What is the difference in results for SculpSure Laser Fat Loss vs. Coolsculpting?

What is the difference in results for SculpSure Laser Fat Loss vs. Coolsculpting? Is one better than the other? I recently completed, one "round" of Coolsculpting of flank, abdomen, inner and outer thigh and back, spread out over an 18 month period due to cost. My weight has remained about the same over that time period and I have to say I'm not overly impressed with Coolsculpting. I see some slight changes but the biggest reduction has been in my wallet.

Doctor Answers 45

Coolsculpting or Sculpsure: Is one better than the other?

Dear Marithon: reading about these 2 procedures on this site can quickly become overwhelming when trying to decide between these body contouring devices. The surgeons with Coolsculpting will say that their machine is the best, and vice versa, surgeons with Sculpsure will say that theirs is. 
I will give you some of my own personal thoughts and observations. As a surgeon I did quite a bit of research on both procedures prior to deciding to offer Sculpsure over Coolsculpting to my Richmond patients. I will try to outline the similarities and differences in hopes of helping you to make the best personal decision.

  1. both machines permanently destroy fat cells. 
  2. Patient satisfaction- both have around 80% RealSelf worth it ratings
  1. Time- Sculpsure is 25 minutes for one area, Coolsculpting is 50 minutes. One of the physicians below brought up that the Sculpsure treatment heads are smaller and therefore do not save time. Its not the size of the applicator that matters, its what areas you can treat in those 25 minutes. Take the flanks (love handles) as an example- you can treat both flanks in one 25 minute session with Sculpsure. Because of the design of Coolsculpting, you would have to treat each flank separately at 50 minutes each. So, 25 minutes vs 100 minutes. Which would you rather do?
  2. Pain- not uncommon after Coolsculpting, sometimes requiring narcotics or neuropathic pain medications such as Neurontin. (there are many patient stories about Coolsculpting pain on this site). I personally had 2 areas treated with Sculpsure in the morning and saw patients for the rest of the day. For the next week, I felt like I had done a vigorous abdominal workout. Not pain, just sore. 
  3. Downtime- you can literally get up from your Sculpsure treatment and go right to the gym. Zero downtime. As mentioned, I worked a full day right after mine. After Coolsculpting, massaging the "frozen stick of butter" is required. You can read stories on this site from patients who experienced significant swelling and bruising after Coolsculpting, keeping them from returning to their normal activities. 
  4. Numbness- Coolsculpting uses a suction applicator. Anything that gets sucked in gets frozen, including nerves. This causes numbness in the treated areas. In most patients this resolves with time, but can prove an inconvenience. Sculpsure uses laser energy at 1060nm and only targets fat cells. Nerves, vessels, and skin are not affected. 
  5. Shelving or "Shark Bite"- Because of the suction applicator, some patients see a sharp demarcation from the treated and untreated areas with Coolsculpting. This leaves and area that many people say looks like a shark took a bit out of their tissue. Sculpsure uses an applicator head that sits on top of the skin and does not use suction. The heat from the laser spreads out beyond the applicator head to allow for better blending between treated and non treated areas. 
As you seem unsatisfied with your Coolsculpting results, I would recommend consulting with a board certified surgeon in your area who offers Sculpsure to find out if it might be an effective alternative to help accomplish your goals. 

I wish you all the best

Dr S

Richmond Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 22 reviews

SculpSure vs. Coolsculpting

SculpSure newer 1060nm laser technology offers several advantagesover Coolsculpting in performance, time, and reduced risk of complications. Below are the reasons to choose SculpSure over Coolsculpting: 1.)Ability to Treat Multiple Areas in One Treatment: SculpSure can treat multiple areas at the same time (up to 4 areas) in 25 minutes. Whereas, Coolsculpting can only target one area per treatment in 60 minutes. 2.)SculpSure Cuts Treatment Time in Less than Half: Your SculpSure treatment only takes 25 minutes per area compared to Coolsculpting which takes 1 hour per area. 3.) No Suction Necessary: The applicators used in Coolsculpting require “pinchable” fat that is large enough to be pulled and sucked up into the applicator for treatment. First, this can be uncomfortable but more importantly if your problem area is not big enough to get pulled in the applicator this area cannot be treated by Coolsculpting. SculpSure ensures comfort by utilizing flat applicators that do not use a suction method. This also allows SculpSure to treat areas that Coolsculpting cannot because it is not necessary to fill up an applicator of fat. The technology that SculpSure employs can treat even the smallest amount of stubborn fat. 4.)Only ONE 25 Minute Treatment Needed: Although, you can repeat SculpSure treatments on the same area after 6 weeks, SculpSure has the ability to reach optimal results in just one treatment. It is common for Coolsculpting patients to require two or more treatments to achieve their desired result. 5.)No Pain, Numbing or Bruising: Many Coolsculpting patients have reported numbess, pain and bruising that can last for weeks post treatment. Also, research is now revealing that Coolsculpting can cause more severe complications such as delayed onset pain and nerve damage. Delayed onset pain typically occurs a few days post CoolSculpting treatment and causes neuropathic symptoms such as stabbing, burning, and shooting pain within the treatment areas that is unresponsive to medications. To date, SculpSure patients have not reported pain or discomfort following treatment. 6.)Advanced Laser Technology vs. Freezing: Coolsculpting uses a process called Cryolipolysis to freeze fat cells. The treated areas are exposed to extreme cold. This method can cause long term nerve damage and pain. SculpSure utilizes laser technology to heat the fat cells to release them from the tissue to be naturally eliminated by the body. The treatment can be described as a soothing, warming sensation that does not pose any threats to the tissue or nerves. 7.)Lower Cost & Increased Efficiency: The fact that SculpSure can treat 4 areas at one time in 25 minutes and Coolsculpting can only treat 1 area an 1 hour you saving over 50% of your time. Although, you can repeat SculpSure treatments on the same area after 6 weeks, SculpSure has the ability to reach optimal results in just one treatment. It is common for Coolsculpting patients to require two or more treatments to achieve their desired result.

Scott Chapin, MD, FACS
Philadelphia Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 21 reviews

Heat vs Cold, SculpSure vs Coolsculpting

Coolsculpting is an excellent method of reducing unwanted pocket of fat that can fit into specially made applicators. I have been using this device for nearly 6 years, and yes, it is a great treatment that is predictable, reliable and has excellent long term positive effects. It works by cooling fat cells to destroy them. 

SculpSure is the new kid on the block. I personally had a treatment done 4 weeks ago to experience the treatment, and to judge the efficacy of this new device. 

My personal experience as a Dermatologist-

1. Coolsculpting - great for contouring  esp. Pockets of fat, like the flanks. Predictable. Downtime of a few days after the treatment. Post treatment pain is frequent but tolerable. 

2. SculpSure- heats fat. Best for general reduction. Takes only 25 minutes to do. So far at 4 weeks, I have noticed and measured a difference, but no large long term studies, so that is only MY opinion. No downtime, back to the gym the next day. Super comfortable. 

Bottom line- I think both of these devices have their place in a body contouring clinic, time will tell if SculpSure is the game changer. To date there has been a 100% patient satisfaction rate, but only 20 reviews on RealSelf. I think it is too early to make a hard call. 

Watch this space. 

Dr Davin Lim
Laser and aesthetic dermatologist
Fiori Institute
Brisbane, Australia.

Davin Lim, MBBS, FACD
Brisbane Dermatologist
4.7 out of 5 stars 75 reviews

The difference between SculpSure vs. CoolSculpting...

Both SculpSure and CoolSculpting are FDA Approved for permanent fat reduction.  While the results should be somewhat similar, the method of action and post care is completely different.  SculpSure has a Sapphire cooling tip keeping the skin and nerves cool while the 1060 nm laser heats the fat cells for 25 minutes.    While the cooling is constant, the heating period oscillates to keep the fat at the correct temperature.  Patients report only minor discomfort during the heating periods.  After the treatment, the laser heads are docked and the applicator frames are removed.  The patient only has to get dressed and go back to their normal activities. 
CoolSculpting is cryolipolysis where it freezes fat cells for 60 minutes.  The applicator is attached to the treatment area and a vacuum is introduced, sucking the area up into the applicator to be frozen.  Please read the other reviews about the comfort of this procedure.  There is a significant risk of temporary to permanent nerve damage.  Once the 60 minutes of freezing is over, the patient has to massage the area back into place for the next 1 to 4 weeks.

Laura Riehm, MD
Fort Worth Physician
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

CoolSculpting Remains the Leading Noninvasive Fat Reduction Technology Worldwide

As the founder and medical director of Coolspa, I have directed and supervised over 6,000 CoolSculpting procedures since adopting CoolSculpting in my practice in 2010. During the past 6 years, I have been impressed with the consistent results that CoolSculpting has provided my Coolspa patients in New York. According to the FDA, the average fat reduction is 20-25% in each area treated, and the Coolspa experience is entirely consistent with this. Of course, we see a wide range of responses among our patients, with some demonstrating a reduction of over 25% in their treated fat, and some less. One important issue in CoolSculpting is to be certain that the evaluation and treatment okab are formulated by a body contouring expert who is very familiar with the CoolSculpting applicators. What I mean by this is, for example, that if a "pinching" applicator is applied to an area which is too thick to be adequately drawn into the applicator, that patient will predictably not demonstrate much of a result. Therefore, the key is to have an individualized treatment plan for each patient. It is not unusual that I recommend liposuction over CoolSculpting when the fatty deposits are too extensive and would require an unreasonable number of CoolSculpting treatments.

In terms of SculpSure, while I am not personally experienced with this technology, I suggest that it and claims surrounding it be viewed with caution until a significant level of experience with this technology has accumulated. Thus far, I have found that all heat-based technologies such as Liposoniix produce inconsistent results and that in order to achieve impressive results a significant amount of heating, and therefore pain, must occur. One of the nice things about CoolSculpting is that within 10 minutes of the start of a treatment, the treated area becomes numb.

Overall, I have been impressed by how much y patients enjoy the CoolSculpting process. They find the treatments to be generally very easy to tolerate and frequently watch movies or do work during treatment. Furthermore, they seem to enjoy the sense of empowerment that they have in directing their treatment course over time.

David P. Rapaport, MD, FACS
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 38 reviews

Difference between SculpSure & CoolSculpting

In some ways, SculpSure is similar to CoolSculpting, another non-invasive fat reduction treatment. Both treatments work by destroying fat cells so the body can gradually eliminate them. The main differences between these two treatments is that SculpSure takes only 25 minutes where as CoolSculpting takes 60 mintues, the mode of fat cell destruction used in SculpSure is very high temperatures where CoolSculpting uses very cold temperatures. The treatment area for SculpSure are applicators that can rest on top of the skin and be placed almost anywhere while for CoolSculpting the area must be large enough and skin lax enough to be lifted up between two cooling panels. Discomfort is rare with the SculpSure and many patients find the CoolSculpting to be uncomfortable with the cold sensation. With the SculpSure you get increased collagen and you don't get that with CoolSculpting. Since it’s approval in late 2015, SculpSure has rapidly grown in popularity and is now one of the most requested fat loss treatments. SculpSure can treat twice the amount of treatment area in half the time of CoolSculpting.
  • Noticeable fat loss results in the targeted area in less than 12 weeks*
  • Provides a natural appearance with smooth contours and no dimpling*
  • Treats twice the surface area in half the time
  • No downtime afterwards and no unsightly bruising*
  • Comfortable and fast treatment sessions

Dennis Gross, MD
New York Dermatologist
4.4 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

CoolSculpting vs. SculpSure

SculpSure and CoolSculpting produce similar results, up to a 24% and 22% reduction in fat, respectively. The advantage with SculpSure is the variety of application zones (CoolSculpt is somewhat limited by its handpieces’ ability to fit various body types), comfort of procedure, and length of procedure time. In our experience, the practical nature of the handpieces helps to ensure a more predictable result with SculpSure.
Both procedures are often repeated in monthly intervals to see a more dramatic results. Up to 24% means you might not see a big enough difference to feel satisfied with a single round. By the second round, thanks to the magic of compound math, you could see up to 45% reduction in fat, which would certainly be very noticeable.
You also mentioned some concern over the effectiveness of the treatment, as you have not lost weight. Neither of these treatments is intended to be for weight loss. The fat these procedures target best is light and fluffy, which means you should see a change in volume or circumference, but it doesn’t tend to weigh enough to amount to a large change on the scale.
Financial budgeting is a large part of our treatment recommendation process. We understand patients want to make sound financial decisions, and honor that by offering a variety of treatment options in a range of price points, as well as a few different financing and payment options. You should feel confident in the value of your treatments. Neither CoolSculpting or SculpSure if right for everyone. It is important that you choose a physician who is experienced and well respected to help you make a choice that you will be happy with.

Mark Karolak, DO, FAOCO
Bridgewater Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 49 reviews

SculpSure is effective

Thank you for your question. I am sorry to hear that you did not see results with CoolSculpting. I am a huge proponent of the SculpSure treatment over Cool Sculpting or Vanquish. It has worked for many of our patients. SculpSure is a hyperthermic laser fat removal system that works by directing laser energy into your treated areas. What I like about the SculpSure is that it heats up the fat cells so that it not only gets rid of them, but also helps promote collagen or elastin production for tighter skin. There is no downtime and patients can return to work or other activities after treatment. With SculpSure, you can treat up to four areas at one time and it only takes about 25 minutes per treatment. Overall, I feel it’s the best noninvasive option in the market. If you’re interested I suggest scheduling a full in-person consultation with a qualified physician to review your treatment area. The practice can show you before and after pictures and explain more about how it works. From there you can decide if it’s something you want to do. Good Luck!

Bruce E. Katz, MD
New York Dermatologic Surgeon
3.8 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Sculpsure Over Coolsculpting

Hello and thank you for your question.  I have been using sculpsure for the last 6 months since it first came out.  I have been very impressed with the results and lack of side effects seen with coolsculpting.These are some of the benefits of Sculpsure. 
  1. FDA-approved 
  2. Highly effective treatment 1060nm laser targeting fat cells more specifically. 
  3. Can be used on the flanks, abdomen, upper arms, thighs, knees, and other locations with fat deposits
  4. Completely non-surgical and non-invasive
  5. No anesthesia
  6. Painless – most patients describe the treatments as feeling like a warming sensation
  7. Only requires one treatment
  8. Most treatments are approximately 25 minutes long
  9. No downtime; can return right back to work or other activitiesIf you have stubborn areas of fat that you can’t seem to get to go away, SculpSure™ is the revolutionary treatment that you’ve been looking for. In addition to its FDA-approval for safety and effectiveness, it also requires only one treatment, whereas several other fat-reduction techniques require multiple treatments. You don’t have to fear any pain or discomfort and can return to work right after your SculpSure™ session. You should notice results within 6-12 weeks and will love the way you look.

Brian Joseph, MD
Orlando Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 52 reviews

Sculpsure is Best

Sculpsure is a new technology that uses a 1060nm laser to specifically target the fat cells in the area that is being treated.  24% of the fat cells are permanently removed in a single 25 minute treatment.  Four separate applicators can be placed during one treatment which allows for greater customization for each individual patient.  
In our practice patients are seeing results as early as 6 weeks after treatment while optimal results won't appear until 12 weeks after treatment.  There is absolutely no downtime after Sculpsure and no problems with nerve pain which is significant in Coolsculpting patients.

Sculpsure is the game changer in non-invasive, permanent fat reduction. 

Jeff T. Healy, MD
Oahu Island Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 104 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.