Tips to tighten loose skin

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I know they say it takes about 1 year for the skin to bounce back, but I'd like to hear your stories, how much you lost, how long it took to bounce back and any tips you might want to share.
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Replies

  • jeepinshawn
    jeepinshawn Posts: 642 Member
    edited February 2016
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    I have tons of loose skin
    12744053_10207403620002863_7975507063046718664_n.jpg?oh=8b49f2c162486c8c0dd770885556fbd4&oe=5764EA9B

    Been maintaining for only a short time, sure hope it bounces back some. There is a 110lbs difference between those pics...
  • Francl27
    Francl27 Posts: 26,372 Member
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    Sorry but short of weight surgery, there isn't anything.

    Been this weight for 2 years... no change whatsoever in the loose skin.
  • LivingtheLeanDream
    LivingtheLeanDream Posts: 13,345 Member
    edited February 2016
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    @jeepinshawn Did you lose your weight very quickly? I do hope some of it tightens in over time.... I didn't have much to lose so never really had an issue.

    OP Hope you get some good feedback or suggestions.
  • 47Jacqueline
    47Jacqueline Posts: 6,993 Member
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    My underarms were the worst. I tried laser treatments, but what really worked was a year of free weights. I know some people say you have to lift heavy, but my results came from a mix of 20 to 30lb.
  • ilovesweeties
    ilovesweeties Posts: 84 Member
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    I am in my early thirties, I stopped trying to lose about 8 months ago after reaching goal weight and getting really sad about some areas of loose skin (67 lbs down). I didn't have a huge problem, but it was noticeable enough to make me self-conscious. Eight months on and things haven't 'snapped back', but it all is looking a bit better! I can't say exactly what worked, but I can tell you what I did:

    1) Bio Oil. It won't have 'tightened' anything, but it may have helped with the texture of skin and just the act of applying it helped get me used to the shape and feel of my new body.
    2) Push ups. Building a little muscle helped bulk the worst area out.
    3) Regaining a few pounds - I put on about 7 pounds and overall I think I prefer to be slightly rounder and less umm, loose (how I feel about that changes all the time though)
    4) I have been doing New Rules of Lifting Supercharged (progressive lifting programme) on and off over the 8 months and that has had 2 benefits - firstly in bulking out some of the loose areas and secondly in giving me some muscle to be proud of, taking my mind off the bits of me I don't like so much
    5) I have resolved to give up saying mean things about myself until Easter (but hopefully by then it'll be a habit!).
  • amyk0202
    amyk0202 Posts: 667 Member
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    I'm 44 now. I had a VSG in 2012 & lost a little over 100 lbs very quickly. I stopped at 10 lbs over the top of the "normal" bmi weight for my height (so still an "overweight" bmi). If I had tried to get to the lower end of the "normal" bmi range, I imagine it would have been worse. I maintained for about 2 years before I decided to do anything about my skin. For me, there were several problem areas:

    1) Breasts lost a lot of volume. I am still large, but there is loose skin & definitely more pancaked than projected. Per the surgeon, I could have a reduction/lift to correct this.

    2) I have a fold of skin that runs along my side from the bottom of my breasts to my back (lateral thoracic laxity). Per the surgeon, the only way to get rid of this is to excise the skin. During the breast reduction/lift they would do an anchor incision & extend the "hook" under the breast, all the way around my side to cut out that fold.

    3) I have the floppy "bingo wings" on the backs of my arms. Per the surgeon, I could have an arm lift. I think this might be improving some on it's own, or maybe I'm just more used to it now & it doesn't bother me as much. I don't know. I've never measured. Maybe I should.

    4) The inner skin on my upper thighs is loose. I didn't ask the surgeon about that. This has actually improved a lot on it's own now that I'm 4 years out. I used to sugar my legs. When I was obese, it was hard because I could barely reach my legs & was dizzy & couldn't breathe when I was bending down. Right after I lost the weight, the skin was so loose, I needed more hands than I had to pull everything tight enough to sugar. I had to kind of tuck skin under my leg to get enough tension (gross, I know). Now, I use an epilator & the skin has tightened up enough that I can just pull it tight with one hand like I do the rest of my leg. Kind of a weird way of knowing that things are improving =).

    5) Under my chin/neck is loose & soft. This does not seem to be improving.

    6) My stomach area was horrible beyond words. It didn't bounce back & made me extremely unhappy. This is what I decided to fix (too expensive to do everything). I had an extended tummy tuck with muscle repair. The scar goes from mid-hip to mid-hip. It is thin & low & not at all noticeable--unlike my awful skin apron. It was expensive, painful, inconvenient, and life changing. It was soooo worth it.

    I know I should have been happy with being healthier after losing weight, but honestly, I wasn't. The way my stomach looked really just made me so unhappy. The tummy tuck made all the difference. Now I like how I look--big pancake boobs, bingo wings & all.
  • jeepinshawn
    jeepinshawn Posts: 642 Member
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    @jeepinshawn Did you lose your weight very quickly? I do hope some of it tightens in over time.... I didn't have much to lose so never really had an issue.

    OP Hope you get some good feedback or suggestions.
    @RunRutheeRun I did I lost about 110lbs in 215 days or so.
  • LivingtheLeanDream
    LivingtheLeanDream Posts: 13,345 Member
    edited February 2016
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    @jeepinshawn you did great but that was around 15lbs a month (if I have calculated that right)!! jeepers! fast loss creates loose skin, the body will hopefully shrink yet though and become accustomed to your new weight.
  • Francl27
    Francl27 Posts: 26,372 Member
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    amyk0202 wrote: »
    I'm 44 now. I had a VSG in 2012 & lost a little over 100 lbs very quickly. I stopped at 10 lbs over the top of the "normal" bmi weight for my height (so still an "overweight" bmi). If I had tried to get to the lower end of the "normal" bmi range, I imagine it would have been worse. I maintained for about 2 years before I decided to do anything about my skin. For me, there were several problem areas:



    3) I have the floppy "bingo wings" on the backs of my arms. Per the surgeon, I could have an arm lift. I think this might be improving some on it's own, or maybe I'm just more used to it now & it doesn't bother me as much. I don't know. I've never measured. Maybe I should.

    4) The inner skin on my upper thighs is loose. I didn't ask the surgeon about that. This has actually improved a lot on it's own now that I'm 4 years out. I used to sugar my legs. When I was obese, it was hard because I could barely reach my legs & was dizzy & couldn't breathe when I was bending down. Right after I lost the weight, the skin was so loose, I needed more hands than I had to pull everything tight enough to sugar. I had to kind of tuck skin under my leg to get enough tension (gross, I know). Now, I use an epilator & the skin has tightened up enough that I can just pull it tight with one hand like I do the rest of my leg. Kind of a weird way of knowing that things are improving =).

    5) Under my chin/neck is loose & soft. This does not seem to be improving.

    6) My stomach area was horrible beyond words. It didn't bounce back & made me extremely unhappy. This is what I decided to fix (too expensive to do everything). I had an extended tummy tuck with muscle repair. The scar goes from mid-hip to mid-hip. It is thin & low & not at all noticeable--unlike my awful skin apron. It was expensive, painful, inconvenient, and life changing. It was soooo worth it.

    I know I should have been happy with being healthier after losing weight, but honestly, I wasn't. The way my stomach looked really just made me so unhappy. The tummy tuck made all the difference. Now I like how I look--big pancake boobs, bingo wings & all.

    Pretty much all this for me too, except I don't have money for surgery.
  • robininfl
    robininfl Posts: 1,137 Member
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    OK here is my experience, birth is the fastest weight loss I've experienced and much faster than someone would lose fat (I have reasonably "good skin", did not get stretch marks or anything like that):

    At 24, 8lb baby, big round belly, hemmorhaged and had to lay down for 3 weeks, skin on belly bounced right back.

    At 27, repeat.

    At 36, repeat, but with 9lb baby and more weight gain, skin bounced back as I did bedrest after the bleeding.

    At 39, 10 pound baby with my biggest weight gain during pregnancy, no hemmorhage, I felt great and was up and around immediately, skin did not bounce back - either because i did not rest laying down for weeks, or age, or because it could not do this a fourth time, like a piece of elastic wearing out with use?

    I lost the extra weight slowly and during those years, took care of the skin by exfoliating with a scratchy washcloth to bring circulation, always moisturizing, and lots of working out to tone and tighten all over, and now, while it's still not perfect, not back to how it was after #3, I can wear a bikini without worry. I will note that it improved over years, not months, that last baby is 9 now.


    I did have a friend who had one baby at 25 and also gained weight in general then lost it & her skin never shrunk back up, she had very delicate skin texture and once stretched, it stayed where it had been stretched to. No elasticity. She waited 5 years, lost weight to a very healthy size, and then got a tummy tuck/boob lift and looked AMAZING. Without the surgery she would never have recovered the skin tone, though, it never bounced.
  • spoonyspork
    spoonyspork Posts: 238 Member
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    I'm in my mid-30's and was overweight for about 12 years. I lost ~100lbs pretty quickly (less than a year), but was lucky enough that I've always had pretty small arms and waist compared to my weight. 6-ish months into maintenance, my obvious loose skin is all in my boobs and a bit in my stomach. At first I had a bit on my neck and legs, but that quickly snapped back. My stomach and even boobs are sloooooowly tightening up. People keep thinking I'm still losing weight, but it's actually just my skin tightening up, shrinking up bumps and curves. I've done nothing to make this happen: simply eating as close to maintenance as possible while doing my usual routine (not much exercise, though I do ride horses for an hour or so once or twice a week, which I consider to be comparable to light strength training. Also casually walk/run/bike/bock, but only like once or twice a month)

    My thought is: I didn't do this out of vanity or to look good for anyone, just my own health. If the skin snaps back it snaps back, but I know I've gotten WAY more healthy: what do I care if I look sexy in a swimsuit?
  • airangel59
    airangel59 Posts: 1,887 Member
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    My thought is: I didn't do this out of vanity or to look good for anyone, just my own health. If the skin snaps back it snaps back, but I know I've gotten WAY more healthy: what do I care if I look sexy in a swimsuit?

    I agree with this 100%. I'm over 50, I carried my weight (SW 275) give or take 3 decades. I'm only 5'5.5" and carried it in my face & gut mostly. The only thing I've done is walk & drink water (I need to still work on firming/toning and do have a weight bench/set but am a couch potato) . Did not start walking till nearly down 100 lbs (when I got my first Fitbit 7/2013) & haven't stopped since.

    I've been maintaining the same weight for a year now (I still weigh, measure, write what I bite). I consider myself very lucky that I don't have more skin laxity than I do (I do have some batwing hang but I can live with it, and some saggy upper inner thighs, my stomach area has done a nice job in snapping back & I'm so grateful for that). Never was well endowed and what I did have has disappeared (when in sweatshirt been called 'sir' a few times, sigh).

    I no longer am considered diabetic, hypertensive or have high cholesterol/trigycerides & am off the 5 meds I was taking for all this. I consider a bit of saggy skin a fair trade for getting my health & life in gear.
    4ev9ce8eam3u.png

  • ald783
    ald783 Posts: 690 Member
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    I'm not sure how much it really matters how fast or slow you lose it. I'd say how long you were overweight and how long the skin was stretched out probably has more to do with it. I lost weight pretty slowly and still had some loose skin, although it wasn't terrible. After 2.5 years at that weight it was still there, so I don't know if it really snaps back on its own. I think in most cases of losing a substantial amount of weight, surgery is the only way to really get rid of excess skin.
  • amyk0202
    amyk0202 Posts: 667 Member
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    ald783 wrote: »
    I'm not sure how much it really matters how fast or slow you lose it. I'd say how long you were overweight and how long the skin was stretched out probably has more to do with it. I lost weight pretty slowly and still had some loose skin, although it wasn't terrible. After 2.5 years at that weight it was still there, so I don't know if it really snaps back on its own. I think in most cases of losing a substantial amount of weight, surgery is the only way to really get rid of excess skin.

    I agree. I think that if you lose slowly, your skin may have time to snap back while you are still losing (if it's going to), which may lead people to the false impression that you won't have loose skin if you lose slowly.
  • Heartisalonelyhunter
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    robininfl wrote: »
    OK here is my experience, birth is the fastest weight loss I've experienced and much faster than someone would lose fat (I have reasonably "good skin", did not get stretch marks or anything like that):

    At 24, 8lb baby, big round belly, hemmorhaged and had to lay down for 3 weeks, skin on belly bounced right back.

    At 27, repeat.

    At 36, repeat, but with 9lb baby and more weight gain, skin bounced back as I did bedrest after the bleeding.

    At 39, 10 pound baby with my biggest weight gain during pregnancy, no hemmorhage, I felt great and was up and around immediately, skin did not bounce back - either because i did not rest laying down for weeks, or age, or because it could not do this a fourth time, like a piece of elastic wearing out with use?

    I lost the extra weight slowly and during those years, took care of the skin by exfoliating with a scratchy washcloth to bring circulation, always moisturizing, and lots of working out to tone and tighten all over, and now, while it's still not perfect, not back to how it was after #3, I can wear a bikini without worry. I will note that it improved over years, not months, that last baby is 9 now.


    I did have a friend who had one baby at 25 and also gained weight in general then lost it & her skin never shrunk back up, she had very delicate skin texture and once stretched, it stayed where it had been stretched to. No elasticity. She waited 5 years, lost weight to a very healthy size, and then got a tummy tuck/boob lift and looked AMAZING. Without the surgery she would never have recovered the skin tone, though, it never bounced.
    This is almost the same as my experience. I have 5 kids including one set of twins. The skin from the twins took 5 years to go back to how it was. I will add that with my most recent pregnancy (also a 10lber) the skin is still there but not as bad. Nowadays they give you postpartum compression wear at the hospital and it really helped. I would think that anyone in the process of losing a lot of weight should invest in some good compression wear. It stops gravity pulling the skin down
  • csillabrimer978
    csillabrimer978 Posts: 90 Member
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    robininfl wrote: »
    OK here is my experience, birth is the fastest weight loss I've experienced and much faster than someone would lose fat (I have reasonably "good skin", did not get stretch marks or anything like that):

    At 24, 8lb baby, big round belly, hemmorhaged and had to lay down for 3 weeks, skin on belly bounced right back.

    At 27, repeat.

    At 36, repeat, but with 9lb baby and more weight gain, skin bounced back as I did bedrest after the bleeding.

    At 39, 10 pound baby with my biggest weight gain during pregnancy, no hemmorhage, I felt great and was up and around immediately, skin did not bounce back - either because i did not rest laying down for weeks, or age, or because it could not do this a fourth time, like a piece of elastic wearing out with use?

    I lost the extra weight slowly and during those years, took care of the skin by exfoliating with a scratchy washcloth to bring circulation, always moisturizing, and lots of working out to tone and tighten all over, and now, while it's still not perfect, not back to how it was after #3, I can wear a bikini without worry. I will note that it improved over years, not months, that last baby is 9 now.


    I did have a friend who had one baby at 25 and also gained weight in general then lost it & her skin never shrunk back up, she had very delicate skin texture and once stretched, it stayed where it had been stretched to. No elasticity. She waited 5 years, lost weight to a very healthy size, and then got a tummy tuck/boob lift and looked AMAZING. Without the surgery she would never have recovered the skin tone, though, it never bounced.
    This is almost the same as my experience. I have 5 kids including one set of twins. The skin from the twins took 5 years to go back to how it was. I will add that with my most recent pregnancy (also a 10lber) the skin is still there but not as bad. Nowadays they give you postpartum compression wear at the hospital and it really helped. I would think that anyone in the process of losing a lot of weight should invest in some good compression wear. It stops gravity pulling the skin down

    Do you have any before and after pics? What did you do in that 5 years to help your skin bounce back ?
  • csillabrimer978
    csillabrimer978 Posts: 90 Member
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    I'm in my mid-30's and was overweight for about 12 years. I lost ~100lbs pretty quickly (less than a year), but was lucky enough that I've always had pretty small arms and waist compared to my weight. 6-ish months into maintenance, my obvious loose skin is all in my boobs and a bit in my stomach. At first I had a bit on my neck and legs, but that quickly snapped back. My stomach and even boobs are sloooooowly tightening up. People keep thinking I'm still losing weight, but it's actually just my skin tightening up, shrinking up bumps and curves. I've done nothing to make this happen: simply eating as close to maintenance as possible while doing my usual routine (not much exercise, though I do ride horses for an hour or so once or twice a week, which I consider to be comparable to light strength training. Also casually walk/run/bike/bock, but only like once or twice a month)

    My thought is: I didn't do this out of vanity or to look good for anyone, just my own health. If the skin snaps back it snaps back, but I know I've gotten WAY more healthy: what do I care if I look sexy in a swimsuit?
    Good news, happy for you, I can see the light at the end of the tunnel :)
  • BurnWithBarn2015
    BurnWithBarn2015 Posts: 1,026 Member
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    I lost a lot of weight and yes i have lose skin. Not really bad in my opinion, not beautiful either.
    But the triad off is far more important to me. Healthier and fitter, full of life and energy and after all nobody sees me naked except me or my husband...And he is thrilled so no problems there either.

    Yes skin snaps back till about 2 years after you lost weight. So for me, i hope it does a bit more we will see. I notice it is still catching up.
    I also decided that weighing around the 139 lbs is my range ( weigh atm 143 lbs) I am "5.5 with a large frame.
    I dont want to be skinnier, and dont mind to be fuller than a girl/teenager body. This automatically means that i also still have some fat and so the lose skin there is "less" noticeable.
    In the future i will move hopefully to some lifting and "fill" it up with some more muscle. But that is all guessing for now.

    Do i think of removing excess skin? no..... it isn't bothering me a bit for now. Maybe later, but i really dont feel like it. I am fine. I am happy with the result even if this means the lose skin forever.

    I think some people also have a to low opinion of them self. Put them self down to much. What they did by losing all that weight is awesome and respect to them. And yes it comes with lose skin for many of us. But that doesn't mean we are less, or ugly. The mind set of disappointment by some amazes me. I am just happy and enjoying every single second of my life and "new" body.
    And of course we have the group that need an operation for medical reasons/rashes etc. Rightfully so. And for the people who want to or can afford it. Also rightfully so.
    But the mind set that your ugly or not happy with the result or even heavenly disappointed is just wrong to me. Think of the accomplishment and how much better your life is now. Healthier!
    That must be the most important feeling.

    Everybody is different but everybody is beautiful in his/her own way...with or without lose skin

    95069916.png

  • csillabrimer978
    csillabrimer978 Posts: 90 Member
    Options
    I lost a lot of weight and yes i have lose skin. Not really bad in my opinion, not beautiful either.
    But the triad off is far more important to me. Healthier and fitter, full of life and energy and after all nobody sees me naked except me or my husband...And he is thrilled so no problems there either.

    Yes skin snaps back till about 2 years after you lost weight. So for me, i hope it does a bit more we will see. I notice it is still catching up.
    I also decided that weighing around the 139 lbs is my range ( weigh atm 143 lbs) I am "5.5 with a large frame.
    I dont want to be skinnier, and dont mind to be fuller than a girl/teenager body. This automatically means that i also still have some fat and so the lose skin there is "less" noticeable.
    In the future i will move hopefully to some lifting and "fill" it up with some more muscle. But that is all guessing for now.

    Do i think of removing excess skin? no..... it isn't bothering me a bit for now. Maybe later, but i really dont feel like it. I am fine. I am happy with the result even if this means the lose skin forever.

    I think some people also have a to low opinion of them self. Put them self down to much. What they did by losing all that weight is awesome and respect to them. And yes it comes with lose skin for many of us. But that doesn't mean we are less, or ugly. The mind set of disappointment by some amazes me. I am just happy and enjoying every single second of my life and "new" body.
    And of course we have the group that need an operation for medical reasons/rashes etc. Rightfully so. And for the people who want to or can afford it. Also rightfully so.
    But the mind set that your ugly or not happy with the result or even heavenly disappointed is just wrong to me. Think of the accomplishment and how much better your life is now. Healthier!
    That must be the most important feeling.

    Everybody is different but everybody is beautiful in his/her own way...with or without lose skin

    95069916.png
    I agree, I had a c section and already have a scar, I can imagine getting another one with surgery. In some cases I completely understand it however, as you said some people have medical reasons and some extreme cases that justifies. Also agree, we all accomplished something MAJOR just by losing the weight

  • Heartisalonelyhunter
    Heartisalonelyhunter Posts: 786 Member
    edited February 2016
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    robininfl wrote: »
    OK here is my experience, birth is the fastest weight loss I've experienced and much faster than someone would lose fat (I have reasonably "good skin", did not get stretch marks or anything like that):

    At 24, 8lb baby, big round belly, hemmorhaged and had to lay down for 3 weeks, skin on belly bounced right back.

    At 27, repeat.

    At 36, repeat, but with 9lb baby and more weight gain, skin bounced back as I did bedrest after the bleeding.

    At 39, 10 pound baby with my biggest weight gain during pregnancy, no hemmorhage, I felt great and was up and around immediately, skin did not bounce back - either because i did not rest laying down for weeks, or age, or because it could not do this a fourth time, like a piece of elastic wearing out with use?

    I lost the extra weight slowly and during those years, took care of the skin by exfoliating with a scratchy washcloth to bring circulation, always moisturizing, and lots of working out to tone and tighten all over, and now, while it's still not perfect, not back to how it was after #3, I can wear a bikini without worry. I will note that it improved over years, not months, that last baby is 9 now.


    I did have a friend who had one baby at 25 and also gained weight in general then lost it & her skin never shrunk back up, she had very delicate skin texture and once stretched, it stayed where it had been stretched to. No elasticity. She waited 5 years, lost weight to a very healthy size, and then got a tummy tuck/boob lift and looked AMAZING. Without the surgery she would never have recovered the skin tone, though, it never bounced.
    This is almost the same as my experience. I have 5 kids including one set of twins. The skin from the twins took 5 years to go back to how it was. I will add that with my most recent pregnancy (also a 10lber) the skin is still there but not as bad. Nowadays they give you postpartum compression wear at the hospital and it really helped. I would think that anyone in the process of losing a lot of weight should invest in some good compression wear. It stops gravity pulling the skin down

    Do you have any before and after pics? What did you do in that 5 years to help your skin bounce back ?

    No pics (nobody wants to take pics of their post baby belly!) I think mainly it was just time. The skin was so stretched (I went full term and gained 50lbs in a 4 month period) that it just took a long time for it to shrink back. But it did. I will say that during that time I started strength training, which helped my waist get smaller (hello obliques) and I always used a huge amount of moisturizer. Well moisturized skin is bound to have more elasticity than dry skin, right? I swear by amlactin (moisturizer with lactic acid) - I'm convinced it helped smooth out my belly skin. But other than I would just say that your body is an amazing machine and given enough time can recover from most things.