaction in your body and you replace the water lost from sweating.

+ 3 sources

Health Canal avoids using tertiary references. We have strict sourcing guidelines and rely on peer-reviewed studies, academic researches from medical associations and institutions. To ensure the accuracy of articles in Health Canal, you can read more about the editorial process here

  1. Mayo Clinic. (2021). Dehydration – Symptoms and causes. [online] Available at:,fluids%2C%20you%20will%20get%20dehydrated.
  2. Ramage, S., Farmer, A., Apps Eccles, K. and McCargar, L. (2014). Healthy strategies for successful weight loss and weight maintenance: a systematic review. Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism, [online] 39(1), pp.1–20. doi:10.1139/apnm-2013-0026.
  3. FLACK, K.D., HAYS, H.M., MORELAND, J. and LONG, D.E. (2020). Exercise for Weight Loss: Further Evaluating Energy Compensation with Exercise. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, [online] 52(11), pp.2466–2475. doi:10.1249/mss.0000000000002376.
Sevginur Akdas

Written by:

Sevginur Akdas, RD

Medically reviewed by:

Kathy Shattler

Sevginur Akdas is a researcher, medical writer, and clinical dietitian, who is currently pursuing her Ph.D. in metabolism, chronic diseases, and clinical nutrition fields. She has many scientific articles, meta-analyses, systematic reviews, and book chapters on nutrition, chronic diseases, dietary supplements, maternal and child nutrition, molecular nutrition & functional foods topics as a part of a research team currently. Besides her academic background, she is also a professional health&medical writer since 2017.

Medically reviewed by:

Kathy Shattler

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