Cellulite is essentially a buildup of fat that causes a lumpy, dimpled appearance on various parts of the body. You'll usually find it showing up on the hips, thighs, abs or booty, although it can appear anywhere.
Not only is cellulite incredibly common, but it's completely harmless. It forms when the skin overlying certain areas of fat is pulled inwards by the collagen fibers or connective tissue bands which lie between the skin and fat cells. This causes the fat cells to protrude into the layer of skin, creating an uneven appearance which we know as cellulite.
How or why cellulite shows up is not exactly clear although it's believed that sex, genetics and or lifestyle plays a role. Females are more likely to have visible cellulite largely thanks to the way we store fat.
In females, the fat cells and connective tissue just below the skins surface is arranged vertically. If this connective tissue weakens by any means and for whatever reasons, the fat cells can protrude into the layer of skin giving it that cottage cheese like appearance.
In men, the connective tissue is a zigzag pattern which means a stronger barrier better at preventing fat cells from making an appearance.
As we age, our skin looses thickness, and collagen levels usually decline which means our connective tissue may weaken. Collagen helps to keep cellulite in check by building strong, healthy skin and connective tissue. As a result of the drop in oestrogen and in turn collagen, the appearance of cellulite may increase as the years tick by. Other factors that potentially bring about the dimples may include genetics, vascular changes, hormonal changes, or inflammatory factors.
Genetics is a huge determining part of our body shape, skin type and structure. As a result, some may naturally see more cellulite due to their body make up. Although incredibly fit and lean individuals can have visible cellulite, your weight and muscle tone will affect whether it shows or not. Weight gain undoubtedly makes cellulite more visible.
How can you prevent it? Well you can't stop the clock on aging but there are a few things you can do to help reduce its appearance, if it is of concern to you. So let's find out here - Does cellulite go away?