It’s unfortunate, sure. But the fact remains that 90 percent of women have cellulite in some form. And while there’s not a ton you can do about it (more on that later), you might as well know the ins and outs of what it is, why it happens and whether or not you can get rid of it.
Myth: Only overweight people get cellulite. Nope. Cellulite (the fat beneath the skin that appears bumpy because it pushes against connective tissue, causing the area above it to dimple) is an equal-opportunity bummer. While being overweight might make it appear more noticeable, cellulite is influenced by aging, genetics, weight fluctuation and even sun damage. And it can happen to women of all shapes and sizes.
Myth: Losing weight will make cellulite disappear. Since weight fluctuation is a key factor in the presence of cellulite, losing weight could actually exacerbate its appearance, depending on how you lose it. Crash-dieting obviously isn’t healthy, but it could also make cellulite more obvious since losing a lot of weight quickly causes the skin to lose some of its elasticity, therefore calling attention to already-existing puckers in the skin.
Myth: Cardio is the answer to cellulite. First of all: Yes, exercise can strengthen the tissue beneath dimpled skin. But that can’t exactly happen on a treadmill. You should really be hitting the free weights and kettle bells to smooth out skin at the muscular level. (Then any additional cardio can help you manage those weight fluctuations.)
Myth: Skin-firming creams get rid of cellulite. Sorry, folks. Despite what their labels might lead you to believe, no creams (over the counter or prescribed) have been proven to permanently reduce cellulite. Certain products, especially those containing retinol, might work to temporarily reduce the appearance of little dimples, but long-term, there’s no cream (yet) that will take care of the issue.
Myth: Liposuction could make it less noticeable. Not only is it expensive and painful, liposuction could actually make cellulite worse, since you’re messing with fat distribution, which could create dips and divots where they didn’t previously exist. Stick to your gym routine instead–and maybe just accept that dimples happen to, literally, everyone.