Women dread it, and those who have it are often resigned to being stuck with it for the rest of their lives. Here is why you might be wrong about everything you ever thought you knew about cellulite.
What is Cellulite?
Cellulite is a term used to describe lumpy, dimpled skin. It mostly affects the flesh on the thighs, hips, buttocks, and belly. While it can affect men and women, it is more common in females. Over 80% of women are thought to experience cellulite after puberty or later in their lives.
Cellulite is not a serious condition at all, but most women don’t like how it makes their skin look. While weight gain can make cellulite more noticeable, thinner people can also have it. Whether you develop it or not is likely a matter of genetics, as it has been shown to run in families.
What Causes Cellulite?
It is unclear what, exactly, causes cellulite. We do know that the uneven, dimpled surface of the skin is caused by what happens underneath: As our fat cells accumulate, they push up against the skin and stretch the fibrous cords that connect the underlying muscle to the skin; at some point, those cords are stretched out as far as they go and begin pulling down the skin in those places where they’re connected. You might think of it like the slightly bumpy surface area of a mattress or a quilt.
Again, cellulite cannot be merely attributed to weight gain. You might be genetically predisposed to have shorter connective cords than others, giving your underlying fat less room to expand and thereby causing dimples in the skin.
How to Tell if You Have Cellulite
For many women, cellulite can be brought on by pregnancy and with aging, when the skin loses its elasticity.
And here’s the thing: What happens to your skin when it loses its elasticity due to aging may not really be cellulite at all.
“People often mistake age-related skin laxity for cellulite”
This is great news for many women who think they have cellulite. They may give up because they’ve been told there is no effective treatment, while a simple solution might be right around the corner.
“People often mistake age-related skin laxity for cellulite,” says Licensed Aesthetician Diane Novacek, who has practiced skincare and medical aesthetics in the Nashville area since 2005. They think they have cellulite and throw up their hands. This is understandable because permanent treatments of cellulite have remained elusive.
However, the appearance of cellulite is different from the actual thing. What appears like the bumpy skin caused by cellulite is often just aging skin that has become slacker.
How to Effectively Treat Cellulite
At NuBody Concepts, we know a thing or two about aging skin and how to treat it.
To illustrate this better, let’s return to the mattress analogy described earlier. If cellulite is like your mattress, then you might imagine your aging skin like a wrinkled balloon that has lost some of its air.
While in one case (cellulite) there are strings – for lack of a better word – that pull down the skin, in the other case (age-related laxity) the skin is simply a bit rumpled and therefore uneven. And while it’s difficult to fix the “strings,” it is entirely possible to tighten and even out the “rumpled” skin.
The good news is that we can do this without invasive surgery by applying radio frequency assisted energy onto your skin.
Skin Tightening Options
There are different technologies for this kind of skin-tightening, like Exilis, BodyTite, and ThermiSmooth. A plastic surgeon may have his or her preference based on training and existing equipment. But as with other plastic surgery procedures, it is not just a matter of equipment. What matters is the skill and experience of your surgeon or aesthetician.
“I have achieved great skin tightening results for the past six years”
At NuBody Concepts, we have treated over 7,000 Tennessee patients with fat removal and skin tightening. “I have achieved great skin tightening results for the past six years using the non-invasive Exilis technology,” says Diane, the Licensed Aesthetician mentioned above who has recently joined the NuBody Brentwood team. And at NuBody Concepts Germantown, our board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Peters has seen excellent results using BodyTite and minimally-invasive liposuction to remove unwanted fat and tighten skin. He won first place in the 2020 InMode Expert Clinician Award Program for his innovative use of BodyTite to treat cellulite.
Are you bothered by bumpy, uneven skin? Are you unsure whether this is due to cellulite or other causes? We are confident that we can create a customized solution for you. Contact us or simply request a consultation to learn how we can help you to firmer, younger-looking skin.