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Suck It Out, Freeze It or Melt It_ Lipo, CoolSculpting and Thermi – Fat Treatments 101 (7)

Got Fat? We Can Take Care of That

Many people are familiar with the concept of a “mommy makeover”. This cutesy term typically references one or more of a variety of cosmetic procedures that many women choose to have done as a way to get their pre-baby body back after pregnancy. One such procedure is liposuction, or “lipo” for short.  Lipo can be part of a mommy makeover, a daddy makeover, or a just an anyone slim down, shape up or makeover—it’s an option for just about anyone/everyone! A very famous celebrity who’s never been afraid to be honest with her fans dished about why she chose to have lipo.

Cardi B is a reality star turned famous rapper who recently had a daughter with her husband Offset, one-third of the rapping trio, Migos. This past May, the rapper was looking quite tiny and svelte, and admitted to her fans, while on stage at the Beale Street Music Festival, that she just had lipo and because of it she couldn’t move or dance as much as she normally would because it would “mess up” (we’re keeping it clean here!) her lipo.  Shortly after, Cardi was forced to cancel her Memorial Day weekend performances and slow down a bit to allow her body to adequately heal post-lipo.

Lipo is the Gold Standard

When you see Cardi B’s results, you’ll probably get excited about the potential to slim and sculpt your own body.  Her recovery story is less than exciting though and that may make you a little nervous about the idea of lipo. In truth, lipo is one of the safest and most commonly performed surgical procedures in the United States. For context, in 2018, it was the second most popular cosmetic surgery performed overall in the U.S., and the second most popular option for women

dr. steele-johnson performing liposuction surgery

What is lipo?

In short, lipo is when fat is removed from specific areas of your body to improve shape, contouring, and definition. You can have lipo performed nearly anywhere on the body, although it’s most often done around the following areas:

  • tummy
  • arms
  • thighs
  • hips
  • back
  • under the chin

The fat is suctioned out of you, and once those fat cells are gone, they are gone—never to return to the areas or anywhere else.   

Lipo is a great way to treat those stubborn areas that don’t go away even when you’re on your best behavior with your diet and exercise.  Sometimes you are genetically programmed to carry a little extra fat in your thighs, or maybe it’s your chin? Maybe after a baby, or after you’ve gotten to a certain age, you carry extra fat in your belly or you have back fat that you dislike?  Dr. Steele Johnson and lipo help re-define the shape and size that you were given genetically.  

before and after lipo at steele dermatology

Traditional (Anesthesia) Lipo

Unlike awake Precision Lipo, you have to go under general anesthesia to be put to sleep before removing fat.  This is likely what Cardi B had, given her story, because the recovery is often much tougher in this procedure.  Since you are unconscious, the procedure tends to be a lot more aggressive, with a lot more soreness and a longer recovery. 

Precision (Tumescent) Lipo

At Steele Dermatology, Dr. Steele Johnson performs Lipo using the Precision lipo technique. Precision Lipo is an approach that uses local anesthesia (also called tumescent anesthesia) to numb the lipo target areas.  The procedure was invented by dermatologist Dr. Klein, with whom Dr. Steele Johnson trained with. You’re awake, but given medicine to feel completely comfortable and relaxed during the procedure.

With the treatment area numbed, you won’t feel a thing—giving you great results without any need for anesthesia. This treatment option is great for patients who have stubborn fat pockets but want to avoid a more invasive approach.

It has been proven time and time again to be the safest option with the speediest recovery time.  Patients are up and walking around the next day and doing normal exercise within a week.

Are there non-surgical options?

Absolutely! Allow us to introduce one of Steele Dermatology’s favorite and most effective non-surgical approaches to fat reduction on the market: CoolSculpting®

side by side image of before and after of woman's mid section after cool sculpting treatments at steele dermatology


Unlike traditional and precision lipo, CoolSculpting® is an entirely non-invasive, non-surgical procedure which means no surgery, no needles, and no downtime. CoolSculpting is the only FDA cleared procedure that uses controlled cold temperature to freeze the fat and eliminate it from your body.  Say goodbye to love handles, muffin top, saddlebags, belly rolls and more!  

CoolSculpting is one of our favorite procedures, and just like in lipo, when those fat cells are gone, they’re gone.  We are able to CoolSculpt small areas or big areas and may do one or more treatment depending on your goals. We completely customize your treatment to give you the results you want.

To compliment your lipo or CoolSculpting® treatment you may need a little something extra to meet your appearance goals. Or if you have loose or stretched out skin, then laser skin tightening with or without lipo may be just what you need and we have a few options:

before and after thermismooth


This method involves combining radiofrequency (RF) technology and local anesthesia to provide specific, controlled contouring around the lower face, neck, and body. The entire process takes only an hour or two, and many patients see results after a single session.  If you have any excess fat then we lipo in conjunction with the Thermi for a combination treatment.

ThermiSmooth Face and Body

This contouring option is similar to ThermiTight in that it uses RF technology, but unlike ThermiTight, no anesthesia or incisions are necessary. ThermiSmooth Face is ideal for tightening the skin around the eyes or mouth, with the whole procedure taking no more than fifteen to thirty minutes. ThermiSmooth Body is designed to target the appearance of loose skin for a smoother and a more contoured appearance. This specialized technology can provide a personalized solution to eliminate the appearance of cellulite and stubborn fat in various areas all over the body. 

If you want to get rid of your stubborn areas of fat once and for all or re-shape and define your body contours, Steele Dermatology has a solution to help you look and feel your best. Request a consultation and see how we can help you meet your appearance goals!

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New Location Alert
Our former Buckhead office on Pharr Rd. has relocated to a stunning new facility at:
2716 Piedmont Rd. Atlanta, GA 30305
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New Location Alert
Our former Buckhead office on Pharr Rd. has relocated to a stunning new facility at:
2716 Piedmont Rd. Atlanta, GA 30305
Make an Appointment
Our old Buckhead office on Pharr Rd., has moved to a beautiful new facility located at: 2716 Piedmont Rd. Atlanta, GA 30305
New Buckhead Location!
Contact Us
New Buckhead Location!
Our old Buckhead office on Pharr Rd., has moved to beautiful new facility located at: 2716 Piedmont Rd. Atlanta, GA 30305
Contact Us