Does CoolSculpting® Really Work?

A person in jeans and no shirt pinching their love handles

CoolSculpting® is a popular procedure that reduces fat in selected areas of the body. You have probably heard a lot about this procedure and may wonder, does CoolSculpting really work?

Here are answers to many questions you may have about CoolSculpting.

What Exactly is CoolSculpting?

Cryolipolysis is a fat-freezing procedure that reduces fat in specifically targeted areas of the body. It is not meant for overall weight loss.

CoolSculpting is a branded form of this cryolipolysis treatment.

CoolSculpting has become a very popular fat-reduction treatment not only because of its results, but because the treatment is completely non-invasive. The patient doesn’t need to take any medications or receive anesthesia that can cause an allergic reaction.

Also, there are no cuts made during the procedure and no instruments enter the body.

These factors all add up to a very low rate of complications and a very high rate of patient satisfaction.

CoolScultping is especially popular because it provides long-lasting results. Destroyed fat cells simply do not return.

CoolSculpting and cryolipolysis are regarded as cosmetic treatments. So, medical insurance does not cover this procedure.

Benefits of CoolSculpting

A woman looking at and touching the extra fat on her upper arm

Cryolipolysis effectively gets rid of stubborn fat in specific areas of your body. We all know of areas that seem resistant or even immune to dieting. No matter how carefully you watch your diet or exercise, some areas just don’t want to let go of fat.

That’s where CoolSculpting comes in–it targets these challenging and frustrating areas of your body and reduces fat in an effective and non-invasive way.

Harvard Health Publishing of Harvard Medical School reports that “In an analysis of data from over 1,000 people who underwent cryolipolysis, fat in the treated areas was reduced by about 25%, on average, and side effects were limited to temporary redness, bruising, soreness, and numbness.”

Cryolipolysis is also associated with fewer risks than other fat reduction methods, including liposuction.

What Body Areas Respond to CoolSculpting?

Professionals use CoolSculpting to treat areas of the body that simply aren’t responding to diet and exercise. For example, if you’re dieting to lose weight around your stomach, and you’re losing weight everywhere but there, CoolSculpting will provide the fat-reduction results you want.

An FDA Approved sign with a checkmark

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) initially approved CoolSculpting in 2010. It is now approved for treating these areas:

How Does CoolSculpting Work?

Skin freezes at a lower temperature than fat. So, the cryolipolysis process can safely freeze fat without harming the skin or other body tissue. The fat cells then safely leave the body over one to three months—sometimes a bit longer.

The length of a single CoolSculpting procedure varies, but many of these procedures take between 30 and 60 minutes.

Some areas of the body require only one CoolSculpting session. For example, treatment of an arm often needs only one session. However, if you want to have a larger area treated, such as your love handles or back fat, more sessions will most likely be required.

After the Procedure

Another benefit of CoolSculpting is that there is no need to set aside time for recovery after the procedure. Patients drive themselves home and continue with their daily activities.

However, you may experience mild soreness in the treated area or minimal swelling. Sometimes patients report stinging, itchiness, or mild discoloration.

Over the next few months, the destroyed fat cells will completely leave your body.

You will start to see visual improvement in the treated area about three weeks after your treatment.


In short, CoolSculpting is a proven safe and effective way to remove specific areas of unwanted fat. The procedure is associated with high rates of success and satisfaction.

However, the ultimate results of your treatment will depend upon your commitment to maintaining a healthy diet and exercise regimen. If you overeat or live a sedentary lifestyle, it will limit the results you see. Just because the old fat cells are destroyed, doesn’t mean new ones can’t or won’t develop.

To see the best results, you must commit to eating a healthy diet and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

Is CoolSculpting for Everyone?

While cryolipolysis is an extremely effective fat-reduction procedure, it isn’t right for everyone. It won’t make up for an unhealthy lifestyle or act as an overall weight-loss treatment for someone with obesity. Nor will this procedure tighten the skin.

CoolSculpting works best on people who are near their ideal body weight and who have been trying unsuccessfully to lose weight in a specific area(s).

You should avoid cryolipolysis treatments if you have:

  • Poor skin tone
  • Obesity
  • Loose or sagging skin
  • Raynaud’s phenomenon
  • Certain skin conditions related to the cold
  • Paroxysmal cold hemoglobinuria—a specific type of anemia
  • Or are pregnant or nursing

Also, cryolipolysis should not be performed around varicose veins, rashes, or lesions.

At Vibrance MedSpa in New Jersey, we offer both CoolSculpting and DualSculpting to reduce specific areas of body fat. Learn more about these procedures here.

You may also be interested in another of our treatments, VelaShape® III body shaping.

Our skin care professionals can meet with you and come up with a personalized treatment plan so you can achieve the results you want. Contact us today for a complimentary consultation.

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