What Determines Whether Your Skin Snaps Back After Weight Loss?

If you're trying to lose a considerable amount of weight, chances are you've considered what your body will look like after you've achieved your goal. For many people, the body effectively bounces back after losing weight, with the skin tightening back up and becoming firm. Other people, however, don't have it so good. But is it really just a matter of luck, or is there more at work here? If you're wondering about what your skin will look like after you lose weight and don't know what to do if it doesn't tighten up, here's what you should know.

Weight Gained

One factor to take into consideration is exactly how much weight you put on over a normal, healthy weight range.

As your body puts on weight, it doesn't just gain fat, but has to accommodate that fat. This means that muscles often have to stretch, and skin has to grow new cells in order to house all the new fat cells hiding under it.

When you have a lot of weight to lose, there's more excess skin to begin with, and usually looser muscles, too. To an extent, this can start to tighten back up after you lose the weight, but it may not get back to where you were before putting on the weight in the first place.

Rate Gained

Perhaps an even larger factor to take into consideration is the rate at which you gained the weight.

Those who gain weight slowly at a steady pace are more likely to have their skin snap back after losing it again than those who put on weight rapidly. The reason for this has to do with the way that your body builds new skin cells to house that weight.

As previously mentioned, your body responds to needing more space by growing more skin. However, when you put on weight rapidly, the body often can't keep up with how quickly you accumulate fat cells. As a result, microtears in the skin develop, otherwise known as stretch marks. Stretch marks aren't just unsightly; they're damaged skin that's lost much of its elasticity. The presence of stretch marks often means that tissue won't bounce back the way you might hope after losing weight.

What to Do

The first thing you should do is to keep pressing on with your weight loss. Until you get to a healthy weight, you can't expect your body to look the way that you want it to.

Once you've achieved this weight goal, if you're still disappointed with the way that your skin looks, it's time to consult with a cosmetic surgeon. Cosmetic surgeons are pros at doing things like tightening up skin with a tummy tuck surgery in common weight gain trouble spots, like the belly. This can restore you to your old appearance - or even better - even if your skin won't naturally cooperate with your weight loss by shrinking.