Ninety percent of women have cellulite – the #1 “beauty bummer”, according to Fitness Magazine. Their readers rate cellulite worse than acne, frizzy hair and wrinkles. More than half of women admit that they’ve worn clothing over their bathing suits to hide it.
What is cellulite?
“Cellulite is basically fat pushing out of your connective tissue matrix, just below the surface of the skin, causing a dimpled orange peel appearance” says board-certified NY plastic surgeon Dr. B Aviva Preminger. “Although cellulite is fat, its appearance actually has nothing to do with weight,” she adds, explaining that genetics and hormones are the primary causes.
How can you get rid of cellulite fast?
There are plenty of creams promising to “cure” cellulite, but “don’t waste your money” on a scientifically impossible solution, FDA experts tell The Washingtonian. Some treatments — like filler injections — can reduce the appearance of cellulite temporarily, but are expensive to maintain in the long run. Liposuction can actually make cellulite look worse when inelastic skin, sagging, stretch marks and a past history of weight fluctuations are also involved. Plastic surgery may be right for some, but not all, patients.
Does laser cellulite removal work?
The situation is not hopeless for those wishing to get in shape for bikini season this spring, however, says Dr. Preminger. Laser therapy can dramatically reduce the appearance of cellulite by freezing or melting fat bulges. With laser cellulite removal, a small probe is guided through tiny incisions to direct laser light in all the right areas. Newer lasers include Cellulaze, CelluSmooth and SmartLipo.
Similar procedures (like Coolsculpting) freeze the fat for removal and do not require any incisions for proper targeting. Swelling and bruising are common side effects. Most patients report a resolution of side effects within two weeks – during which time they wear compression clothing to maximize results – although some patients have up to 12 weeks of minimal discomfort. Dr. Preminger says these treatments are revolutionary in that only one session is needed to see immediate results.
Cellulite removal treatments depend on the patient
“The answer is not the same for every patient,” explains Dr. Preminger. “The exact nature of a fat bulge differs from person to person. Is it loose, baggy skin causing the dimpling? Is it pockets of fat pushing through? Is it a weak dermal matrix? Does the patient have a history of yo-yo dieting, dramatic weight loss, pregnancies, or hormone-related disorders?”
All these questions explored during one-on-one consultations help plastic surgeons recommend the best procedures for the patient. “Maybe it’s fat removal, not cellulite removal, or skin tightening that will really produce the results patients want,” she adds.
Women who are interested in body sculpting in time for bikini season can contact Dr. Preminger at 212-706-1900.