The Bikini Cleanse is a 7-day food-based cleanse that claims to help with weight loss and energy. It is designed to be done before going on vacation or wearing a bikini. The cleanse consists of seven days of meal replacements and snacks. Candice Kumai, a chef and author, has her own version of the Bikini Cleanse called “Clean Green Bikini Cleanse.

You may also remember that I told you all about how much anxiety I have about putting on a swimsuit for the first time this season, but this year, I decided to take action. I decided to go on a quick cleanse in preparation for my trip.

My last experience with a juice cleanse taught me that I like solid food too much, so that method was DOA. But, when I met with the founder of the Bikini Cleanse, I knew that it could be the one for me.

The whole idea behind it is basically just clean, careful eating, free of sugar, unhealthy carbs, dairy, and all those little things that you find in pretty much everything that you enjoy consuming (the complaining begins).

The recommended Bikini Cleanse takes seven days, but since I’m a very busy adult with important things to do, I knew I wasn’t going to be able to commit to an aggressive amount of cooking, meal prep, and lack of social life (I’ll explain) for an entire week. Instead, I opted for the three-day Bikini Cleanse ($89). Here’s what you get:

Bikini Cleanse takes seven days
  • Three Bikini Smoothies, which taste delightfully like those creamsicle ice cream pops you probably got at day camp when you were little.
  • Six Bikini Sticks, which I referred to as “healthy Emergen-C.”
  • Three Bikini Teas, which are just senna teas, and don’t worry, I’ve got a whole lot to say about these.

You can also get a Blender Bottle for your smoothies, but that’s sold separately and it’s totally not required (I would, though—they’re a revelation).

Here’s how the cleanse works: Every day, you replace either breakfast or lunch with one of the Bikini Smoothies, and since it’s a whey protein smoothie, they’re actually super filling.

Outside of that, you can have two healthy meals a day from the Bikini Cleanse’s prescribed meal plan (they also have tons of recipes on their website if you don’t know where to start) and two healthy snacks a day (I pretty much exclusively stuck to carrots), along with one of the Bikini Sticks with tons of water.

Sadly, there’s no fruit allowed—it has to do with the whole “no extra sugar” thing—which made my snacking significantly less fun. You’re also supposed to work in 45 minutes of vigorous exercise each day you’re on the cleanse, which, LOL, I didn’t do, for reasons I will explain.

Sounds easy enough, right? And it was. Kind of. Rather than take you through each day, which isn’t really that exciting, I thought I’d just share some of my complaints with all of you. Because what is the Internet if not the perfect platform on which I can publicly whine about my first-world problems?

Complaint #1: Did any of you ever have Flintstone’s vitamins when you were a kid? You know, the chalky chewables shaped like Flintstone’s characters that were all the rage before gummy vitamins were a thing? 

Well, the Bikini Sticks tasted exactly like those in that they were overly sweet, overly chalky, and downright unpleasant to suck down.

The first few sips were okay, but after that, I had to wave the white flag. I’d rather just drink water all day than deal with this “metabolism-boosting” nonsense, which, BTW, definitely added to the nagging headache I had throughout the cleanse.

Complaint #2: You really need to take the time out to do a lot of meal prep and cooking to do this cleanse right.

Honestly, I can only blame myself for not preparing a lot of things in advance, but between the aggressive amount of shopping (I had to battle some bitches for spinach at Trader Joe’s) and the whole trying-not-to-get-bored with my meals thing, I found myself wanting to cancel plans in order to stay home and do the cleanse properly. Which brings me to…

Complaint #3: Sorry, but you can’t have a social life if you want to do the Bikini Cleanse.

You’ll be too busy cooking and grocery shopping. Also, that vigorous exercise you were supposed to work in? Shockingly difficult to do when you’re literally living in your kitchen.

I firmly believe that your diet should never interfere with your life. Cause a change in lifestyle, sure, but never make you actively unable to live it how you want.

Complaint #4: I don’t know how many of you have had senna tea in your life, but here’s what’s up: it makes you poop more than you’ve ever pooped in your entire life.

Like, I’ve heard horror stories of people pooping for hours on end after drinking senna tea.

I actually had a period of time about a year ago when I was having some stomach problems and had to drink senna tea every night, and while it’s awesome when you need it, it’s categorically not awesome when you don’t.

While I’m sure the “eating right” and “exercising” parts of the Bikini Cleanse are helpful, the fact that you’ll literally poop your body weight is probably why this cleanse is so effective.

Final verdict

Look, for all of my bitching, I’ll say this: the Bikini Cleanse definitely worked. I don’t weigh myself on principal, but my stomach looks way flatter than it did when I started, and, overall, I feel a lot better.

So, if you’ve got a big trip or event coming up and are willing to sacrifice your life to your diet for a couple days, the Bikini Cleanse is an awesome way to go.

Plus, I can totally see myself working meal-replacement whey protein shakes into my IRL diet, which I don’t think I would have tried if not for the cleanse.

That said, $89 isn’t a small chunk of change. Here’s what I’d suggest: go for it if you want, but if you can’t or don’t want to, snap up some whey protein powder from whatever sports store is nearby, stock up on veggies and lean proteins for the next week, and spend your entire weekend prior cooking. You’ll be ready to go, and you won’t have to suffer the consequences of Senna Tea Poops™. And really, that’s the greatest gift of all.

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