Cellulite: How Do I Really Get Rid Of It?

Orange Peel Spiral

Everyone wants to know how to get rid of cellulite. Papped shots of bikini-clad celebrities might make you feel like you’re the only person in the world to have orange peel skin on your thighs, but that’s definitely not true. In fact, 80-90{19761799e1353b7a6a49a5f02d3172230495afcde52b198895f8f3ba7ac759cb} of women are estimated to have cellulite. There are countless old wives’ tales about how to get rid of it naturally, but there are far fewer treatments that have been clinically proven to make a difference.

MyFaceMyBody busts some of the myths and takes a look at the professionals’ favourite cellulite treatments.

Myth: You get cellulite if you’re overweight

Cellulite is actually a structural problem in the skin, caused when the connective tissue bands under the skin stiffen and cause the fat cells to bulge. It’s caused by all sorts of factors, including ageing, dramatic weight change, genetics and hormones.

Myth: Diet and exercise will get rid of it

Sort of. Because cellulite is to do with the structure of your skin tissues, reducing your body fat won’t necessarily smooth out the dimpled skin; plenty of slim people have cellulite too. Reducing the subcutaneous fat will help a bit, but you need to address the stiff fibres to really smooth out the orange peel.

Myth: I can fix it with anti-cellulite creams

Topical products for cellulite are at best a short term fix but, usually, are pretty ineffective. Plastic surgeon Mr Hassan Shaaban at Phi Clinic on Harley Street says, “They can’t touch the core structure and the fat underneath, and you have to use them every day to maintain what little effect you get.”

So what are the best treatments for cellulite?

Acoustic wave therapy

This non-surgical treatment uses acoustic waves (a type of ultrasound energy) to disrupt the fat cells and give your blood circulation and lymphatic system a boost. A study published in 2015 in the US journal Dermatologic Surgery found it reduced fat in the thighs and improved the appearance of cellulite. Plus it’s totally painless.

Radial wave therapy

This technology is used in a device called Lipotripsy. It’s a kind of shock wave therapy often used as a non-invasive way to remove kidney stones, and clinical trials have found it’s reduces cellulite, too. The radial waves break down fat, boost collagen production and the lymphatic system. Like acoustic wave therapy, it’s completely non-invasive and pain-free.

Minimally invasive laser treatment

This is where you have a laser inserted just beneath the skin to target the cellulite. It has a double effect, zapping the fat cells under the skin and also cutting the stiff fibres that are causing the dimples, to give a smoother appearance. It more hardcore than the non-surgical options, and must be performed by a doctor, but there is low risk and the recovery is pretty quick – around two weeks on average.