This year, I lost a lot of weight. A combination of a stressful period in my life and intermittent fasting helped me shed close to 7 kilos on my already small frame in about 4 months. The upside was that I could fit into teeny tiny clothes, felt more energetic and clear headed than in my 20’s. The downside was loose skin around my tummy that no amount of pilates and barre classes seemed to address.
I had tried other non invasive procedures at Elite Body Contouring in the past and was curious to see if they had a non surgical solution to this loose skin issue. I had no fat to lose but the sagging skin made me feel uncomfortable in a bikini.
Elite Body Contouring Director, Danielle Smith is an expert on all things and devices that deliver long lasting, non invasive solutions for pesky body problems..
Here’s what she shared with me:“ There are many factors that can contribute to loose skin, particularly around the belly. We can generally categorise these into three main areas: Lifestyle/Environmental Factors, Weight Loss/Pregnancy, Ageing.
Lifestyle and Environmental Factors include excessive exposure to UV Radiation from direct sunlight which can break down collagen and age your skin prematurely.
The sudden and dramatic weight loss post pregnancy or after a rapid diet and lifestyle change, may also result in your skin stretching and not having the elasticity to regain its original form . Think of an elastic band that’s been stretched out of shape that struggles to regain its original elasticity after its been stretched.
Of course Ageing is another factor for loose skin. Your skin cells are constantly turning over as we age resulting in a loss of elasticity and skin firmness. The connective tissue that supports our bones, cartilage, and organs also becomes weaker and as this supportive network weakens, so too does the skin surrounding these tissue. “
So here’s the million dollar question: Can this be addressed without surgery?
Danielle Smith is very enthusiastic about the breakthrough science and technology that can be used before considering surgery and her clinic Elite Body Contouring is the go-to destination for Sydney’s celebrities, influencers and jet set who want a discreet treatment protocol in between trips to Hawaii and St Tropez.
“There are many non-invasive procedures that help to rebuild and repair collagen and elastin! The effectiveness of these procedures will always depend on the individual and their concern so it’s important to seek the right advice before jumping into non-invasive skin tightening treatments.”
Here are some of the latest options recommended by Smith.
“Depending on the severity of the concern, there are two new technologies that have taken over Radio Frequency (RF) for treating loss of elasticity.
HIFU (High intensity focused ultrasound) which uses heat energy to stimulate new collagen and elastin production of the epidermis and deep dermis and LIPOcel which also utilises HIFU energy however is 60 times more efficient than HIFU used for facial skin tightening and can penetrate to depths of between 8-13mm below the surface of the skin. Lipocel is basically HIFU for the Body.
How many treatments you need and how quickly you will see results will vary depending on the current condition of the ski . We are relying on the skin to naturally tighten as new collagen and elastin is formed, this process can take time also so it’s very difficult to give an exact number of session. Most clients will see a dramatic difference in the improvement of skin firmness with LIPOcel or HIFU in 4 sessions spaced 4 weeks apart.”
Rescu. Road Test:
I had three sessions over 4 months and the result was about a 50% improvement, which is a lot. I would definitely consider going back for another 2-3 sessions to really get my tummy to pre baby/ pre weight loss firmness.
I also asked Danielle to explain the difference between LIPOcel and fat freezing, another hugely popular non invasive, but effective treatment.
“Fat freezing is a great treatment to permanently reduce stubborn fat utilising cryolipolysis (cooling) technology however fat freezing does not produce new collagen and elastin. LIPOel will offer a similar result for fat freezing in regards to permanent fat reduction however uses heat energy called HIFU. LIPOcel has many advantages over fat freezing in that the skin is also tightened during the treatment. We can penetrate to different depths by simply changing over the cartridge and we are not limited to the size of the treatment area as the hand piece is moved during the LIPOcel treatment , unlike the fat freezing applicator which has to remain stationary during the procedure.
Results of LIPOcel and fat freezing are permanent as the whole fat cell is destroyed and processed out of the body. However it is important to note that if lifestyle changes in a negative way , and visceral fat is increased, this can mask the results of the treatment . Skin tightening results for LIPOcel and HIFU can last up to 18 months. “
Let’s get real about what to expect.
My three treatments resulted in a visible improvement in the loose skin around my belly and definitely helped me feel more confident in a bikini. The results however can vary and I need more treatments to really treat the area properly. I also need to keep up with a healthy diet, regular exercise and treating the skin on my body as I do on my face. With sunscreen and regular hydration.
Danielle Smith adds “Fat reduction results are permanent however no non-invasive skin tightening treatment can really claim to be permanent as our skin cells are constantly turning over as we age.”