No-Needle Face Lifts and Other Beauty Treatments for the Lazy and Squeamish

3 Hollywood-Tested Beauty Treatments for the Lazy and Squeamish-HollywoodReporter_FearfulBeautyGuide_FINAL copy--Illustration by Katie Carey-H 2018
Illustration by Katie Carey

"No pain, no gain" is becoming irrelevant as cutting-edge machines do the exercising for you, new massages lift the face and portable pods eliminate the need to drive to spas, attracting stars such as Jennifer Aniston and Jimmy Fallon.


Three months ago, Beverly Hills dermatologist Harold Lancer was one of the first doctors to acquire an EmSculpt, which is FDA-approved to tighten the butt and belly. Patients lie down for four $1,000 treatments within a two-week period (plus a follow-up session every four to six months) as a large paddle emanating electromagnetic energy does the work. "It’s surprisingly effective," says Lancer. "It’s really for people who are already in shape, but that’s most people in Beverly Hills. When the entertainment crowd sees a 5 to 20 percent improvement in the butt and greater abdominal definition, they are quite happy." Ava Shamban, a Beverly Hills dermatologist who reportedly counts Nicole Kidman among her patients, agrees the EmSculpt can achieve what the gym can’t. "There is no regular workout that can give you these results," she says. "The release of ions from the huge magnetic wave creates a muscular contraction much greater than you can achieve on your own."


Deep manual stimulation of the sagging facial muscles boosts them up, increases circulation for glow and eliminates fluids and toxins that cause puffiness. FaceGym, which launched in London in 2015 with the facial “workout” concept (from $70), will open Uma Thurman on a conference-room table before a shoot, and last week I wound up working on Michelle Williams on the bathroom floor at a studio,” says Nguyen. “When she got up from the treatment, she high-fived me because it looked like she had slept for a week.”


Once only available at spas or via cumbersome, in-home units, infrared saunas and hyperbaric oxygen chambers have become mobile, perfect for stars to take to sets and on vacations. Compact versions like Therasage’s $800 Thera360 infrared sauna (Radiant Saunas, Durherm and Sunlighten also make them) weigh 26 pounds and take 10 minutes to assemble. Kate Hudson calls it a “quick-fix detox”; Aniston, Gayle King and Robert Downey Jr. also are fans of the technology that uses negative ions to purportedly lower blood pressure and flush out toxins. Michael Jackson, John Travolta and Kirstie Alley famously owned in-home hyperbaric oxygen chambers, but a new wave including Madonna, Jim Carrey and Ian Somerhalder are embracing the portable, inflatable version said to combat fatigue and aging. Says OxyHealth owner Samir Patel, who created a line of portable chambers (from $7,000), “I’m selling more and more to stars: singers, actors, over 550 NFL players and other high-powered, high-stress people.” 

This story first appeared in the Nov. 14 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.