Cellulite: What It Is, What Causes It & What You Can Do About It

Smooth skin is a hallmark of youth. We all wish we could retain the supple, wrinkle-free skin of our early twenties but the fact of the matter is that skin changes with age. As if fine lines and wrinkles weren’t enough of a headache, there is another skin problem many women find themselves dealing with – cellulite. This condition affects nearly 90% of women at some point in their lives, even women who are physically fit and those who have a slender body type.

In this article, we’ll tackle the subject of cellulite to discover what it is and what causes it to form. You’ll also receive helpful tips for reducing the appearance of cellulite including recommended products from Yon-Ka Paris to help you attain the smooth, dimple-free skin of your dreams.

What is Cellulite?

Though you may not want to admit it, you’ve probably noticed areas of cellulite in your skin at some point. It typically affects the skin on the buttocks and thighs, but it can occur in other areas as well. Though you may be able to identify cellulite by sight, do you really know what it is?

Cellulite is a cosmetic condition in which the skin takes on a dimpled or lumpy appearance. Because of this textured appearance, it is sometimes called orange-peel skin, and between 80% and 90% of women will experience cellulite during their lives. Cellulite is ranked in three grades – mild, moderate, or severe – which range from superficial depression and a sagging appearance to the skin up to a “mattress” appearance with deep depressions and severe skin draping.

Though cellulite might be embarrassing, it is not a serious or dangerous medical condition. Even so, when you come across an area of dimpled skin, you may find yourself wondering why it’s there.

What Causes Cellulite to Form?

The exact cause of cellulite is unknown, but it is thought to be an interaction between the connective tissues under the skin’s surface and the layer of fat that sits below it. It happens when fat deposits under the skin push through those connective tissue, affecting the texture on the skin’s surface.

Risk factors for cellulite include aging, weight gain, and genetics – it may also be linked to certain hormones such as estrogen. This is based on the observation that decreasing estrogen levels in menopause leads to a decrease in blood flow in the connective tissues under the skin which means less collagen production and larger, more visible fat cells.

This brings up a point that many women are loathe to admit – that cellulite doesn’t seem to affect men in the same way it affects women. Women tend to have higher body fat percentages than men as well as higher estrogen levels. The primary determining factor is that the bands connecting skin to muscle are different on a man’s body than on a woman’s. Men have thicker, more numerous bands that sit in a crisscross pattern, keeping the underlying layers of fat in place so they don’t pucker.

If you’ve ever wondered why skinny women also have cellulite, this is why. Most women have some layer of fat between the skin and muscles, thin as it may be, and the connective tissues run vertically on women which offers more space for the fat to push through. Cellulite forms most often on the buttocks and thighs because this is where most women tend to store fat.

What Can You Do About It?

Cellulite is not a medically significant condition, but it can affect your appearance as well as your self-confidence. Unfortunately, losing weight is not a guaranteed solution to cellulite – your fat cells may shrink, but they will still be present, and you may still have mild dimpling. Though there are no guarantees, there are a few things you can do to reduce the appearance of cellulite.

Here are some simple lifestyle changes you can implement to reduce cellulite:

  • Start lifting weights. Losing weight alone may not be enough to reduce the appearance of cellulite, but building muscle will make your skin look smoother and it will be harder for fat cells to push to the surface.
  • Stop using tobacco products. Research from the International Journal of Dermatology shows that smoking cigarettes can weaken collagen, the primary structural component of your connective tissues, increasing the appearance of cellulite.
  • Avoid slim-quick solutions. Dropping pounds may seem like a no-brainer but if you lose weight without increasing muscle tone, your skin may become laxer which makes cellulite more visible. Liposuction is also a bad idea – it removes fat unevenly and may make skin look more dimpled.
  • Drink plenty of water. Proper hydration is important for healthy skin in general, but it also plays a role in healthy circulation which keeps your skin plump and smooth.
  • Follow a balanced diet. Avoid fad diets and aim instead for balance. Eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats for optimal skin health.
  • Try dry brushing. Though this technique has not been scientifically proven, many find that it helps with cellulite. The idea is that by brushing the skin in repetitive motions, it stimulates lymph flow and boosts circulation to the skin’s surface.

On top of making healthy changes to your diet and lifestyle, you might want to take a closer look at your skincare routine. Yon-Ka Paris offers several products designed to tone and smooth skin, reducing the appearance of dimples.

Recommended Yon-Ka Paris products to reduce cellulite:

  • Huile Silhouette – This nourishing oil is designed for toning and shaping care. It features sunflower, sesame, and baobab oils to nourish and protect the skin with pink peppercorn oil to reduce the appearance of cellulite. Apply this spray morning and/or evening on trouble areas and massage in with circular motions. To maximize your results, mix with Crème 55 or 155.
  • Crème 55 – Part of Yon-Ka’s slimming duo, this anti-water retention cream contains climbing ivy leaf extract and Yon-Ka’s Quintessence of essential oils to drain excess water and reduce tissue pressure. Apply in the morning after bathing and massage vigorously into still-damp skin, focusing on problem areas. Alternate with Crème 155 at night. Use with Huile Silhouette to intensify the results.
  • Crème 155 – Partner to the Crème 55 slimming cream, this anti-dimpling cream features a blend of botanicals like capsicum and nutmeg. It also contains cedar and wintergreen essential oils to boost circulation and stimulate fat metabolism. Apply in the evening to cleansed, still-damp skin and massage into problem areas. Alternate with Crème 155 in the morning and use with Huile Silhouette to intensity the results.

If you’re not sure which products are best for your skin type or your unique skincare concerns, don’t hesitate to consult with a Yon-Ka Paris professional. Use the Spa Locator to find a spa near you or shop online for the Yon-Ka products recommended above.

Brianna Cunningham
Brianna Cunningham

Brianna is a writer and blogger living in Austin, Texas. When she isn't working, she enjoys running, watching beauty/skincare videos on YouTube and taking her dog to the park.

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