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Cool Sculpting: how I got my fat frozen off

TextHanna Hanra

Hanna Hanra reports on her Cool Sculpting experience

Because I like to spend the odd Sunday morning rolling around in bed covered in croissant crumbs, rather than say, jogging, I am prone to being not a naturally thin person.

So when the opportunity arose to have some fat frozen off, I leapt at the chance, albeit with as little exertion as possible.

Cool Sculpting is the process of freezing one’s flab to minus 11, at which point the fat cells die, never to be seen again. They are then flushed through your body via the lymphatic system and “eliminated” (their words, not mine). It’s painless (more on that shortly), it doesn’t involve any needles or anything, just lying down, which, for obvious reasons, is great if you are a lazy person like me.

When you lose weight you are not losing fat cells, just making them smaller. Which is great if you lay off the chocolate biscuits for eternity but we all know that is impossible. So when you do enter a deep and prolonged “cake” phase after a particularly harrowing break up or whatever, it’s those same, former shrunken fat cells, that resume their girth once more. This is where Cool Sculpting comes in. It works because it reduces the number of fat cells you have. They don’t migrate to another part of your body – your gunt isn’t suddenly shifted to your saddlebags or vice versa, they are actually “eliminated” (again, their words – but you know they mean that you just crap it out, right?) and banished for good.

You have to admit, it sounds fabulous, doesn’t it? So I was more than thrilled to head across town to Harvey Nichols, where I’d be having my fat iced off at Beyond Medispa on the fourth floor. After taking off my top and dropping trou to expose my “problem” area, I was told that “I might not have enough fat for it to work” (reader, I was thrilled, but also after sitting on the tube at rush hour to get there on time was prepared to eat a cake on the spot to have it done). After various “just breathe out”s and much encouragement to stop holding my stomach in, my therapist and I finally settled on two “cups” to be frozen off on the upper-rib area. The Fat Under Rib Area, or my Fura as I like to call it.

You can have Cool Sculpting on any part of the body where you can pinch more than an inch. Under the chin? Ice it off. Inner thighs? Freeze them. Gunt? Be gone! Saddlebags? Sayonara. Many people have between four or six ‘cups’ on a cycle but you can have up to 12 in one go. For example if you wanted to defrost your six-pack you’d have six ‘cups’ put on you and the fat cells frozen off. Each cycle kills off about 27% of the fat cells and most people have two cycles. It takes about six weeks to see a visible difference as the fat cells take a moment to wither and die and pass through your body.

Once you have decided on which area you’re going to give your own personal ice age to, the therapist draws on you with a marker pen to exactly plot out where the most amount of subcutaneous fat is and where to position the “cup”. The “cup” is not a cup as we know it. Imagine the end of a very powerful hoover, or a mini hovercraft type thing. It is an oval shaped device that forms a tight suction onto the body, sucking up the fat and then freezing it. It’s the sort of thing that in 50 years time will look like the most insane thing we ever did to ourselves.  Our children’s children will be bemused and baffled (or maybe not because the world is burning etc etc). So let me tell you what having your Fura sucked into a cup and frozen feels like. It feels like someone has put a really heavy bag of pointy elbows on your ribs and it’s so heavy you can’t move and you haven’t eaten so you feel a bit sick and you’d like it to come off but also you don’t want it off so you are enduring the heavy bag of pointy elbows for thirty five fucking minutes. Actually after about six minutes the freezing starts and it feels OK and you can go back to thinking about lunch. And then when the time is up the cup has to come off and placed on the other side and the whole thing starts again. When the cup is removed what is left is bright red and feels so cold to the touch. I can not underline how cold. It feels like one small part of your body is minus 11 cold and the rest of it is room temperature, it is like your own personal permafrost.

Because it takes a while to notice any difference I can’t confirm if indeed it has worked, but I can confidently say that the feeling came back although it felt a bit weird for a few days. I am still eating cake with no guilt whatsoever, like I did before because at the end of the day, it doesn't matter so long as you are happy.

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