The public obsession with a flat, well defined midsection has created a billion dollar industry filled with all manner of gadgets, pills and diets. One of the most popular has been the waist trimmer. For more than 40 years, we’ve seen ads for these products that promise that you can drop inches by simply wearing a waist belt. But do they really work? Let’s find out.

What is a Waist Trimmer?

A waist trimmer is a wide neoprene belt that fits around the waist, typically running from the upper ribs to the hips. It generally has a wide velcro strap to allow you to securely fasten the belt around your waist. There are also versions of the trimmer belt that can be wrapped around the thighs and upper arms. It is claimed that wearing a waist trimmer belt will burn body fat, sweat off excess water weight and increase thermogenesis.


Waist trimmers are designed to be worn in conjunction with exercise. Many people wear one while they are doing weight training exercises as well as during their cardio sessions. 


Because neoprene is not a breathable material, waist trimmers cause an increase in perspiration. The body, therefore, heats up. In order to bring the temperature back to a state of equilibrium, extra energy must be expended. It is this extra calorie burn that leads to the supposed weight loss.

Are All Waist Trimmers Effective?

When it comes to the waist trimmer market, there is a wide disparity in terms of quality and effectiveness. The two most important considerations are the construction material and the fit. Neoprene is the preferred material, as it does the most effective job of retaining the heat and bringing about a thermogenic effect. 


When it comes to the fit, you need a waist trimmer that allows for a tight, cinched fit and will not loosen during your exercise session. It should also consist of high quality velcro that will do its job consistently over the long term. Look for a waist trimmer that has a double fastening system, such as velcro and metal hooks to ensure that it remains tight around your body as you move through your workout. One of the most popular and effective waist trimmers on the market right now is the Sweet Sweat Waist Trimmer

What are the Benefits of a Waist Trimmer?

As soon as you strap on a waist trimmer, you will look better. That is because the tightness of the garment compresses your waist in a similar way that a corset does. You may even notice that your stomach remains pulled in for an hour or two after you remove the waist trimmer. However, this is a temporary effect which does not result in real weight loss.


Waist trimmers are also able to help improve a person’s posture. By pulling in the stomach and supporting the lower spine, they reduce the forward lean that causes many people to have stooped shoulders and resultant neck and spinal issues.


When worn during resistance training workouts, a waist trimmer can also act as a back support, in effect doubling as a lifting belt. This can be handy when performing heavy lifting exercises like squats and deadlifts. However wearing a waist trimmer as a matter of course throughout your resistance workout may actually be counterproductive. Providing too much support around the core area means that the muscles of your erector spinae, obliques, intercostals and abdominals don’t have to work as hard to stabilize and balance the body during the workout. This reduces the effectiveness of your training.


When it comes to long term fat loss, a waist trimmer will allow you to lose water weight. This effect is quite similar to what you would get from spending time in a sauna. Your body’s core temperature will increase and you will detoxify impurities from your body. The water loss will be temporary, being replaced when you rehydrate. However, the increased caloric burn that comes from the higher body temperature will result in fat loss. This may amount to about an extra hundred calories per hour. They key to success with the waist trimmer, then, is to use it regularly in conjunction with calorie burning exercise. 

How to Get the Most from Your Waist Trimmer

A waist trimmer can provide you with a slight boost to your waist slimming efforts. To get the most benefit from your waist trimmer investment, you need to use it in conjunction with a regular exercise program and weight loss nutrition. We recommend doing 3-4 cardio sessions such as running on a treadmill or using a rowing machine for 30-40 minutes while wearing the waist trimmer. In addition, you should do 3 sessions of resistance training.  In terms of weight loss nutrition, you need to achieve a caloric deficit of between 250-500 calories per day. Focus on eating lean proteins, fibrous and starchy carbs and healthy fats.

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