........A Chicago area beauty blogger's foray into day-spas, med-spas, and countless beauty counters........

(Anything in BLUE or GRAY within the text is a LINK to more information)

i-LIPO...Another Laser Fat Reduction Treatment I Can't Find Anyone Who Has Tried

I was at a medspa yesterday talking to the owner. I brought up Zerona and Zeltiq, which I've mentioned here before, and he told me his spa does i-Lipo, which is another laser that heats fat and shrinks the cells.

I continue to get frustrated when I hear about these services---Zerona, Zeltiq, Exilis, and now i-Lipo which all claim to freeze or heat up fat cells to shrink or destroy them, depending on the technology. The reason for my frustration is that none of these medspas are ever able to offer up several before and after photos of THEIR OWN clients. I mean, if you're asking people to invest anywhere from $2000 for 4 Exilis treatments (not sure how many you actually need) up to $3800 for 8 Zeltiq/Zerona/iLipo treatments and you can't even show them anything except the laser company's photos or one of your employees who may have had 20 free treatments for all we know, how do you really expect people to purchase this service? How much results can people really expect? Also annoying is that every place tends to be vague in their answers as to whether or not it helps cellulite or how many inches and how many treatments it will REALLY take to see noticeable results (and don't think any place is throwing in extra treatments for free if it takes more than the package they sell!).

I also don't understand why, no matter how much competition keeps showing up or how many years pass, the price of these services never decreases. Having worked in the laser hair removal industry when it was hitting it's height of popularity, I know the laser companies made medspas, doctors, etc agree not to significantly reduce their prices---and no one did until 10-12 years later when the economy got bad and no one was buying. My guess is something similar is going on with laser fat reduction treatments. 

Making laser treatments the same price as some surgical procedures seems outrageous, in my opinion. Get these services down to packages UNDER $1000 and I guarantee there will be a larger interest and more purchases.

My understanding of painless, non-invasive i-Lipo is that laser paddles (up to 4 of them) are attached to the areas to be treated (ie: inner and outer thighs on both legs, or all 4 on abdomen and waist) for 20-30 minutes (some places I've checked say 45 minutes and others say 10 which I find hard to believe--seems like no place can even agree on the time this service takes), emitting low level laser energy that doesn't harm the skin but creates a temporary hole in fat cells allowing fat to empty out of the cell and be naturally excreted by the body.  Then you're asked to workout immediately following the treatment for 30-45 minutes so that your metabolism speeds up and your body gets rid of the fat faster. The immediate workout is something that Zeltiq, Zerona, and Exilis do not require, although I have to wonder if results would be better if they did.

8 treatments are recommended, 2 times per week, so 4 weeks total. Everything I read online says that about a 20%-30% (whatever that really means) reduction in fat of treated areas can be expected for around $3500. That seems like a small percentage for such a big price.

I'm not going to lie---I'd like to try all of these treatments, but since I don't have an extra $12,000+ to "try" all 4 and "see" if they "really" work or are worth the cost, it's not going to happen. Neither is spending $2000 or $3500 in this economy on something that places are so vague about. Thus far I have met no real person who has tried any of them---only some medspa owners and employess who swear by it, and let's face it, they're biased.

I feel like these treatments are still so new and so few people have them done to talk about it and spread the word, maybe these medspas need to start offering programs where people pay AFTER they see their results--and if before and after pictures and measurements don't show any results, well then, too bad medspa. I've tried too many medspa/spa services over the past 10 years that did absolutely nothing---a good $6000 wasted. Fool me once...

But hey, MedSpa people---feel free to prove me wrong. I'll happily play guinea pig for ya  at no cost and spread the word. ;)

Have you done i-LIPO? Come over to Facebook and tell me about it!

Red Carpet Manicure UV Gel Pro Kit (for home use!)

It's FINALLY happened!!!

A nail polish that STAYS ON MY NATURAL NAILS!

I know....you can't believe it. Trust me, I had my doubts too after all I've been through the past couple of months!

You may recall that I took off my acrylic nails 2 months ago after 13 years of artificial long nail BLISS. Then I tried a $40 CND Shellac UV gel manicure at the salon, but it slid off my nails in a day and all my natural nails broke with it. After that I tried Butter London Nail Lacquer which lasts 6-8 days without chipping, but I sometimes need even longer wear than that! 

The ride to getting pretty nails since I took off my artificial ones has not been easy!

$80 and worth every dime!
Now I've discovered HEAVEN in a nail polish!! Red Carpet Manicure UV Gel Pro Manicure kit available online and at Ulta stores is what I've been wanting both from a long-lasting manicure standpoint AND from an economical one!

For $80 (the cost of 2 salon visits) the Pro kit includes supplies that will last through many months of manicures: a UV light like those used at salons, plus all the ingredients you need to do your own gel manicure at home: sanitizer, base coat, 1 color, top coat, cleanser, and remover.

my sad short uneven nails :(
The steps for a RCM manicure are easy-- clean/prep nails with sanitizer, apply base coat and put under light for 30 seconds. Next apply 1 coat of color and hold under UV light for 45 seconds, repeat this step, then use top coat and cure under light for a final 45 seconds. Afterward, wipe down nails with the post application cleanser to remove any sticky residue. THAT'S IT!

I did my nails at 3pm on December 25th and 4 days later there isn't even the slightest chipping and they're as shiny as ever. I suspect this manicure will last at least 2 weeks without chipping---RCM even suggests it may last 3 weeks. Even if it were to chip tomorrow, which I doubt will happen, it's lasted longer than anything I've put on my natural nails ever.

I want them ALL!
Today I went to Ulta and picked up a couple more colors. The Pro kit comes with "Red Carpet Ready," but I also purchased "Best Dressed" and "Thank You Thank You." I would have picked up "Paparazzi" and "9 Inch Heels" for $9.99 each, but they were out of those colors (and about 5 others I wanted!). Next visit for sure!

The best part is, since my nails are still weak from growing out all the acrylic damage (probably 2 more months before it's all grown out--a total of 4 months), the RCM gel mani that I do at home gives them a bit of strength so they're protected from breaking.

I don't know if this is true, but a manger at Ulta told me that instead of RCM gel color, if I want to put my own non-formaldehyde regular polish in between the gel base coat and gel top coat, I can, I would just need to let the polish dry completely on it's own before I added top coat. She also told me that if I want clear nails, I can use the top and base coats together without any color in between. I haven't tried either of these things yet, but I will. Right now I'm just enamored with nails that haven't chipped when I'm used to my natural nails always having broken polish on them!


Thanks Red Carpet Manicure!!!