Your Guide to Different Types of Liposuction

Body, Contouring

11 minute read


Credit: Samantha Hurley via Pexels

Liposuction is an incredibly versatile surgery. It can accomplish multiple goals and appeal to a variety of patient needs.

In general, a liposuction procedure is used to permanently remove excess fatty tissue and provide slimmer, contoured results. It can be used on its own or paired with another type of surgery to optimize results (for example, it can contour the sides of the abdomen after a tummy tuck).

Liposuction is also a key part of fat transfer procedures, like fat transfer breast augmentations or Brazilian Butt Lifts (BBLs), where fatty tissue is removed from a certain area of the body (for example, the lower back), purified and then reinjected into the desired area to create more fullness or contour.

At GraceMed, we offer liposuction in Hamilton for patients that want to remove stubborn fatty tissue, contour their body or transfer fat to a more desirable area. If you’re interested in achieving any of these goals or getting any other type of plastic surgery, you should book a surgical consultation at our clinic. Our surgeon will go over your qualifications and discuss all the options available to you.

There are multiple types of liposuction available and we will help you determine which is best for your desired results. Learn more about the different approaches to this procedure to determine what type of liposuction will meet your recovery needs, which type of liposuction is ideal for your skin type and more.

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The Different Types of Liposuction

At GraceMed, we offer several types of liposuction: traditional liposuction, Body-Jet Lipo, Smart Lipo and SlimLipo. Find out what makes these types of liposuction unique and who are the best candidates for them.

Traditional Liposuction:

The traditional type of liposuction is sometimes referred to as manual liposuction. It involves inserting a cannula (a stainless-steel tube) into the targeted area and moving it around to break up the fatty tissue. That broken-up fatty tissue is then suctioned through the cannula into a vacuum.

This type of liposuction is ideal for patients that want to remove large amounts of fat and target larger areas of the body. It can also be useful for dealing with dense fatty tissue (for example, male breast tissue during a gynecomastia procedure).

Your surgeon can cover multiple areas during your liposuction surgery, and you do not have to treat every area with the same type of liposuction. This means that you could use traditional liposuction to target the thighs and use different types of liposuction to treat the knees and the hips. A surgeon can typically treat up to four different areas during an operation.

Body-Jet Lipo

Body Jet Lipo is type of a water-assisted liposuction. During the surgery, a gentle jet of water is used to irrigate fat and remove it from the desired area.

Body-Jet Lipo is less invasive/aggressive than manual liposuction, so it allows for better precision. This precision comes in handy when contouring shapely areas (for example, the buttocks) and treating small areas (for example, the knees).

The gentler approach also makes it easier for patient recovery. Since there is less tissue trauma during the procedure, patients will have less post-operative pain, bruising and swelling. They won’t need so much downtime to heal before they can get back to their regular routine.

Patients that need short recovery times and precise contouring should consider this type of liposuction. You should have good overall skin elasticity to prevent any sagging or loose skin post-operation. If you don’t have good skin elasticity, you should look into different types of liposuction.


SmartLipo is a type of laser-assisted liposuction. During the procedure, your surgeon will use laser energy to liquefy the fatty deposits in the targeted area so that they’re easier to suction out of the body.

Similar to water-assisted liposuction, laser-assisted types of liposuction are excellent for treating areas that require additional precision and accuracy. These could be small areas of the body (for example, the neck) or areas that have natural curves (for example, the hips). The technique can help patients achieve optimal results.

One of the special benefits of these types of liposuction is that they can tighten the patient’s skin during the procedure as the heat from the laser stimulates collagen growth in the skin. Collagen is the protein that makes the skin smooth, strong and supple, so the patient’s skin will get firmer and smoother in the months after the surgery. This can be a relief for patients who are worried that they will have looser skin after their operation.

Laser-assisted liposuction also minimizes certain surgical risks since the heat from the laser seals blood vessels during the procedure. This minimizes the patient’s chances of blood clots, bleeding or going into shock mid-operation. It also reduces the amount of swelling and bruising in the body, so the recovery time is much faster.

If you’re concerned about health risks, you can read our basic guide on liposuction safety to see the best ways that patients can limit risks and speed up their recovery.


SlimLipo is another type of laser-assisted liposuction. It offers the same benefits as Smart Lipo, such as precise contouring, skin tightening, minimized surgical risks and a shorter recovery time.

The main difference between SlimLipo and Smart Lipo is that their devices emit different wavelengths. SlimLipo emits two shorter wavelengths, and Smart Lipo emits one higher wavelength. SlimLipo’s device is also more flexible, which could make it more effective for curvier areas of the body.

Talk to your surgeon about which types of liposuction you’re interested in. They will guide you in the right direction and help you choose the type of liposuction that works best.

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Liposuction and Skin Laxity

Skin can become loose or puckered after liposuction surgery, which is why our surgeons ask that patients meet certain qualifications before going forward with the operation. Patients should have good skin laxity and be near their goal weight.

Patients should be close to their goal weight because the idea is to remove a smaller amount of fat from the targeted area. The more fat is removed from the body, the less padding the skin will have to rest on. It won’t stay taut if you remove too much.

Other than meeting these qualifications, there are two things that patients can do to minimize their chances of having loose skin after liposuction. First, patients can look into laser-assisted types of liposuction like SlimLipo or Smart Lipo, which will tighten up their skin. Second, they can book a cosmetic skin-tightening treatment like Renuvion or Thermage.


Renuvion (previously called J-Plasma or J Plasty) is a skin-tightening treatment that’s commonly paired with liposuction. It uses a combination of pro-helium gas and radiofrequency to emit plasma energy into the skin, which contracts the skin and makes it tighter on the surface.


Thermage is a non-invasive skin-tightening treatment that can follow up a liposuction procedure. During this treatment, a specialist uses a handheld device that emits radiofrequency waves into the skin. These waves contract the collagen fibres in the dermis, making the skin on the surface tighter. The waves also stimulate collagen production, so you will notice that your skin gets smoother in the months after your appointment.

What Should You Do If You Have Loose Skin?

When you already have loose or sagging skin, you may need to consider surgical procedures outside of liposuction. Otherwise, you could end up with more sagging, puckering and looseness than before the operation. Non-invasive skin-tightening treatments may not be able to resolve that problem for you.

So, what can you do? You should consider surgical procedures that involve the removal of excess fat and skin. For instance, if you have sagging or loose skin around your stomach, you should consider having an abdominoplasty (also known as a “tummy tuck”) instead. Click here to find out the major differences between lipo vs tummy tuck to see which one is more suitable for your situation.

Other surgical procedures that can remove excess skin are arm lifts (also known as “brachioplasties”), thigh lifts and breast lifts. You can book a consultation for these procedures at our clinics in Burlington, Mississauga and North York.

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Non-Surgical Alternatives to Liposuction

You can still get rid of stubborn pockets of fat with the help of non-surgical body sculpting treatments. These treatments can target fatty tissue and contour areas of your body so that they’re slimmer, curvier or more toned than before.

Non-surgical body sculpting treatments can be very appealing to patients that don’t want to go through a surgical operation. So, if you’re concerned about getting surgery or general anesthesia, these can be some great alternatives. You can walk into your appointment, get your treatment and walk back out. It’s that easy.

These treatments can also be appealing because they require no recovery time. Patients don’t need to book days off of work or school to heal safely. They can return to their regular schedule immediately after their appointment.

However, it’s important to know that non-surgical body sculpting treatments require more commitment than liposuction surgery. With liposuction, you will undergo one operation. With body sculpting, you will have to book several sessions to achieve the best results. It won’t be a one-day commitment.

So, what body sculpting treatments can be alternatives to liposuction?


Vanquish is a treatment that uses radiofrequency energy to target and kill surplus fat cells (this process is called apoptosis). These dead fat cells are filtered through your lymphatic system and purged from the body through your urine.

Vanquish offers a few benefits as a non-surgical alternative:

  • It’s non-invasive. The Vanquish device doesn’t even touch the skin.
  • It requires no downtime after a treatment session.
  • It requires no anesthesia or pain medication.
  • It’s used to treat large areas of the body, like the waist, abdomen and inner/outer thighs.

Patients should attend a minimum of four treatments to see the desired results. These treatments should take place a week apart. You can book an appointment for this service at our Burlington, Oakville or North York clinics.


Exilis uses a combination of ultrasound and radiofrequency energy to target, liquify and kill surplus fat cells. Similar to the Vanquish treatment, your lymphatic system filters these dead fat cells and then purges them out through your urine.

In addition to removing stubborn fat cells, Exilis can improve the targeted area’s skin. It firms the surface layer of skin during the treatment and stimulates collagen production. In the months after the appointment, the new collagen growth should soften fine lines and wrinkles in that area.

Exilis offers a few benefits as a non-surgical alternative:

  • It’s non-invasive.
  • It requires no downtime after a treatment session.
  • It requires no anesthesia.
  • It tightens the skin on targeted areas.
  • It can be used to treat smaller areas like the face, the neck and the jowls.

Patients should go through approximately six sessions of Exilis to get the best results. These treatments should be spaced a week apart from each other. You can book an appointment for this service at our Burlington, Oakville or North York clinics.


Emsculpt is a body sculpting treatment for the abdomen or the buttocks by using electromagnetic energy to create supramaximal contractions in the targeted muscles. Essentially, your muscles are exercising more than they would during a gym workout while you’re lying down. A 30-minute session of Emsculpt is the equivalent of doing 20,000 sit-ups or 20,000 squats.

Emsculpt offers these benefits as a non-surgical alternative:

  • It’s non-invasive.
  • It requires no anesthesia.
  • It requires no downtime after a session.
  • It can help with fat loss, muscle strength and muscle tone.

Patients should expect to book at least four treatments of EmSculpt to see optimal results. You can book your first session for emsculpt in Toronto at one of our world-class clinics. We offer the service at our Burlington, Oakville and North York locations.

You don’t want to choose a type of liposuction that won’t meet your needs. Learn about the different types of liposuction available so that you can make the best choice for your surgical goals. This will help you get the results that you’re looking for.



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