Cellulite – or ‘orange peel skin’ – is actually more common than you think. Research has shown that between 80 to 90 percent of women experience it at some point in of their lives, regardless of weight or body type. Here we delve into all you need to know, including top treatments to reduce cellulite.
What, how and why?
Cellulite occurs when the layer of fat beneath the skin pushes against the connective tissue and bulges, resulting in dimples and lumps appearing on the skin. Hormonal changes is one major cause for it – a dip in oestrogen levels often leads to enlarged fat cells and circulatory pattern changes, which reduces collagen production. For most ladies, the risk of developing cellulite increases with age, and peaks near menopause. Genetic and lifestyle factors also play a part in its formation.
While cellulite can affect both men and women, it’s more common in females because of our physiology. “Genetically, the fat lobules and fibrous septae are arranged differently in women compared to men, which makes them more susceptible to cellulite formation as they age or gain weight,” says Dr Ivan Puah, Medical Director at Amaris B. Clinic.
What are the options?
It’s easy to get lost in the sea of cellulite reduction treatments on the market, especially when many of them overpromise and under-deliver. A tip is to set your expectations straight – it’s really impossible to zap out all your cellulite in just one sitting!
As cellulite develops when fat and skin interacts, one way is to target the fat cells through cryolipolysis. Also known as fat freezing, this non-invasive system delivers precise and controlled cooling that gently and effectively targets and freezes away the fat cells underneath the skin, while leaving the treated skin unaffected. The fat cells crystallise and die, and the body naturally eliminates them. However, this isn’t the best solution as it only removes unwanted fat. “This treatment can only freeze fat, but it may not improve the adhesions and tension amongst the fibrous tissue. So, it’s less useful as a cellulite treatment,” Dr Puah explains.
Another option he suggests is VASER Lipo, which uses ultrasound wave energy to eliminate fat while stimulating collagen production gently. “This procedure can remove fat effectively and break up adhesions that form dimpling and cellulite. When combined with skin tightening treatments such as Ultherapy, cellulite can be improved and treated.”