Haute Beauty Expert Dr. Michele S. Green Reviews The Best Laser Skin Tightening Options

Michele S. Green M.D., FAAD., is a Board-Certified Cosmetic Dermatologist, Fellow of the American Academy of Dermatology, and has been an international leader in cosmetic dermatology for over 25 years. Upper East Side patients and those around the globe flock to her practice for cosmetic dermatology treatment. A graduate from Yale University, with an MD and Chief residency from The Mount Sinai School of Medicine in NYC, Dr. Green treats some of the most discerning, demanding women and men in the world, with issues ranging from premature skin aging to hyperpigmentation, rosacea, wrinkles, acne, skin laxity, hair loss, and sun damage.

Before & After Thermage

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Dr. Michele Green

What is Laser Skin Tightening Treatment?

Collagen is a skin protein that enhances structural support and helps provide an overall youthful appearance. Sun exposure and the natural aging process can lead to depleted collagen levels, resulting in various signs of aging, including loose skin. Laser skin tightening is a type of non-invasive cosmetic procedure performed by a dermatologist that stimulates new collagen and elastin production, resulting in smoother, firmer, tighter skin without downtime. Dr. Green offers a host of non-invasive and laser skin tightening treatments at her private dermatology office in New York City, including Thermage FLX, Vivace RF Microneedling, and Intense Pulsed Light.

Laser skin tightening treatment has been FDA-approved for reducing fine lines, wrinkles, and skin laxity. While the results of a plastic surgery procedure, such as a facelift, might be more dramatic, most patients want to achieve optimal skin-tightening results without the downtime, discomfort, and high costs associated with cosmetic surgery. Laser skin tightening is the best nonsurgical way to restore a more youthful appearance to the face, as well as to rejuvenate skin almost anywhere on the body.

How does Laser Skin Tightening work?

Laser skin tightening is a non-invasive procedure that uses laser energy to stimulate the production of collagen, which can result in tighter, firmer skin. The laser heats the collagen under the skin's surface, causing it to contract and tighten. This process also stimulates the growth of new collagen, which can help to improve the overall texture and appearance of the skin. The treatment typically takes about 30-60 minutes and may require multiple sessions for optimal results. Patients may experience some redness or swelling after the procedure, but there is typically no downtime associated with the treatment. Laser skin tightening can be used on various areas of the body, including the face, neck, and abdomen. Dr. Green will work with you to determine the best course of treatment based on your individual needs and goals.

What is laser skin tightening for the stomach?

Laser skin tightening is a process by which a targeted laser can help to increase the elastin and collagen production in the skin, which in turn can produce effective nonsurgical skin tightening. Common energy sources for skin tightening include radiofrequency (Thermalift, Exilis, and Thermage) and ultrasound (Ultherapy).

Dr. Green recommends Thermage® for laser skin tightening of the stomach. Thermage uses innovative radiofrequency energy within its laser to heat the deeper layers of the dermis, which in turn leads to smoother, firmer skin. It is a safe and popular cosmetic procedure that can be used on most parts of the body and requires no recovery time.

Can Skin Tightening Lasers be combined with other Lasers or Facial Injections?

Dr. Green utilizes the Thermage™ laser, Vivace RF Microneedling, and Intense Pulsed Light for non-invasive skin tightening. These skin tightening lasers can easily be combined with chemical peels or other lasers for pigmentation, sun damage, and fine lines, such as the Fraxel® or Alex-Trivantage® after your skin tightening procedure. While Skin tightening lasers work on the deeper collagen in the dermis, the Fraxel and Vbeam lasers work on the epidermal layer of the skin to remove sun spots and redness. Many patients with skin laxity choose to combine their laser skin tightening treatment with Botox and dermal fillers, such as Juvederm or Restylane, to rejuvenate the face in a cosmetic procedure often referred to as a liquid facelift.

Which Skin Tightening Laser is Best for Me?

Thermage and Vivace RF Microneedling are some of the most popular non-invasive skin tightening laser treatments that stimulate the generation of healthy, new skin cells and increased collagen production. When considering the best skin tightening laser, it’s important to note that there’s no one “best” skin tightening treatment for all patients. Rather, the best skin-tightening laser treatment for you will be based on your needs and goals. The best laser for tightening your skin will be determined by an in-office consultation with Dr. Green.

49 Year Old Female Before & After Thermage

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Dr. Michele Green

How does Thermage FLX work for Skin Tightening?

Thermage FLX is a state-of-the-art, non-invasive skin-tightening technology that uses radiofrequency (RF) to heat the collagen-rich layers of the skin. This stimulates collagen production, which in turn reduces skin laxity, resulting in smoother skin and a reduction in the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Solta Medical has been at the forefront of RF skin-tightening technology since the early 2000s, and Thermage has been the gold standard for non-invasive skin tightening for patients of all skin types.

Thermage FLX works similarly to earlier Thermage technology but with additional enhancements and improvements. The treatment is safe for all skin types and gradually improves skin sagging and fine lines over time. The full cosmetic results of Thermage FLX may take up to six months to become apparent. While the effects are not permanent, they can last up to two years in duration, and most patients choose to undergo regular maintenance treatment sessions every year to a year and a half to maintain their results.

Thermage FLX produces natural-looking and long-lasting skin-tightening results without the need for invasive cosmetic surgery or downtime. By opting for regular maintenance treatment sessions, patients can maintain a smooth, firm, tight, and more youthful appearance. 

How does Thermage FLX Compare to other Skin Tightening Treatments?

Thermage FLX is considered the gold standard in non-surgical skin tightening, offering a comfortable treatment experience with zero downtime. Unlike other treatments, such as Ultherapy, which can cause discomfort and may require downtime after the procedure, Thermage FLX uses radiofrequency technology to heat the collagen-rich layers of skin, stimulating collagen production and reducing skin laxity without pain or recovery time.

Ultherapy is a popular alternative to Thermage for non-surgical skin tightening, but the two treatments work in different ways. Ultherapy uses ultrasound energy, which penetrates deeper than radiofrequency energy, making it a potentially more painful treatment to endure. Ultherapy may also cause unintended fat loss in the treatment area, which can lead to unwanted cosmetic results. Additionally, Ultherapy is only FDA-approved for use on the face and decolletage, while Thermage FLX is FDA-approved for use on a wider range of body areas, including the neck, arms, abdomen, thighs, buttocks, and above the knee.

Another non-surgical skin tightening treatment is Vivace, which combines radiofrequency laser treatment and microneedling to improve elasticity in the skin and create a more youthful appearance. While Vivace can be effective for skin rejuvenation, it may not produce the same level of skin tightening as Thermage FLX. Additionally, Vivace requires multiple treatment sessions, whereas Thermage FLX produces noticeable results in just one session.

Ultimately, the best skin tightening treatment for an individual will depend on their unique needs and preferences. Patients should consult with a qualified medical professional to determine the best treatment option for their desired cosmetic results.

Before & After Thermage

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Dr. Michele Green

How does Vivace RF Microneedling work for skin tightening?

Vivace is a cosmetic treatment that combines radiofrequency laser treatment and microneedling to improve skin elasticity and create a more youthful appearance. This minimally invasive treatment is suitable for all skin tones and requires no downtime. Vivace has been approved by the FDA and is effective in reducing the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, and skin laxity.

The combination of targeted radiofrequency energy and microneedling offers the best of both worlds. Radiofrequency laser skin tightening stimulates collagen and elastin production in the body, while microneedling activates the natural wound-healing properties of the body to rejuvenate the surface of the skin and reduce the appearance of scars and imperfections. Together, these two techniques enhance the surface and deeper layers of the skin, resulting in overall facial rejuvenation.

What is Intense Pulsed Light (IPL®) Therapy?

IPL treatment, also known as photo rejuvenation or flashlamp therapy, is a non-invasive treatment that uses a broad spectrum of light to address a variety of skin issues. Unlike laser therapy, IPL releases multiple wavelengths of light, allowing it to target various skin concerns simultaneously. The light penetrates the skin and is absorbed by pigmented cells, hair follicles, or blood vessels, depending on the specific wavelength of light used. The absorbed light energy destroys the target cells without damaging surrounding tissues, resulting in a more youthful appearance.

IPL therapy is a suitable treatment option for individuals with sun damage, freckles, age spots, broken blood vessels, spider veins, and leg veins. It can also address fine lines and wrinkles, remove unwanted hair, and reduce the appearance of red marks from acne and acne scars. A significant advantage of IPL treatment is that there is no downtime associated with it, and patients can resume their regular activities immediately.

Following the IPL treatment, patients may experience mild redness and swelling, which typically resolves within 1-2 days. The treated area may also feel similar to sunburn for a few hours after the procedure, but this discomfort can be eased by applying a cool washcloth to the area. After the first treatment, some spots on the skin may darken, but this is a normal reaction and typically fades within 3-7 days.

Which skin tones can be treated with IPL laser?

IPL treatment is typically best suited for patients with skin types I-IV (fairer skin tones) due to the way the treatment targets melanin in the skin. For laser hair removal, Dr. Green uses different lasers depending on the patient's skin tone. The GentleLase laser is used for patients with light skin, while the GentleYAG laser is used for patients with dark skin. Patients with light skin and dark hair tend to have the best results with GentleLase, but both lasers can effectively remove hair without causing pain or requiring recovery time.

How does IPL compare to laser treatment?

In contrast, Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) therapy releases multiple wavelengths of light to treat a variety of skin conditions, including sun damage, age spots, and broken blood vessels. IPL therapy is non-ablative, meaning it does not remove the top layer of skin as some laser treatments do. IPL is also a less expensive treatment option than many laser therapies. While both laser and IPL therapies can be effective for treating certain skin conditions, the choice between them will depend on the specific skin concerns and the patient's individual needs and preferences. A consultation with a dermatologist or skin care specialist can help determine which treatment option is best for each individual.

How Can You Get Started with Laser Skin Tightening Treatments Today?

If you’re frustrated by the appearance of excess skin or fat on the stomach, Dr. Green in NYC can help. Dr. Michele Green is an internationally renowned board certified cosmetic dermatologist and is known to be one of the best Botox injectors in New York. Dr. Green has been consistently voted as one of the “Best Doctors” by Castle Connelly, New York Magazine, Super Doctors, and The New York Times as a pioneer in the field of cosmetic and medical dermatology. Please call the office today at 212-535-3088 or contact us online to schedule a consultation to discuss if you are a candidate for laser skin tightening treatments.

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