body contouring
BY: LBL Team

What’s the Difference Between Thermage & CoolSculpting?

CoolSculpting vs. Thermage

Thermage and CoolSculpting are two of the most popular non-invasive body contouring and skin-tightening procedures available. But, with all the different complex technologies involved, it can be challenging to parse out the differences between the two.

CoolSculpting = Fat reduction

CoolSculpting targets stubborn fat deposits using controlled cooling to freeze and eliminate unwanted fat cells without downtime. Because fat cells freeze at higher temperatures than surrounding tissues, the CoolSculpting device targets these fat cells, delivering a controlled cooling effect that crystallizes them. The fat cells die, and over time, your body eliminates them. Each CoolSculpting session decreases the number of fat cells in the treated area by up to 25 percent. The treated fat cells are gone forever, and fat cells from the untreated areas won’t migrate to replace them.

One CoolSculpting treatment cycle lasts anywhere from 35 to 75 minutes, depending on the treated area. A protective gel pad is placed on the targeted area at the start of the procedure, and when the applicator is first applied, it is not uncommon to feel a pulling or tugging sensation. CoolSculpting’s suction applicators cause this sensation as they draw skin and fat into the applicator’s cooling cup. Once the cooling begins, the treated area will feel cold (similar to an ice pack) until it goes numb, making the treatment completely tolerable.

CoolSculpting results can be seen as soon as four weeks after your initial treatment and are permanent. Your body will continue to eliminate fat cells for one-to-three months after treatment, and most tend to experience full results at the three-month mark. If your body weight does happen to fluctuate, this will occur evenly all over your body.

Thermage = Skin tightening

Most people undergo a Thermage treatment to tighten loose skin on their bodies, such as the abdomen, buttocks, thighs, knees, stomach, face, and neck. Thermage uses radiofrequency technology to create heat and “trick” the body into thinking it is damaged. To repair itself, new collagen is formed.

A single Thermage treatment can take anywhere from 45 minutes to an hour and a half, but each radiofrequency pulse lasts only a few seconds. Best of all, there is no downtime involved afterward.

While some patients experience improvements lasting two to three years, others report that ideal results are maintained by regularly re-treating smaller focus areas every three to six months. You may notice a temporary appearance in skin tightening right away, but results tend to appear gradually in the three-to-six months following a Thermage treatment.

Using CoolSculpting and Thermage together

Thermage and CoolSculpting target different things but can achieve complementary results when combined. Both treatments are right for you if you want to tighten your skin while getting rid of stubborn fat deposits. It is recommended that you undergo CoolSculpting first, then Thermage to target loose skin.

Want to learn more? LaserAway offers a diverse range of body contouring and skin tightening treatments, including Thermage and CoolSculpting, with options to accommodate every skin and body type, and all treatments are performed by registered nurses, nurse practitioners, or physician associates.

  1. “Does Fat Freezing Work? Two Experts Weigh in on CoolSculpting,” Vogue, June 4, 2018.
  2. “VelaShape III: The Noninvasive Body Shaping Treatment,” Better Off, n.d.
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