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Medically Reviewed by:

Robert Applebaum M.D.

Body Sculpting: Techniques, Benefits, What It Is

Dieting and exercising can go a long way towards helping you achieve your dream figure. But what happens when you hit a wall and can’t seem to get rid of stubborn fat deposits in areas like the lower abdomen, thighs, or hips? 

As it turns out, liposuction isn’t your only option. Instead, body sculpting may be quicker, easier, and even more effective. 

What Is Body Sculpting?

Body sculpting involves non-surgical techniques to eliminate stubborn fat deposits from areas of the body that are difficult to eliminate through diet and exercise alone. 

These non-surgical techniques are quick, safe, and painless. Body sculpting is typically performed on areas like the abdomen, hips, waist, arms, and thighs. These procedures offer a safer and less invasive alternative to liposuction

What Are the Benefits of Body Sculpting?

Body sculpting can help you achieve a more sculpted and toned appearance. Sometimes no matter how much you diet and exercise, stubborn areas of fat around your abdomen, waist, hips, and thighs may remain. 

Instead of going with a more invasive procedure like liposuction to eliminate these stubborn fat deposits, body sculpting is minimally invasive, and has a quick recovery time. Additionally, the results of body sculpting have been found to be extremely long-lasting — so it’s more than just a quick or temporary fix. 

Is Body Sculpting Safe?

Body sculpting is totally safe as it is minimally invasive and involves minimal discomfort. The different methods of body sculpting are able to effectively reduce or otherwise damage fat cells without affecting other cells or even the skin. 

What Are Some of the Different Body Sculpting Techniques?

There are four different techniques for body sculpting that you should know about: cold treatments, heat treatments, ultrasound treatments, and radiofrequency treatments. 

Let’s discuss each one in more detail: 

1. Cold Treatments

Cold treatments such as CoolSculpting utilize low temperatures to kill fat cells without damaging your skin. This treatment uses a machine to suck in areas of skin before cooling to a temperature between 39 and 41 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Cold treatments have the potential to reduce body fat in treated areas by up to 25%, but results are not immediate. Instead, it takes about three to four months for your stubborn fat cells to die off and reveal your final results. 

2. Heat Treatments

Heat treatments such as SculpSure utilize heat from lasers to damage the structure of fat cells so that the body can naturally eliminate them. This treatment uses an applicator to target specific areas of the skin with lasers that can heat up to 116 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Like cold treatments, the results of heat treatments aren’t immediate either as it can take up to 12 weeks for your body to fully eliminate the dead and damaged fat cells. 

3. Ultrasound Treatments

Ultrasound treatments such as UltraShape utilize vibrations from ultrasound waves to break down the walls of fat cells. This treatment uses a manual application method that works best in areas around the abdomen. 

While this treatment is more time-intensive than some of the other body sculpting methods, it is generally pain-free. 

4. Radiofrequency Treatments

Radiofrequency treatments such as truSculpt and Vanquish utilize radiofrequency energy to heat up fat cells and effectively destroy them. This treatment uses a device to target areas with radio waves that can heat up to 120 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Radiofrequency treatments can provide faster results than other treatments and are especially effective — being able to reduce abdominal fat by more than 29%.                                                                                             

What Does the Recovery for Body Sculpting Entail?

Perhaps one of the biggest benefits of body sculpting is that the recovery process is a breeze. For instance, no anesthesia or downtime is required for these treatments. These treatments usually take less than an hour to perform and they are always done in a doctor’s office rather than in a hospital. 

Although you may experience minimal pain following the procedure, you shouldn’t experience anything too intense that cannot be managed with over-the-counter pain medications like ibuprofen or acetaminophen. You may also experience some redness, swelling, bruising, and tenderness in the treatment area in the days after your procedure. 

How Much Does Body Sculpting Cost?

The cost of body sculpting varies depending on the treatment method, treatment area, provider, and location. However, it’s always helpful to have an idea of what some of these treatments may cost you before moving forward. 

  • The average cost of CoolSculpting is between $2,000 and $4,000 per session.
  • The average cost of SculpSure is around $1,400 to $1,500 per session.
  • The average cost of UltraShape is around $1,500 to $2,500 per session. 
  • The average cost of Vanquish is around $500 to $750 per session. 
  • The average cost of truSculpt is around $600 to $1,000 per session.

The keywords here are “per session” as many body sculpting treatment methods require multiple sessions to begin to see results. You should expect to undergo two to four different body sculpting treatments to achieve the desired long-lasting results. 

How to Find the Right Doctor for Body Sculpting?

If you want to achieve the best body sculpting results, then you need to choose the best doctor. When it comes to cosmetic procedures like body sculpting, you get what you pay for. It’s always worth it to pay a little more to go with an experienced professional like Dr. Applebaum

Wrap Up on Body Sculpting

Dr. Applebaum has helped his patients achieve incredible results using body sculpting methods for more than 30 years. So reach out to schedule a complimentary in-person or virtual consultation today to see how you can achieve your body and weight goals using body sculpting. 


Medically reviewed by Dr. Robert Applebaum

Dr. Robert Applebaum is a world renowned and highly respected Plastic Surgeon who is Board Certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. In his nearly 30 years as a practicing physician, Dr. Applebaum has become known as an innovator in the field of laser technology techniques for plastic surgery procedures. He has published numerous articles and scientific papers about the use of laser technology and educates physicians worldwide on the applications of laser technology for plastic surgery. Dr. Applebaum primarily practices out of his private outpatient surgery center, Four Thirty Six Aesthetic Surgery Center, which is located in Beverly Hills.


Liposuction or CoolSculpting: Which Is Better for Your Goals? | American Society of Plastic Surgeons

Does Fat Freezing and Non-Surgical Body Sculpting Work? | Cleveland Clinic

CoolSculpting: Does It Work? | Healthline

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