Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

SUMMER SMOOTHIES; There's Still Time to Get into Shape for the Beach with Fast-Track Treatments That Will Tone and Tighten You Up

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

SUMMER SMOOTHIES; There's Still Time to Get into Shape for the Beach with Fast-Track Treatments That Will Tone and Tighten You Up

Article excerpt

ULRIKA Jonsson has just spent [pounds sterling]11,000 on surgery to get her body back in shape for the beach. But without that kind of cash what can a girl do to prepare before she bares all in a bikini? We sent three writers to put some miracle body-transformation treatments to the test and find out if it's possible to get beach-ready legs without going under the knife -- or spending a fortune.

DEBORAH COLLCUTT TRIES A COFFEE CELLULITE BUSTER Priori CoffeeBerry Slimming Complex

What is it? A 50-minute treatment that promises to tighten and soften skin and, crucially, take inches off cellulite-prone areas such as your thighs and bottom. The company says that twice-daily applications of Priori CoffeeBerry Slimming Complex at home are clinically proven to reduce thigh circumference by an average of half an inch over eight weeks.

What's it like? After a thorough rubdown cleanse with a mitt on a heated bed under strategically placed fluffy towels, the CoffeeBerry Botanical Enzyme Mask is applied to your thighs and bottom. They are then wrapped in cellophane for 10 minutes. While you wait for the CoffeeBerry (a patented product, extracted from arabica berries) to work its anti-ageing and antioxidant magic, there is the option of having a yoga scalp massage or, as I chose, the Priori facial. This uses a milder version of the same product that contains a natural sun protector -- ideal for the face -- in the form of a cleanser and moisturiser.

When the thigh mask came off it was time for therapist Harriet to work up a sweat with a powerful -- and rather painful -- lymphatic massage. This is designed to get the circulation going and help the body break down the fat stored in the thighs and bottom.

How fast? It is recommended that you have around six treatments -- for example, twice a week for three weeks -- before baring all on the beach.

Miracle factor? It is difficult to tell after just one treatment but certainly my thighs felt and looked smoother. I may have been kidding myself but they seemed a little slimmer the following morning.

Cost: [pounds sterling]90. Details: Spa at Chancery Court, 252 High Holborn, WC1 (020 7829 7058, www.spachancerycourt.com).

LIZ HOGGARD GIVES HER THIGHS THE FREEZE Champneys Chill & Tone

What is it? Cold mask and bodycontouring wrap to combat cellulite and eliminate excess fluid from hips, thighs and stomach.

What's it like? An Englishwoman's arse is her key area of vulnerability. So naturally I was dreading a bottom "mask" -- especially one supposed to freeze you into submission. But actually it's more of a strange tingling sensation. And the pain is lessened by being cocooned in a thermal blanket on a heated bed. It's also incredibly modest: towels are held up to conceal your every embarrassing angle. …

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