Could a vitamin IV drip really make me feel like a post-yoga retreat Gwyneth Paltrow? That was the question on my mind before I tried it. Intravenous vitamin therapy has been well documented on social media and proponents say it can do everything from boost your glow to increase energy levels. Sounds easier than eating seven oranges after a Bikram class, right?
actIV infusion, a Sydney-based company, offers several IV drips starting at $49 to detox your body, cure your hangover and boost your immunity. They gave me an opportunity to undergo one of their treatments, and I decided on the actIV Myers Cocktail, which claims to increase energy levels, improve mood and reduce stress thanks to its mix of magnesium, vitamin C and B vitamins.
According to co-founder Max Petro, the effects of one drip session last for about a week and they also offer subscription packages for ongoing treatments to further optimise results.
“The key advantage of an IV is that it allows for the 100 per cent bioavailability of fluids, minerals and vitamins as they avoid being processed by the gut, allowing for better cell absorption,” says Petro.
The company notes, however, that there are small risks involved, such as bruising at the injection site (ouch!) and like all medical treatments, shouldn’t be taken lightly.
I’m a beauty editor and already take daily vitamins, drink a green smoothie for breakfast and know my way around a gym—so my health is in pretty good shape. I still had to know: could this drip do an even better job at giving me a boost than all the stuff I already do?
What It’s Like to Get a Vitamin IV Drip
In addition to their clinic, they offer a call out service, resulting in a qualified, licensed and insured doctor (blue scrubs and all) turning up at the office. Caveat: I don’t like needles. After signing a liability waiver, she asked me for a brief medical history as well as any allergies. In a nervous sweat, I steeled myself and she inserted the IV drip cannula, which felt like a bee sting-like pinch. I end up laying down on the floor, with my feet propped up on an exercise ball. IV therapy delivers nutrients to the body directly, bypassing the digestive process, which is why it’s supposed to have instant results. I sat for about 30 minutes as the drip slowly worked its way into my veins. My arm definitely felt a bit funny—like the sensation you get after giving blood. While I waited for the IV to work its magic, I chatted with the doctor who established that yes, medical students really do administer IV fluids for hangovers. Urban legend confirmed.
After the infusion was over and the needle was removed, she explained that it would take a bit of time for all of the vitamins and minerals to circulate through my system. I headed back to my desk and continued working. I felt in a slight daze but sipped on my water bottle and rode it out.
How I Looked—and Felt—After the Treatment
A couple of hours later I went to dinner with some friends and was more tired than usual. The next morning, was a different story. I beat my alarm and woke up energetic and alert for an early gym session. During my fifth set of burpees, I still hadn’t worn myself out and the others in the group commented that my skin had a fresh glow. Win.
The bottom line: 24 hours after I tried the vitamin infusion, I noticed that my energy levels were at an all time high and I went make-up free the next day. Score.
What’s more, I retained a healthy, rested glow for several days after the treatment—and definitely felt an extra bounce in my step. Although the treatment was pricey, I’d consider getting an IV drip again if I needed an extra boost—but it definitely won’t replace my regular health routine.