best body contouring

Cool Sculpting vs Sculpsure vs Liposonix: What’s the Best Body Contouring Treatment for You?

Categories : Aesthetics

Think of any spot where you wish you could take off half an inch, or firm up and tighten: stomach, arms, back, butt your thighs – even your knees! Now you can achieve body goals without surgery: the best body contouring machines blast stubborn fat cells. It won’t help you lose weight, but it can help you firm, tone and sculpt that tiny bit of flab.

But what’s the best body contouring treatment for your problem area or your body goals? That’s something you need to talk about with a doctor, because everyone’s body is different. But this can help you see what’s available and whether it’s something you’d like to try.

Cool Sculpting

It’s one of the best known body contouring procedures, thanks to the praise it got from celebrities like Khloe Kardashian and Molly Sims. It got FDA approval in 2010, and is typically used to treat the thighs, lower back, belly, and flanks. Some people also use it to help tone the chin, or reduce cellulite on the legs and arms.   

How it works:

Cool Sculpting based on the principle of cryolipolysis, or freezing fat cells to death. While this sounds like something out of a sci-fi movie, it’s based on sound science: fat cells die at lower temperatures, but surrounding tissues don’t. So, doctors are able to safely tone an area with minimal risk or effects.

So what happens during a treatment? The doctor will sandwich the target area between two cool plates.  It’s relatively comfortable. Patients usually say they feel a tugging or cooling effect. Afterwards, you may feel mild pain and aching at the treatment site, but surveys say this goes away on its own anywhere from 3  to 11 days.

How effective is it:

A 2009 study found that it could improve a targeted “fat spot” by as much as 25%. But it’s not an instant slim-down: it can take weeks for the body for the fat cells to completely stop regenerating, die and then get excreted by the liver.  You may also need several sessions to achieve your goal, especially if you’re targeting larger body parts.  

Pros and Cons

One of the advantages of Coolsculpting over other body contouring treatments is that the paddles actually work better on thicker, pinchable fat (it needs something to grab on to). People also say that the cooling technique simultaneously numbs the skin, so it isn’t as uncomfortable as other body contouring treatments.  

Sculpsure

Prefer hot over cold? Sculpsure uses laser energy to break down fat cells. It’s FDA-approved to treat stomach, flanks (i.e., your love handles), back, thighs and chin.

How it works:

Instead of freezing fat cells, Sculpsure heats them until they’re no longer viable and the body flushes them out. This is done through four plates that are held in place by a belt. The machine cycles through warm and cool cycles so your skin won’t get uncomfortably hot.

How effective is it:

Clinical trials show that people lose 24% fat reduction of localized fat after a single treatment.  That’s really similar to Cool Sculpting (and both body contouring treatments will need about the same time to show results).

Pros and Cons

A clear benefit: the shape of the plates themselves. The doctors can use it on larger areas, and adjust the belt so it can be used on different body types.  

New York cosmetic dermatologist Dr. Sejal Shah also says that the laser has a potential bonus of stimulating collagen and improving skin texture. “But keep in mind it is not a skin-tightening treatment and not FDA-cleared for these benefits.”

The cons? You will feel the heat, so keep that in mind if you’re sensitive to pain. You’ll also need to massage the area

Liposonix

This body contouring treatment melts fat with high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) — or in layman’s terms, sound waves. It’s been cleared for use on bra bulges, arms, stomach and love handles, thigh and calves. Aside from contouring, it can also reduce cellulite (and much more effectively than the best anticellulite products!)

 How it works:

Like Sculpsure, Liposonix works through heat. The high frequency of the ultrasound wave causes the targeted area to heat up. This kills the fat cells and tightens the skin around it too – talk about a power combo! This body contouring treatment has FDA approval for treating abdomen, hips, thighs, flanks and buttocks.  

How effective is it

In one study Liposonix was able to remove 4 to 5 inches around the waist. But on the average, people are able to remove about 1 inch per session and 3 inches over several sessions.  If you’re looking for much more dramatic fat reduction, you’ll have to ask your doctor if you need to combine this with body contouring surgery.  

Pros and Cons

Well, it’s about 10 degrees hotter than Sculpsure – so yes, you’re going to feel some discomfort. Your doctor can give you painkillers, but if you really have a lower tolerance for pain you may want to look at other body contouring options.

But if you can take the discomfort, Liposonix reviews say that they started feeling and seeing the improvement as early as two weeks after their treatment.

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