Bye Bye Cellulite
Summer is almost here, folks! And you know what that means? Those summer legs are coming out of hiding and into the spotlight. For some of us that is a sunshiny, joyous occasion. Hooray! For others? Not so much. If your New Year’s Resolution to “exercise more often” never made it past February, or if the candy-binge from Valentine’s Day lasted through March and into Easter, you are probably feeling a little uneasy about strutting your stuff in that new bikini you bought online. But, even if you did everything right. Even if you worked all winter long to get those legs summer-ready. Even if you are in tip-top shape. You still might feel like hiding those limbs, due to the one thing that almost EVERY woman has and NO woman wants; cellulite! Uggh!
Cellulite occurs when fat deposits push through the fibrous cords (or fascia) that connect the skin to the underlying muscle. Think of a mattress you sleep on. The springs are the connective tissue between the muscle (think: the bottom of the mattress) and the skin (think: the top of that mattress.) These “springs” pull downward on the surface of the skin as the fat pushes upward, creating the mattress effect that we know as cellulite. For some of us, it’s an overall orange-peel appearance. For others, the dimples are sporadic and deeper. Some just have one or two little dimples; others of us are covered with them. Even the most perfect bodies on the planet have cellulite: they merely know best how to minimize its appearance. All that said, however, if you are one of those rare lucky gals who is truly cellulite-free, then, on behalf of the 95% of women of all shapes and sizes who suffer from cottage cheese thighs: congratulations! (And… we hate you!)
For the rest of us normal people, let’s get to work, shall we?
So let me start with the bad news: You can’t cure cellulite. (I know… Bummer.) But have no fear, my fearless females, here comes the good news. There are products and treatments that do work to reduce the appearance of it. And just because one particular treatment doesn’t mask every ripple, don’t throw in the towel and give up. Me? I use a multitude of treatments. Just as I preach that one should attack the aging process from every angle (mind, body and spirit), so, too, should you attack cellulite in this way: from the superficial to the very deep, so to speak.
Here are my top 5 cellulite treatments: (From least effective to most effective)
1. Creams: To be completely honest with you, most cellulite treatment creams are bullsh*t. They do little to attack the root of the problem. There are a few, however, that contain the right ingredients to temporarily mask that dimpled skin. Look for creams that contain caffeine, retinol, and aminophylline. Every effective anti-cellulite potion contains caffeine, which helps combat cellulite by acting as a diuretic, increasing blood flow, and reducing fat deposits under the skin.
Retinol products increase cell turnover, stimulating collagen, and aid in firming the skin. Aminophylline is an active antioxidant and aids in breaking down fat deposits that lead to cellulite. Although anti-cellulite creams containing these ingredients are only temporary, they work well when paired with other treatments.
2. Dry Brushing: Dry brushing does wonders for your skin to increase circulation and cell turn-over. It also helps with lymphatic draining. All of these results help reduce the appearance of dimpled skin. Click here to see a video on how to dry brush.
3. Foam Rolling: Okay, folks, now we are getting to the root of the problem. You’ve probably heard exercise enthusiasts talk about the benefits of foam rolling for injury prevention. And, at the mere mention of “rolling,” we all have rolled our eyes at the notion. But what if I told you that foam rolling is one of the best things you can do to prevent cellulite formation? I’d bet there would be a lot less eye-rolling and a lot more thigh-rolling! The idea behind foam rolling for cellulite is that it breaks up and loosens the connective tissue that separates muscles (those mattress “springs”), which then allows the fat to lie smooth under the skin. It can also decrease inflammation, help with lymphatic drainage, and flush toxins from your body. All of which help decrease the appearance of cellulite. Hooray!
4. Endermologie: Endermologie is like foam rolling on steroids. Endermologie involves massaging, rolling, and sucking at the skin surface by two rollers, like two rolling pins. Click here to watch my Youtube video where I undergo this treatment. According to Endermologie practitioner, Pamela Lee, this treatment stimulates the break up of stubborn deposits of cellulite. It increases blood flow and lymphatic drainage, facilitating the elimination of excess fluid and fat cells, and firms and smooths the skin. And as someone who has been a long-time client of The Body Professionals, I am hooked. The results are real, folks. Not permanent, of course (remember, there is no cure for cellulite, just ways to improve its appearance), but this treatment will lead to noticeable improvement.
5. Cellfina: Now this is a treatment I have yet to try. I’m not really a candidate, most likely because I already utilize all of the above listed treatments. However, I will be filming someone undergoing this treatment in the next few months and I promise to keep you posted. This treatment is the big guns, folks, and a lot more invasive, with bruising that could last a month. On the bright side, it’s the only FDA-cleared, minimally-invasive procedure that has been proven to decrease the appearance of cellulite for at least one year. (Note: it, too, does not get rid of cellulite; it just reduces the appearance.) Under local anesthesia, the physician uses the Cellfina System to target the fibrous bands (those damned mattress springs) under the dimpled areas of skin. Releasing these bands allows the skin to spring back up, reducing the appearance of cellulite.
So there you have it. My top 5 anti-cellulite treatments. The weather is warming up, folks. So if your cottage cheese thighs are hindering you from wearing those short shorts, then let’s do something about it!