Body Contouring Options to Reduce Love Handles

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Published on Nov 3, 2023 By: WIFH Staff

Body Contouring Options to Get Rid of Love Handles

The area on the body known as “love handles” is used to describe the extra fat hanging over the rear and sides of the waistline. This area is also commonly referred to as the “flanks.”  Because this area shapes an individual’s midsection, love handles are a figure-defining problem area that’s often a popular target for toning and tightening for both sexes.

Love handles are present in both men and women, and can be harder to target with lifestyle (diet and exercise) as we age. Sure, aerobic workouts[49] and abdominal exercises[50] can help burn calories and reduce excess fat on the body, but often the love handles can be resistant making it challenging to get rid of them.

So this begs the question – how do you reduce love handles? And what’s the best way to get rid of love handles when exercise doesn’t seem to be working?

There are multiple body contouring treatment options available to treat this body area.

Getting Smartlipo to Reduce Love Handles

The Laser Liposuction Option

Smartlipo is a minimally invasive laser-assisted liposuction. It’s performed under local anesthesia, meaning the patient is awake, comfortable, and experniences only mild discomfort in most cases during the procedure. the entire procedure. There is the option to used Pronox or “laughing gas” for additional comfort as well. Around 94% of our patients don’t even take an oral sedative and drive themselves home after completing Smartlipo.

What to Expect During Smartlipo for Love Handles

During the Smartlipo procedure, 1-2 tiny punctures (about 1/8″), are made in the skin on each side of the waistline. The area is then infused with a tumescent numbing fluid and a cannula containing the laser fiber is inserted under the skin to melt the adipose (fat) tissue. The heat from the laser melts the fat, and simultaneously tightens the skin[51]. Once liquefied, the fat and fluid is suctioned out of the area.

Recovering From Smartlipo for Love Handles

Following the Smartlipo procedure, patients may experience some swelling, inflammation, mild discomfort and rarely, bruising. For the next 3-4 weeks patients must wear a compression garment under clothes to help reduce the post-op inflammation, swelling and to help further contour the love handles area. Depending on the individual post operative course some patients see positive changes at around 8 weeks. The “final” results are expected between 4.5-6 months after Smartlipo. It is important for patients to attend all scheduled post operative appointments to help track their progress photographically and with measurements.

SculpSure vs CoolSculpting
SculpSure vs CoolSculpting
Non-Invasive Fat Reduction Compared
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Getting SculpSure to Reduce Love Handles

The Non-Invasive Fat Removal Option

SculpSure is a non-invasive fat reduction procedure and is the only FDA approved warm laser for reducing fat[1]. The treatment itself only takes 25 minutes to complete and each treatment can reduce fat by up to 24% in the treatment area at 12-16 weeks after the treatment time[3]. Because this procedure is non-invasive, it relies on the patient’s body to metabolize (break down) the destroyed fat cells, versus liposuction procedures where the fat cells are manually removed. This process varies from person to person so the results are harder to predict and are generally less consistent than with Smartlipo.

What to Expect During SculpSure for Love Handles

Before the SculpSure procedure is performed, the treatment area will be cleansed, and the necessary frames will be secured to the love handles area. The laser windows are then snapped into the secured frames.

During the 25-minute love handles treatment, the SculpSure device cycles between 20 seconds of heating, followed by 10 seconds of cooling. The exact sensation varies from person to person. Some patients feel a sense of heating, and others describe it as a crampy or tingling sensation. Most patients tolerate the temporary discomfort of the heating sensation without difficulty, but if the sensation is objectionable then Pronox (laughing gas) can be used during the treatment. Once the love handles fat removal procedure has been completed, the lasers are removed along with the frames.

Recovering From SculpSure for Love Handles

There is zero downtime following a SculpSure procedure, and patients can immediately return to all normal activities. Patients will experience some mild tenderness similar to a bruise for 2-3 days post procedure.

Patients will begin to see results from the first treatment around 12 weeks post-procedure. For optimal results, patients should return in 8-10 weeks to have a second SculpSure treatment on the love handles area.

Which Treatment is Best for Getting Rid of Love Handles?

At WIFH, we offer free consultations for body contouring patients who want to get rid of their love handles. At that time we can determine the right treatment choice for them. Both of these body contouring procedures work well for love handles, and they can also treat other problem areas such as abdomens, saddlebags, double chin, bra fat and arms. Some patients opt to have 360 circumferential lipo of their entire torso area.

For more information or to schedule a complimentary consultation, contact us today.

Paul E. Cox, MD, MS

Dr. Paul Cox MD, MS is the Owner and Medical Director of WIFH, serving the Atlanta-area community as a physician for over 20 years. A 1999 graduate of the University of Tennessee College of Medicine, Dr. Cox completed his residency in Family Medicine in 2002 and is board certified in both Family Medicine and Anti-Aging Medicine. He has been licensed in Georgia since 2001. As one of the first physicians trained in Smartlipo in 2007, Dr. Cox has performed thousands of Smartlipo laser liposuction procedures without complication. He has been performing cosmetic injectables since 2003 and has a wealth of knowledge and experience in the world of aesthetics.