Cellulite is a problem for almost every woman, especially as we age. No matter how skinny or toned we are, it seems to affect our thighs and buttocks most commonly.
We don’t really care why it forms. All we want to know is how to get rid of it. What can we do that will make it disappear within minutes—well, okay, days? Can we get rid of the problem or is it something that we must put up with for the rest of our lives.
Well, the great news is that we can reduce and hide cellulite. It is now possible to get rid of it completely in some patients and reduce it tremendously in other patients.
These are the two things that I’m going to cover today—no pun intended. I’m going to teach you just how you can get rid of cellulite!
Wait! What Exactly Is Cellulite?
Okay, so I know I said that we don’t care about what it is, but that’s not completely true. There are so many of us who want to know how and why it forms. If we know that, there’s a higher chance that we will be able to stop it from forming again in the future, right?
The downside is that some of us are genetically predisposed to developing cellulite. Because there is a genetic component, there is very little that we can do about cellulite formation; at least that’s what it seems.
So, onto some good news. It’s not all about the genetics. There are many other reasons for cellulite formation.
Let’s just start with what cellulite is first. It forms by fat protruding through the connective tissues. The fat forms lumps through the tissue, making your skin look uneven, bumpy, and full of dimples. It’s why cellulite is always linked to people being overweight, even though that’s not the only reason.
There are different grades of cellulite. Grade 1 is cellulite that isn’t visible, even when the skin is pinched. This means that we all have cellulite, no matter how fit or toned we are. It’s present but not always visible. This moves up to Grade 4, which is visible regardless of your positioning. Many people suffer from Grade 3, where it’s visible when standing but not while lying down.
While Grade 1 isn’t visible, only around 10 percent of people will deal with this grade in their lifetime. Most people must manage some type of more severe cellulite (Grade 2-4).
In a way this is great news if you suffer from cellulite as it is common and you are not alone.
So, Why Does Cellulite Form?
While genetic predisposition exists, there are other reasons for the formation of cellulite.
Cellulite is linked to those who are overweight. This isn’t the only reason, but it is prominent in many people who have excess body fat in the affected area.
Anybody can be affected by this condition, but it is commonly associated with an unhealthy lifestyle. This doesn’t necessarily mean an unhealthy diet, but also nicotine exposure, poor exercise levels, and other health issues or co-morbidities.
The best way to know if you are going to deal with cellulite in your lifetime is to look at the older women in your family. If they have it, there is a higher chance you will develop it. It’s not just women! Men also get cellulite, so you’ll want to look at the older men in your family too.
Genes affect the way that fat is deposited or stored in our body. For example, the way fat pulls on the connective tissue bands, allowing it to move through those bands and to the top layers of your skin.
Genetic predisposition is not the main reason for developing cellulite. Increased BMI is the most common reason for people to suffer from cellulite. If you are overweight and/or obese, you’ll have increased fat volume pulling down on the bands of tissue and forcing their way through to the surface of your skin. Since women by nature have a higher body fat percentage versus men, more women experience cellulite. Cellulite tends to affect the areas of highest fat volume, and in women this is usually the buttocks, hips and thighs.
In my opinion, having cellulite is much better than dealing with visceral fat (fat inside the abdomen around the organs), which is more common in men, but that is a totally different discussion for another blog!
As you start your weight loss journey, most will find that cellulite isn’t as noticeable. Toning up your muscles through exercise, better eating habits, increased water intake and an overall healthy lifestyle will also lead to improvement in the appearance of your cellulite.
It’s Time to Hide Your Cellulite
Before we look at options for removing cellulite, let’s discuss ways to hide it or “cover it up”, so you can feel more confident in a swimsuit and/or slip into lingerie for your partner.
Start by Boosting Your Water Intake
Start by improving your water intake. Dehydration affects your body in more ways than headaches. It disrupts all the processes that keep your body functioning properly.
One of the problems with dehydration is that it affects the collagen production in your skin. If collagen is produced properly, you will find that the layers of your skin are more flexible or supple. Collagen is what makes our skin youthful, thick and smooth. Strong collagen will not allow the fat to push through the connective tissue as easily, helping to smooth out the irregularities at the surface layer of your skin. This is why cellulite is less evident when we are young and our skin has more collagen. Dry skin also does not look as aesthetically pleasing as well hydrated skin. Plenty of water intake along with a good moisturizer will help with your overall appearance.
Enjoy a Massage All Over
There’s never been a better excuse to get a deep tissue massage, cupping and or Endermologie. Forget about the relaxation benefits, and focus on the way it will help improve the look of your skin. The massage will help to boost your circulation or blood flow. Not only does increased blood flow help to rid of toxins and muscle/tissue aches and pains, but it also helps to plump your skin leaving it temporarily smoother and firmer.
Because the results only last 2-3 days, these deep tissue massages must be done on a regular basis for sustained improvement to the skin. If you have an important event coming up, you’ll need to get a massage the day before in order to reduce the appearance of your cellulite.
Cupping is one of the most beneficial types of massages for cellulite. It will force the blood to raise to the surface of the skin, evening out the layers and reducing the look of the fat lumps. Cupping massages are extremely popular by sports people, with many Olympians favoring them during the 2016 Rio Olympics. The downside is that cupping massages can be painful and can leave temporary bruising.
Opt for Beauty Products
Another way to hide your cellulite is by using the right beauty products for your skin. You want to find products that will help with the toning and firming of your skin to hide the irregularities.
Let’s start with some skin firming creams. After all, you want to tone the skin, right? The firming creams will help to boost the connective tissues and improve the layers of skin to prevent the fats from pushing through as much.
These firming creams will have a positive effect on the appearance of cellulite, but are also temporary. The best results are seen when a patient chooses to use these creams regularly. My personal favorite product for body use is Alastin Transform. This product is used daily similar to how most of use a moisturizer. The results are best if used daily for at least 6 weeks.
Another option is self-tanner. Cellulite tends to be less noticeable when skin has a darker pigment. A natural tan will also work but be careful as UV rays from the sun and/or a tanning bed have their negative effects, including pre-mature aging and the potential of causing cancer.
Dry Brush the Affected Areas
Another effective method for hiding cellulite is dry brushing. Dry brushing not only exfoliates the skin (removed dead skin cells), but also leads to increased blood flow leading to similar benefits as a massage discussed previously. A brush with strong bristles and a circular motion least to the best results.
After exfoliating with a dry brush, the skin can become dry very quickly and the pores are remain open. To avoid creating another issue such as body acne, moisturizing is a necessary next step.
You Can Always Opt for the Right Clothing
You don’t need to change the look of the skin to hide your cellulite. Sometimes it’s all about choosing the right type of clothing.
While on the beach, you may want to find something that you can wear without feeling too hot and stuffy. Why not buy a sarong for over your bikini? You’ll cover up your butt and legs while still being fashionable.
If you’re not going to the pool or beach, you have a few other options. Trying to hide the appearance of bumps under a tight fitting dress? You could always opt for shaping underwear instead.
How Can You Reduce Cellulite Permanently?
Now that you know how to hide your cellulite, it’s time to reduce it permanently. What steps can you take to never have to worry about the look of your skin again?
Well, remember that it is linked to fat. While you don’t want to cut out all fat, you want to reduce some of the fat in your body. That means focusing on a calorie controlled, healthy diet.
Make it a priority to lose weight now. Get to a healthy BMI but make sure you tone your body at the same time. There are a few ways that you can do that.
Start with a Healthy Diet
Let’s focus on the eating aspect of a healthy lifestyle. It’s important to create a calorie deficit, where you eat fewer calories than your body burns off. Your body will need to burn off the extra calories that your body has stored over time so that you start to lose some of the excess weight.
You can’t do this by starving yourself. Starvation leads to a slower metabolism and storing more fat. It’s important to follow a diet that is healthy and sustainable. You may need to seek help from a dietician in order to be successful with long term weight loss.
It is also now common for patients to get help with weight loss with a prescription medication such as Semiglutide shots. If you are interested in hearing more about this option, please reach out to my office Adrian@myhoustonsurgeons.com.
Do You Really Want to Deal with That?
If you opt for a healthy eating plan, you just reduce the number of calories you eat. Once it comes to maintaining your weight, you just balance out the calories you eat with the calories you burn (basal metabolic rate plus any exercise or additional calories burned throughout the day).
Healthy eating also means that you’re less likely to binge. You’re not saying no to the food that you love but not right now. Portion control is key to successful long term weight loss. You’re reducing the amount you have and eating everything in moderation. You’re also increasing the number of nutrients that you get in your diet, which will help improve your overall lifestyle.
Try to clean up your diet, rather than just focusing on a reduced intake of calories. Opt for less processed food and refined sugar in your diet. Focus more on the healthy fruits and vegetables and opt for meals that sustain you throughout the day. It’s also worth cutting back on the drinking and focusing more on drinking plenty of water.
Again, medications such as Semiglutide (trade names for these medications that can help with weight loss include Ozempic, Wegovy and Mounjaro just to name a few), can help patients who struggle with weight loss on their own. Please reach out to my office Adrian@myhoustonsurgeons.com if you want more information on these medications.
Improve Your Fitness Levels
While you focus on a healthy diet, you need to tone your muscles. This is especially important around your legs and butt. You need to help your tissues tone and strengthen, so the fat cannot push through as easily.
This is another reason to eat a healthy diet. When you get just enough calories to keep your body fueled without going over, you have the energy to do an exercise plan. You don’t feel drained, meaning that you’re more likely not to skin a workout.
Leg exercises are not difficult and do not require special equipment. You can do the workouts in your own home, and there are plenty of home workout DVD’s and YouTube videos to follow to get you started. If you have the resources and desire to join a gym or hire a personal trainer, then that is a great option too.
Some of the best leg exercises include:
- Leg raises
- Hip raises
Cardio workouts are also great for losing weight. Running, swimming, and even rowing are among the most popular options. Walking is also a great low impact option and therefore easier on the body as you age.
Add Some Extra Flaxseed to Your Diet
If you’re not going to clean up your diet completely, at least add an ingredient that is great for getting rid of cellulite. Flaxseed is extremely easy to add to meals and is full of protein and fiber. The best part about flaxseed is that it boosts your collagen and helps with the hormone balance. It supports the estrogen in your body. Decreased estrogen levels (which occurs naturally as we become premenopausal), can have negative effects on our skin. As I stated before, when you have more collagen, your skin is strengthened, and the appearance of your cellulite improves.
This affect is more permanent as long as you continue to incorporate flaxseed to your diet.
What About the Plastic Wraps?
Utilizing plastic wraps to help tone the body has gained popularity. The truth is that these wraps can help. This is usually done in a spa type setting. Plastic is wrapped around various body parts and the heat created helps the body sweat away volume leaving the area looking smaller temporarily. Many patients use this type of intervention the day before a big event such as a wedding or a beach trip.
Are You Ready to Lose Your Cellulite?
Cellulite is a nuisance, and no one is exempt from it. It’s not just a symptom of being overweight. This is something that all women can end up dealing with over their life time, and even some men.
Well, now we have a way to permanently reduce the appearance of cellulite. Aveli Cellulite Reduction is a non-surgical minimally invasive procedure that is done awake in the office. Depending on the surface area to that needs treatment, this procedure takes 1-2 hours to perform. The results are seen immediately but improve over 4 weeks after the procedure as the bruising and swelling subside. There is little to no down time and very few restrictions. Please reach out to my office if you are interested in more information on Aveli Cellulite Reduction Adrian@myhoustonsurgeons.com