Does Body Sculpting Actually Work?

If you lose a significant amount of weight because of a surgery, diet changes, or post-pregnancy, some loose skin will probably stay behind. However, body sculpting procedures can help remove this skin and tailor your body into a preferred shape.

Body sculpting, or body contouring, is a surgical procedure that improves the appearance of skin and tissue after a major weight loss. It’s common, and it’s also one of the only ways to remove loose skin that remains after a significant amount of fat loss.

Body sculpting is a great way to take back control over your appearance and feel more confident than ever. 

Here’s everything you need to know about this form of cosmetic surgery.

Types of Body Sculpting Surgeries

There are many different types of body sculpting procedures, and they take up a large majority of plastic surgery work. You’re probably already familiar with a few of these, but you may want to undergo multiple procedures based on how dramatic your weight loss was.

Abdominoplasty (Tummy Tuck)

An abdominoplasty, or tummy tuck, is a type of body sculpting procedure that removes extra fat and skin around the abdominal wall. Additionally, the muscles are tightened to make for a more defined abdomen.

These are not to be confused with liposuction, which is a cosmetic surgery that removes fat deposits. With that said, your surgeon may choose to perform a tummy tuck after a liposuction if excess skin remains.

This is a helpful procedure to remove flabs of skin that hang from the region of your body around your stomach, allowing you to really show off the results of your weight loss.

Gluteoplasty (Butt Lift)

A gluteoplasty, better known as a butt lift, involves contouring the buttocks, improving their size and shape with implants of fat grafting. This procedure can increase the fullness of your butt, improve the balance of your figure, and help enhance your sex appeal.

Sometimes, a buttock enhancement can even be completed by removing soft tissue. This is a popular procedure after major weight loss, as the buttocks may appear to sag or fall flat. Getting silicone implants or using fat grafts can help to bring more volume to your glutes.

This procedure can be more involved based on the amount of weight loss, but it can also be a “mini” surgery. These are often referred to as athletic Brazilian Butt Lifts (BBL) and are meant for people who are already thin and have a lower body fat percentage.

Mastopexy (Breast Lift)

This procedure raises the breasts by removing excess skin and tightening the surrounding tissue. It allows the breasts to reshape and support a new contour. Breast lifts have replaced breast implants 2-to-1, having grown in popularity by 70% since 2000.

As you age, or after major weight loss, your breasts may lose firmness and appear to sag. This procedure can rejuvenate your figure by giving you a breast profile that feels more youthful and rejuvenated. 

Non-Surgical Body Sculpting

While body sculpting can be done through an invasive surgery, there are also some non-surgical procedures that can be done to help you achieve a desired appearance as well.

The benefit of these procedures is that since they don’t require incisions, the recovery time is much quicker and there’s little to no scarring. On top of that, they tend to be safer surgeries and don’t come with as many risks. 

With that said, they are mild and can’t be used on as large of a scale as surgical body sculpting methods. Also, they aren’t usually permanent, so they will require repeated treatment.


Botox is a brand name for onabotulinumtoxinA, which is a chemical that temporarily prevents muscles from moving. While it can be used cosmetically to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, it has some medicinal benefits for treating things like hyperhidrosis or muscle contractures.

Botox is nothing more than an injection into problem sites, and you’ll start to see its effects in just a few days. However, you’ll need follow-up injections after a few months.


Thermi is a radio frequency technology used to tighten the skin and do some light body contouring. Basically, it heats the skin, physically burning fat cells beyond the point of repair. This is a great, non-invasive option if you’re looking to tighten skin on parts of your body or reduce the appearance of frown lines, similar to Botox.

How Does Surgical Body Sculpting Work?

While the procedure can differ slightly depending on the part of the body being contoured, there are a few general mainstays throughout most surgeries. 

For one, all body contouring procedures require incisions to remove excess skin. For mini butt lifts, these are pretty small. But for large-scale procedures like tummy tucks, these incisions can be very extensive.

After that, the remaining skin is sutured together, resulting in a tighter appearance with less excess skin and fat.

Recovery Process

Following surgery, dressings and bandages will be applied to sites of incision to help prevent bleeding. You will be given specific instructions in regards to caring for surgical locations and you may also be given medications to take orally or apply topically.

Your plastic surgeon may also instruct you not to bend or strain certain areas for a specified period of time. In tummy tucks or other procedures that involve your abdomen or thighs, you may also be asked not to stand fully upright or stress any internal sutures to allow them to heal.

Who is Body Sculpting For?

You can help tone and craft your ideal body through things like diet and exercise, and your skin is elastic enough to shrink with lower levels of fat. However, overweight individuals may have skin that has become too stretched out. There’s no way to get rid of this excess skin without a body sculpting procedure.

With this in mind, ideal candidates for body sculpting surgeries are:

  • People who have lost weight and stabilized their weight.

  • People who are committed to a healthy lifestyle with proper diet and fitness after the procedure has been completed.

  • Healthy individuals with no medical conditions that might impair healing or increase risk of injury during the surgery.

  • People who do not smoke.

Is Body Sculpting Effective?

Body sculpting isn’t only effective, it’s also one of the only ways to remove excess skin and fat in certain areas of the body. Body contouring procedures are a fantastic way to take back your confidence and boost your self-image.

Also, body contouring procedures can help to alleviate discomfort associated with excess skin, such as chafing. It’s a great option to make yourself feel good both inside and out.

Potential Risks of Body Sculpting

Body sculpting procedures are popular, and trusted plastic surgeons have probably completed hundreds of similar procedures. However, all surgeries come with some risks and considerations.

The primary risks of body sculpting are wound healing difficulties, such as infection. On top of that, your body may continue to change over time, so it can be hard to predict exactly how you will look in the future after the procedure has been completed.

Additionally, the recovery process is more difficult compared to some other plastic surgeries. You may need to use surgical drains to eliminate excess fluids from the surgical site, which can be uncomfortable and difficult to use. The recovery process is generally longer and a bit more uncomfortable.

Finally, the size of scarring that results from a body sculpting surgery is hard to gauge. While it’s possible that there is very minimal scarring, large-scale surgeries like abdominoplasty can leave large scars at the site of incision.

Wrap Up

Body sculpting is a surgical procedure that can improve your appearance by removing skin and tissue after extensive weight loss. When you lose a lot of weight, some of the skin remains. Body sculpting surgeries can help eliminate that.

There are many different types of body sculpting procedures, including tummy tucks, butt lifts, or breast lifts. Each works by making incisions and removing layers of skin, then pulling the remaining skin together to achieve a tighter contour.

Additionally, there are some non-surgical body contouring procedures that can achieve more subtle, temporary improvements. Botox injections and Thermi treatments are among the most popular.

Body sculpting is an effective procedure for people who are committed to living a healthy lifestyle post-surgery. It can help improve your self-esteem and confidence while also making you feel more comfortable with your own skin.

If you’re ready to take control over your body with a surgical or non-surgical body contour, PH-1 Miami is a holistic practice that combines advanced techniques with proper nutrition and fitness. Click here to fill out an inquiry form today.



Abdominoplasty (Tummy Tuck): Risks, Recovery | Cleveland Clinic

Breast Lift Mastopexy | American Society of Plastic Surgeons

Botox injections | Mayo Clinic

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