It used to be the only way one could improve muscle tone was through diet and exercise. That isn’t the case anymore. There have been leaps and bounds made when it comes to the advancements in aesthetic technology—especially when it comes to body contouring.

Most technologies, like melting or freezing options, focus on fat removal. However, fat and muscle are completely different physiologically speaking, fat will never turn to muscle. So, if lack of muscle tone is more of a concern, fat removal may not be the best treatment option.

Luckily, there are a few technologies that specifically tone and sculpt the muscles to make them firmer and more aesthetically appealing.

What Technologies Help With Toning Muscles?

There are two main types of technologies available for toning the muscles and shaping the body: one utilizes high-intensity and rapidly shifting magnetic pulses that create current that makes the muscles contract, while the other technology uses electrical current to stimulate the muscles directly. While both technologies work well to create muscle contractions, magnetic pulses are more likely to affect deeper muscle layers when compared to direct stimulation as with electricity.

Both technologies build muscles by enlarging existing muscle fibers while simultaneously stimulating the growth of new ones. These devices work by replicating thousands of muscle contractions that would never be possible with an exercise program. Below are a few examples of devices that can tone muscles to give them a more sculpted appearance.

The first high intensity electromagnetic (HIFEM) therapy device approved by the FDA to build muscle in the abdomen, buttocks, legs, arms, and pelvic muscles by stimulating 20,000 of contractions to sculpt the body is EMSCULPT®, which is manufactured by BTL. Treatments typically take 30 minutes, and it usually takes on average four treatments scheduled every two weeks to achieve the desired results. Improvement in muscle tone takes a month or two to fully transpire and determine the results of the treatment.

Another device that utilizes electrical impulses to stimulate muscle contractions and treat multiple areas of the body is truSculpt® flex, which is manufactured by Cutera. truSculpt flex can generate 54,000 contractions per session, isolate and treat 8 areas simultaneously, and simulate 5 different workouts.Treatments take on average 45 minutes and are typically administered in a series of four treatments over a several week period with programs for prepping, toning, and sculpting that alter the muscle stimulation to get different results. This allows a high level of customization for the individual being treated as well as creating a maintenance program based on their needs.

Why Does Muscle Tone Matter?

First and foremost, when muscles are worked, they grow and tighten resulting in a firmer, more defined physique. Increasing muscle mass may also help to burn more calories and raise the metabolic rate. In fact, in an exciting new study with both mice and humans, researchers found that after weight training the muscles create and release little bubbles of genetic materials that can flow to fat cells to jump start processes that relate to burning fat.

Not only do the results of the study illustrate how extensive and interconnected the physiological effects of exercise can be, but it adds to the growing body of clinical evidence that strength and resistance training has for fat loss.


Body contouring, body sculpting, and body shaping treatments have become more popular recently as surgical treatments like liposuction have grown more common. Thanks to technological advances, non-invasive treatments are now available as an alternative to enduring and recovering from painful, expensive surgeries. While these technologies are great for burning fat and toning muscle, by no means are they a substitute for regular exercise and a balanced diet. Rather, they are geared towards individuals who live healthy, active lifestyles who suffer from localized trouble areas that diet and exercise don’t resolve.