The Skinny on Cellulite Reduction Products and Treatments
With so many cellulite treatments promising dramatic results, do any live up to their claims? Some cellulite treatments have been shown to diminish the appearance of cellulite, but there really is no product that can permanently remove cellulite. For many of these treatments, the effects will only last as long as you are using the product (if they last at all). Here's the skinny on the most popular treatment options.
Massage. While not proven as an effective long-term treatment, vigorous massage or rubbing the skin with a stiff brush may increase blood flow, remove toxins and reduce excess fluid. Lipomassage actually uses a hand-held machine to knead the skin between rollers. The results usually don't last for more than a day or two.
Cellulite creams. There is no shortage of creams in a variety of price ranges that claim to be the cure for cellulite. But, according to the Mayo Clinic, no studies show that these creams work—with one exception. A twice-daily application of 0.3% retinol cream has been shown to diminish the appearance of cellulite after six months of use. Beware though, in some cases, the ingredients in these creams can actually cause allergic reactions or rashes.
Self tanner. While self tanners do not actually reduce the amount of cellulite in your body, these products can make cellulite less noticeable by evening out or darkening your skin tone. New to self-tanners? Here are some tips!
Lasers and radiofrequency systems. Some treatments involve using radiofrequency and infrared light to break up cellulite. These usually take quite an investment and multiple treatments to see results. However, people do see results that can last up to six months after completing these treatments.
Liposuction. This is the most invasive and complicated cellulite treatment, as it involves a surgeon inserting a narrow tube under your skin to suction out fat cells. Although liposuction can shape the body and remove fat, it doesn't always remove cellulite, and it may actually make cellulite appear worse. Laser-assisted liposuction is a newer, less invasive form that destroys fat cells while tightening the skin, and may be a more effective treatment for cellulite. Again, though, there are serious risks of complications with this more invasive procedure.
Mesotherapy. Another more serious treatment, mesotherapy is a procedure that injects a solution of aminophylline, hormones, enzymes, herbal extracts, vitamins and minerals under the skin. While there's no research on its effectiveness, this treatment can cause several unwanted effects including infection, rashes, and bumpy or uneven skin contours (which pretty much seems like the opposite of what you want)!
The best way to really fight cellulite? Stop fighting it altogether and learn to love your body as it is! Cellulite isn't a health problem—only an aesthetic issue. Celebrate your body for everything it does for you—and remember, almost everyone has cellulite somewhere.
This article has been reviewed and approved by Nicole Nichols, certified personal trainer.
Mayo Clinic. "Cellulite," Accessed April 2011. www.MayoClinic.com
The World's Healthiest Foods. "Can you tell me which foods promote collagen?," Accessed April 2011. www.WHFoods.com
eHow Style. "How to Reduce Cellulite," Accessed April 2011. www.eHow.com
WebMD. "Cellulite Causes and Treatments," Accessed April 2011. www.WebMD.com