Nipping and tucking is a huge part of the beauty industry. After spending a ton of money on creams and serums, people turn to cosmetic surgery in order to fix what cannot be fixed without something invasive. But what if there was a way to markedly improve your appearance without needles or knives or really anything remotely painful?

Enter the Erchonia ML Scanner, also known as the Zerona laser. Zerona contours the body and removes inches from various parts, specifically areas that cannot always be helped with exercise (such as the hips, knees, back and other trouble spots). The process takes about 40 minutes per session for a total of at least 6 sessions conducted no more than 72 hours apart.

While liposuction literally involves vacuuming fat cells from within the body, Zerona is applied externally. It is painless, even without the use of numbing creams, anesthesia and the like. Best of all, there is no downtime after the procedure is over.

So, how does it work? The laser liquefies fat within the fat cells. The cells release their contents and the body disposes of the contents naturally. This results in the fat depleting and a decrease in volume, which leads to losing inches off of whatever particularly vexing body part you have chosen to laser. Results can be seen immediately and will last as long as you allow them to last; if you overeat, expect that fact to creep back.

In a clinical trial, patients lost about an inch from their waists, and thighs. Admittedly, this study was conducted by Erchonia, though it was published in the journal Lasers in Surgery and Medicine.

Support also comes from the FDA, which approved Zerona as a “Low Level Laser System for Aesthetic Use,” which is defined as “a device using low level laser energy for the disruption of adipocyte cells within the fat layer for the release of fat and lipids from these cells for non-invasive aesthetic use.”

Another benefit of Zerona is that people with diabetes and other conditions that prevent them from taking advantage of more invasive procedures can use the laser safely.

Since Zerona is quite new, I didn’t think there would be a whole lot of reviews on the procedure. However, I was wrong – the Internet is abuzz with talk of Zerona. There is an Adverse Event Report on the FDA’s website regarding the laser, though nothing bad actually happened to the person who filed the report. Instead, she saw no effects from her treatment. However, she claimed that the “Zerona provider did not operate the Zerona machine properly” or “position it properly” on her body.

I found that at least half of the reviews I read were negative, based on the fact that the laser didn’t work. There were also plenty of people that said they were happy with the procedure. I have a feeling that some people expect major changes to occur after undergoing the Zerona laser, when in reality it is only meant to help you shed a couple of inches. It is not a weight loss tool; it is strictly a beauty procedure, an aesthetic instrument.