If the thought of letting Mother Earth swaddle and comfort your weary body, a mud or clay wrap might be the spa or at-home treatment you seek.
That is, if you don’t have any claustrophobic tendencies. Mud or clay is applied to your skin before you are wrapped in strips of coth or plastic to let either the clay or mud press into your skin. Wrapping acts to trap body heat to increase the effectiveness of treatment. In broad strokes, these wraps work to detoxify, cleanse and relax you.
MUD WRAPS ARE SAID TO HELP:
- Bone, cartilage inflammation
- Cellulite reduction
CLAY WRAPS HELP:
Not just any mud will do. Whether in a spa or using an at-home mud (or clay), make sure the mud is high quality because disease-carrying microorganism can live in mud. Do a little homework before putting the anti-stress and pore cleansing properties to work. Consider Dead Sea mud with its concentrations of magnesium, potassium, sodium, bromine and calcium. As for clay wraps, bentonite clay is considered one of the most beneficial body wraps. Clay wraps often include essential oils to promote relaxation.
Consider French red clays rich in amino acid, iron, magnesium and vitamins A, B, B12 and E.
Depending on what you’re going for, these additions can be included in either your mud or clay wrap:
• Algae — to nourish, detoxify • Chocolate — for its anti-
aging, toning properties
• Cold — to control excess fluid in the hip, leg, thigh areas
• Seaweed — to hydrate, firm the skin
• Parafango — warmed paraffin and mud to stimulate the body’s lymphatic
flow, draw out toxins.
• Oil — to moisturize
Body wraps should not be considered a weight-loss treatment. Yes, you may loss a pound or
two from sweating during the treatment, but any weight or inch loss is temporary. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration warns against body wraps for weight reduction,
Avoid wraps if pregnant/ breast feeding or have diabetes, high blood pressure or any heart condition. Also, inform your practitioner of any allergies or prescriptions you’re taking.
Some people experience bloating right after wrapping as ingredients break down and remove toxins, and you might have mild flulike symptoms (usually more likely in people getting wrapped for the first time).
As with most things, stay hydrated and increase water intake for at least several days to help flush the toxins.