The term ‘bingo wings’ is often used in jest, but this hides the fact that many men and women feel very self-conscious about loose or sagging skin on their arms.
Loose skin in this area can influence a person’s life – they might hesitate to lift their arms up or wave in public. The loose skin can also dictate what they feel comfortable wearing – some would rather overheat in a long sleeved top than reveal their upper arms.
There are various reasons why you might have sagging skin beneath your arms. Even those who are slim can suffer from lack of muscle tone in the upper arm, whilst others suffer from sagging skin under the arms due to hormonal imbalance as they grow older with a lack of testosterone often being cited as being to blame.
It is also very common to have sagging skin caused by rapid weight loss, which often leaves excess skin behind. We often see inspirational stories in the media of people who have shed weight with a change in diet and exercise or via a gastric band, but the excess skin that is left after dropping the pounds is glossed over.
Whatever the reason, loose skin on the arms can result in lack of confidence and poor self-esteem for many people.
So, what can you do to help to tighten the loose skin on your arms?
1. Swim regularly
When you swim you are always moving your arms, making a great low impact exercise for toning underneath the arm.
Swimming is recommended for many people as it is so gentle – including those suffering from arthritis or diabetes.
While you swim, focus on moving your body using your arms more than your legs to increase the toning benefits.
2. Sign up to pilates or yoga
Both pilates and yoga are also very gentle but effective ways of toning muscle. You can ask your instructor to show you specific movements that would tone the arms and then practice them in the comfort of your own home.
As a bonus, you will also improve your posture and strengthen your core muscles.
3. Schedule in some daily press ups
Press ups are high intensity and will test your upper arm muscles to the limit, developing more arm muscles along the length of the arm.
Many people avoid push ups because they just assume they won’t be able to do them. Luckily there are various graduations of push ups that enable you to do this exercise without necessarily having a significant strength in your upper body.
If you find that you can’t do a traditional press up, try with your knees on the floor and if that is too difficult you can do standing up press ups against a wall.
4. Add some daily chair dips
The chair dip is something that you can easily do at home. Stand with your back to a chair placing your hands on the front edge of the chair with fingers facing your back. Then lower your body until there is a 90 degree angle between your ankles and thighs. Keeping your back straight, breathe in as your lower body bends your elbows and breathe out as you extend your elbows out to raise your body up.
Safety must come first – there are many YouTube videos to demonstrate this exercise properly. You must also make sure that the chair you use is sturdy and will not topple over – ideally place it against a wall for extra support.
5. Stay hydrated
If you don’t drink enough water you will find it difficult to lose the fat deposits in your arms.
Try to drink at least eight glasses of water each day (2 litres). On top of this, drinking cups of dandelion tea with a dash of ginger will help to naturally reduce fluid retention.
6. Research Endermologie
A popular treatment for cellulite, Endermologie is a non-surgical procedure that uses mechanical rollers to massage the skin and improve skin tone.
It is a very safe procedure with no down time, but results are likely to be quite minimal on loose skin and you would need a course of treatments.
7. Take a look at radiofrequency
Radiofrequency (RF) stimulates collagen and elastin production to tighten, lift and firm the skin. This treatment is best used when the loose skin on the arms is mild.
You would also need repeated treatments, but the procedure is extremely safe with no downtime.
8. Consider CoolSculpting
With no anesthesia and no downtime, CoolSculpting is the ideal treatment to tone your arms, targeting fat cells beneath the skin while leaving the skin itself unaffected.
The treated fat cells are crystallised (frozen), then die. Over time, your body naturally processes the fat and eliminates these dead cells, leaving your arms looking sculpted.
A consultation will determine if CoolSculpting is the right treatment for you. As well as tightening loose skin on your arms, it’s also perfect for toning the thighs, stomach and even under the chin.
9. Consider arm lift surgery (brachioplasty)
If you have tried to reduce and tone loose or sagging skin on your arms through exercise and diet but haven’t seen the results that you want, brachioplasty surgery will be able to help tighten your loose arm skin.
There are also some cases where surgery is the only option to completely getting rid of the excess skin – especially when someone has lost a considerable amount of weight.
If the idea of surgery makes you feel nervous, rest assured that this type of cosmetic surgery is not considered to be especially painful and with the appropriate pain killers and recovery time, any discomfort will be minimal, ensuring you’ll feel confident revealing your upper arms in no time.