The New Sub-Zero
The painless lipo alternative.
In the never-ending quest for thinner thighs and flatter tummies, body fat has been melted, sucked out, kneaded, and subjected to vacuum pressure. The latest weapon of choice: the freezer. Last summer the FDA approved CoolSculpting by Zeltiq, the world’s first cryolipolysis (translation: fat-freezing) device. Over the course of a one- to two-hour treatment, the machine chills love handles, muffin tops, and other assorted bulges down to a temperature at which fat cells, or lipocytes, are damaged, while other cells remain unharmed. During the next few weeks, the lipocytes die off and are recycled by the lymphatic system and the liver. “You can see as much as a 20 percent decrease after one treatment, and the fat cell reduction continues for about three months,” says Santa Monica dermatologist Ava Shamban, who has used the procedure on more than 700 patients. Noninvasive, with little discomfort, and requiring no post-treatment downtime, CoolSculpting is also reasonably affordable—Shamban charges about $500 per area. And it’s a particularly welcome addition for men, whose lumpy areas are more fibrotic and vascular than women’s, making them difficult to treat with liposuction. “It has definitely revolutionized the way we think about fat reduction,” says Shamban. “Watch out, cellulite. You’re next.”