KUMA PRO/VELLA SHAPE
WHAT IS KUMA PRO/VELLA SHAPE?
Kuma Pro/Vella Shape is a noninvasive body contouring treatment that’s been cleared by the FDA for temporary cellulite reduction, as well as the circumferential reduction of the thighs and abdomen. The most commonly treated areas are the thighs, buttocks, upper arms, and stomach. It can also reduce excess fat and sagging under the chin.
Unlike most cellulite treatments that use one modality to treat the appearance of dimpled skin, Kuma Pro/Vella Shape uses a combination of four: infrared light, bipolar radiofrequency (RF) energy, massage, and gentle suction.
The suction brings the skin closer to the energy source inside the handheld device, working with the massage to help relax and stretch the stiff fibrous bands under the skin that cause the dimpling and orange peel texture known as cellulite. The infrared and RF energies heat the skin, tightening tissue and making fat cells shrink and, in some cases, die.
The heat reduces skin laxity by tightening the existing underlying dermal collagen fibers and stimulating collagen and elastin production, which builds more firmness and elasticity over time.It’s frequently paired with RF microneedling to smooth and tighten the skin faster and more effectively.
WHO MAKES A GOOD CANDIDATE FOR KUMA PRO/VELLA SHAPE?
Kuma Pro/Vella Shape works best for people who are at a healthy weight, with a body mass index (BMI) of less than 30 and mild to moderate cellulite. If your skin has some dimpling or an “orange peel” look when you’re standing up (stage 1 or 2 on the Nurnberger-Muller Cellulite Scale), you may be a good candidate.
Kuma Pro/Vella Shape isn’t recommended for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding, or people with an implanted automatic defibrillator, pacemaker, or other electronic device. If you’re taking blood thinners, you’ll need to stop taking them for at least 5 days before your treatment to reduce the risk of serious bruising.
DOES KUMA PRO/VELLA SHAPE WORK?
Studies and clinical trials show that Kuma Pro/Vella Shape is effective, with some caveats. A 2015 study reported that “patients treated with the Kuma Pro/Vella Shape device showed significant improvements in mean circumferential reduction and skin laxity,” while clinical trial results published in 2014 showed that a series of Kuma Pro/Vella Shape II treatments led to “average reductions in the circumference of the abdomen, buttocks, and thighs of 1.4, 0.5, and 1.2 cm, respectively” within 3 months of their last treatment session.
A 2018 article in the International Journal of Women’s Dermatology surveyed the results of reputable studies and concluded that Kuma Pro/Vella Shape has been shown to reduce cellulite. However, the results they cited were seen in patients who had twice-weekly treatments for up to eight weeks (with earlier Kuma Pro/Vella Shape models), which points to the need for new research on results from Kuma Pro/Vella Shape III.
DOES KUMA PRO/VELLA SHAPE GET RID OF CELLULITE?
“Kuma Pro/Vella Shape offers an improvement, not a cure, for cellulite,” says Dr. Nichter. There’s no permanent cellulite removal solution, but Kuma Pro/Vella Shape can improve its appearance.
Cellulite is caused by fibrous bands, called septa, that run vertically between the skin and fascia. These bands bundle fat into honeycomb-like compartments. When they stiffen in response to hormonal shifts, they pull the skin down and compress the fat until it bulges out of these compartments, causing the appearance of dimples and pits on the skin’s surface.
Kuma Pro/Vella Shape’s suction and massage rollers relax the bands, while the RF energy shrinks the fat cells in the treatment area. The combination creates a temporary reduction in the appearance of cellulite.
HOW MUCH DOES KUMA PRO/VELLA SHAPE COST?
Your cost will depend on the number of sessions you have, the size and number of the areas being treated, the experience level of your provider, and their office location. Some treatment centers offer a reduced cost for a package of treatments.
WHAT ARE THE PROS AND CONS OF KUMA PRO/VELLA SHAPE?
- Treatments don’t take very long. The procedure itself typically only lasts 20 to 30 minutes, though it can take longer for multiple areas.
- There’s no downtime afterward.
- The procedure is, by most accounts, painless.
- It works well in combination with other procedures.
- It’s safe for all skin types and tones.
- You’ll need multiple treatments—usually three to six sessions, spaced a week or so apart—to see results. Candela Medical (the makers of Kuma Pro/Vella Shape) say you’ll see results in just three treatments, but multiple doctors who’ve used the device say it can take more than that.
- Your results will be temporary, and you’ll need three to four follow-up sessions every year to maintain them.
- Results are temporary and can be subtle. Just over 70% of RealSelf members say Kuma Pro/Vella Shape was Worth It, meaning that many didn’t see the results they’d expected.
KUMA PRO/VELLA SHAPE I, II, AND 3: WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE?
The numbers I, II, and III simply refer to the model of the device, with III being the newest. “It’s important to note that there are several generations of the Kuma Pro/Vella Shape device, so make sure your doctor is using Kuma Pro/Vella Shape III, the most advanced and effective version,” says Dr. Nichter.
WHAT HAPPENS DURING KUMA PRO/VELLA SHAPE?
During the treatment, you’ll lie on a table while your doctor places the handheld device against your skin. You’ll feel a gentle suctioning as the device pulls the skin’s fatty layer closer to the device, to maximize exposure to the infrared light and RF energy. You’ll also feel a warm sensation as it causes “deep heating of the connective tissue, which stimulates collagen,” explains Orange County, California, plastic surgeon Dr. Jed Horowitz. Let your doctor know if the treatment feels too hot at any point.
At the end of a procedure, you should feel like you’ve had a vigorous deep tissue massage. Your skin should be pink and warm to the touch.
The treatment doesn’t require any preparation, though we tell our clients patients to try to be well hydrated. “Radio waves travel through water faster—and being hydrated will make the radiofrequency portion of Kuma Pro/Vella Shape more effective,” he says.
WHAT IS KUMA PRO/VELLA SHAPE RECOVERY LIKE?
Kuma Pro/Vella Shape requires no downtime or recovery period. However, it’s “normal for the treated area to appear red for several hours after the treatment session. You may also have some swelling, if your skin is very sensitive.
HOW SOON WILL YOU SEE KUMA PRO/VELLA SHAPE RESULTS?
Most people see optimal results about six to eight weeks after they’ve completed a full treatment series, though some NuFaceGlow clients say they started seeing results after their first or second treatment.
HOW LONG DO RESULTS LAST?
Kuma Pro/Vella Shape results aren’t permanent. You’ll need to maintain them with follow-up treatments at least every six months, and by exercising regularly and eating a healthy diet. Dr. Nichter says, “I tell my patients to think of Kuma Pro/Vella Shape like salon hair color, manicures, or teeth cleaning. To maintain results, you’ll need to come in for touch-ups.”
IS KUMA PRO/VELLA SHAPE SAFE?
Kuma Pro/Vella Shape is considered safe, with minimal risks when it’s done by an experienced provider.
The most common side effect is occasional bruising, but it lasts for only a few days.It isn’t very common, but there’s also a chance of scabbing or blistering—more so in people with very loose skin. The doctor can help prevent this by lowering the level of the energy delivered. There’s also a small chance of burns.
Women who are pregnant or nursing should wait to have a Kuma Pro/Vella Shape treatment, since research hasn’t yet been done to prove that it’s safe for them.