Is Coolsculpting Painful? Side Effects and Aftercare Tips

I’m here today to share with you some information about my experience of cooling down after I have done cool sculpting. My name is Mike and I’ve been doing this since 2012. Before that I did it for years but never had any formal training or experience. So if there are things that could be improved, please let me know!

What Is Cool Sculpting?

Cool sculpting is a form of body modification where the skin is cooled to create a temporary change in appearance. Cool sculpture involves placing ice cubes into the affected area to cause the blood vessels and other tissues within that area to constrict causing them to appear cooler than they really are. The goal of cooling down after cool sculpting is usually for the person experiencing it to feel less hot and uncomfortable.

How Does It Work?

The body’s natural ability to regulate temperature is very good at keeping us comfortable. However, when our bodies become too cold, we start shivering and eventually go into hypothermia (low body temperature). When we get too hot, we sweat profusely which causes the air around us to heat up. This is called exhalation of heat and it helps keep us warm.

Coolsculpting works by cooling a specific area of fat cells in the body called adipose tissue. Normally, in our bodies, fat cells store energy that we can burn or use at any given time. In some areas in our bodies, there are more of these cells such as the abdomen, thighs, and love handles.

For others, there are less such as the back or shoulder blades. For men, the “gravy pouch” around the lower abdomen is a common problem area. In women, the upper and lower abdomen as well as the thighs are common problem areas.

Coolsculpting is non-invasive and done using a hand piece and two to four cooling elements called “cool strips.” These are applied to the skin for a period of time that can range from between 30 minutes to an hour at any one time. During the procedure, the person is awake and comfortably lying on an examination table.

The technician then moves the applicator around the treatment area which can take between one to two hours. Some people find that it is slightly uncomfortable but others don’t feel anything at all.

What Are The Side Effects Of Coolsculpting?

There are some common side effects most people experience soon after the treatments and others are less common.

Common side effects can include:

Redness in the treated area for a few days that is similar to a mild sunburn (this mostly affects people with darker skin tones)

Swelling or puffiness of the skin in the treated area especially in the first week after treatment and may last up to two weeks

Tightness or firmness in the skin in the treated area which can last from a few weeks to a few months

Feeling unusually cold in the treated area which can last a few weeks to a few months

Longer-term or less common side effects include:

Changes in skin pigmentation in the treated area (especially in darker skin tones)

Change in skin texture in the treated area (especially in darker skin tones)

Fluctuations in fat cell size (especially in people who have had the procedure done several times)

All of these side effects are temporary and will resolve over time.

Who Can Coolsculpting Be Used On?

Coolsculpting is designed for people with certain areas of stubborn fat they are unable to lose through exercise or diet. The skin in these areas must be relatively loose so that the applicator can be moved around the area as well as the appropriate depth of fat that skin can effectively pinch in on.

The best candidates for coolsculpting are in good general health and have a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or less. This means that you are obese or very overweight and you may experience certain medical issues such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, sleep apnea, or other obesity-related diseases.

It is vital that you consult with your physician before undergoing any treatment that could put you at risk. If you have a serious medical condition, are pregnant, or are currently trying to become pregnant then you should avoid this procedure.

The procedure is completely safe and non-invasive but it isn’t without risk factors. There is always a chance that you will experience some of the side effects listed above. In rare cases, there can be some slight bleeding under the skin which will cause bruising and redness in the area.

This is temporary and will go away within a few weeks. You can also have sensitivity in the area which may last for a few months after the procedure.

How Much Does It Cost?

You can expect to pay between $2,000 and $5,000 for each area treated. This is the only major downside to this treatment as it is an expensive treatment. However, if you can afford it then the benefits are quite good.

You can find out how much you will have to pay by contacting local beauty centers and clinics. Most places will offer a free consultation where you can find out if you are suitable for the procedure and how much it will cost you.

How Long Before I See Any Improvements?

Some people see an improvement in their stubborn fat areas as soon as two weeks after the procedure. Others see an improvement between two and three months after the treatment.

The best way to see an improvement is to combine coolsculpting with a healthy diet and regular exercise. This will help you to see a significant improvement in the fat on your body.

How Long Before I See The Final Results?

After undergoing coolsculpting, most people will see the best improvements in their stubborn fat areas between six and twelve months. However, it can take up to two years for the final results to be visible.

Research has shown that it can take up to two years for all of the stubborn fat cells to be removed by the treatment. During this time, you may notice that your body shape is changing and you may also notice small changes in the way your clothes fit. This is all part of the process and shows that the treatment is working.

Does It Work On All Types Of Fat?

Coolsculpting is most successful when used on white fat and not on other types of fat. White fat is also known as subcutaneous fat and this is the type of fat that can be found just below your skin. This is the type of fat that coolsculpting can successfully remove. The procedure cannot target visceral fat or yellow fat.

Visceral fat is the type of fat that can be found in your stomach, intestines, and organs. This type of fat is very dangerous as it can cause many health problems such as heart disease and diabetes. Visceral fat is in fact more dangerous than subcutaneous fat and it is more difficult to get rid of.

The good news is that coolsculpting can’t treat this type of fat.

The other type of fat that coolsculpting can’t target is yellow fat. Yellow fat is also known as brite fat and this is the type of fat that is typically only found in cosmetic surgery patients. This type of fat is found in abnormally large quantities in certain areas of the human body.

It is almost impossible to treat brite fat with coolsculpting as it will simply melt away without any effect.

Does It Work On Men As Well As Women?

Coolsculpting was designed with women in mind, however, it can also be used on men to good effect. As men tend to suffer from stubborn fat areas such as the love handles, stomach, and chest. Men are able to see good results with coolsculpting as they are able to target these problem areas.

As men have a great deal more muscle than women, the procedure can take longer for men in some cases. As men have more muscle, they also have a lower percentage of fat and this means that the doctor will need to apply more coolant for the procedure.

Coolsculpting is not meant to be used on the male chest as this could cause adverse side effects such as gynecomastia. This illness causes male patients to develop female-like enlarged male chests.

Does It Work On Various Areas Of The Body?

Coolsculpting can be used to target various areas of the human body. Commonly, areas such as the stomach, love handles, thighs and back are common places for people to have the procedure performed.

As already mentioned, the fat cells in the arms, legs and chest are more difficult for coolsculpting to target successfully. This means that if you have fat build up in these areas, you are unlikely to notice any difference even after a course of sessions.

Coolsculpting is very safe to use on most areas of the body. There are however, some exceptions such as the face and neck. As the skin in these areas is much thinner, the procedure can cause burns and blisters.

Sources & references used in this article:

Caring for your skin in menopause by A Schedule –

Full-thickness wounds resulting from ‘do-it-yourself’cryolipolysis: a case study by CD Leonard, SA Kahn, JB Summitt – Journal of Wound Care, 2016 –

Mapping the way: non-invasive body contouring treatments and aftercare by A Dutta – Journal of Aesthetic Nursing, 2019 –

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