Saturday, July 26, 2014

Review on Slim Couture

This post was written on my Dayre two days ago.

I wrote it at 4am - 5am and deleted it at 530am (thereabouts) because I had wrote about a company, Slim Couture, that I was supposed to do a slimming ad for. In the end I rejected the ad as the treatment... Well let's just say it literally sucked (hahaha coz it involves doing ba guan or cupping). The deal went through Nuffnang. When I said I couldn't advertise for Slim Couture, the Nuffies were very understanding and said ok.

However, I didn't want to get the Nuffies into trouble as I heard the client can be quite... difficult to deal with. So I took the post down.

For some reason the said client was awake at that time and saw the post, then proceeded to scold the Nuffies anyway, saying Nuffnang is very unprofessional, allowing their bloggers to write bad reviews, even if it only existed for such a short time at an ungodly hour.

This was sent to my manager:

 Erm your english...


Not sure if she is kidding that she thinks Nuffnang writes my posts or is just a very confused individual...

Nuffnang has no say over what I write on my own blog. What I choose to post here is directed and approved by me and me ALONE.

Besides, being a blogger management company, Nuffnang places blogger editorial freedom first.

Without real, true opinions, a blogger has no credibility. A blogger with no credibility cannot sell ads, and Nuffnang cannot exist. 

Protecting a bloggers' right to freedom of speech - THAT is professionalism.

After a client pays for an ad a blogger has agreed to write for, Nuffnang facilitates and makes sure the ad is properly written and it is specified as an ad. THAT is professionalism.

If the deal doesn't go through and no advert happens, then Nuffnang owes the client nothing. My deal with them was over and resolved long ago. What I write now has nothing to do with Nuffnang's professionalism AT ALL.

Asking bloggers to mask shitty products or services as good, or pander to clients every little wish - THAT IS UNPROFESSIONAL, not to mention unethical.

A blogger's integrity cannot be compromised by mercenary gains, that's what I strongly believe it and always will.

After I took down the entry, I started immediately to hear stories of other people who went to this company too and also didn't lose any weight at all, wasting all their money. Whether they are lying to me or not, I don't know.

When people sign up for a package with them, all they hear and see are the magical success stories, but not the failures.

That isn't fair. It won't work for everyone just like it didn't work for me. It's better to have an all rounded view before deciding on spending so much money, don't you think?

Even before deciding on a movie or a simple meal at a restaurant, you are entitled to read both bad and good reviews before deciding yeah?

As such, I have decided to repost the entry that I wrote.

EVEN THOUGH THE COMPANY SAID THEY WANTED TO SUE NUFFNANG (or me I guess, since this has nothing to do with Nuffnang).

I believe just like anyone who can write a bad review of a restaurant, a spa or any other services or products they used, I can too.

I wrote on my deleted post multiple times that their services have worked for others, but it didn't for me. Is that not as fair a comment as fair can be? In fact, please do visit their website HERE to read testimonials on the women it has worked for. It has indeed helped a lot of women lose weight.

I wrote only my opinions. Anything here that can be perceived as a fact, is also just my opinion.

Here is my deleted post (with a little bit of editing):



So, my friend informed me that an ex friend of mine did an advertorial for a company that I was working with. I was so disgusted with the post, I'm writing in my dayre about it.

Here's the background story.

A month before I went off to Greece for my wedding photoshoot, a slimming company approached me. They used TCM methods like ba guan (cupping) and gua sha (scrapping) to help their clients lose weight.

Initially, I was very very excited. They told me in a month they had clients lose 6, 10, 15kg even.

There wasn't anything you needed to do except go for their treatment. No exercise required!

I only wanted to lose about 4kg. I should be able to do it, right? I'm only writing this because there are a few bloggers and even their partners go for this treatment - and they all had significant results.

So maybe this TCM slimming thing works. It definitely worked for others. Even with amazing results!

BUT. There is always a BUT.

Before everyone gets taken in by the mercenary deliberately-embellished and unpleasant-details-omitted blog posts these bloggers have been paid to write (some worse than others and btw I consider being given free treatment also a form of "payment"), I shall clarify the unwritten bits.

So I was saying... Disgusted with ex friend. I could barely stomach the article as she repeatedly praised herself on how good she looks throughout the blog post... It seemed to be that perhaps the post just an excuse to boast about her figure.

But never mind that... After resurfacing from the fathomless pool of humble brags I saw something which made me super irritated. The ba guan/cupping bruises which were a residue of the treatment were photoshopped away.

The excuse she gave was that the placement for the cups were top secret.


At this point let me go into more detail about why I eventually rejected that ad. Note humble brag here guys, I'm saying I have ethics.

1) after about 3 weeks, I didn't lose any weight. 

If I did, it was definitely within 1kg, which I find is normal fluctuation for humans.

2) The treatment required a special diet. 

I was asked to eat lots of cherry tomatoes, avoid carbs, eat less etc. You can't eat any red meat including chicken thigh, no salmon, or codfish or unagi either. No snacking on stuff like chips or biscuits. I already don't eat carbs much at all. I ate the tomatoes, and I tried very hard to go with their diet plan, but I'm sorry I do not have that kind of self control!

In the first place if you can have the self control to only eat healthy food, won't you already be skinny?!?!

When I asked that question, the slimming company said that that is true, but if you don't do their treatment, all your dieting weight loss will not be maintained. With their treatments you won't bounce back easily. Since I never lost any weight, I can't tell you if that is true or not.

Anyway, it wasn't like I binge ate. I really did try to eat healthier. But it is hard for me, because I stay up very late and what's there to eat at night? Maggie mee? Macdonalds? I know it sounds like excuses, but this wasn't what I signed up for. I was told all I had to do was so lie down for treatments.

I felt that most people who go to slimming companies probably don't have much self control when it comes to resisting sinful food anyway.

As such, the treatment might not work for them and I didn't feel right recommending it.

3) I was told that if I ate unhealthy food, it will make me gain MORE weight with the treatment than usual!

Wtf! Ok maybe not gain more weight, but it will affect me worse, as the TCM treatment was detoxing my body and if u eat "toxic" shit during a detox, how does it get flushed out?

Anyway that's horrifying. I kept eating unhealthy shit and telling myself I will skip the next meal, but next meal comes and I still eat as per normal.

Then after that I go do my treatments and get told I didn't lose any fat percentage and sometimes even gained. It stressed me like mad!

So anyway I maintained slightly better or same dietary habits. I even cheated and took a supplement that helps me retain less of the oils in the food I ate. The treatment should still at least work right??? But I didn't lose any weight, or perhaps I did a meagre 0.5kg??! We come to reason four.

4) I was told I did lose several cm around my thighs, belly etc. 

But I don't believe it. My clothes didn't feel looser. My weighing scale says otherwise.

I believe that the measuring tape can be manipulated by the person measuring. 1cm... Just hold the tape looser, really easy to achieve. I don't know if they did that of course, but seeing as my weight didn't drop, it is my opinion that the measuring tape's measurements shouldn't either.

5) The treatment fucking HURTS. 

This is coming from me. I am the Queen of pain threshold. I can put fillers in my face with no numbing cream. I didn't even find liposonix, thermage or ulthera that painful.

And yet I found this almost intolerable. The gua sha involves the therapist use this wavy bone thing to scrap against your skin. Google image gua sha yourself to see, thanks.

She uses force. It is actually quite nice on the back and on the neck, but on the inner thighs and inner arms it almost made me scream out in pain.

After that it's time for cupping. I rate this 9/10 on the pain scale. 

I'm not sure how many cups in total were used, but it feels like at least 50?? For about 10 mins the therapist sucks the air out of little cups and suctions them on my bare skin. It is barely tolerable for the first 10 mins after.

Then your body gets used to the pain and it's ok. Then you flip over and do it on the other side. 1 hr of suffering.

I was told I will get used to the pain after a few sessions, but I DIDN'T. Everytime I went I dreaded going in.

Look at the fucking bruises I'm posting below. How is it possible that something that turns you blue black all over not hurt? Don't kid yourself.

Maybe somehow my pain threshold for this is low. Because I see other women come in and out of the place and they must have tolerated their treatments, right?

To me, this doesn't make sense. If you don't mind pain and have self control, why don't you just diet and exercise like normal people do? Surely that's a lot cheaper too!

6) The cupping left bruises. 

As I was saying about ex friend's bullshit about the bruises.

I realised that none of the bloggers posted pictures of their bruises at all. This was the least favourite part of the treatment for me.

When I started I was told that the bruises will stay for 2-3hours MAX.

Now I'm wondering did I hear them wrongly? Because I remember my reaction was that it was really ok, and they said yeah, it will go off very fast.

In the end they lasted for about 5 days before they faded away, by which time it's time for your next treatment. So you have to constantly walk around with these stupid circular purplish marks all over your body for a fucking month.

When I complained about the bruises, the company told me it is because I didn't eat enough cherry tomatos. Roll eyes to the back of my head. To them, cherry tomatoes are god's gift to mankind and it can possibly also solve the world's energy crisis.

Here are some pics from my old dayre posts with the bruises.

None of these pictures are edited:

On my torso.

On my thighs. One light and one dark because they were from an old session and a fresh session, which I did twice a week.
The fucking marks were the reason why I wore this conservative long sleeved dress to nuffnang's birthday. I had bruises on my upper arms.

Like so.

You can see the fainter circle? That was from the previous treatment and it hasn't faded yet. Also, this proves that everytime I went, the cups were put on different spots, not at the exact same spots. (Important point for later)

 So awful

Three round marks... Made me so self conscious wearing a bikini. 

Check out my beautiful body!

Urgh. I wouldn't be so irritated if I knew what I signed up for. But I was told the pain was tolerable, the marks won't last more than a few hours, and I wasn't informed I had to adhere to a strict diet or it won't work at all.

In fact, I was told that another blogger (admittedly, fatter) also didn't really follow the diet and still she lost a lot of weight so I thought that will happen to me as well.

 I was goaded beyond words when I kept having to waste two days a week to come for treatments, suffer so much pain, then suffer my bruises afterwards... For no weight loss.

Eventually I told the company the treatment isn't for me.

The ad I was so excitedly preparing for them, wasn't going to happen because I had planned for a proud before and after photo... My after photos looks the same as the before. Except bruised.

I wasted 3 weeks I could have been on my D diet pill (got some leftover from last time) doing this treatment instead, and went to Greece for my photoshoot much fatter than I would have liked.

According to one of the bloggers' post, the treatment cost $200 per session. 

 I was told most people do a minimum of 8 sessions, so that's $1,600 already. 

Oh yeah I was saying why the "cupping placement are top secret" sounds like bullshit to me. 

Firstly, they cup so many areas that just showing thigh bruises don't fucking matter. Look at the last photo I posted - The cups were so numerous I couldn't even count them. My entire stomach, back, neck, even up to the back of my hands had cups on them. I looked like an octopus' tentacle when I was done. So just showing thigh bruises? INSIGNIFICANT AND UNIMPORTANT.

Secondly, I was personally told by my therapist that she cups every person differently, based on their needs.

So said ex-friend posting a picture of her bruised thighs won't matter. Nothing was ever told to me by the company that I cannot post pictures of my bruises... In fact, I did post pictures with my bruises and they didn't say a thing.

If anything, it probably wasn't posted because it is a deterrence to anyone who wants to try the treatment. Who wants to look like they got abused? If she wants her ad to be successful, she needs to hide the unpleasantries, right?

I'm not saying the company isn't ethical or the bloggers aren't. This is just a factual review of my experience with the place. I'd rather forgo thousands of dollars than risk my readers blaming me for making them lose shitloads of money because they trusted me and when to pay for something I vouched for.

Perhaps it really doesn't hurt so much for other people and perhaps the bruises only last 2 hours for them.

And maybe it is super effective in helping others lose weight. After all they boast about all the success cases they have. Especially for those people with a lot of self control when it comes to dieting and exercising too, surely their weight loss plan worked. (Then why you need the treatment I wonder?)

And they claim to give money back guarantee if there are no results... However, as I said the measuring tape can be easily manipulated. 1cm on each thigh, 1cm at the belly, half a cm each at the arms... Easily you can lose 4cm already yeah? Even if you change your diet just a little it is likely you lose at least 1 kg in a month... In that case I wonder if you can still get your money back. I don't know.

But I just wanted to say my side of the story. 

Afterall, before you drop thousands, you should know exactly what you are paying for, right?

Ok, rant over.