The Ultimate Guide To Cellulite
All about cellulite treatments, how to reduce cellulite and how to get rid of cellulite.
When you go into battle, it’s essential to know your enemy. Here’s everything you need to know about the dreaded lumps and bumps
Did you know there’s actually more than one type of cellulite?
Cellulite is very rarely caused by a single factor but is often the result of a number of issues – no wonder that over 90% of women suffer from it
It’s estimated that 90% of women all suffer from cellulite to some degree – we take a look at the female curse
Truth, lies and cottage cheese thighs explored
CRYSTALSMOOTH® is a unique and innovative way to combat cellulite – effortlessly smoothing skin while you go about your daily activities
Our experts look at whether it is really possible to exercise your way to becoming dimple free
Qualified nutritionist and weight loss specialist Kim Pearson gives the lowdown on how your diet and cellulite are linked, for better and worse
A leading aesthetic practitioner and cellulite expert reviews the cellulite- busting treatments available
The eternal question. Virtually all of us have it and most of us absolutely hate it and expend much time and money trying to eradicate it. What is this curse that affects almost all women of all ages, once they hit puberty?
Cellulite isn’t just excess fat – which is why very thin, toned women can still sport those dreaded lumps and bumps – but instead it’s the result of fat cells pushing up against the skin, constricted by tight, short fibrous bands in the dermis.
One medical definition of cellulite is ‘Oedematous FibroSclerotic Superficial Panniculitis’. In layman’s terms this means, inflammation of the fat cells in the adipose or superficial layer of the dermis combined with scar tissue or hardening of the connective tissues, plus water retention.
The lumps or troughs are caused by the collagen strands tightening, pulling the skin down, and the bumps or nodules are the result of fat cells pushing against the skin.
Medical or cosmetic?
Cellulite is not a medical condition and is deemed purely cosmetic by the medical community. That’s not to mean that it doesn’t cause a lot of distress to those suffering from it or even that it can’t be uncomfortable or even painful for some women. Also, some of the cellulite-busting treatments available are best performed by a properly qualified and experienced medical professional – Find out more in our Inside Secrets section on cellulite treatments.
Cellulite is the eternal problem and I’ve been treating women for cellulite for the last 28 years since I became a laser and plastic surgeon. It is a common issue that can cause a great deal of distress and I see two to three patients a day seeking treatment, ranging from 20 to 65 years old.
As we know, it’s a common problem for women and this is due to basic differences between male and female anatomy.
There are two types of fat. First, there is the superficial fat layer directly underneath the surface of the skin. The fat cells in this layer are very small and compacted, with collagen tissue running between the fat cells. This collagen tissue responds to certain factors, such as hormonal fluctuations in the body, and the skin becomes pulled down by collagen fibres, causing the pockets of fat cells to push against the skin.
Underneath the superficial layer of fat, is the loose or deep fat layer. Men typically have far more deep, loose fat so are less likely to develop cellulite. Women, unfortunately, have far more superficial fat, so are more prone to suffering from stretch marks and cellulite.
Now, understanding that cellulite is a fat-related condition rather than a problem relating to the skin is the first step. It means that any procedure or topical products that claim to treat cellulite by smoothing the overlying skin, will just not work.
Cellulite has traditionally been treated using laser or radiofrequency based devices. Although they can greatly improve the condition of your skin, they can’t target the superficial layer of fat without causing burning of the skin and damage to nerve endings. This explains the limited results that can be achieved with these types of devices.
Recently, though, there has been a breakthrough in the treatment of cellulite. Cellulaze is a laser surgical treatment that fractures the fibrous bands that pull down the surface of the skin.
It’s minimally invasive but it is a surgical procedure.
Why I use CRYSTALSMOOTH® leggings for treating cellulite?
I’ve been using these garments since they were first introduced because I believe they have many benefits. Their design is unique in that they are very thin, comfortable garments that can easily be worn under normal clothes unlike some of the other post-surgical products that are available. They also never irritate the skin. The underlying science is also unique to these products and sets them apart from the competition.
They can enhance the results of any surgical procedure for cellulite or fat reduction and I give every patient who undergoes the Cellulaze procedure the garment to wear during the healing process as it speeds up drainage. Patients find them extremely comfortable to wear and, as well as a significantly speedier recovery, they see a quicker improvement in the appearance of their skin than if they didn’t wear the garment.
I also advise patients that have undergone traditional liposuction or VASER lipo, to wear the macom garment because it applies gentle pressure that reduces the risk of complications such as haematoma or seroma.
Some patients might not be suitable for laser surgery, whether due to a medical issue or skin condition. In this case, we may perform an alternative procedure such as VelaShape or fat freezing. These treatments are usually performed over a number of sessions with intervals in-between. Again, I ask patients to wear the Macom garment to enhance their results.
The final group of patients that can benefit from the CRYSTALSMOOTH® leggings are those that don’t require any other procedure at this point; for example, a patient in their mid-20s who has grade one cellulite.
I recommend CRYSTALSMOOTH® leggings as a standalone treatment for patients that have grade one or very mild grade two cellulite because it introduces gentle heat into the skin, safely penetrating the superficial fat layer beneath.
So instead of suggesting an intensive course of VelaShape that requires them attending our clinic every week, these patients will see really good, visible results in a month or so of wearing the CRYSTALSMOOTH® leggings under their normal clothes.
I am very selective on who I operate on or which procedures I offer. As with everything in life, success is measured by results and I never suggest unnecessary treatments just for the sake of it.
Cellulite isn’t just a single problem and knowing what’s what when it comes to the different types of cellulite is essential to find the most effective type of treatment. Here are the three different types of cellulite.
1. Soft cellulite
Also known as flaccid cellulite, this is associated with sagging skin and often found on body areas where fat accumulates, such as the arms, stomach, hips, buttocks and legs.
It is more apparent when you are lying down rather than standing. The good news is that it isn’t painful when touched although the skin can feel very gelatinous and undulating. Weight gain or lack of tone is mostly to blame.
Best approach for tackling soft cellulite: adopting a rigorous diet and exercise routine should be your first step as it will visibly improve the appearance of soft cellulite. Wearing CRYSTALSMOOTH® leggings while you exercise can boost your results.
2. Hard cellulite
Hard or compact cellulite is the cause of the dreaded ‘orange peel’ that even fit and toned women can suffer from and is characterised by depressions and blemishes on the thighs, glutes and hips. Severe cases can feel very hard and painful to the touch.
Treating hard cellulite: if you’re susceptible to developing this type of cellulite, it can be very challenging to prevent it completely, but the earlier you start, the better. Excision-based treatments such as Cellfina are a new, minimally invasive approach to treating severe cellulite and it works by releasing the hardened fibrous tissues, producing long- term results.
3. Edematous cellulite
Also known as poor circulation cellulite, this is the least common form of cellulite and can be challenging to treat. It results from poor blood circulation which is aggravated by fluid retention. It can affect the thighs and knees but most frequently presents in the lower legs, altering the shape of the legs as they swell. The skin may feel painful when touched or if you’ve been sitting for a long period of time.
How to improve edematous cellulite: treatment should be aimed at improving blood circulation and reducing fluid retention. For very severe edematous cellulite, lymphatic drainage can be beneficial.
Cellulite is very rarely caused by a single factor but is often the result of a number of issues – no wonder that over 90% of women suffer from it.
Hormones play an important role in the development of cellulite as oestrogen, thyroid hormones, insulin, noradrenaline and prolactin are all part of the process by which cellulite is produced. When girls hit puberty, the battle with cellulite commences as our levels of oestrogen rise. Pregnancy-related hormonal fluctuations can also make cellulite worsen.
When women enter the menopause, their levels of oestrogen decrease, causing blood flow to the connective tissues under the skin to fall. This decrease in blood flow means less oxygen getting to the area and therefore lower collagen production. Our fat cells also tend to enlarge as oestrogen levels drop – the reason why we suffer from the menopausal middle-aged spread.
The fix: many specialised clinics now offer a hormonal approach to reducing cellulite. This can be costly and take longer to see results, but is an effective way to tackle a whole host of ageing concerns alongside cellulite.
Alongside the menopause causing hormonal havoc, as women get older their skin becomes thinner, less elastic and more prone to sagging. Furthermore, muscle mass reduces as you get older – physically inactive women can lose as much as 3% to 5% of muscle mass and function each decade after the age of 30. This, in turn, means it easier to pile on the pounds.
So, the incidence of cellulite doesn’t necessarily increase with age, but cellulite will often start to appear worse or become more visible.
The fix: treatments that use radiofrequency or high intensity focused ultrasound can firm and tone sagging skin.The downside is that they can be time consuming and costly. Remaining physically active, whether it’s through cardio or weight training, is always important as you get older. Alongside the many health benefits, it can help keep ageing concerns such as cellulite at bay.
Certain genes are linked to how fast your metabolism works, how fat is distributed and the efficiency of your circulation or lymphatic drainage system. Cellulite also seems to be more prominent in some ethnic groups. While cellulite can affect women from all ethnicities, it is more prevalent in white, European ethnic groups.
Scientists have also identified two specific genetic variations that were found in subjects suffering from cellulite and further research has worked out which gene variant is responsible for either moderate or severe cellulite. A good indication, however, is that if your mother and grandmother had cellulite, then you definitely have a better chance of also developing it.
The fix: there’s nothing you can really do to in regards to your genetic inheritance. However, it’s important to note that just because your female relatives do not have cellulite, you are guaranteed to also have smooth, toned legs. Particularly if you’re not following a healthy lifestyle.
Cellulite is not caused by toxins, per se, but an unhealthy lifestyle is definitely a risk factor in worsening cellulite. Too much refined and processed foods, unhealthy fat, carbs, salt and too little fibre can all encourage cellulite to form. There is also no magical list of foods you can avoid; instead look for foods that are known to cause inflammation as that results in your fat cells becoming enlarged and holding onto fluids and toxins. These toxins slow down lymphatic drainage and contribute to the breakdown of collagen and elastin in our skin.
Refined carbs, for example, are one of the main inflammation- causing food groups. The grain is missing one of the key components that make it a whole grain, stripping it of essential proteins, fibre, minerals and vitamins. Refined carbs are found in white bread, rice and flour or as refined sugars in cake, cereals and sugary drinks.
The fix: lymphatic drainage can help with blocked lymph cells and improve drainage of toxins from the body.
Smoking won’t cause cellulite, as such, but the negative impact it has on your skin health can ensure that cellulite will become more visible or worsen. This is because nicotine in the cigarettes is a vasoconstrictor; this means the blood vessels become constricted, lessening oxygen being delivered into the dermis. This, in turn, impacts on the formation of collagen. Lack of oxygen also affects your circulatory and drainage systems and ages your skin.
Cigarette smoke also contains thousands of different chemicals, such as acetylene, ammonia, benzene, formaldehyde and methanol, and all these toxins produce free radicals that damage the connective tissue of the skin, making cellulite look even worse.
The fix: the obvious answer, of course, is to give up smoking. Unfortunately, vaping is only slightly better than smoking because, although it doesn’t contain tar, it still delivers nicotine into the bloodstream.
A sedentary lifestyle may contribute to the appearance of cellulite, but this isn’t a definitive cause as even very fit and active women can suffer from cellulite. However, exercising a few times a week, often isn’t enough to combat the effect of working in
a sedentary occupation, whether sitting or standing for long periods of time. Inactivity causes a calorie imbalance that encourages the storing of fat cells in the cellulite layer. Lack of mechanical stimulation also causes collagen and elastin production to slow down, making your skin less taut and firm. Click here to find out more about Exercise + Cellulite.
The fix: although exercise is an important weapon in the battle against cellulite, it’s thought that lactic acid build-up, which is very common after exercise, can make cellulite worse in those who have a predisposition to it. Doing your leg exercises on a vibrating plate increases circulation in your lower body, meaning quicker removal of waste products such as lactic acid.
A woman's issue?
It’s estimated that 90% of women all suffer from cellulite to some degree and, furthermore, Caucasian women are most prone to this problem. There are a number of reasons for this:
It’s thought that women have a distinctive structure to their dermis that make them more prone to developing cellulite.
The connective tissues that keep a smooth appearance to the overlying skin in the thighs are thinner in women and when the fat bulges against the surface of the skin, lumps and bumps are formed.
Evolution has given women softer, rounder hips and thighs to attract males, but unfortunately it also means we are more prone to put on fat in these areas and our modern diets and sedentary lifestyles result in excess fat putting pressure on the connective tissue in our dermis.
The important hormonal stages in a woman’s life – puberty, pregnancy and the menopause – are all linked to the appearance or worsening of cellulite.
Teens and cellulite
Although most women start to see cellulite appearing in their 20s and 30s, a typical teenage diet, full of junk food and sugar, combined with a technology-obsessed sedentary lifestyle and the intense hormone fluctuations of puberty, means more and more teen girls are starting to suffer from the complaint.
It’s never too early to adopt a healthy lifestyle which is the best way to avoid the problem getting worse. And don’t be fooled by all the social media images of perfect bodies – they are probably just filtering away any body imperfections such as stretch marks or cellulite.
So, why are some women immune?
Everyone’s body is unique and some women may have won the genetic lottery, whether that’s in terms of fat composition, skin thickness, collagen structure or different hormone levels.
Also, those women who you envy for their toned and taut thighs? They probably do have some degree of cellulite – grade one cellulite isn’t often visible – which may become more noticeable as they got older.
One life event that affects all women, even those who have remained dimple-free throughout, is the menopause where the steep drop in oestrogen levels significantly increases your potential to develop cellulite.
Despite the fact that most women suffer from cellulite, there are as many myths as truths about the dreaded c-word. Here we take a look at the most common misconceptions about cellulite.
1. Cellulite is caused by toxins. √ MYTH
One of the oldest old wives’ tales about cellulite is that it is caused by toxins – as evidenced by the amount of ‘toxin-eliminating’ creams and lotions on the market. Cellulite is the result of fat deposits constricted by collagen fibres, bulging against the overlying skin and, physiologically, the unique characteristic of someone’s skin structure indicates whether they are susceptible to developing cellulite.
However, although cellulite is not caused by toxins, they can make existing cellulite appear worse.
2. You can blame your mum for cellulite. √ FACT
It is true that cellulite has a genetic element – or rather the predisposition to develop cellulite as other factors then also come into play – and if your mum or grandmother has cellulite then you are much more likely to suffer from it. Certain genes affect your metabolism, distribution of fat and efficiency of your circulatory and lymphatic drainage systems. In fact, a 2010 scientific study found that there are different gene variations that could determine whether you are more susceptible to moderate or more severe cellulite.
3. Liposuction can get rid of cellulite. √ MYTH
As cellulite is a fat problem, it seems to make sense that a fat reduction procedures such as liposuction could eliminate cellulite. Your medical practitioner inserts a cannula through a small incision and then remove fat cells permanently to improve body shape and eradicate pockets of stubborn fat. However, the one thing it doesn’t do is reduce cellulite and, in fact, it can sometimes make it look worse, depending on the patient’s skin quality.
Liposuction removes fat deposits from a deeper layer of the dermis to where cellulite is present. Furthermore, liposuction can result in excess skin and contour irregularities which can occasionally worsen the appearance of existing cellulite. Wearing a good quality compression garment after liposuction is a must to avoid this problem.
4. There isn’t a permanent solution to cellulite (for the moment) √ FACT
Although there isn’t currently a permanent and fool-proof way to eradicate cellulite totally, we do seem to be moving closer to finding a long-term and effective way to reduce the appearance of cellulite. Treatments that work by releasing the tight fibrous bands that constrict cellulite, such as Cellulaze and Cellfina, are an exciting development in treating cellulite. Cellfina currently has FDA approval for two years – although it is thought that results will last far longer, its relative newness means it can only promise this much at the moment.
Turn to our section on Cellulite + Exercise to find out more about our Cellulite Busting Exercise Routine.
Until a permanent solution is found, though, a treatment like CRYSTALSMOOTH® improves the appearance of cellulite and smooths skin, particularly when combined with exercise.
5. You can run off your cellulite. √ MYTH
While running is an excellent form of cardiovascular exercise, it’s not necessarily the best exercise to improve cellulite. Jogging doesn’t sculpt and build muscles nor work the key ones, namely your glutes and hamstrings, as well as other forms of exercise. Turn to our section on Cellulite + Exercise to find out more about our Cellulite Busting Exercise Routine.
6. Dermal fillers can ‘fill’ up your cellulite, smoothing away lumps and bumps. √ MYTH
Theoretically, this should make sense. Dermal fillers are a fantastic product for filling and restoring volume where it’s been lost, so surely you can just fill cellulite lumps to create a smooth surface to the skin.
The truth is, though, that dermal fillers are not suitable for treating cellulite and could make it appear worse. Cellulite indentations are caused by bands of constrictive tissue and you can’t simply push that area up by inserting filler into the area. Fillers could also spread, pushing up the around the indentation, making it look even noticeable. Furthermore, cellulite usually covers a large area of the body so the cost of using dermal fillers would be prohibitive.
It’s no surprise that product companies are constantly searching for a treatment the appearance of cellulite as many women are prepared to pay a small fortune to eradicate those dreaded lumps and bumps.
One unique approach to treating cellulite has been the discovery of an intelligent material that can reduce cellulite and then formulate a product that users could wear as they go about their normal daily activities, exercise regularly or even while they sleep.
CRYSTALSMOOTH® anti cellulite range are made of emana® fibre, an intelligent material that has been woven with bioactive crystals. These absorb body heat and return it to the skin in the form of infrared rays.
These infrared rays are able to improve lymphatic drainage, stimulate blood microcirculation, speed up your metabolism and unblock the fat lymph cells, thereby targeting all the underlying causes of cellulite.
CRYSTALSMOOTH® is clinically proven to increase skin elasticity, encourage collagen production, regulate body temperature and reduce the build-up of lactic acid, all of which helps to produce smoother skin.
Whether worn under your normal clothes, as gym gear or as sleepwear, CRYSTALSMOOTH® anti cellulite range are the next step in the daily battle against cellulite.
If you search for ‘exercise + cellulite’ on the internet, there will be thousands of experts proclaiming they hold the key to eradicating cellulite, but is it really possible to exercise your way to becoming dimple free?
Unfortunately, no single method, including exercise, can get rid of cellulite completely. However, a long-term commitment to a healthy and varied fitness programme can reduce fat, strengthen muscles, boost circulation and firm the skin, all of which will greatly reduce the appearance of cellulite.
Here’s our advice on how to feel good and look better through exercise.
Look for workouts that continue to burn calories long after class has finished: It is proven that high intensity exercise is the most efficient way to speed up your metabolism and burn calories both during your workout and throughout the day.
Look for exercises that boost circulation: Workouts that mechanically stimulate lymphatic drainage and improve circulation in the legs can gradually help to improve the appearance of your skin.
Avoid focusing only on leg and bum exercises when you work out: Many cellulite-busting workouts claim that if you just complete these five, seven or ten targeted exercises you can eradicate the dreaded orange peel. This just won’t work – however many squats, lunges or plies you do, it’s not possible to spot reduce fat or cellulite in a specific area.
Embrace yoga for general health and wellbeing: Pilates and yoga have many benefits, but cellulite reduction isn’t one of them. Alongside other low intensity workouts, it produces little mechanical stimulation.
If running isn’t for you, then it’s time to take the plunge: Running isn’t for everyone, particularly if your joints are feeling the effects of wear and tear. Fast swimming will burn a lot of calories and will provide some mechanical stimulation, alongside the massaging effect of the water on the skin, so it is a moderate cellulite reduction workout.
HIIT is where it’s at: High intensity interval training, also known as the more old-school circuit training, burns calories at a very high rate and for a long time afterwards and also provides good mechanical stimulation.
High energy aerobic classes are also good for cellulite reduction, alongside their other health benefits.
Vibrate cellulite away: Although we said that performing leg exercises alone won’t magically erase your cellulite, performing squats and lunges on a power plate provides excellent mechanical stimulation.
And, if you do not rest for long periods of time between sets but keep the momentum up, then you can also burn a lot of calories with this form of exercise.
Fast or interval running: Running is one of the most intense calories burners around – it can potentially burn up to 1,500 calories an hour, depending on your weight – and if you speed up with sprinting intervals then you also get intense mechanical stimulation.
Join a team: Sports such as netball, football, hockey and handball provide excellent interval training and can be a much more fun way to exercise – and try and get rid of cellulite – than slogging away at the gym.
Qualified nutritionist and weight loss specialist, Kim Pearson, has worked with hundreds of clients over the last ten years to help them lose weight – from just a few pounds to over seven stone – and feel comfortable with their bodies.
Published in national magazines and newspapers and regularly appearing on TV, Kim gives the lowdown on how your diet and cellulite are linked, for better and worse.
How does diet affect your cellulite?
For most people, the more body fat they have, the more noticeable cellulite will be. Fat cells push up underneath the skin, creating the dimpled appearance we all hate. Reducing the volume of those fat cells can be helpful in minimising the appearance of cellulite.
That said, some women’s cellulite won’t be affected by their weight and some can even notice it worsens with weight loss, much to their distress.
Ultimately, maintaining a healthy diet and a healthy weight is the best thing you can do – and avoid yo-yo dieting.
Diet also affects our skin quality – ensuring we eat a diet that supports healthy skin will help to maintain skin integrity and minimise the appearance of cellulite.
Which are the top five dimple-busting foods and which are the worst cellulite criminals?
Ensure you’re eating sources of good quality protein (such as fish, seafood, eggs, tofu as well as a little organic meat if you’re not vegetarian or vegan). Protein is essential for supporting healthy skin as well as helping to maintain a healthy weight.
Vegetables and low sugar fruits are a great source of essential nutrients to keep our bodies healthy and our skin glowing.
In order to reduce body fat effectively we still need fats in our diet so don’t be tempted by out-dated low fat diets.
In addition to adding in healthy, nourishing foods, there are a few things we should absolutely be avoiding, too. Sugars, sugary foods and refined carbohydrates (such as bread, white rice, white noodles and pasta, etc) promote weight gain and skin glycation.
Watch out for foods marketed as ‘healthy’ such as granola, cereal bars, low fat foods, as often these foods are secretly high in sugar.
Gwyneth Paltrow claims that bone broth can cure cellulite among other things – is bone broth the miracle elixir?
No, it’s not a miracle elixir. However, it does contain nutrients that are supportive of skin health.
Homemade bone broth is rich in the minerals magnesium, phosphorus, sulphur, and trace minerals not widely available in other foods.
It contains the broken-down material from cartilage and tendons – chondroitin sulphates and glucosamine – which are widely available as supplements for joints. It’s rich in beneficial fats and proteins whilst being low in sugar.
Coffee and cellulite – I’ve read that drinking too much coffee can cause cellulite but I thought caffeine was supposed to be good for improving the appearance of dimples. Should I be giving up my daily latte fix?
Coffee scrubs have been promoted for helping to reduce the appearance of cellulite, as it’s thought that the caffeine can act to tighten the skin temporarily. But using a substance topically can have different effects to consuming it.
There is not much evidence to show that coffee has a particularly negative effect on cellulite but different things affect people differently. If you think that your coffee habit could be contributing to your cellulite, there’s no reason not to cut it out for a while to see if you notice improvements.
Pressotherapy is a controlled compression system that boosts the body’s natural detoxification process. The patient wears a tight body costume and the machine increases the pressure up the body, varying suction and pressure levels to produce a sensation similar to a manual massage.
As Sandra explains, “this is particularly suitable for women suffering from cellulite as a result of excess water retention or poor lymphatic drainage, but if there is a large degree of tissue hardening or lack of skin firmness, then I would recommend other treatments.”
Acoustic Wave Therapy
Using ultrasound gel, shock waves are directed into the legs to break down fatty deposits and improve microcirculation and lymphatic drainage. Sandra sees this procedure as an important part of the treatment process: “I would recommend it for all four grades of cellulite. I particularly like it because it can be used on the arms, bra fat and localised areas around the hips and thighs.”
Much beloved by French women where it was first invented, Mesotherapy is an effective cellulite treatment as it is aids fluid retention, lymphatic drainage, localised fat reduction and skin rejuvenation.
“This is a fantastic, minimally invasive way to improve skin texture,” comments Sandra.
“We combine different cocktails of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, blended with hyaluronic acid, depending on the patient’s needs and these are then injected into the skin to improve skin texture.”
Radiofrequency is a very effective, minimally-invasive approach to skin tightening and cellulite reduction. Radiofrequency energy is delivered into the dermis, heating tissues and stimulating collagen production.
There are a number of radiofrequency devices available, but one of Sandra’s preferred treatments is VelaShape (also known as VelaSmooth). “I typically include VelaShape into any cellulite treatment programme as it incorporates a number of cellulite- fighting actions in one procedure. The devices utilises radiofrequency to tighten the tissue and infrared light to boost blood circulation and nutrient flow and then this is combined with manual stimulation with rollers and suction to improve skin texture.
“BTL EXILIS 360® can also be effective. This combines ultrasound with radiofrequency to stimulate collagen production, improve skin elasticity and reduce fatty deposits, alongside boosting microcirculation and lymphatic drainage.”
Other radiofrequency devices that treat cellulite include EndyMed 3DEEP, which uses radiofrequency technology to tighten and firm the skin and stimulate the body’s collagen renewal process. VenusFreeze combines multi-polar radiofrequency and pulsed electromagnetic fields to produce three times more radiofrequency energy.
Fat Dissolving Injections
Aqualyx is a gel-based aqueous solution which can be injected into localised, superficial fat pockets underneath the skin, dissolving the fat cells before the body naturally expels the released fatty acids. This can greatly improve the appearance of cellulite.
Fat freezing has become the big buzzword in fat reduction and body contouring, but it can also improve the appearance of cellulite as it targets the superficial layer of fat. Fat cells are carefully frozen with no damage to the surrounding tissue and then naturally expelled from the body. Typically, one session is enough and you’ll start to see results over the following four weeks.
CoolSculpting is the market leader for fat freezing, but another device that incorporates cryolipolysis is the 3D-lipo system, along with ultrasound, radiofrequency, vacuum suction and rollers to reduce cellulite and improve body contours.
Cellulaze is a minimally invasive laser treatment that typically requires just one treatment and produces a long-lasting, visible improvement in cellulite. A small cannula is inserted into the dermis and then laser energy is delivered directly under the skin, releasing the fibrous bands that pull down the surface of the skin, while at the same time liquefying superficial fat and stimulating collagen production for a much smoother appearance.
Cellfina is one of the newest cellulite treatment options and is a subcision or incision-based approach. The constrictive fibrous bands are released to improve the appearance of the lumps and bumps that are caused by cellulite. This technique does not require a general anaesthetic and is a highly effective, long-term treatment of deep dimples.
If you’re committed to get the best results possible, there’s also a number of steps that you can take alongside your clinic treatments. Sandra recommendations include “wearing CRYSTALSMOOTH® leggings for a minimum six hours a day, even when you exercise or sleep. Contrast showers – where you use very hot water and then switch to cold water for the final few minutes – can also help to stimulate circulation and drainage in the legs. Body brushing might be seen as an old-fashioned cellulite method but it’s always in fashion as far as I’m concerned.”
Ageing is one of the physical factors in the development of cellulite, so Sandra believes that collagen-containing supplements such as Totally Derma can help to improve skin condition on the bottom or thighs, as well as reversing signs of facial ageing. “I will often advise combining with botanical supplements such as Ginkgo biloba that help to improve circulation naturally.”
Improving skin texture from the outside is also important. “Topical retinol products that contain antioxidants such as vitamin A should be part of your daily skincare routine, but did you know they can also be applied to areas troubled by cellulite to improve skin condition? If you don’t want to use your expensive creams or serums, then look for products like La Roche- Posay that contains 0.3% strength retinol.
“Cellulite isn’t an easy condition to treat and it’s not possible to eradicate it completely. However, with the right treatments and approach then I believe we can produce a marked improvement in the appearance of cellulite.”