Nude and Improved: Neck-to-Toe Skin-Care Guide

Spider veins, sunspots, saggy knees: If looking in a full-length mirror naked makes you want to buy a muumuu, then stop fixating and start fixing.

By Nikki Ostasiewski
Ilan Rubin/
Ilan Rubin/
Photograph: Ilan Rubin/

Fat-eliminating treatments that require no gym time or downtime? Believe it or not, they exist. The one getting the most buzz: Zeltiq's Cool Sculpting treatment, which freezes fat cells in your body, initiating a natural process of "elimination" (apparently fat breaks down when chilled), which can take up to four months. Expect to pay $1,500 to $3,000 per treatment, and you'll likely need between one and three. Note: Cool Sculpting is most often recommended to target trouble spots (saddlebags or a poochy lower abdomen), not for overall weight loss. For more information, go to

What’s bothering you Dimpled thighs
What to do Laser/massage treatments; retinoids

Every doctor we spoke to stressed that there is no cure for cellulite (in fact, one recommended prayer). However, there are treatments that soften the appearance of bumpy skin—temporarily. In his practice, Neil Sadick, MD, a New York dermatologist, uses VelaShape II, a vacuum-roller device that flattens the skin using heat and suction. About eight treatments are needed at $500 or so per session. A second option is Smooth-Shapes XV, a device that combines laser and light energy with massage. Treatments start at $200, and you’ll need about eight. A less costly option: prescription retinoids, such as Retin-A. Sadick pointed us to a study in the Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology that suggests retinoid use may smooth dimpled skin.

What’s bothering you Spider veins on your legs
What to do Vein-eliminating injections or lasers

Asclera, a new FDA-approved injectable, gets rid of veins quickly—usually in one to three treatments. How it works: Polidocanol is injected into the vein, damaging the interior walls so blood can no longer flow through the vessel. Average cost: $350 per leg. Another option is an Nd:YAG laser treatment, which uses heat to destroy the vein (note: because a laser beam is smaller than a needle, the Nd:YAG can target tinier veins than an injection can); multiple treatments are required. Average cost: $450 for 20 minutes.


First Published May 11, 2011

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