Our legs and butt are hidden away during winter months, but once the weather warms up, they’re back on display. With innovative at-home tools to resurface and smooth, and new treatments to tone and reshape, it’s no wonder our lower halves are in full focus.
All the Right Moves
Xtend Barre founder Andrea Rogers’ favorite way to target the lower body is with standing weight-bearing exercises that challenge stability, balance and muscle endurance. “My go-to leg, thigh and tush sculpting move is a second-position plié series,” she says. “With your legs open wide and your feet turned slightly outward, place your hands on your hips and bend your knees. In a pulsing fashion, lower and raise your hips a few inches for 16 to 32 reps.” Rogers says this move will yield noticeable results over time.
To treat cellulite on the buttocks, Des Moines, IA plastic surgeon David Robbins, MD says the new injectable Qwo can help instantly release the dimples. “It’s used for butt cellulite and works by breaking up the collagen septa that contracts the skin, causing the dimpling effect,” he explains. Side effects include temporary bruising, pain and hardness. Dr. Robbins adds that results can be seen for one year.
Also new for cellulite is Resonic, an FDA-cleared treatment launching this summer that uses Rapid Acoustic Pulse (RAP) technology, or sound waves, to break up fibrous bands, with results that improve over time.
According to Baton Rouge, LA plastic surgeon John Williams, MD, the primary concern his patients have about their thighs is excess fat and skin on the inner thighs that often rub together and cause chafing. “For moderate skin laxity, I can combine liposuction with the minimally invasive BodyTite treatment. The liposuction removes the fat and the radio-frequency procedure helps with skin retraction.” For those with more skin laxity and sagging, a thigh lift procedure that involves liposuction and skin excision may be recommended.
Nonsurgical procedures to lift and sculpt the butt are growing, no pun intended. “For fat reduction around the flanks and thighs, which can help reshape the butt, CoolSculpting is a quick, easy procedure with minimal to no downtime, and results are permanent,” notes Dr. Robbins.
Vero Beach, FL plastic surgeon Alan Durkin, MD likes Emsculpt NEO, which uses high frequency electromagnetic energy (HIFEM) to build muscle, firm the buttocks and increase gluteal tone. “Each cycle is like doing 20,000 squats,” he says.
The main nonsurgical treatment Arcadia, CA plastic surgeon Arthur Yu, MD performs for the butt is a “Sculptra Butt Lift.” The procedure can be expensive, as multiple injections are needed. “We use about six to 12 vials per side,” he says. “However, results are instant and can last up to two years.”
For an increase in size, fullness and projection, Brazilian Butt Lift surgery is a popular choice. However, it’s important to seek a board-certified plastic surgeon, as there are safety risks associated with it, and it should only be performed in an accredited office-based surgical facility or licensed hospital. “Fat must be injected above the buttock muscle,” Dr. Williams explains. “When fat is injected incorrectly into the muscle, the fat can go under the muscle and tear large veins of the buttock. This can result in the fat traveling to the lungs or heart, which is fatal.” In the end, only about 30 to 60 percent of the injected fat will stay long-term.
To tighten, tone and get the glowiest skin below the waist, try these new lower-body essentials.
Get a full-body workout in just 2 feet of space with the Board30 Mini ($249), which brings the Pilates studio home with resistance band training.
Icewine, the main ingredient in Bawdy Super Tight ($55), gives your lower half an instantly tightened and firm feeling on contact.
With red and blue LED lights that you can place anywhere on the body, including your thighs and butt, Dr. Dennis GrossDRx SpectraLite BodyWare Pro ($435) targets loss of firmness and uneven tone and texture.
With 56 massaging knobs, Bellasoo Roller Crush Cream ($18) is a skin firmer and body tool in one. Caffeine, probiotics and pumpkin extract help strengthen skin and promote blood flow.
Provide immediate cooling relief for tired legs this season with LATHER Cooling Leg Lotion ($24), which utilizes botanical extracts and essential oils.
Sol de Janeiro Bom Dia Bright Body Cream ($45) contains the brand’s hero cupuacu butter, but mixes in vitamin C ester and fruit alphahydroxy acids to help resurface skin and improve bumpy areas.