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Skin Care Tips and Trends, Skin Concern

The Truth About Cellulite: Tips & Tricks From Dr Alek Nikolic

Let’s get one thing straight: Just like how the seasons change, cellulite is a fact of nature. Even Cindy Crawford admits she battles with cellulite!

The 411 On Cellulite

What is cellulite, really? First of all, cellulite is normal. So normal, in fact, that it is rarer not to have any! Here is everything you need to know about one of the most misunderstood body topics (before we get to how to diminish the look of it).

  • Cellulite occurs when the soft fat just under your skin (aka subcutaneous fat) pokes through connective tissue (that, by the way, looks like honeycomb), creating a dimpled appearance.
  • It’s most likely to occur around your thigh and buttock area because this is where you have the most subcutaneous fat.
  • Cellulite affects 85-90% of women. Men are less likely to get it (only 10%) because their connective tissue is stronger and thicker, and they have less of that subcutaneous fat.
  • Forget what you heard: Cellulite has little to do with weight. Your genetics, hormones, and age all factor into if you’re prone to getting it.
  • How you store fat is largely determined by your genes, so some people are genetically predisposed to have cellulite (even with healthy lifestyle habits).
  • It seems most likely that oestrogen is involved because cellulite often appears after puberty and pregnancy (when oestrogen levels increase).
  • Cellulite has a nasty way of becoming more visible as you age, and your skin loses thickness and elasticity.
  • That said, a healthy diet and exercise can *minimise* the likelihood of developing cellulite. There is no harm in trying!

Can you get rid of cellulite?

There’s no magic potion for eradicating cellulite forever. However, there are options that are effective at diminishing the appearance of dimples.

Scrubs, Oils, and Creams

While these surface-level solutions won’t actually change what’s happening underneath your skin, in our experience, a combination of a few treatments – and a little hard work and dedication – can make a difference. It’s worth looking out for ingredients such as caffeine and retinol or vitamin C.

Caffeine

Topical products containing caffeine make the list because they constrict your blood vessels and shrink your fat cells, for a short time disguising cellulite.

Retinol and Vitamin C

Collagen-producing and skin-plumping retinol and vitamin C could help to play down its appearance.

Massage and Scrubs

Who knew that a trip to the spa could reduce cellulite? Temporarily, at least. Turns out, everyone’s favourite treatment – deep-tissue massage – can help stimulate lymph flow and swell the skin, making your skin appear smoother for up to three days. If a trip to the spa isn’t in the cards, then try using a scrub in the shower. Scrubs subtly reduce the appearance of cellulite by stimulating blood flow and aiding in releasing toxins. At the very least, scrubs help to reveal your skin’s natural beauty.

For Best Results

With most cellulite products, apply at least twice a day for three months to clean skin – following a hot bath or shower to aid penetration

Self-tanners

Self-tan is a non-invasive beauty hack that can camouflage cellulite. Cellulite is less noticeable on darker skin, so it makes sense that applying a self-tanner may make lumps and bumps less evident.

Our best self-tan application tips (and product recommendations):

  • Exfoliate, paying attention to any problem areas (like your knees, elbows, ankles, and heels).
  • Moisturise any dry spots to prevent them from turning orange.
  • If you’re new to self-tanner, then use an easy-to-apply mousse or gradual self-tanner.
  • Tan your face first, washing your hands immediately after.
  • Tan from the ankle up and then go back to your feet.
  • Use an applicator mitt!
  • Give your self-tanner time to dry.

Treatments

Laser Skin Tightening and Injections

Laser skin tightening is one of the most effective methods for toning loose skin – basically anywhere on the body. Laser treatments use heat to break down connective tissue and trigger collagen production. Unlike liposuction, they’re non-invasive and non-surgical, and there’s little-to-no downtime required. Patients usually start to see the best result after 3 months. While you have to be patient with laser treatments, the results of (slightly more invasive) injections or fillers are immediate and last up to a year. It’s important to know that even surgical treatments meant to get rid of cellulite aren’t permanent.

Our best treatment aftercare tips:

  • Patients can experience minor redness and tenderness.
  • No harsh products or exercise for 24 hours.

Consult an aesthetic medical practitioner to learn what skincare treatment will be the most beneficial.

At the end of the day, cellulite is just part of life. It’s ok to not care whether you have it, and it’s ok if one of your goals is to reduce it. We get it!

Yours in skin,
Dr Alek and the SkinMiles Team

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