Click Here To Schedule A Consultation

Schedule a Consultation

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

For many patients, especially women, the upper arms can be an area where unwanted fat tends to accumulate. Even patients who maintain healthy lifestyle habits with a balanced diet and regular exercise can see changes in their upper arms as they age. These changes can be due to the accumulation of stubborn fat, hormonal changes, genetics, a decrease in collagen and skin elasticity, or perhaps excess skin due to weight loss or successful bariatric surgery. Whatever the reason, flabby arms or “bat wings” can be a point of frustration to many patients.

thermage arms 1721950033

Thankfully, new cosmetic dermatology procedures have provided an array of treatments that can help reduce fat in your upper arms with non-surgical body contouring. Non-invasive cosmetic procedures such as CoolSculpting (cryolipolysis) and Thermage (radiofrequency laser treatment) are commonly used to eliminate excess fat and tighten loose skin, respectively, helping patients look and feel their very best. These procedures are incredibly popular alternatives to invasive surgical procedures like body lifts or liposuction, as they can offer permanent body contouring improvement without the need for surgery with its attached risks and extensive recovery time.

If you’re looking to reduce the appearance of arm fat or sagging skin, board-certified cosmetic dermatologist, Dr. Michele Green in NYC, is here to help. Through a combination of non-invasive body contouring procedures, Dr. Green can help produce permanent body contouring results without the need for a plastic surgeon. Whether it is loose skin, excess fat cells, arm fat, underarm fat, bra fat, or skin laxity and fat bulges in another area of the body. CoolSculpting and skin tightening lasers can help remove these areas of unwanted fat without any recovery time.

What causes arm fat?

Arm fat can be caused by a variety of different factors, including aging, hormonal changes and genetics. One hormone which has been associated with arm fat in women is the decrease in testosterone in the body, which also contributes to having an increased amount of loose skin. As testosterone helps to release fat from fat cells into the bloodstream, patients with lower testosterone levels often find that stubborn fat pockets develop in many areas of the body, including the arms. These fat cells, which can accumulate between the armpit and the elbow, often are difficult to target via traditional weight loss methods like diet and exercise.

Another aspect of flabby arms is a loss of skin elasticity that happens as a part of the natural aging process, with the loss of collagen and elastin. This aging process can lead to “bat wings” and loose skin–or a combination of excess skin and excess fat–that sags, making some patients feel as though they must limit movement or hide their upper arms in order to feel comfortable. As women age, there is an increase in total body mass, and the fat cells tend to increase significantly in the upper arms. Additionally, excess skin can occur after a large amount of weight loss, when excess skin and stubborn fat cells remain on the upper arms.

Can you have fat removed from your arms?

One of the most exciting discoveries in cosmetic dermatology was that of permanent fat removal through the freezing of fat cells in the body. The most popular fat reduction technique for fat cell reduction, including arm fat, is that of cryolipolysis. Cryolipolysis was discovered by two Harvard medical researchers who observed that children would develop dimples in their cheeks after consuming ice pops. This indicated that fat cells freeze at a higher temperature than surrounding cells, laying the groundwork for CoolSculpting applicators. CoolSculpting can eliminate stubborn fat by freezing fat cells within the treatment area, allowing the body to permanently excrete these fat cells through the body’s own natural metabolic processes.

AH 61 4 month Before and After Coolsculpting CoolFit LT Inner Arm MGWatermark 1

How to get rid of fat in the upper arms

There are a variety of different methods that can be used to enhance the look and feel of the upper arms. Non-surgical options are a great method to contour the upper arms without the need for invasive cosmetic surgery, and often offer permanent results. These methods include CoolSculpting for permanent fat removal, and Thermage for skin tightening. Fat can also be removed from the upper arms through surgical methods, though any surgical procedure would require general anesthesia, recovery time, and avoidance of strenuous activities for several weeks post-surgery.

Non-Surgical Arm Fat Reduction

Non-surgical approaches to arm fat reduction have become a go-to for patients seeking improved contouring in the upper arms. Dr. Green is an expert in body contouring, and offers a variety of non-invasive cosmetic procedures, including dermal fillers, Botox, Kybella, CoolSculpting, Thermage, laser skin resurfacing, and more. When you work with Dr. Green, she will carefully evaluate your medical history, current skin condition, and individual desires to determine a treatment plan that will best fit your needs.


CoolSculpting is one of the most popular options for upper arm fat reduction. It’s FDA-approved to remove fat cells in treatment areas all over the body, including the stomach, inner and outer thighs, knees, buttocks, bra fat, underarm, double chin, and upper arms. CoolSculpting is unique because it is a non-invasive fat reduction procedure which permanently eliminates fat cells from the body. Permanent fat removal in as little as one treatment, without the need for any recovery time? No wonder this procedure has had a continual increase in popularity over the past decade and is the number one non-surgical method of fat reduction in the United States!

The process for CoolSculpting is simple and convenient. First, you will consult with Dr. Green to develop a treatment plan, to determine if CoolSculpting is best for you. A CoolSculpting session typically takes from 35-60 minutes, during which area of the body is being treated and which applicator is needed to “freeze” the fat cells. The procedure is entirely painless and has no down time. Results will continue to improve over the next several months as the body permanently metabolizes the destroyed fat cells.

It’s important to note that CoolSculpting is not intended as a substitute for weight loss, and that CoolSculpting is only recommend for patients who are within 30 lbs of their ideal weight. CoolSculpting is an excellent way to support patients who maintain a healthy lifestyle, but who struggle with stubborn fat accumulation in specific areas of the body. CoolSculpting will effectively target the various areas of fat bulges in the body from the privacy of Dr. Green’s boutique NYC dermatology office.

58yo female coolsculpting before after arms1 MGwatermark

How much does arm fat removal cost via CoolSculpting?

The answer to how much CoolSculpting costs to get arm fat removed varies widely depending on the amount of arm fat, as well as the patient’s aesthetic goals, as well as the size of the treatment area. These factors all help to determine which CoolSculpting applicator will be most effective. In general, the CoolAdvantage or CoolPetite applicators are the best choice for upper arm fat reduction.  The price for CoolSculpting of the upper arms, will depend on the applicator used and number of treatments needed. Depending on the amount of excess fat in the treatment area, multiple CoolSculpting sessions may be needed. However, any fat reduction results are permanent, as those specific fat cells are unable to grow back.

Thermage Radiofrequency Laser Treatment

Thermage is an FDA-approved skin tightening treatment that relies on radiofrequency energy to heat the deeper layers of the dermis, in turn stimulating collagen and elastin production in the body. Thermage improves the elasticity of the skin, creating a non-invasive arm lift that does not require any plastic surgery or downtime. Thermage is an excellent option to reduce the appearance of loose skin, and is commonly combined with other body contouring treatments (such as CoolSculpting or Kybella) to create total-body rejuvenation.

Dr. Green utilizes the new Thermage FLX device to provide state of the art radiofreqency skin tightening. Thermage FLX builds upon the unique technology of Thermage, but offers a wider treatment tip and patented AccuREP™ technology to create a shorter, more precise, and more comfortable treatment experience. Thermage FLX treatment requires no downtime, increased collagen stimulation, and patients can resume normal activity directly after treatment.

How many laser sessions are needed for arms?

The results of Thermage FLX treatment will be present immediately after treatment, but elastin and collagen production will continue for several months, providing maximum results about six months post-treatment. From that point onward, your Thermage FLX skin tightening results should last up to two years, depending on a patient’s skin condition. The majority of patients require only one Thermage FLX treatment session to see best results. However, some patients with moderate to severe skin laxity may require more than one session or return every year for increased skin rejuvenation.

Arm Lift Surgery Options

When it comes to severe flabby arms or loos skin, arm lift surgeries may be right for you. Arm lift surgeries can be a good option for patients who have folds of excess skin under the arm, or for whom non-surgical fat reduction and skin tightening treatments are not an option.


Brachioplasty, also known as a surgical arm lift, is an arm lift surgery that is designed to improve the appearance of the underside of the upper arms. Over the past several years. the American society of plastic surgeons has reported an increased interest in brachioplasty surgery. During this procedure, a plastic surgeon will make incisions on the underside of the arm to remove excess skin and fat between the armpit and elbow. Then, the remaining skin is placed back over the treatment area to create a tighter, firmer look to the arms. In some cases, a surgical arm lift procedure is done through the use of sedation and local anesthesia, but most plastic surgeons will recommend general anesthesia.

After treatment, you may experience soreness, and will likely be prescribed over-the-counter pain medication during your recovery time. A significant amount of downtime is required after this procedure – about a month – during which time you will need to avoid any strenuous activities while the upper arms are healing. You will also need to use a compression garment around the arms after the surgery, to ensure healing and decrease swelling to the surgical area.

Surgical Arm Lift vs. Liposuction

Though liposuction is the most common plastic surgery for fat removal, liposuction alone will not reduce the appearance of excess skin on the upper arms. In some cases, a surgical arm lift can be combined with liposuction to reduce the amount of stubborn fat in the upper arm, though for some patients, a surgical arm lift may be the only surgical procedure necessary. One of the downside of liposuction alone is that while it may remove the fat in the area, it can often leave an excess amount of hanging skin, and in a patient with poor skin turgor may make the area cosmetically worse.

A surgical arm lift is surgical procedure that’s often combined with a “mommy makeover,” which often includes a tummy tuck, breast augmentation, and other body contouring methods. However, the majority of patients prefer non-invasive body contouring, as non-surgical methods require little to no downtime and can create incredible body contouring results.

How much does arm fat removal surgery cost?

The answer to how much does it cost to get fat removed from your arms via surgical methods will vary depending on the selected surgery and the treatment area itself. However, arm lift procedures typically cost upwards of $10,000, which is a considerable expense. Non-invasive body contouring methods like CoolSculpting and Thermage offer our patients long lasting results without the need for recovery time, surgical risks, or excessive costs.

Can flabby arms be reduced naturally?

Flabby arms can be toned via muscle-building exercises, weight training, and changes in diet to a certain extent but, ultimately, patients with a considerable amount of excess fat or loose skin will not see this dissipate purely through natural means. For patients who struggle with flabby arms, non-surgical treatment options like CoolSculpting and Thermage can offer proven results without the need for cosmetic surgery, general anesthesia, or downtime.

coolsculpting arms 536645212

How to lose arm fat with workouts

By engaging in exercises that target the primary muscle groups of the arms, such as the biceps and triceps, you may find that you’re able to achieve a certain amount of upper arm contouring. In general, weight lifting exercises are more likely to create contouring results than cardio workouts, which is more appropriate for all-over weight loss. You might try to incorporate bicep curls or overhead tricep extensions to improve muscle mass in the arms, potentially reducing the appearance of arm fat. However, the majority of our patients find that flabby arms often require non-invasive cosmetic treatment in order to truly achieve their desired results.

How do I get started with fat removal and skin tightening of my arms today?

If you’re frustrated by the appearance of flabby arms or arm fat, there are finally non-surgical solutions to help. Dr. Michele Green is an expert in non-invasive body contouring and was one of the first dermatologist in NYC to incorporate CoolSculpting and Thermage FLX into her private boutique New York office. Dr. Green is an internally renown cosmetic dermatologist who has been practicing for over 25 years and is at the forefront of the best cosmetic laser treatments, Botox, Thermage, and CoolSculpting on the Upper East side of Manhattan. Please contact our office today, either online, or call us at 212-535-3088 to schedule a consultation with Dr. Green and develop your custom-tailored treatment for fat reduction and skin tightening of your upper arms.

Related Topics

Call Us (212) 535-3088