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CoolTone vs CoolSculpting: What’s the Difference?

Written by Kelly Wala, RN BSN, Advanced Nurse Injector on November 23, 2020 No Comments

cooltone vs coolsculpting

CoolTone and CoolSculpting are two of today’s most popular non-surgical body contouring treatments. While neither treatment is considered a weight loss treatment, both CoolSculpting and CoolTone can dramatically tone and tighten targeted body areas that have not responded to diet or exercise. Additionally, they are both owned by Allergan (created by Botox) and they are both 100% non-invasive, meaning there are no needles, incisions, pain, or downtime involved with either treatment.

With so many similarities, including the “Cool” in both their names, it’s easy to see how they can be confused as the same treatment. However, CoolSculpting and CoolTone are distinctly different in terms of how they work and the results they provide. The main difference is that CoolSculpting works to eliminate unwanted fat while CoolTone helps to build and tone muscle.

Here’s a rundown on the differences between CoolSculpting and CoolTone:

CoolSculpting Targets Fat

CoolSculpting is a non-surgical alternative to liposuction that works through the process of cryolipolysis. It works by freezing and killing fat cells, which are then naturally flushed out of the body through the lymph system. The device safely freezes fat cells at a precise temperature so surrounding tissue remains unaffected.

During a CoolSculpting treatment you may feel a sensation of tugging, pulling or mild pinching as the device moves over your skin. Because it involves freezing, you may at first feel extreme cold, tingling or cramping in the area being treated. Eventually, the area will become numb as the 30 to 40-minute treatment is completed.

The machine itself knows when to stop and will only target fat cells, so there’s very limited risk. Some patients even find themselves falling asleep, especially if they are lying during treatment.

The results of CoolSculpting can last for as long as you maintain your post-treatment body weight. Following the procedure, patients should maintain a regular exercise program and eat a healthy diet in order to enhance their results and prevent remaining fat cells from becoming enlarged.

CoolTone Enhances Muscle Tone

CoolTone works differently from CoolSculpting in that it builds muscle rather than removing fat. The relatively new device uses a technique called magnetic muscle stimulation, or MMS, to send electromagnetic pulses into your muscles. These pulses cause involuntary contractions which strengthen and thereby tone your muscles.

Because the device engages the muscles at a much higher rate than exercise does, results are more immediate than going to the gym. During one 30-minute CoolTone session your muscles will contract over 25,000 times. There’s very little discomfort as you feel the rapid muscle contractions. Some patients report feeling tired following their session, similar to how they might feel after a strenuous workout. Others report feeling much stronger the following day, more aware of their muscles.

Because the contour that results from CoolTone shaping is reliant on muscle, results will maintain for as long as you keep your muscles active. For this reason, CoolTone works best for those who already have an active lifestyle, and results are best maintained if you continue a regular exercise program.

Treatment Area Differences

Coolsculpting is approved to treat a variety of different body areas including:

  • Chin (double chin)
  • Arms
  • Back (bra fat)
  • Chest (for males)
  • Upper and lower abdominals
  • Inner and outer thighs
  • Knees

In contrast, CoolTone received FDA clearance in 2019 to tone muscle in the following areas:

  • Abdomen (including diastasis recti treatment)
  • Buttock
  • Thighs

CoolTone + CoolSculpting = Total Body Contouring

Discussing your body contouring goals with an experienced provider of both CoolSculpting and CoolTone is the best way to determine which option is best for you.

On the surface, the choice seems easy: patients who only want to lose fat should chose CoolScupting while patients who want increased muscle definition should opt for CoolTone. While that distinction seems obvious, there are many individuals who may benefit from a treatment plan that includes a combination of both CoolTone and CoolSculpting.

The two treatments, while different, can often complement each other nicely. Some patients may opt to first remove unwanted fat with CoolSculpting before toning underlying muscle via CoolTone. Others may benefit by doing both treatments simultaneously during the same appointment (patients say CoolTone feels like a nice massage when performed after a CoolSculpting session).


Kelly Wala, RN BSN

Kelly Wala is a Registered Nurse with a Baccalaureate Degree of Science in Nursing from Eastern Kentucky University. As an Aesthetic Nurse Specialist for the past 10 years Kelly specialized in a full complement of non-surgical aesthetic services such as facial injectables, laser and light therapy, body contouring, and skin care. Kelly was the first in Texas to perform the Injectable Threadlift.


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