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How to Tighten Loose Skin While Losing Weight

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The aftermath of weight loss is often expected and welcomed: higher energy levels, smaller pants, and a more defined body. But there is one unexpected challenge: keeping skin tight while losing weight. This unwanted change can be uncomfortable, frustrating, and leave you confused about what to do next.

Read on to learn how to keep skin tight while losing weight and find out what causes skin to stretch in the first place.

Why does loose skin after weight loss happen?

Well, in short, it’s usually linked with rapid weight loss, so it’s a common conundrum among people who undergo bariatric surgery for massive weight loss (more than 100 pounds), explains Jordan Jacobs, M.D., an assistant professor of plastic and reconstructive surgery at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York. In fact, about 70 percent of people who undergo the procedure are left with excess skin, some studies find. “Losing weight rapidly doesn’t give our skin adequate time to gradually contract and this results in loose, hanging skin,” he says.

But loose skin post-weight loss is also a product of the weight gain itself. “Skin has a finite elasticity, and if pushed beyond the limit of that elasticity upon weight gain, the skin cannot fully contract back down upon subsequent weight loss,” explains Joshua Zuckerman, M.D., surgical director at New York City-based Zuckerman Plastic Surgery.

Person Standing On Weighing Scale

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So who can expect loose skin after weight loss? While it varies, mild weight loss (think: 20 pounds or less) typically doesn’t lead to excess skin, Zuckerman says. Weight loss of 40 to 50 pounds can as can massive weight loss of 100+ pounds.

Also: It’s not just how much weight you lose, but your age and skin quality that determines whether or not you’ll experience loose skin after weight loss, he says. “Younger patients have a better chance at avoiding excess skin as do those with inherently high skin elasticity.” (As you age, the elastic fibers and collagen molecules that give your skin its firmness lose their strength.)

Men also tend to do better in their arms and legs than women do, notes Jeffrey M. Kenkel, M.D., a professor and chair of the Betty and Warren Woodward Chair in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at UT Southwestern Medical Center.

How can you get rid of loose skin after weight loss?

Loose skin from weight loss usually requires surgical removal to effectively contour the body, explains Jacobs.

“Typically speaking, after bariatric surgery or massive weight loss, plastic surgery is required to remove excess skin,” says Zuckerman. “These plastic surgery procedures are very effective and typically involve cutting away excess skin and lifting or reshaping the remaining tissue.”

On top of surgical excision, options include liposuction (which uses a suction technique to remove fat, and, for patients with mild skin (and fat) excess, non-invasive procedures usually in the form of ultrasound or radiofrequency procedures that heat up the skin and cause contraction by triggering collagen production, explains Jacobs. You might have micro-needling with radio frequency energy done, for example, which makes thousands of tiny punctures in your skin and delivers radiofrequency energy during treatment, explains Zuckerman.

Patient in hospital gown waiting in examination room

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Patients can also turn to contouring procedures such as BodyTite and FaceTite (which can be used in conjunction with liposuction) to remove fat and tighten skin, but for all but mild cases of excess skin, these treatments may not fully address the problem, he notes.

In short, surgical excision (though it comes with a longer recovery) remains the gold standard, says Jacobs (and produces “profound” effects) and the results from the more minimally-invasive treatments are what you would expect: subtle, he says.

Can you tighten loose skin?

Besides the non-invasive and minimally-invasive options out there that are somewhat effective, (but, again, usually only for those with mild cases) there’s no magic cream or exercise that’s going to tighten loose skin after weight loss on its own. That’s what makes excess skin a difficult problem for those with more moderate cases, says Zuckerman.

While it’s not always an option (especially for those who have bariatric surgery done), gradual weight loss seems to be the best though for preventing loose skin in the first place, notes Jacobs.

Can loose skin after weight loss go away on its own?

Not really, docs say—though remember, how much excess skin you’re left with and how well your skin responds to weight loss in the first place depends on everything from age and genetics to how much weight you lost and your skin quality. So, depending on your circumstance, you might be able to expect some changes.

“Patients who may see improvement in their loose skin are those who do not have stretch marks and younger patients who still have reasonable skin quality despite weight gain,” says Kenkel. “The quality of the skin is the key to improvement.”

Asian Guy Tying Running Shoe, Preparing to Running for Losing Weight

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Jacobs also suggests that if you’ve lost weight gradually to give your skin a full year to contract once you’ve reached your goal weight. “After this time, you are not going to see any more noticeable tightening.”

Then, if you have loose skin you’re concerned about—or if you have loose skin after bariatric surgery—do your homework and get in touch with a plastic surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery to learn about your options, suggests Jacobs. “There are a lot of physicians that label themselves as ‘plastic surgeons’ and, as long as they have a valid medical license, they can legally perform any procedure,” he says. “But the American Board of Plastic Surgery denotes the proper training.”

What is the best home remedy for skin tightening?

Rubbing cocoa butter on your skin might sound like a good idea, but while many topical products claim to tighten skin, doctors are skeptical. “There are no efficacious topical products or OTC remedies for excess skin,” says Zuckerman. Jacobs adds that any product you’re going to buy for this issue usually will have subtle results at best.

The best home remedy, then? “Taking care of your skin,” says Jacobs. “This includes sun protection, avoiding smoking, limiting alcohol consumption, and eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables and low in sugar and saturated fats.”

Also: Building muscle—by way of a solid exercise regimen with strength training work—is always a good idea. Plus, it can make your skin look tauter, says Holly Wyatt, M.D., professor of medicine at the University of Colorado.

Anecdotally, people on forums such as MyFitnessPal claim that dry brushing helps prevent loose skin. The technique involves using a natural fiber brush with a long handle to brush and exfoliate skin in a particular pattern, according to Healthline. Practitioners believe dry brushing may help tighten loose skin; eliminate toxins from the body; stimulate the lymphatic system; and increase circulation. However, there is little scientific evidence to support these claims.

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12 Best Soaps for Men 2020

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You may not have thought about bar soap in a while, except when you’re suddenly confronted with it in a hotel room shower or a guest bathroom. It seems retro, like something you used when you were taking baths as a kid, but we say it’s time to re-examine the power of the bar.

Body washes may be exceedingly popular among men, especially those who struggle with dry skin, but the kind of clean you get from a bar soap is second to none. While they are not self-cleaning as Joey Tribbiani once claimed, they get the job done with less mess and can last longer than a bottle of wash.

Plus, in our current age of sustainability and eco-friendliness, bar soaps come with less waste. Think about it: they’re smaller, you can use them till they’re completely gone, and there is no plastic bottle to throw into the recycling bin when you’re done. Many soap companies are even changing their packaging to make bar soap an even greener option. In short: there is no way Greta Thunberg uses body wash.

Bar soaps are versatile and can be great for you no matter what your skin type. You can find a soap for oily skin, dry skin, sensitive skin, and everything in between. Check out the 12 best bar soaps and we promise, you won’t go back to the bottle.

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Baxter of California Vitamin Cleansing Bar

baxterofcalifornia.com

$18.00

One of the biggest complaints about bar soap is that they can make your skin feel too dry; not this one. It contains sunflower oil and glycerin to keep your skin hydrated and smooth all over. Plus, the citrus and musk fragrance is one of our favorite men’s scented soaps.

Method Men Sea + Surf Exfoliating Bar Soap

Exfoliating bar soaps have a little grit in them to help smooth away dry, dead skin cells and leave your body feeling clean and fresh. This one contains minerals, instead of microbeads (better for the environment) and the scent is fresh without being overpowering. 

Dove White Beauty Bar

This dermatologist-endorsed bar is one of the best for your face, but here’s a secret: you can use it all over your body, too, especially if you have sensitive skin. It’s contains gentle moisturizing ingredients that hydrate and clean skin without overstripping it.

First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Gentle Cleansing Bar

Another soap bar that can be used on your face as well as your body, this one includes colloidal oatmeal, which is known for its skin-soothing properties. It’s ideal if you struggle with sensitive or dry skin and other skin issues like eczema.

Beekman 1802 Goats Milk Bar Soap

Beekman soaps are hand made from natural ingredients. The brand says goat milk is a natural anti-inflammatory agent, which means it may help calm irritated skin while cleansing. All we know is that it smells damn good and leaves you feeling clean AF.

The Rich and Clean No 09 Bar Soap

therichandclean.com

$12.00

For guys with oily skin or who sweat a lot, the charcoal in this soap helps soak up excess oil and leave you fresh without that telltale tight feeling. The Japanese peppermint is said to help curb oil production, but also gives this soap a bite of fresh, but not overpowering, fragrance.

Caswell-Massey Cold Cream Luxury Bath Soap Set

Triple milled soap is known for its silky-smooth texture and it cleans effectively with less lather (which can strip away your skin barrier). The natural vegetable base of this soap is gentle enough for all skin types and the subtle almond fragrance smells fresh, without being in your face.

Ursa Major Morning Mojo Bar Soap

It’s called Morning Mojo, because the peppermint and eucalyptus fragrance in this soap gives you a jolt of clarity in the morning, even before you have your first cup of coffee. It has grit to it, but doesn’t feel rough on your skin, thanks to moisturizing honey and coconut.

PLANT Apothecary BE GENTLE Organic Bar Soap

This soap is heavy on the shea butter, which is great news if you have dry or sensitive skin. The ingredients are naturally-derived and sulfate-free, but still gives enough lather to adequately clean your whole body.

Oars + Alps Natural Moisturizing Alps Bar Soap

Want to smell like you just got back from a hike through the Rockies? This soap delivers a woody, outdoorsy scent that says “I’d rather be exploring.” It also contains shea butter, so it’s gentle on even dry skin.

Ethique Pumice, Tea Tree, & Spearmint Bar Soap

Ethique has every kind of bar you could imagine (even shampoo and conditioning bars), but we like this exfoliating and clarifying bar because it helps get rid of dead skin cells and excess oil at the same time. It’s ideal to keep in your gym bag for a refreshing post-workout shower.

Lush Karma Bar Soap

This handmade soap sounds like it would be overpowering, but it also has citrus which helps temper what could otherwise be a heavy fragrance. Bars are made fresh with natural ingredients and last for months.

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‘The Goop Lab’ Review – Inside Gwyneth Paltrow’s Netflix Series

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A few weeks ago, I passed along to a friend some CBD lip balm that had come across my desk. “Sure, I’ll take it,” the friend said. “And remind me—why would I want CBD in my lip balm?”

The best I could come up with was a shrug, because the mountain of evidence that backs up what it could do in a lip balm is pretty much flat ground right now. But people buy it. It’s trendy. They’re curious. They want to feel better, look better, be better.

Which is probably one of the reasons people are also tuning in to The Goop Lab, a 6-episode Netflix show that launches today, billed as a series “guiding the deeply inquisitive viewer in an exploration of boundary-pushing wellness topics.” It’s by Gwyneth Paltrow’s “lifestyle brand” Goop, of course, and the 30-ish minute episodes feature its staffers trying trends like psychedelics, cold therapy, energy healing, anti-aging, and psychics. It also explores female pleasure (hopefully not just a trend).

There are plenty of jabs you can take at the series, especially given Goop’s history of being slapped with penalties for making false claims about the products it sells (the essential oil that claimed to help prevent depression and the infamous Jade Egg). But passing on egregiously bad “facts” isn’t really one of them. In what’s probably a smart move for the company but a less helpful one for viewers, there aren’t a lot of them. In the first episode, staffers fly to Jamaica to take psilocybin—magic mushrooms—after a brief interview with the executive director of MAPS (Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies) Canada, who outlines some legit findings about psychedelics (sure, it could go deeper, but it’s not claiming to be an investigative show). Their experience is interspersed with testimonials (positive! Whaddya know!) by other people whose lives have been transformed by psychedelics.

The trouble is that when the Goop starts—with the cast in the mushrooms episode imbibing and then crying, hugging, wow-ing over the clouds—you just don’t care. All you see is a bunch of willowy superpeople trying this trend as if it were another hoodie from Supreme. The crying, the writhing, the exaggerated comforting hugs feel like an endless scroll through the narcissistic Instagram feeds that make you say, “Oh, congrats! You took another picture of yourself!”

Which can turn the very real quest for feeling better and doing better into a potentially exhausting try-the-trend circuit—or a potentially expensive buy-the-trend circuit, conveniently available on Goop.com. Which may be why, no matter how many times her elegant wrists get slapped, people keep coming back for more Gwyneth, more Goop, more stuff.

Maybe so many people love/hate The Goop Lab and Gwyneth because it’s the symbol of the thing we want to deliver but never quite does. It’s the thing that left us with an empty wallet and an empty spirit but a smoldering desire to have abundance in both. There it is, the empty tube of CBD lip balm (or roll of CBD toilet paper, or CBD hair products) that’s still making you scratch your head about what it does. Meanwhile, you’re suffering under your workload, your mom has dementia, that pain in your back keeps getting worse, and you can’t afford PT.

For a moment, The Goop Lab might take your mind off all that, if you can stand the Goopy patina of perfection, the peek into “real” experiences that feel as authentic as reality TV does. But at the end of the day, or the end of the episode, you’re still left wondering, “now, why do I need this?”

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James Corden Doesn’t Always Drive During Carpool Karaoke

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  • A behind-the-scenes video revealed that James Corden doesn’t actually drive during his Carpool Karaoke segments.
  • The fans are betrayed. The fans are angry. The fans feel lied to.
  • This is their story.

    Update: January 23, 4:28 pm

    The Late Late Show has released a statement about Corden’s Carpool Karaoke segment: “James always drives during Carpool Karaoke. However, on the rare occasion when there is a stunt component and the producers feel it is unsafe to drive, we will use a rig (tow).”


    January 22nd was a pretty nice day, full of promise and hope—until Twitter user @zolihonig revealed that James Corden is NOT actually driving during the ever-popular and Emmy-winning TV segment Carpool Karaoke, and he actually just pretends to drive while his shiny black Range Rover is actually pulled around on the road by a truck in front of it.

    But how could this be? We’ve seen Corden turn the wheel. We’ve seen him put his foot on the brake. We’ve even seen him, like, swerve out of the way of some unseen obstacle. Well, my dear reader, it turns out that Carpool Karaoke is Corden’s finest acting job since his role as Bustopher Jones in Cats.

    Fans were shocked at the news, and they made sure that betrayal was heard online:

    But even in the midst of all of this outrage, there were a number of people that were like “dude, why would you ever think he was actually driving?”

    While they are actually 100% right, and safety should always comes first, it still stings to know that Mariah Carey wasn’t really driven around by Corden, or that Michelle Obama had to smile and laugh through a fake car ride. And poor, poor Paul McCartney. Doesn’t Sir Paul deserve to be actually chauffeured around?

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