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The best treatments to support your weight loss journey

Discover how weight loss impacts the face and body, and which treatments experts recommend to tighten and tone

It’s not just your dress size that can drastically change when you lose weight. In fact, "the transformation extends beyond the lost pounds, affecting every inch of our skin and reshaping our contours," shares Etre Vous Expert Julie Scott, who believes it’s crucial to complement this process with treatments that sculpt, refine, and tighten, providing extra support to adapt to the skin’s new form.

We couldn’t agree more, so we’ve asked the experts which non-invasive treatments they recommend booking in for during and after your weight loss journey.

Cellulite reversal

Research published in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, the official medical journal of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, revealed that for some women weight loss can significantly worsen cellulite, a condition that affects 85 per cent of women. Cellulite occurs when the skin overlying certain areas of fat are pulled inwards by tough connective chords. This creates dimpled, lumpy areas, most notably on the thighs, hips, and bottom.

Newly launched in the UK, though available in Europe for the last 11 years, Alidya is the only injectable treatment for cellulite. "Supporting skin cell repair and regeneration leading to improved texture, it works by reducing toxic metals in the extracellular spaces and restoring healthy blood flow to the skin–two elements that have been found to be major contributing factors in the development of cellulite,” shares Dr Anna Hemming, Etre Vous Expert, Aesthetic Doctor and Thames Skin Clinic Founder.

Containing collagen peptides, antioxidants and amino acids, “this injectable also neutralises acidity, promoting alkalisation of the extracellular matrix, helping to counteract the acidic nature of cellulite, and works to restore the optimal functions on adipose tissue, correcting imbalances often found with cellulite, resulting in smoother, more even skin,” adds Hemming.

How many treatments needed depends on the severity of your cellulite. “A mild case can see great results with just four treatments, while more heavily dimpled areas may need up to 12 treatments,” says Hemming, who offers Alidya at her clinic and has found on average seven sessions is the most optimal number. Treatments are performed one week apart and can be administered at any point during your weight loss journey, but since skin does tighten with treatment, Hemming shares that some patients find that booking in while still losing weight can be beneficial.

Body sculpting 

When your BMI isn’t a cause for alarm, yet there are areas of stubborn fat that just won’t budge through diet or exercise, cue Lipofirm Pro. “Combining radio frequency and dynamic muscle activation (DMA), when it comes to the body this device can target fat on the buttocks, tummy, arms, and legs," shares Advanced Aesthetics Practitioner at Neville Hair & Beauty, Joanna Birch-Jones.

"Fat loss can be seen after just one treatment, though I recommend eight, spaced one week apart. Thanks to this incredible medical grade device and techniques that I’ve honed over the years, clients can expect to drop two to four dress sizes."

But how does it work exactly? “Radio frequency energy offers targeted heating of the dermal and deep dermal (hypodermal) layers, to cause contraction of the collagen fibres, as well as an increase in collagen and elastin production which leads to long-term skin tightening, that helps sculpt the body," explains Birch-Jones.

"The heat also improves vascularisation of the dermal tissues, with subsequent elevation of oxygenation levels, vital for metabolism," she continues. "The TriLipo Dynamic Activation (DMA) element uses the multiple electrodes of the Lipofirm Pro applicators to deliver low frequency pulsed currents to the underlying skin muscles. This causes muscle contractions that push the fat cells up, while the applicator pushes down. The combined forces 'squeeze' the fat layer, encouraging the fat to drain via the lymphatic system.” You can’t get much more multi-targeted than that!

Skin tightening 

Losing weight can result in not just a change to your dress size but a massive change to the skin, especially if you lose a lot in a short space of time. “When in a period of weight loss, micronutrients are often diverted away from skin health and this can lead to crepy, thin skin, alongside the volume depletion creating skin laxity,” shares Dr Jo Mennie at Dr David Jack Clinic.

As skin changes are gradual, staying on top of laxity throughout your weight loss journey will lead to the best results, believes Mennie, who recommends a course of Morpheus8.

Morpheus8 is one of the most advanced technologies that effectively targets loose skin. The technology allows for fractional radio frequency to be delivered in the sub-dermal layer of skin as the microneedling pins pass the current when in the skin," she explains.

"This process stimulates collagen and elastin far more effectively than surface radio frequency treatments, or microneedling on its own. RF microneedling is one of the most advanced fractional technologies to effectively target loose skin through stimulation of collagen synthesis and strengthening the fibro-septal network. A greater healing cascade is also triggered through the process of thermal heating from the radio frequency and micro injuries.”

Arms, thighs, and tummies are the most popular areas to treat and usually three to four sessions at one month intervals are recommended, though more might be needed depending on the degree of laxity.

Volume boosting

You may have heard the saying ‘choose your body or your face’ when people refer to weight loss–especially if you’re looking to lose weight in your 40s and beyond. What do they mean by that? Essentially you can’t control where you lose weight when going on a diet, and typically fat in the face decreases as you lose the pounds. The issue is that as we age, we naturally lose fat and bone, while our skin becomes less taut. Couple this with weight loss and you can start to look emaciated, with sagging from the mid-face down.

“For facial volume loss that often accompanies weight loss, Profhilo and dermal fillers are my go-to treatments,” shares Julie Scott. Profhilo, an injectable hyaluronic acid, improves skin texture and hydration, while dermal fillers restore lost volume, particularly in the mid-face and cheek areas, which can become gaunt.
“Profhilo triggers a natural renewal response,that enhances collagen and elastin production to aid skin tightening over time. It’s also draws water into the deeper layers of the skin, increasing the appearance of plumpness. Dermal fillers on the other hand, provide immediate volume and also encourage collagen synthesis, helping recapture youthful fullness,” she explains.

Unlike other treatments that support or boost fat loss, these injectables should only be administered once weight has been lost and maintained for a while. “This ensures that enhancements complement the face's natural contours, and the full extent of volume loss can be addressed effectively,” adds Scott.

Generally, two sessions of Profhilo are required, with some individuals benefiting from a third. Scott follows this initial course with sessions every three to six months to maintain a youthful glow. Dermal fillers usually involve a single session with follow-ups as needed for maintenance–between 12 and 36 months depending on the filler.

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