100 lb. Club - Loose skin?

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10-15-2009, 07:37 PM
Does anyone have any tips to avoid loose skin? I am very afraid of it! Not afraid enough to stay fat, but still afraid. Also, I am concerned about my face wrinkling up and looking older!

Any tips?

10-15-2009, 07:41 PM
Fantastic FAQ here - http://www.3fatchicks.com/forum/body-image-issues-after-weight-loss/36040-weight-loss-skin-faqs.html

10-15-2009, 07:45 PM

10-15-2009, 08:02 PM
You're welcome :hug:

10-16-2009, 12:43 AM
I've lost 155 lbs and so far? not HALF as bad as I thought... and my face looks AWESOME! I do credit this to a whole foods diet with GOOD fats and lots of healthful foods :)

10-16-2009, 01:29 AM
My biggest tip would be to not give it another thought. Your skin will do what your skin will do.

The most important thing is for you to get to a healthy weight. Having loose skin doesn't increase your chances of having some pretty horrific health conditions and diseases.

I beg you to not be concerned about it. You will be so overwhelmingly thrilled with your results that any loose skin you may have will not bother you in the least.

It is way better to be slim, trim and healthy with a bit of loose skin then it is to remain overweight with none.

And like Meg always says, if you're that displeased with the results you can always gain the weight back. But I'm fairly certain that won't be the case! So please, please, please don't fear it.

10-16-2009, 09:58 AM
skin was a big concern for me... so I had decided that somehow we would find a way to pay for surgery for me to get rid of it... then I starded looking at pics of before and after... boy oh boy those scars are a lot more nasty looking than some extra skin. I have told hubby that he will just have to turn off the light if the skin gets to be too much. He is a good liar and said something about loving my body at any size and shape because it's mine...I love him ;)

10-16-2009, 10:35 AM
I gotta be honest... it's a concern of mine but I have so far pushed it away from my mind. I'll cross that bridge when I get there. I mean, you really don't know how big an issue it will be until you get to goal, or really close.

10-16-2009, 11:09 AM
I figure I'll deal with it when it gets here!

...and hello 155 pound loss!! CONGRATS :)

10-16-2009, 11:19 AM
I also recommend making sure you get enough healthy fats in your diet. I probably go a little overboard (I eat nuts and salmon almost every day, EVOO, flax, etc on others, plus I take fish oil and EPO supplements). But as a result, I think my facial skin is in *better* shape than when I started (and I'm getting near 50). I do think my thighs and abdomen are looser than if I hadn't been overweight, but I don't have any extra folds or wrinkles there. I also recommend losing weight slowly.

I'm not saying that these measures will prevent extra skin, but I do think they will help minimize the effect and both eating healthy fats and losing weight slowly are very important for good health.

10-16-2009, 11:47 AM
Thanks everyone. My goal is to lose 107 pounds. Maximum would be 120. It sounds like some of you with more loss than that aren't really having an issue.

Where can I get information on how these good fats help the skin elasticity???

10-16-2009, 12:22 PM
The loose skin is just ... frustrating. My face didn't sag, though. The problem areas are my neck, my belly, my thighs & my upper arms. The latter bother me the most. I have some decent definition in my arms, but still have the jiggle. Can't seem to get rid of it, no matter how much time passes or how much I work my triceps & biceps. I've got a gorgeous dress for a friend's wedding but have decided on covering up with a lace bolero so I'm not thinking about my arms when I ought to be enjoying myself & celebrating my friend's big moment.

I'm not going to spend the money on surgery, though. There are other things I want to do with that money. Travel, stuff for my new apartment, savings toward retirement. So since I have decided against surgical modification, I deal with my discontent by reminding myself that I'm human. I cannot become perfectionistic about this. There's a lot you can change about yourself, but you cannot change everything through sheer force of will & positive thinking. When I lost weight, I wasn't originally trying for bodily perfection. I was trying to be healthier & to look more normal. I moved the goal posts as I went along, and began wanting more & more, because suddenly, conventional beauty, which had always seemed to be beyond my grasp, looked nearly attainable. But now I've talked myself down from those aspirations. They just get me into trouble. Perfectionism & all or nothing thinking is the enemy! It's what got me fat & kept me fat for a long time.

So I remind myself why I started this project. I try to remember that I lost weight so I wouldn't have to think so much about how unacceptable my appearance was, & so that I could get on with other things in my life. Fretting over the loose skin would be just like fretting over the fat, wouldn't it? I would still be imprisoned by my discontent with my body. I really do not want to live that way.

Anyway, being a slave to perfectability of one's physique is a losing game. Age will take its toll eventually, even if fat doesn't. Being healthy & being active & feeling like a not-freak & wearing nice clothes are all a good tradeoff for a little loose skin.

I try to see the skin as honorable battle scars. I engaged with life; I worked at taking control over my health, instead of sticking my head in the sand & letting myself get bigger & bigger every year out of apathy. And life bit me back. It gave me as good as it got. Loose skin is my medal or Girl Scout honor badge.

10-16-2009, 12:28 PM
I got this from a quick google. It looks pretty good but there are lots of other sites if you want more info...


Here's the most relevant excerpt:

This final experiment supports the earlier findings I shared about flaxseed oil. In this trial, a purified fish oil supplement was tested to see if it could help improve skin elasticity in women.

24 healthy, middle-aged women participated in this study. For 3 months they were asked to take fish oil on a daily basis, after which a special dermatological assessment was made using a device called an “optical cutometer”. It was found that there was a 10% increase in skin elasticity by the end of the trial.

ETA: BTW, I don't think I had seen this research before! I had incorporated healthy fats in my diet for health reasons (and to improve memory) and noticed the improvement in my own skin! Anyway, if I did see this research beforehand, I guess it hasn't improved my memory all that much, lol!

10-16-2009, 01:36 PM
I was worried. I started using more lotion, doing skin brushing (which I still do and think helps), taking fish oil. I think the best you can do is just moisturize and lose the weight, tone up and worry about it when you get there. Don't let it become a reason to quit. I would rather have loose skin than a thigh the size of my neighbor's waist.

10-16-2009, 02:06 PM
I was very concerned about loose skin, too. I have come to the point where the thought of being obese, out of shape, unfit, sick, diabetic and sad overtook the fear of saggies!

I do watch the shows on TLC or Discovery Health that show the super-morbidly obese people with yards and yards of extra skin getting the surgery. A lot of these folks had gastric bypass and lost a LOT of weight VERY VERY quickly.

Please don't let this worry get in the way of being a healthier person!

10-16-2009, 02:12 PM
Thanks ladies. No worries, I am not going to let it get in my way, I just want to try to avoid it if possible. I am hoping that because I "only" have to lose 100 pounds and not doing it rapidly that I won't have a huge issue with it.

Should I start taking fish oil now or just incorporate salmon and almonds in my diet at this point? Or both?

10-16-2009, 02:18 PM
studies do show that losing weight QUICKLY had no real bearing on whether you would have lose skin at the end or not. Within a year it will tighten up as much as it's going to either which way. HOWEVER the real correlation is that a lot of people that lose quickly ARE doing it unhealthfully. I actually can't think of any on here (RR, DC, myself) all did or are losing weight quickly but making sure that we're getting plenty of good fats and healthful foods.

I think when we're talking about weight loss surgery patients we're not talking optimal nutrition right? Yes there are supplements etc but REAL foods are the best way to get optimal nutrition. So therefore skin elasticity etc can suffer as a result of not getting an optimal amount of good fats etc. So there lies the correlation between fast weight loss and loose skin.
I actually have some front/back pictures of me in my underwear (NOT control top) and if there is anyone that is really interested in seeing what a REAL 155 pound loss looks like in the way of extra skin then feel free to pm me your email address and I'll send them to you. It's really not as bad as you would think... and PLEASE only send me your address if you belong to the 100 lb club... I'm not a freak show ;)

10-16-2009, 02:22 PM
What I have found and I've seen is that if you lose weight quickly, you will tend to have more loose skin than if you lose weight slowly for an initial time period. The reason being is that your skin can bounce back somewhat but it can take time.

I can definitely see and feel a difference from my loose skin today than it was 2 years ago. It isn't great but it is better than it was and it really depends on your own genetics and situation.

Lori Bell
10-16-2009, 02:42 PM
I'd say my initial weight loss was fairly rapid, in the first year I went from 333 to 179 for a total of 154 pounds in one year. The last 30+ have come off slowly, but surely. I have to say that compared to the TLC plastic surgery shows that my skin is not nearly as loose as some of the people who have lost less in the same amount of time....(most of them losing rapidly due to wls). I also eat very healthy foods and make sure I hydrate my skin daily. My face unfortunately shows the most signs of weightloss, much more than I would like...and maybe someday I'll get a nip/tuck. But regardless of what I do, right this minute, nothing feels as good as my deflated saggy bags! :)

10-16-2009, 02:46 PM
I have some loose skin now. I'm 43 and started losing two years ago this month. I lost the first 60 pounds, went off the wagon for 10 months -- put on 15 pounds in the process -- and am now about 80 pounds down.

I have found by taking fish oil daily that my skin is not so dry and dimply looking. My knees don't creak when I exercise. I also moisturize with Jergens Skin Firming Lotion...it seems to keep my skin hydrated as well. My neck has firmed up with the lotion.

I'm not too worried about the loose skin. I'm doing all I can do...I spent 20 years being morbidly obese and am now just obese. I feel healthier than I ever have, I have more spring in my step than my co-workers who are 15 years younger, and I live life now. That is what counts -- and I don't worry about those stupid plastic lawn chairs anymore ;)

Thighs Be Gone
10-16-2009, 02:58 PM
I went from 215 to 132 in about 1 year. Some consider that rapid. I myself do not. My most troublesome area is my stomach. I am not sure if that is from weight gain or pregnancy. Also, the very top of the back of my thighs--just as it becomes my butt, is saggy.

I found great relief in SPANX. They really help out under clothing. I would like to have surgery though.

From almost the beginning of my journey, I ate healthy fats--in careful moderation. I also have had plenty of water and whole foods. In addition, I run and do some resistance training. I think all of those things help.

Either way be assured that loose skin is much easier to hide under clothes than being overweight! :)

10-16-2009, 03:06 PM
I would think the biggest factors in the amount of loose skin one winds up with is - age, genetics, how long one was overweight for and just how heavy they got.

I will take my loose skin (which is way better then I thought it would be, come to think of it, I didn't give it much thought) any and every day over my tight taut skin covering up my 287 lb 5 foot body. It is undetectable in my size 4 clothing. There was no hiding my morbid obesity in my size 26/28 clothing.

Besides, loose skin won't lead to massive heart attacks, numerous cancers, stroke, liver disease, diabetes, limbs having to be amputated, gout, infertility and a slew of other debilitating and life threatening diseases and conditions.

I can fit on any amusement park ride, any picnic bench, any airplane seat, any public transportation seat, any hair dressers chair, any folding chair, any lawn chair, any - anything with my loose skin. I can go horseback riding, ice skating, rafting. My husband can scoop me up as if he's lifting a pillow. I can zip around and be highly productive with my loose skin. I can have an ENORMOUS wardrobe with my loose skin. I can sleep at night with my loose skin now that I am no longer worried about dropping dead and who will care for my children.

I am so ever thankful that I *finally* have loose skin. :)