How To Avoid Sagging Skin After Weight Loss

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 How to Tighten Skin After You've Lost Weight

Losing a significant amount of weight has numerous health benefits for your heart, hormones, and overall body. It does, however, have one drawback: loose skin. Many people who have successfully lost a significant amount of weight, typically 70 pounds or more, may experience uncomfortable and frustrating loose skin. Fortunately, lifestyle changes, noninvasive treatments, and surgery can all help manage and treat loose skin.

What Are the Causes of Loose Skin?

Several factors can contribute to loose skin after weight loss. Collagen and elastin fibers are proteins that make up part of our skin. These proteins provide firmness to the skin and allow it to snap back into place after being stretched. Collagen and elastin fibers are damaged when the skin is stretched for an extended period of time. Your skin may lack the necessary proteins to return to its original shape after losing weight. The skin loses its elasticity and tends to cling to the body.

In addition to losing elastin and collagen, the collagen that remains in the skin changes in composition. Our skin contains less collagen after we lose weight, and its composition differs from that of young, healthy skin. Other factors that influence the makeup of your skin include your age, smoking history, general health, and family history.

The Consequences of Loose Skin

Many people who have lost a lot of weight are unconcerned about their excess skin and don't need treatment. It is possible, however, for this extra skin to become irritated and infected.

When excess skin folds over on itself, it rubs against itself, causing chafing. This can result in a rash that is both painful and itchy. Infections can also be caused by loose skin. It can be difficult to thoroughly clean each fold when loose skin folds over itself. Bacteria can build up and grow out of control, resulting in an infection. The infection can enter the body if your skin chafes and tears slightly.

Excess loose skin on the body can be painful and inconvenient, especially when trying to exercise. This is especially problematic for people who have recently lost weight, as exercise is an important part of maintaining their weight loss. According to a 2013 study, women with loose skin after bariatric surgery cited their skin as a physical activity barrier. 5 This was because the excess skin made exercise uncomfortable, in addition to the emotional discomfort of unwelcome stares and attention while exercising. Many people avoided working out because they were embarrassed to go for a run or to the gym because of their loose skin.

Even if your loose skin hasn't caused any health issues, the way it looks may bother you. Excess skin has been shown in studies to have a negative impact on one's quality of life, self-esteem, and body image. 

Treatments that can be done at home

To address loose skin, you can try some simple, healthy habits at home. While at-home treatments can help you improve the appearance and feel of your skin, they won't completely solve the problem or address the cause of your sagging skin. When you lose a lot of weight, you usually end up with more skin than your lifestyle changes can handle. As a result, many people seek help from medical treatments.


Strength training and physical activity can help you maintain your weight loss and build healthy muscles. Sagging skin will benefit from this because the new muscles will help to fill it out. You don't have as much body fat to fill out your skin after losing weight. You'll be able to add muscle while losing weight if you use strength training to build lean muscles.


Diet is yet another way to improve loose skin. A diet high in lean proteins can help you avoid muscle loss and promote muscle growth. Protein is especially beneficial for muscle growth after strength training. After that, drink a lot of water to wash down all that good protein. Skin that is well hydrated is more elastic and flexible than skin that is dehydrated. Aim for 64 to 100 fluid ounces of water per day, unless otherwise directed by your healthcare provider.

Compression Clothing is a type of clothing that is worn to

Some of the side effects of loose skin can be mitigated by wearing compression clothing. Skin-to-skin friction is reduced by wearing compression stockings and other garments that firmly hold loose skin together. This can help with pain, irritation, itching, and infection risk. Compression clothing, on the other hand, will only improve the side effects of loose skin.

Cream for Firming

Several firming creams and over-the-counter products that promise to firm and tighten loose skin can be found by conducting a quick Internet search or browsing the pharmacy shelves. Unfortunately, research has not supported these claims, and natural or herbal remedies are not required to prove their safety or efficacy in order to be sold. Before trying a new skin product, make sure to consult your doctor.

Medical Interventions

Procedures to address the excess skin that can result from bariatric and weight loss surgeries have become more common as well. Talk to your healthcare provider about the best medical treatment for loose skin once you've reached your weight loss goal and maintained a healthy weight.

Surgery for Body Contouring

A plastic surgeon performs body contouring surgery, which involves removing excess skin and fat from the body. In order to give your body a smoother appearance, the surgeon will work to improve the shape of the remaining tissue. Depending on where you have excess skin and how much you want removed, there are several types of body contouring surgeries available, including:

  • A tummy tuck is a surgical procedure that tightens the (abdominoplasty)
  • Panniculectomy is a surgical procedure that removes the pawn (skin removal surgery)
  • Raise your arms (brachioplasty)
  • Breast augmentation
  • Lifting the lower body
  • Lifting the thighs

Body contouring surgery usually necessitates general anesthesia and a one-night stay in the hospital. You may need a surgical drain for excess fluid for a few weeks after being discharged home, as well as compression clothing. Although recovery can take months, most people begin to feel better after four weeks.

If you've been able to maintain a stable weight and don't have any major medical issues, body contouring surgery may be right for you. Nonsmokers, as well as people who have made healthy habits like diet and exercise a part of their lives, have better outcomes.

Additional Medical Procedures

There are other options if you don't want to have surgery to fix your loose skin. Noninvasive and minimally invasive body contouring procedures like VelaShape and ThermiTight can help tone the skin. If you only have a small amount of excess skin to remove, these procedures may be a good fit:

  • VelaShape massages fat cells beneath the skin with radiofrequency, infrared light, and suction. This procedure is designed to promote the production of new collagen and elastin, allowing your skin to be more flexible and defined.
  • ThermiTight works by delivering radiofrequency to your cells through a catheter. The procedure causes the tissue beneath your skin to contract and shrink by heating it to a safe temperature. The time it takes for the results to appear is usually three to four months.

It's crucial to wait until you've reached a stable weight and kept it for a long time before dealing with excess skin. If you continue to lose weight after body contouring, you will almost certainly need to repeat the procedure due to excess skin. Before considering body contouring procedures, experts advise waiting 18 months after bariatric surgery and six months of stable weight.

Last word

It can be frustrating and discouraging to have to deal with excess loose skin after reaching a weight loss goal. It's important to remember that there are several treatment options available, the most effective of which is body contouring surgery. Consult your healthcare provider and make a plan to determine which treatment is best for you. You've already put in the effort to lose weight; now it's time to enjoy your newfound health and physique.

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