Cellulite – how to smooth out the relief and restore harmony

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Cellulite is an appearance defect in which the fatty layer thickens and forms bumps under the skin. In medicine, this condition is called “gynoid lipodystrophy” and is referred to as cosmetic defects. However, such a complex term did not catch on among beauty specialists. They prefer to call any structural changes in the subcutaneous fat cellulite.

Photo from super.ua

Interestingly, even in the middle of the 20th century, lipodystrophy was completely normal. The first steps in the popularization of cellulite were taken in 1973 by the owner of the beauty salon Nicole Ronsard. In an effort to lure women into her office and increase profits, she published an article in a famous magazine in which she presented lipodystrophy as a terrible cosmetic flaw and suggested ways to combat it.

The causes of cellulite

Where does cellulite come from? Loose skin with pits and bumps is not a pleasant sight. But this is not a disease, but just a cosmetic defect arising from a violation of microcirculation and lymph outflow in the subcutaneous tissues. Over time, the condition worsens and leads to degeneration in the fatty tissue.

It is known that cellulite occurs most often in women. The reason is estrogen – a steroid sex hormone of the follicular apparatus. In addition, the formation of bumps and bumps is facilitated by the insignificant thickness of the dermis with a volumetric layer of subcutaneous fat.

Factors predisposing to the appearance of cellulite:

  • genetic inheritance;
  • overweight;
  • unhealthy diet (too many carbohydrates with a minimum of protein);
  • passive lifestyle.

In addition to the reasons considered, the appearance of cellulite on the legs and buttocks can be triggered by impaired peripheral blood flow, metabolic disorders, stress, smoking, frequent weight fluctuations and, of course, the number of years. By the way, loose and uneven skin in women of age is considered the norm, while the absence of tubercles is considered a symptom of hormonal imbalance.

Pregnancy is another major cause of cellulite. It is during this period that women who have never suffered from orange peel on their legs and buttocks notice the first signs of a defect.

Stages and symptoms

There is a very simple way to detect the symptoms of cellulite: pinch a patch of skin between your thumb and forefinger. If irregularities appear, then there are irregularities in the fat layer. Their severity depends on the degree of dystrophy.

Traditionally, several stages of cellulite are distinguished:

  • Stage I – pre-cellulite. A slight swelling is noticeable on the hips and butt, the firmness and elasticity of the skin decreases, bruises and injuries take longer.
  • Stage II cellulite – early. Swelling and puffiness of tissues become more noticeable, waves appear in a standing position. When the skin is pinched into the fold, irregularities are visible, palpation reveals small seals.
  • Stage III cellulite – microlobate. The orange peel is clearly distinguishable in a calm state, bruises easily occur, and pain is felt on palpation. The dermis becomes pale and loose due to circulatory disorders.
  • IV stage of cellulite – macronodular. The subcutaneous fat layer thickens and coarsens, the dermis is cyanotic, cold to the touch. The pits and tubercles are well pronounced, a venous mesh appears. Obvious edema is noticeable.
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The first and second types of cellulite are referred to as cosmetic flaws. It is not difficult to get rid of them at home. The third stage requires a more serious approach and the help of specialists. The fourth degree of cellulite is often a sign of systemic pathologies and requires a visit to a doctor.

Cellulite localization

Where do bumps of cellulite appear most often? The favorite places for the orange peel are the thighs and gluteal muscles. Less often, the defect occurs on the sides and abdomen. Sometimes skin unevenness is found on the inside of the shoulders and in the neckline.

The formation of cellulite on the abdomen, hips and buttocks is provided by nature to protect the fetus and create a depot of nutrients in case of hunger. A woman with a similar disadvantage is able to bear and give birth to a baby without any problems, to feed him with breast milk and to save the life of a baby in difficult conditions.

Which doctor treats cellulite?

Cellulite on the legs and bottom is a multifactorial problem, so different specialists can treat it. When the first signs of a defect appear, it is better to contact a beautician or masseur. If the tuberosity has captured large areas of the skin and does not lend itself to home or hardware procedures, a plastic surgeon will come to the rescue.

With the progressive nature of cellulite, which is most likely a symptom of hormonal imbalance or metabolic disorders, you should approach an endocrinologist or therapist.


Determining the presence of cellulite in women is very simple – just look at the skin of the thighs and gluteal muscles or perform a pinch test. But sometimes it is required to obtain more detailed information about the thickness of subcutaneous fat, the ratio of muscles and subcutaneous adipose tissue, to assess the surface temperature of the dermis and the state of the vessels. For this purpose, a patient with cellulite is prescribed a number of diagnostic tests:

  • anthropometry;
  • bioelectrical impedance measurement;
  • anode thermography;
  • CT and MRI;
  • ultrasound dopplerography;
  • xerography.

To assess microcirculation and texture of connective tissue, to determine the size of nodules in lipodystrophy, two-dimensional echography is used. In rare cases, histological examination is performed. The method allows you to establish the exact cause and stage of cellulite, but it is performed with a violation of the integrity of the skin.

Cellulite treatment

Naturally, any woman, despite the assurances of doctors that the presence of cellulite is not a problem, tries to get rid of it. Moreover, most young ladies are ready for anything, if only to quickly acquire smooth and fit forms. Taking advantage of this, cosmetologists and manufacturers of anti-cellulite products offer a lot of ways to solve the problem. Let’s see what really works, and what it is better to refuse in the treatment of cellulite.

At home

cellulite brush massage

Photo from procellulite.ru

What can you do at home? Numerous women’s publications publish a huge number of recipes for cellulite, and some of them are really effective. However, following them, it must be remembered that at home you can only get rid of grade I and II lipodystrophy.

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Small signs of cellulite on the legs can be easily eliminated with daily self-massage after a shower. It is better to do it with a special mitten or massage brush. They activate blood circulation, restore lymph flow and reduce skin tuberosity. Then an anti-cellulite cream is applied to problem areas and rubbed well. Special anti-cellulite products contain various additives that effectively fight orange peel on the legs and butt.

But it is better not to get carried away with canned massage. After several sessions, a venous mesh may appear on the thighs, which is almost impossible to get rid of.

Another good way to eliminate first degree cellulite is scrubbing. The procedure is performed using commercial or homemade scrubs containing large and medium granules. The manipulation removes dead cells, improves blood flow, lifts and tones the skin, making the orange peel less visible.

With pronounced signs of cellulite, clay masks give a good effect. For their preparation, it is better to take black or blue powder, dilute it with water or a decoction of herbs to the consistency of sour cream and apply to problem areas. Wash off after drying. It is recommended to carry out cellulite treatment 2-3 times a week, the amount of clay depends on the extent of the lesion.

Wraps help well against cellulite. They can be done with anti-cellulite creams, clay masks, honey. But the best effect is given by seaweed wraps. To prepare them, the seaweed powder is diluted with a liquid and left to swell. You can add 5-6 drops of juniper or thuja essential oil to the ready-made mixture for cellulite. Apply to thighs and buttocks, cover with cling film on top. After 2 hours, wash off and use an anti-cellulite cream.

Wraps can be done every other day for a month. The procedure effectively removes cellulite on the buttocks and thighs, removes excess fluid, tightens and firms the skin.

At a specialist

How to treat third degree cellulite? With such a problem, it is better to contact a beautician and undergo a course of apparatus therapy.

The most effective manipulations for cellulite:

  • electromyostimulation;
  • microcurrents;
  • electrolipolysis;
  • radio frequency stimulation;
  • mesotherapy;
  • ozone therapy.

All these procedures do not have a direct effect on fat deposits, but are used as part of a complex therapy. For a direct effect on the tubercles of cellulite, the cavitation method, vacuum massage and cryolipolysis are used.

Cavitation (ultrasonic liposuction) is perhaps the only way to eliminate cellulite, acting directly on adipocytes. By destroying them, manipulation leads to the conversion of fats into triglycerides and accelerates their excretion from the body. Unfortunately, cavitation is not shown to everyone. Therefore, before signing up for a procedure for cellulite, you must familiarize yourself with the contraindications.

With a strongly pronounced orange peel in combination with obesity or the ineffectiveness of the above methods, they resort to a more radical way to eliminate cellulite – liposuction. This plastic surgery is aimed at pumping out excess fat and has a number of contraindications.

In general, hardware methods for removing cellulite in the abdomen and thighs cannot be used for polycystic, uterine fibromatosis, endometriosis. An absolute contraindication to the procedure is problems with blood vessels and skin diseases at the site of exposure.


Lipodystrophy is a condition that is easier to prevent than to fight it for a long time and persistently. To prevent the appearance of cellulite, you must follow a number of simple recommendations:

  • avoid sharp fluctuations in body weight;
  • exercise regularly;
  • keep the skin in good condition, tone and moisturize it;
  • monitor the hormonal background;
  • eat right (get rid of sweets and fast foods in the diet);
  • after a shower, rub the problem areas with a hard washcloth and apply an anti-cellulite cream.
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And the most important thing in the prevention of cellulite is that you need to rebuild your entire lifestyle: get rid of excess weight, quit smoking and long-term TV sitting. It is better to replace empty pastime with walking in the fresh air, swimming, walking or jogging. Instead of taking the elevator, it makes sense to go up the stairs to your floor, walk to work and back. Such exercises not only strengthen the muscles of the legs, but also prevent the appearance of cellulite.

Getting rid of the orange peel is a long and difficult process. To obtain noticeable results, an integrated approach is required, including proper nutrition, exercise and the fight directly against the symptoms of cellulite. Of course, it is impossible to completely get rid of the flaw, but it is quite possible to make it less noticeable.

: Elena Medvedeva, physician,

Useful video on how to get rid of cellulite

List of sources:

  • Get rid of cellulite easily and effectively / E. Stolyarskaya. // M .: Labyrinth-Press, 2002.
  • Goodbye cellulite. The most effective programs to combat cellulite / Vanessa Thompson // Neoglory, 2004.
  • Almanac “Cosmetics and Medicine” / Margolina A. // Moscow, 2001, №3.
  • Seaweed – two in one against cellulite / materials of the Research Institute of Atherosclerosis of the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences // 2000.
  • Prevention of cellulite – myth or reality / Collis N., Elliot L., Sharp K. // Plast Reconstr Surg, 1999.

Elena Medvedeva


Graduated from the Ural State Medical Academy in Yekaterinburg with a degree in General Medicine. Work experience: intensive care team, physician at the enterprise.


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