If the thought of “orange peel” or “cottage cheese” skin has you backing out of rooms or turning down invitations to go to the beach, you’re not alone. According to Dr. J. F. Tremblay, a dermatologist at the MediME Cosmetic Dermatology and Surgery Clinic in Montreal, cellulite affects up to 90 percent of women at some point in their lives — regardless of age, weight or ethnicity — but it’s still not well understood from a scientific point of view.

Unwanted storage
Some of the current theories on cellulite suggest that we develop dimply derrières as a result of a genetic predisposition, poor lymphatic circulation or changes in fat-cell activity due, mostly, to the effects of female hormones on tissue under the skin. Fat is stored in our bodies through a process called “lipogenesis” and is burned off when used as energy for moving, breathing and even thinking. When something affects this cycle, fat cells may swell and start pushing and pulling against the skin’s connective tissue, causing the surface to ripple. The swelling also blocks the excretion of fluids and toxins, adding to the stored matter under the skin and further emphasizing those unwanted lumps and bumps.

anti-cellulite products contain caffeine, ginseng, ginkgo biloba, paprika, cinnamon or peppermint, all of which are thought to improve circulation and to help smooth skin by moving the fluids between the fat cells. According to Carolle Gosselin, an aesthetician who works with Tremblay, “How the product is applied is nearly as important as its ingredients.” She suggests exfoliating beforehand to remove dead skin cells and allow the product to be absorbed. “Massaging products into the skin is crucial to making them work,” says Gosselin. Deeply knead the skin in upward, circular motions to lift and dislodge any stored toxins.

Cellulite-reducing procedures like endermology (in which the skin is massaged between rollers to stimulate the circulation of fluids) and laser treatment (which “melts” the bumps of fat away) have improved over the years, but they are still not considered 100-percent effective. As for the future, Ultrashape, another non-invasive treatment that will soon be available in Canada, uses concentric beams of ultrasound to break up cellulite and fat. For now, though, if you find yourself in a bathing-suit panic, there is one method proven to reduce the appearance of cellulite: wear a sarong!

10 tips for cellulite reduction on the next page …

We solve the 7 most common skin myths!

How to look good naked
Challenge cellulite with healthy lifestyle recommendations from Toronto nutritionist Lilian Presti.

1.cup of hot water and lemon.

2.Avoid added sugar in foods and eat only whole grains.

3.eight to 10 glasses of water a day.

4.Avoid smoking.

5.Exercise daily, even if it’s just a short walk at lunch hour.

6.no more than five alcoholic drinks a week.

7.leafy green vegetables — like kale, chard and bok choy — at least five times a week.

8.Avoid processed and packaged foods

9.fish-oil or flaxseed oil pill.

10.dry-brush your cellulite problem areas.

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