The Nonsurgical Way to Plump, Youthful Skin

Plagued by less than taut skin but don’t want to go the surgical route? From your face and your neck to your stomach and beyond, loose skin can be treated nonsurgically with skin-tightening devices, which offer real results—in record time—making them totally worth the expense. "Skin tighteners are safe for all skin types and colors. They are not long procedures—30 minutes at most. And, when used on the face, they tighten skin in a way that is really natural," says Montclair, NJ dermatologist Jeanine B. Downie, MD. 

With a handful of options to choose from, skin-tightening machines, make use of radio-frequency or ultrasound energy, infrared light or direct heat to tighten skin from the inside out. With each treatment (six to eight every one to two weeks are needed, as well as annual maintenance treatments; if you have your doctor perform it rather than a physician’s assistant you’ll drive the cost up), the skin tightens as new collagen grows via the energy source that was emitted. 

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For the best results, you need to have some loose skin but firm muscles. It can take three to six months for the results to appear. “You can’t beat the results you get for the price without having to undergo anesthesia and a recovery period,” says Dr. Downie. “Skin tighteners are virtually pain- and downtime-free,” says Beverly Hills, CA, dermatologist Rhonda Rand, MD. “It’s a great option for someone who doesn’t want to spend what surgery costs or isn’t ready for surgery but wants to fix the laxity,” adds Carmel, IN, plastic surgeon Janet K. Turkle, MD. 

While they don't produce the same results as a facelift, skin tighteners  (most machines are not first-generation and major research dollars have gone into fine-tuning them) do have a better price. (Facelifts can run from $7,000 to $15,000.) “A skin tightener isn’t even in the same ballpark price- wise. There’s no downtime and next to no risk. You can’t even put a price tag on that,” says Dr. Rand. However, they do not produce the same results as a facelift.

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  • JThomas
    Posted on

    I do facial exercises, Eva Fraser, she is from England, 80 years old and looks amazing. They work, too. I have been doing them for 3 years now, my neck is much tighter. I also use vitamin C, etc. on my skin. And I exercise every day. They did a study, put 65 year olds on an exercise regimen, 3 times a week, examined their skin before and after 3 months, their skin had cellularly anti aged back 25 years, to someone who would be about 40. I also bought a Tria anti aging laser, I love it. It is work but many people think I am 15 years younger than my actual age.

  • Kristy
    Posted on

    You must maintain results with everything because the aging process is ongoing and progressive and the older we get the more we have to work at it. Nothing is a "permanent" solution not even surgery. We need to stay educated on how and why we age the way we do and then we understand how to address it and why that will work. We need to think of anti-aging more like the way we think of diet and exercise and less like buying a product. - I prefer Ulthera because it is able to address muscle (SMAS) and also provide a modest lift along with tightening. It is also more precise than RF and heats target to an optimal temp vs bulk heating. I prefer Co2 or erbium for lines, scars and texture issues, but it will also give some tightening. In my opinion one does not replace the other.

  • Kathleen
    Posted on

    NO Never again dont last just not worth it I think COQ 2 Laser is much better

  • MHam
    Posted on

    I agree, I have been doing laser genesis for a couple of years. Love it. I do it once or twice a year or year and a half (4 x's for 4 months in a row) for 800$. It gives my 55 year old skin great clarity, tone helps keep wrinkles at bay. However, it is difficult to keep up at this cost! I have lax skin in neck and lower face and I am considering neck lift with lower face included for $8,500 ish as stronger laser like (Pearl) is about $4,000 for neck and lower face and I would have to continue upkeep! I am doing the math!

  • MKeith
    Posted on

    Yes the lasers work, but you MUST maintain the results by going back for maintenance laser treatments every 3-6 months. If not your skin will eventually go back to how it was before you started treatment. The still high cost of laser treatments make the lifetime follow-up maintenance treatment impractical in the long run. But that's just my humble option based on my experience as a teacher of Astetics.

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