The Skinny on Skin Tighteners

The market is booming with surgery-free skin-tightening treatments, but are they really the answer to smoother, firmer skin while improving the quality of it? Although the verdict is still out—some experts tout them as the next best thing while others feel they offer very little improvement.

Around your late 20s and early 30s, and sometimes even into your 40s and beyond, you may start to notice changes in the texture of your skin. What was once firm, tight and supple may now be thin and crepey in texture. Depending on what light you catch yourself in, your skin may appear to be wavy, but feel smooth to the touch. Blame it on depleted collagen levels, which happens in part due to natural aging, but chances are your face and body don’t feel, or look, as taut as they used to. If your skin is not extremely saggy, a noninvasive skin tightening treatment may be able to offer improvement. Regular exercise can help, since it creates a healthier breeding ground for high-quality collagen, and diet plays a role, too. In fact, some studies show that taking daily vitamin C and fish oil supplements can increase the skin’s elasticity by about 14 percent.

Skin tighteners are a noninvasive doctor-administered procedure, they are machines that employ one of two types of energy (radiofrequency or infrared light) to tighten the skin below the surface by heating the dermis, causing inflammation and a small injury, which makes existing collagen contract and new collagen to be produced.

While there is a variety of different brand names: Thermage, Ulthera, Accent Your Body, all skin tighteners utilize at least one of the aforementioned technologies; some even combine two together. Read more about skin tighteners here.

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