Tight, firm skin depends on healthy collagen and elastin fibers. These fibers lie deep within the dermis and act like small rubber bands holding the skin tight against our body providing the “snap-back” when loose tissue is stretched or pulled. Sun damage, smoking, weight loss and genetics all play a role in the breakdown of this collagen and elastin that results in drooping skin.
For decades, surgery was the only option for patients looking for a lift. While surgery often provides immediate, long-lasting results, it can be expensive and risky, and the lengthy recovery can be difficult for those with busy schedules. Also, surgery does not address the quality of skin – it only pulls it taut.
Today, often using a combination of different noninvasive methods, substantial skin tightening can be achieved without surgery. Non-invasive, no-downtime procedures are becoming more effective and affordable, making them a popular choice for patients looking to improve their appearance. The most effective no-downtime procedures use radio frequency or infrared heat energy, or a combination of the two, to target loose and sagging tissue on the face, jowls, neck, arms and abdomen. Sublime and Titan are two examples of popular treatments utilizing infrared and radio frequency for skin tightening.
These treatments work by heating the tissue under the skin’s surface to induce an inflammatory response, stimulating the existing collagen and elastin fibers as well as producing new fibers. Skin looks and feels immediately firmer than before the procedure. The surface of the skin is protected from burns with a cooling device, making the treatment very comfortable. The heated collagen contracts, tightens and continues to remodel over the following three to six months. More than one treatment, spaced about one month apart, is usually needed for best results. Call your licensed, trained medical aesthetics professional to find out which procedure is appropriate for your skin type.