You’ve heard of fad diets and workouts that promise to “melt the fat away,” and maybe you’ve even tried a few. From juice cleanses and Shake Weights to body wraps that claim to take inches off your waist, people will try almost anything to reach their fitness goals.

Trust us — we get it. It’s not easy to ditch unwanted fat, even with a healthy diet and regular exercise. Sometimes you can do everything right and still be left with stubborn fatty deposits that just won’t go away. But gimmicks won’t help you shed those last few pounds (no matter what the ad says). Real results come from techniques backed by science, targeting fat at the source to contour your body without letting things like age, genetics or stress get in the way. Liposuction used to be the gold standard in unwanted fat reduction, but nonsurgical options like CoolSculpting and VelaShape have changed the way we think about body contouring. 

If lingering fat deposits are keeping you from achieving your fitness goals or you simply want to enhance your body shape, one of these treatments may be the solution you’ve been looking for. 

What is CoolSculpting?

CoolSculpting is a nonsurgical body contouring treatment that freezes away unwanted fat. It works by using cryolipolysis, a scientifically-proven technique that causes fat cells to break down and die without harming the surrounding tissues. Because fat freezes at a higher temperature than skin and other organs, it’s more sensitive to the cold — this allows the safe delivery of controlled cooling that can eliminate up to 25 percent of treated fat cells. Once targeted by the CoolSculping device, unwanted fat is naturally expelled by the body over the next few weeks, leaving behind slimmer contours without any surgery or downtime.  

What is VelaShape?

While CoolSculpting works by icing out stubborn fat, VelaShape heats things up by delivering a combination of bipolar radiofrequency (RF) energy, infrared light, mechanical massage and mild suction to reduce the appearance of cellulite and sculpt treated areas. This blend of technology from the VelaShape machine works together to gently warm fat and dermal tissues, stimulating new collagen and relaxing the stiff fibers that cause cellulite. In the process, fat cells also shrink, resulting in smoother skin and a reduction in circumference that makes your jeans fit just a little bit better.

How are CoolSculpting and VelaShape Different?

Both CoolSculpting and VelaShape are body contouring procedures that offer clinically-proven results, but there are some key differences between the two. Having a better idea of what each can achieve can help you determine which treatment is right for you. 


  • CoolSculpting uses targeted cooling technology to freeze fat cells
  • VelaShape combines bipolar RF energy, infrared light, suction and massage to shrink fat cells and reduce the dimpling caused by cellulite  


  • Ideal candidates for CoolSculpting should at or near their goal weight, have good skin elasticity and want to eliminate a moderate amount of stubborn fat
  • VelaShape candidates should be at a relatively healthy weight but want to improve the appearance of mild to moderate cellulite


  • CoolSculpting can effectively reduce unwanted fat that doesn’t respond to diet or exercise, but isn’t a weight-loss treatment
  • VelaShape primarily treats cellulite, with a mild reduction in unwanted fat


  • CoolSculpting is often used on the hips, thighs, back, love handles, arms, abdomen, and beneath the chin  
  • VelaShape works best on the hips, thighs, abdomen and buttocks


  • CoolSculpting treatments are generally comfortable, but you may feel some tugging or pulling as the device applies suction to the skin
  • VelaShape treatments are virtually painless and often compared to a warm, deep tissue massage 


  • After CoolSculpting, you may experience some numbness, tingling or swelling in treated areas, but this is mild and temporary
  • Your skin may feel warm after a VelaShape treatment, but you can immediately resume all normal activities with no downtime


  • Once fat cells are eliminated, they’re gone for good, which means CoolSculpting can yield permanent results when paired with diet and exercise
  • VelaShape results aren’t permanent, but can be prolonged with a healthy lifestyle and touch-up treatments at least once every three months

How Long Does Body Contouring Last?

Something a lot of people ask about nonsurgical body contouring is, where does the fat go? Once fat cells are treated with CoolSculpting or VelaShape, they’re eliminated naturally through the body’s lymphatic system. This happens gradually in the weeks after treatment, with visible results developing by the third or fourth week. This results in slimmer contours that will last as long as you eat a balanced diet and exercise regularly. If your weight fluctuates or you want even more dramatic results, treatments can be repeated to sculpt and tone your body even further.

With VelaShape, there’s even more going on beneath the surface to smooth away the appearance of cellulite. In addition to shrinking fat cells in treated areas, VelaShape also stimulates the production of new collagen and elastin for firmer, tighter skin. At the same time, the device’s massaging action breaks up the fibrous bands that cause dimpling. Most patients need four to 12 treatments to achieve optimal results, but this can vary depending on your health and lifestyle.

Is VelaShape Permanent?

VelaShape isn’t a cure for cellulite (no permanent solution exists) but can provide a significant improvement in the appearance of dimpled skin. Although your results won’t be permanent, they can be easily maintained once you reach your fitness goals. A healthy diet and regular exercise can help keep cellulite at bay, while maintenance sessions every one to three months can prolong your initial results.  

So Which is Better?

Both CoolSculpting and VelaShape can contour your body and help you put the finishing touches on your fitness journey, but the one that’s right for you will depend on your unique needs and goals. If you’re looking to reduce stubborn fat in areas that diet or exercise can’t reach, CoolSculpting might be the better choice. But if your primary concern is cellulite, then VelaShape can deliver the results you want. Both procedures can reshape your body to give you a more toned appearance, however, and be included in your noninvasive body contouring treatment plan. The best way to find out which is right for you is to come in for a consultation, where our providers can develop a customized approach for reaching your goals.

If you have stubborn fat or cellulite that won’t go away no matter what you try, we can help. CoolSculpting and VelaShape can deliver the results you want with no downtime or recovery. To learn more about nonsurgical body contouring at The Maas Clinic, contact or call us today at (415) 567-7000. 


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