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RF Facial Device for Skin Tightening: Should You Buy One?

RF Facial Device for Skin Tightening: Should You Buy One?

As we age, it’s normal for our skin to lose its elasticity. The result? We develop certain skin concerns, like fine lines, wrinkles, and sagging. This is why many women want to tighten their skin. Some rely on firming creams, but might find them ineffective. Others go straight for Botox injections or a face lift surgery. But, of course, these procedures are often expensive and result in some downtime (recovery time) or side effects. No wonder many people are looking more into purchasing an RF facial device. What exactly is this treatment, and is the hype worth it? Find out here.

What is an RF Facial Device?

If you pull up your browser and search for “RF facial device,” you’ll know that they are widely sold in online stores. Prices vary: some only cost less than a thousand, while others can be as expensive as P6,000.

What do these devices do?

RF stands for radiofrequency, a type of energy in the electromagnetic spectrum. All types of energy, from our WiFi signal, TV waves, X-ray, grammar rays, to the sunlight, are spread over this spectrum. We measure them with frequency or “wavelengths.”

Now, the wavelengths from an RF facial device are quite “calm.” In fact, reports say it is 100 million times slower than visible light and about 1 billion times slower than x-ray. In other words, the device releases very low energy¹.

How Does an RF Facial Device Improve Skin Health?

At this point, you must be wondering: how will radiofrequency tighten my skin?

All types of energy produce heat and radiofrequency is no different. It increases the temperature deep within the skin, inducing thermal damage. Don’t worry, though. This thermal damage is minimal and actually stimulates collagen and elastin production³. In other words, an RF facial device promotes skin turnover.

This means using this device might give you newer skin, which improves the appearance of wrinkles and sagging.

Is Radiofrequency Skin Tightening Safe?

We are constantly exposed to radiofrequency from our cordless phone, WiFi, and smartphones. And to this day, some people still believe that this exposure is detrimental to our health. Hence, it’s not surprising for people to question the safety of radiofrequency skin tightening treatment.

Many health institutions classify radiofrequency as “possibly carcinogenic.” But the same goes for other commonly consumed or used products. Come to think of it, the World Health Organization even mentioned that eating processed meat is carcinogenic⁴!

As of now, we don’t know the exact connection between RF facial devices and cancer risk.

However, we know that many registered skin clinics offer radiofrequency skin tightening. There are also studies saying that RF devices demonstrate “excellent safety profile⁵.”

Are There Other Risks and Side Effects?

Since using an RF facial device involves heat, the risk of having burns is there. While it has little downtime, clients might still experience redness, swelling, and tingling on the treated area.

What Improvements Can You Notice?

The improvements vary depending on several factors, like the device used, the skill of the dermatologist, and the skin concerns present. But, in general, using an RF facial device can help with:

  • Sagging skin
  • Uneven skin tone
  • Double chin
  • Fine lines and wrinkles

Final Reminders

Remember that only a dermatologist can determine whether or not it’s good for you to undergo radiofrequency skin tightening procedure. Trust only a board-certified dermatologist for your skin concerns.

Interested in purchasing an RF facial device? Be cautious. Like mentioned earlier, the success of the treatment largely depends on the skills and knowledge of the person performing the procedure. Performing radiofrequency skin tightening incorrectly can also result in burns.

If you are set on purchasing the device, at least make sure that it has been approved by the FDA. It would also help if you ask an expert to teach you how to use it at home.

Learn more about Skin Health here.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.


1. So, Are Radiofrequency Treatments Really Safe?, https://www.americanboardcosmeticsurgery.org/are-radiofrequency-treatments-really-safe/, Accessed December 17, 2021

2. Noninvasive Skin Tightening Treatment, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4479364/, Accessed December 17, 2021

3. Radiofrequency for the treatment of skin laxity: mith or truth*, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4631236/, Accessed December 17, 2021

4. WHO report says eating processed meat is carcinogenic: Understanding the findings, https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/2015/11/03/report-says-eating-processed-meat-is-carcinogenic-understanding-the-findings/, Accessed December 17, 2021

5. Monopolar radiofrequency facial tightening: a retrospective analysis of efficacy and safety in over 600 treatments, https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16989184/, Accessed December 17, 2021

6. Scientific Evidence for Cell Phone Safety, https://www.fda.gov/radiation-emitting-products/cell-phones/scientific-evidence-cell-phone-safety, Accessed December 17, 2021

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Written by Lorraine Bunag, R.N. Updated Dec 21, 2021
Fact Checked by Kristel Lagorza