The Body Sculpting Guide

 Is it really possible to slim and smooth your body non-invasively?

With the latest generation of body contouring treatments, the answer is yes..

Long gone are the days when the only way to change your body (other than diet and exercise, which will always be key) was with invasive and painful surgical procedures that cost a small fortune and took weeks or months to recover from. Now, aesthetic medicine offers so many options to slim, tone, and smooth our body parts that narrowing down the most effective and suitable treatment presents a whole new set of obstacles. To de-mystify the choices and help you figure out which body contouring treatment is right for you, we’ve rounded up the newest and buzziest that get impressive results.

Keep in mind that you’ll need to be approved for any of these procedures by a reputable and experienced aesthetic practitioner, as they all come with contraindications, and you’ll likely be advised to make some healthy lifestyle changes for the best possible results.

You can use the Safety in Beauty directory online to search by postcode and find a recommended and vetted provider near you where practitioners have been checked and assured based on key safety criteria.

Best for fat reduction: Non-thermal green laser

Body area: Anywhere with pockets of fat

One of the most exciting and innovative developments in body contouring in recent years comes in the form of Emerald Laser. Somewhat confusingly, this machine doesn’t actually use any lasers in the traditional sense. Instead, it uses non-thermal green laser technology and is completely pain-free. Really.

Something else that sets this treatment apart is that it’s suitable for people with a BMI of up to 40 for fat loss and cellulite reduction. It works by creating tiny micropores in the fat cells, which allows fatty content to seep out. It doesn’t destroy fat cells like cryotherapy. The cells are then shrunk rather than killed off and can work more effectively in the body.

A typical course of treatment is one to two sessions every week for four to eight weeks. The brand reports an average circumference loss of six inches from the abdomen after a full course of treatment, depending on individual body fat ratio and sticking to healthy eating and regular exercise.

Best for toning up: Muscle-stimulating devices

Body area: Stomach, thighs, arms, buttocks, obliques/flanks

You may have already heard of Emsculpt, but think of Emsculpt Neo as its energetic younger sibling. This non-invasive body contouring device combines electromagnetic energy (which the original device utilises) with radiofrequency (RF) technology, meaning that instead of just working to build muscle like most other body-toning treatments, it also targets fat reduction in specific areas of the body. Essentially, you’re getting more bang for your buck. It works by causing muscle contractions (apparently, one 30-minute session equivalent to doing 30 sit-ups or squats), leading to muscle strengthening and building, while the RF swoops into heat and reduces fat by eliminating fat cells in the targeted area.

There’s no downtime; you can get back to your daily activities immediately afterwards, but this is a heat-based treatment that also causes your muscles to tighten and contract like when you’re exercising, so depending on the intensity of your treatment protocol, it might not be exactly comfortable. A series of sessions is recommended, depending on your body and goals. According to the brand, clinical studies have shown an average of 30% reduction in subcutaneous fat and a 25% increase in muscle thickness following a course of treatment.

Other devices in this category include Cutera’s truSculpt flex, which claims to strengthen, tone and firm abdominal muscles, buttocks, and thighs in as little as 15 minutes. The device utilises Multi-Directional Stimulation (MDS) technology to target specific muscle groups using three treatment mode options. Low levels of energy achieve deep muscle contractions at high intensity to optimise results.

Best for lymphatic drainage: Compression

Body area: Legs, buttocks, stomach, arms

If you fancy some sculpting that feels more akin to a massage, Endosphères might be for you. This device is designed to stimulate the lymphatic system, which has a myriad of health benefits but can also lead to slimming and smoothing of the body for a more sculpted and contoured silhouette. The device utilises micro-vibration and micro-compression technology — basically, a roller with multiple spheres that rotate and vibrate over the surface of the body, giving a targeted massage.

Your therapist will move the device over the treatment area in a specific pattern to help drain toxins and excess fluids from the body that have been ‘stuck’ in the lymphatic system, which simultaneously tones the tissues under the skin for a smoother and sleeker appearance.

As well as firmer skin, people often find that their legs, ankles and feet feel lighter after a treatment thanks to their lymphatic circulation having been reactivated. A minimum of 12 treatments is usually recommended for long-lasting results, but again, this is dependent on the individual. Another device that helps with lymphatic drainage is the SLIMYONIK® AIR BODYSTYLER.

Remember when Jennifer Anniston caused a stir by posting a picture of herself in a giant pair of inflatable trousers? Well, this is the same sort of thing. Focused on boosting metabolism and lymph drainage via eight tailored pneumatic pressure therapy massage programmes, the treatment is turbocharged via oxygen-enriched ambient air. This gently activates the lymph system, boosts metabolism, and increases overall skin quality, health and well-being.

Best for cellulite busting: Injectables

Body area: Thighs and buttocks

Cellulite is notoriously hard to treat, but if yours bothers you and you don’t mind a needle, there are a couple of treatments that are worth looking into. First up is Lanluma, a filler specifically designed for use on the body to activate collagen production using something called poly-l-lactic acid (PLLA). Unlike traditional hyaluronic-acid-based fillers, this type of injectable doesn’t simply add volume where it’s injected, but instead, it goes deep within the skin to trigger the body to activate its own natural collagen-creating mechanisms.

Lanluma’s main use is to add volume to the buttocks as a kind of non-invasive buttocks lift or augmentation, but experienced practitioners are also using it in a slightly different way to target cellulite.

Cellulite is caused when fat cells are enlarged and stretch into column-like structures, creating an uneven skin surface. Using a special technique administered beneath the skin, Lanluma can help break down these structures that cause that dimpled look, ‘filling’ the indentations for a smoother appearance on the surface of the skin. Long-term, the body is stimulated to create collagen fibres that lay flat in a criss-cross pattern, essentially ‘ironing out’ the dimples.

Two treatments are typical, and cellulite reduction can often be seen immediately following treatment, according to the brand. Also new to the market is ALIDYA, the first injectable device specifically designed to prevent and treat cellulite.

It has been available in Europe for more than a decade and is formulated with a proprietary blend of active ingredients that target cellulite at its root cause. It’s injected in the same way as mesotherapy and works by removing the toxic elements that contribute to cellulite at the same time as improving the oxygenation to the tissues. You will require an average of seven sessions (up to a maximum of 12) delivered on a weekly basis.

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