Sono Bello Review: Procedures, Costs, Results, Complaints, and More

By Lydia Noyes
HighYa Staff
Updated on: Jul 5, 2019

Sono Bello is a chain of body contouring clinics that claim to employ “America’s top cosmetic surgery specialists.” Over 125 board-certified surgeons work for Sono Bello, and the company states that they have performed more than 150,000 cosmetic procedures for tens of thousands of patients.

Headquartered in Kirkland, WA, the brand has expanded in recent years to cover more than 60 locations across the United States, each offering “advanced microlaser, and power laser-assisted liposuction equipment, as well as numerous invasive and non-invasive sculpting techniques” to help you reduce excess fat, reduce cellulite, and remove excess skin. Their procedures are available for both men and women.

They promise to provide each customer with the most advanced micro-laser liposuction procedures possible to give them bodies they will be happier with.

Should you consider Sono Bello for your cosmetic procedures? In this review, we’ll help you gain a better understanding of how Sono Bello procedures work, the results you can expect, expert opinion on liposuction, and whether this is right for you.

Available Sono Bello Procedures

Sono Bello features three procedures:

  1. TriSculpt™ Laser Liposuction
  2. Venus Freeze™
  3. TriSculpt E/X™

According to the Sono Bello website, these procedures are much less invasive than traditional liposuction and require much less healing time. The procedures are available for both men and women and treat a wide variety of areas, including chest, chin, waist, abs, arms, back, and legs.

Further details about these procedures are below:

TriSculpt™ Laser Liposuction

As Sono Bello’s most popular procedure, this three-step fat removal procedure relies on “stay-awake localized anesthesia, power-assisted liposuction, and micro-laser assisted liposuction.”

Sono Bello reports that laser liposuction helps to restore the natural contours of your body and is ideal for removing fat pockets from your stomach, waist, arms, and legs.

You’ll stay awake through the procedure and get local anesthesia in the treatment areas. During treatment, a physician uses micro cannulas to suck out unwanted fat from large pockets and a separate micro cannula with a low-power laser to break down fat in smaller sections like your upper arms and under your chin.

Venus Freeze™

This non-surgical procedure is designed to reduce the appearance of cellulite through a combination of radio frequency and magnetic pulses. According to the company website, the freeze is painless and causes only a gentle massage feeling on your skin. They state that you will experience a trimmer, smoother figure in as few as five sessions.

Your treatment starts with a soft gel that is applied to the target area, and a Sono Bello treatment provider will glide a Venus applicator over the gel in smooth motions to tighten the skin and reduce cellulite. The treatment purportedly causes new collagen and elastin fibers to form to bring you more supple skin over time.

TriSculpt E/X™

This procedure is designed to remove excess skin, especially around the lower abdomen. It’s advertised as the ideal solution for toning up your appearance, especially when paired with liposuction to remove excess fat first.

Sono Bello Costs

Sono Bello states that their services are affordable, and they claim that TriSculpt and TriSculpt E/X prices start at $1,349 per area, with a minimum requirement of three areas treated ($4,047 total minimum). The starting price for Venus Freeze is $2,995.

However, the precise cost for your procedure will vary based on the clinic’s location, the area and amount of your body you want them to treat, whether you opt for financing or a onetime payment, and what your starting BMI is.

It’s also worth noting that the company doesn’t clarify online what constitutes an ‘area.’ I reached out to customer service for further details and was told this was a question that could only be discussed between my consultant and me during my ‘free, in-person consultation.’

Hitting a dead end with customer service, we looked at customer reviews of Sono Bello from around the web to learn what people were paying in reality. Some reported putting down about $3,000 for an outer thigh procedure, $12,000 for two rounds of back and belly fat removal, $13,500 for a full body liposuction treatment, $4,000 for skin removal on their stomach, and $6,000 for back and midsection liposuction.

As this variance in prices shows, it’s difficult to predict what your treatment costs will be from looking at past procedures because the variables in your situation will be different. Your best bet is to contact your preferred treatment location for a phone estimate or to schedule a free consultation. You can also contact the company at (800) 995-1136 for answers to more general questions.

Does Sono Bello pricing seem standard for the cosmetic surgery industry? The 2017 statistics from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons lists the average cost of liposuction as $3,374, though the price of the procedure varies based on location and surgeon. That’s likely lower on average than what you’ll pay at Sono Bello.

However, this pricing can be deceiving. In the words of plastic surgeon Dr. Samuel Lin, “the average fee referenced is only a portion of the cost. It does not include anesthesia, operating room facilities, or other related expenses.”

For this reason, you need to make sure you understand the full financial picture before committing to a procedure.

What Are Sono Bello Financing Options?

Sono Bello offers numerous financing options, including options where you won’t owe any interest if you pay off the full amount of your treatment in six or 12 months. They also claim to offer financing through Care Credit, a medical credit card that offers various financing options depending on the cost of the procedure and the length of repayment you want.

As with any medical procedure, you’ll want to be sure that you have a complete understanding of the costs associated with your treatment before you commit. Read the fine print and ask plenty of questions during your consultation so you know what you are signing up for.

Are Sono Bello’s Liposuction Procedures a Permanent Solution?

The Sono Bello website offers a comprehensive overview of liposuction. We learned that it is considered to be an effective surgical procedure for slimming, reshaping, and removing excess fat deposits in the body to create desired proportions.

Most liposuction procedures are performed with general anesthesia or minimal oral sedation, and the surgery itself requiring doctors to create small incisions in body tissues and use microcannulas to extract fat cells from the body.

It’s important to note that liposuction treatments aren’t meant to be a solution for obesity or as a shortcut for weight loss.

Rather, Sono Bello states that the procedure should be considered a way to get rid of stubborn fat deposits that are difficult to remove from diet or exercise alone. Unlike dieting—which they state merely reduces the size of fat cells—liposuction removes the fat cells entirely.

Is liposuction a permanent fix for unwanted fat? That depends on how you treat your body afterward.

According to New York-based plastic surgeon Dr. Charlie Chen, “the results [of liposuction] can be permanent. However, it is impossible to take out every single fat cell in the area. Therefore, if the person gains weight, the liposuctioned area may also increase in size.”

Specialist surgeon Dr. Bernard Beldholm clarifies that any fat you regain after liposuction will look a little different than before the procedure.

“If the person gains weight the remaining fat cells will grow but the patient will remain in proportion,” he told us. “For example, if liposuction has been done on the saddlebags ‘hip area’ and the person gains weight, then the legs and body will get bigger but the saddlebags will not return.”

Ideal Candidates and Recovery Times

Not everyone is a candidate for liposuction. Chen told us that prospective patient should be in good health, have a medical history free of significant problems, and be within 30 pounds of their ideal body weight.

It’s also best to be a nonsmoker and to have relatively elastic skin that will “bounce back” after the treatment.

Regarding recovery times, the company website states that most Sono Bello patients return to work within a week of treatment, and they are approved for vigorous exercise within four to six weeks.

» Recommended Reading: Liposuction: How It Works, Types, Risks, Side Effects, and More

Sono Bello Safety and Side Effects

As with all surgical procedures, there are some inherent risks from Sono Bello. The Mayo Clinic states that you might experience mild bleeding immediately after or develop infections at the site of the incision.

Noticeable scarring due to the treated skin pulling away from healthy skin is also possible with procedures that don’t heal correctly, and some people experience permanent or temporary numbness and tingling from nerve damage.

We learned from past HighYa reviews that some people experienced pain during the procedure because they weren’t given general anesthesia. Others reported painful, slow-healing infections because of incisions that went too deep.

However, these negative experiences look to be the exception, not the norm. It seems to us that most people who undergo Sono Bello procedures don’t suffer from unexpected side effects.

How Does Sono Bello Compare to CoolSculpting?

We’ve written before about CoolSculpting, another procedure that claims to be an alternative to liposuction. How does it compare to Sono Bello?

Like Sono Bello, CoolSculpting promises to get rid of extra fat through a safe, cost-effective procedure. The process relies on cryolipolysis, or a technology designed to freeze fat cells so that they die and your body can eliminate them.

This purportedly creates a targeted fat loss, though the process isn’t designed to help you shed weight as dramatically as liposuction. Instead, you’re likely to experience up to 20% fat reduction in the treatment areas after one session, and it may take several months for your body to expel the fat cells so you can see your results.

When you compare CoolSculpting to Sono Bello, a few things are clear. First, CoolSculpting is considered a lower risk procedure because there’s no incision, and you don’t need anesthesia.

This means there’s minimal recovery time after. One drawback is that this often leads to less obvious results as a primary complaint is that it takes a long time for the procedure to work, and the results are usually subtle.

However, this procedure tends to be cheaper than other forms of cosmetic weight loss, as you’ll likely pay closer to $1000 to $2000 for the treatment.

Which one is a better option? That depends on your priorities. If you want to save money and subtle tone up a few problem areas, you’ll likely prefer CoolSculpting for its lower prices and quick recovery time.

If, however, you want a better chance of having a dramatic before and after, the higher price point and potential for pain might still make Sono Bello a better option.

An Analysis of Sono Bello Reviews and Complaints

We like to look at published customer reviews from third party sites to get a sense of what people think of the products we investigate. In general, it appears that the majority of online customer reviews regarding Sono Bello range from average to good.

Here at HighYa, the company scored 3.5 stars out of five after close to 200 reviews. Some of the most common complaints recorded were that patients thought their results were too subtle or short-lived to be worth the cost.

Many people reported that they felt like they were part of a “bait and switch” where they were quoted one price during their initial consultation and then were charged more than four times that amount at the time of the procedure. A few also reported that they felt like their treatment at the clinic was rushed and impersonal for the amount of money they were paying.

On the positive end, many people reported on our site that they loved how they looked after a Sono Bello procedure and that recovery time was quick and relatively painless.

This fits what we found on Yelp, where the company scored four stars out of five. Many of these reviewers stated that they had a positive experience with Sono Bello staff and felt like their needs were taken into consideration for the treatments they received.

We also read reviews from people who felt that their skin looked deformed after treatment and that their bodies weren’t fully healed more than six months after their procedure.

The Bottom Line: How to Decide If Sono Bello Is Right for You?

Committing to cosmetic surgery of any form is a big decision, so how can you decide if Sono Bello is right for you?

First, it’s important to be realistic about what your experience might be. As with any medical procedure, there are always risks involved, and not all patients will achieve the same results. With this in mind, let’s look at some of the concerns we uncovered during our Sono Bello research.

We don’t like Sono Bello’s lack of transparency about their pricing. Our attempts to reach out via online chat and by phone for pricing estimates were unsuccessful, as we were told this information could only be shared through an in-person consultation.

As numerous customer reviews made clear, your initial consultation for Sono Bello treatment might feel like a high-pressure sales talk. Many thought the company seemed more concerned with convincing them to put down a deposit than listening to their concerns or helping them choose the right treatment options.

Keep in mind that any deposit money you hand over is non-refundable, so consider your options carefully before putting down money for treatment. In fact, you may want to leave the office and think about your options for 24 hours before proceeding.

Cosmetic surgery, even relatively non-invasive treatments like what Sono Bello offers, aren’t for everyone. We think you are most likely to benefit from this form of treatment if you fall under the following descriptors:

  • You understand that liposuction from Sono Bello isn’t designed for extreme weight loss, but rather to reduce the appearance of fat in hard-to-tone areas.

  • You are within 30 pounds of your goal weight and struggle to get the results you want from diet and exercise alone.

  • You are willing to commit to a healthy diet and exercise routine to maintain your results.

  • You understand that your treatment will likely cost $4,000 or more and that you will need to put down a non-refundable deposit.

  • You understand it might take six months or more for swelling to go down completely after treatment.

  • You understand that final results might be subtle and that any cosmetic procedure runs the risk of potentially permanent complications.

» Recommended Reading: How to Find the Best Plastic Surgeon for You

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Read 206 Sono Bello Customer Reviews and Complaints

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Average Consumer Rating: 3.4
Rating Snapshot:
5 star: 109 4 star: 14 3 star: 4 2 star: 10 1 star:  69
Bottom Line: 61% would recommend it to a friend
Showing 1-11 of 206
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  • 3 out 3 people found this review helpful

    Follow up

    • Garfield, OH,
    • Aug 6, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    So far my results are good. With dieting and exercising, I’m in great hopes to see even more results. My recovery was great. I went back to work the next day after my procedure and I’m a registered nurse. I’m overall satisfied with Sono Bello.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 11 out 13 people found this review helpful

    Wow

    • Johnstown, OH,
    • Jun 19, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    I had put on about 40 extra pounds after having a baby and being a stay-at-home mom 13 years ago. Three years ago I managed to lose the extra 40 pounds but needless to say my belly, hips, and waistline just didn't bounce back as I was hoping.

    I decided I wanted to be able to wear a bikini again without feeling self-conscious or constantly finding a way to keep my arms covering my midsection. And now, I don't even know how to describe what I see!! I can wear basically anything I want to wear. My little black sheath dress, fitted shirts, and definitely my bikini.

    Every time I look in the mirror (which I avoided most of the time prior), I'm still amazed. My belly is actually flat again and I have an hourglass figure from my waist to my hips. The one big thing that stands out about my transformation was when I put on that new bikini and saw the look on my husband's face. He summed it up with one simple word "Wow!"

    In addition to my amazing results, every staff member at Sono Bello was friendly and genuinely concerned about my desired result. Each team member I spoke with explained every detail of my procedure, step by step, and what I should expect after my procedure. They really put me at ease and made the decision to choose Sono Bello very easy to make. Thank you Sono Bello for giving me such an awesome transformation!

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 32 out 33 people found this review helpful

    Thieves

    • Indiana,
    • Jun 12, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    They acted like they were giving me a big special up front by asking me to only pay $500 down. Then the doctor found a hernia during my visit and said I could not have the procedure until I have my hernia repaired. They charged my card for the deposit of $500 anyway before I left. I had to reschedule twice because of problems with the hernia surgery. I called them today and talked to the manager who was very rude about what I had been through and wanted a refund until my body was ready. I'm scared to have anyone go inside my stomach for anything after the nightmare I've been through with this hernia surgery. She said no refund, credit only, even though their doctor would not do surgery. She was very unconcerned with what I've gone through and said well have your doctor send a statement saying you can't have elective surgery. That's not it. My body is messed up from two infections. He's not saying I can't..I'm saying it's not good for me to have it done anywhere in the near future. But no, she will not refund, telling me well you were supposed to put $1000 down, even though they acted if it was a special.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 34 out 35 people found this review helpful

    Please research before signing a contract

    • Las Vegas, NV,
    • May 30, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE research this company before you sign any contract.

    Once you sign the contract you immediately forfeit $995, which is non-refundable. If you are scheduled within 14 days for the procedure, and you decide not to proceed, you immediately lose half of the deposit (which is the total cost of the procedure up front). Please go to Better Business Bureau online and read the complaints against Sono Bello to better equip you for the possibilities you may encounter. Ask your doctor their opinion. The sales person at this location will tell you that all those complaints are from the other Sono Bello locations, but I assure you that all 40 locations are run the same. Should you decide after this research, make sure the doctor is "Board Certified" of a specific Board (e.g. Family Practice, Emergency Medicine, etc,) Don't let their fancy advertising cloud your judgment and God help you if you do proceed!

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 14 out 14 people found this review helpful

    Friendly staff, uncomfortable prep

    • Bellevue, WA,
    • May 22, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    The surgery can be very uncomfortable and if you suffer from anxiety it might not be great for you. Personally I have trouble with surgeries that don’t provide general anesthesia so this was a rough experience. On the plus side though, the staff is very friendly and the Doctor is very thorough in letting you know how your procedure will be conducted. Ultimately I would recommend Sono Bello to most people, just be cautious if you have anxiety.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 11 out 13 people found this review helpful

    Best experience ever

    • Ontario, CA,
    • May 20, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    My experience with Sono Bello was the most awesome experience. I am totally satisfied with my results and I have referred two friends who are satisfied as well. Thank you to the best surgeon ever, Dr. Amardip Bhuller, for transforming my body back to that before childbirth 9lb 22in baby body. There is a smile on my face every day when I look in the mirror. Best wishes to all your staff especially Karen Vega who was phenomenal. Oh, and to Kelly the best nurse ever!

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 10 out 14 people found this review helpful

    Awesomeness

    • Oklahoma,
    • May 7, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    Dr. Jones and the staff did an amazing job working on my body contouring. They truly are amazing. I would recommend them to anyone. My husband and I are very impressed with the work and couldn't be happier.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 11 out 13 people found this review helpful

    Shrinking tummy

    • Ferndale, WA,
    • May 6, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    I decided to finally do something about my stomach area.

    We went to the Bellevue Sono Bello, and from the start, everyone was so nice and welcoming. From explaining what could be done and what could not be done, to the procedure day, they were very clear, and helpful. The only downside is the office is 2+ hours away.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 7 out 10 people found this review helpful

    Amazing consultation

    • Westerville, OH,
    • May 1, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    First, let me just say that this was not my first time consulting about plastic surgery. I have gone to 3 others, and I wasn't nearly as impressed as I was today with Julie. She was so helpful and informative. Plus, she was careful to make sure she fully understood all of my concerns before suggesting anything. From problem areas, to my medical history, to financing, she really took the time to explain all the ins and outs, and even took the time to get to know me and my family.

    Julie completed a visual assessment of the areas I told her I was bothered by, and let me know what she believed would give me the best result, without making me feel like she was just trying to sell me something. I was so impressed with the care from the consultation alone, that I went ahead and put my deposit down same day! I have never been so sure about anything as I am about choosing this facility for my body contouring needs!

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 37 out 40 people found this review helpful

    Not happy with results

    • Tampa, FL,
    • May 1, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    After having 2 children in the same year and trying everything under the sun to help with my appearance and the way I felt about myself, my fiancé and I decided to go with Sono Bello after talking to the consultant and seeing the before and after pictures.

    I started this process back in January of 2018. After my 6 months check up my hips were uneven and there was more that could have been taken out. One of the nurses at Sono Bello told me that Dr. Mendoza always gets complaints, I was thinking of course he does, the one that did my procedure.

    So I had another doctor look at what I what I was talking about and he agreed the other doctor really messed this procedure up. So I went with him to get a revision, which I wouldn’t have had to do if it was done right the first time. So with his opinion, I did the ex mini tummy tuck to get the best results.

    After that procedure in September of 2019, I had 4 painful infections having to leave work. I also had to go to physical therapy because my leg was in so much pain. Dr. Lyons said that has happened before where they cut in too much causing that leg pain.

    I am still not happy with the results with what I paid. I had the medical team look at my file and they said you got great results so there won’t be a refund or even help with what you have been through.

    Convenient for them to say I got nice results, but it’s my body and I look nothing like I saw in the before and after photos, those have to be a scam.

    Anyways, my story here is don’t go to Sono Bello, not a good company and doesn’t give you the results you talk about with the consultant.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 11 out 13 people found this review helpful

    I’m thrilled!

    • Bellevue, WA,
    • Apr 30, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    My surgery was 1.5 weeks ago and I couldn’t be happier! Dr. Macintosh and all of the nurses were amazing and put me at ease through the entire process. The procedure itself was only mildly painful and my recovery has been smooth so far. I’m still a little swollen, but even with the swelling, I’m overjoyed with the results. I can’t wait to see how the results progress over the next 1-3 months! Thank you Sono Bello Bellevue!

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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