Cellulite. Everyone’s got it. (Just about.) To understand cellulite, we need to get rid of some long-running lies that we’ve been told at some stage about cellulite, clearing up the mess with some home truths.
Cellulite is not caused by toxins.
If only the impurities of our lives could be washed away so easily.
Men get cellulite too. But not half as much as women do.
That’s because men’s connective tissue and underlying structure is somewhat different to women’s. The fibrous connective tissue around our bodies holds us in like a 3-D net, so when there is more fat, more bulges up out of the columns of netting that holds us together.
Women carry more fat because bearing children requires a great deal of physical energy, hormones rely on us having certain levels of fat (which is why skinny girls get their periods later than everyone else), and because food is delicious.
As we age, cellulite gets worse.
This is because as we age, the cells that produce collagen and elastin (the netting) – fibroblasts – decrease their activity. This means the connective-tissue netting that holds us together gets weaker, and more fat can poke out the top.
The fibroblasts are slower, producing less collagen, and that’s why we end up sagging all over. Blame the fibroblasts. You can also blame poorer circulation, particularly in cellulite-prone areas, for not sustaining the fibroblasts adequately or clearing out fluids.
Blame the fibroblasts – or better, blame your mother.
The propensity for cellulite – or at least the propensity for bad cellulite – appears to be genetic. There is a genetic test that can tell you if you have the gene for moderate to severe cellulite, though it seems silly to get a test for something you can see in all the women in your family, including yourself.
You can be the fittest person this side of Africa, and still have cellulite.
Being overweight does make cellulite more noticeable, because the more fat you have, the more it bulges up out of the structural netting. This doesn’t mean you can’t be fit, though, and it doesn’t mean that slim women who work out all the time don’t have cellulite. They do! Well, most of them anyway, including underwear models.
While we’ve just explained that you’re doomed no matter what, this isn’t entirely true. You can reduce the appearance of cellulite by stretching and strengthening the very areas you want to protect. Exercise and muscles (resistance training) tightens the skin, and this can more or less hide cellulite. Building muscle, improving circulation, and feeling good enough that you care less counts. Strength training is best, because you build muscle, and this helps you to look better overall, compared to cardio.
Don’t bother with cellulite creams. They don’t really work.
No cream has been able to reduce cellulite by much, however any product containing retinol does help because it stimulates collagen in the skin. This may hide lumps and bumps a little better, particularly when combined with other treatments.
Skin fillers can help.
Injectable dermal fillers can help, at least temporarily. Deep dimples can be filled to even out the appearance. Speak to your cosmetic doctor about your options – there are likely to be better options.
Laser and radiofrequency treatments do work.
Results are temporary, but these treatments do work to smooth and help firm skin in cellulite-prone areas. Talk to us about our state-of-the-art equipment to zap your cellulite with radiowaves as part of our CelluFix treatment program. These waves – of many kinds – help disperse fluids, break up rigid connective tissue, stimulate collagen, and improve blood supply, which all work to clear out the cause of cellulite.
Liposuction is not a cure for cellulite.
Liposuction can reduce fat deposits, which therefore reduces the bulges out of the netting, but sometimes liposuction can leave the fat deposits uneven and make things worse. (Not at our clinic though!) Liposuction or other fat reduction methods can be part of body reshaping, however, and useful as part of a broader treatment program.
Food matters, but maybe not how you think.
Obviously keeping fat in check is the first port of call for keeping cellulite in check. Eating well makes a difference, but just eating a healthy diet isn’t the answer. Eating the right food matters, so plenty of good fats, lean protein, fibre and fresh fruit and vegetables. Stay hydrated.
Additionally, if you are not eating the food that’s right for your body, your body can produce unfavourable results – like cellulite. Junk food almost certainly means more cellulite.
Don’t wear too-tight clothes in cellulite-prone areas.
Tight clothes are believed to worsen cellulite by blocking circulation and fluid dispersion – a key component of cellulite’s appearance. While wearing tight undergarments or tights might stop your fat jiggling when you walk or exercise, they could be making your problem worse.
Smoking reduces circulation and makes cellulite worse.
When you cut off the blood supply to tissue, it weakens and degenerates. While obviously some blood does get through to your skin in cellulite-prone areas, it can and does reduce the action of your skin cells and lymphatic system.
No cellulite treatment is forever.
That’s just the way it is.