If you read any of the glossy mags or even the tabloid newspapers, it seems that not a day goes by without a massively unflattering set of photos on some celebrity is published. And it is mainly women celebrities that seem to be covered. And more often than not the theme seems to be their body. How they look in a bikini or how they have recovered their body (or not) after childbirth. And if there is a trace of cellulite this is sure to get a mention…quite often a prominent mention.
Indeed, our culture, be it in print, on television or on the silver screen, seems to scrutinize female bodies far more than male bodies. And although this is changing of late, it would be easy to conclude that female bodies have more cellulite. But is this true ? Do women get more cellulite than men ?
What is cellulite ?
Cellulite is a dimpled effect on the surface of the skin. It is most prevalent around the the abdomen, buttocks, and thighs. The dimpling is caused by subcutaneous fat pushing through connective tissue or collagen under the dermis and epidermis layers of skin. This gives the epidermis layer of skin and uneven or dimpled appearance.
Most people, or maybe that should be media, feel that this “orange peel” looking skin is unsightly. And while everybody would like smooth, taut skin, the reality is that cellulite is a very common condition in most women. Research suggest that 85-98% of women will experience the condition at some point in their life. In fact it is so common that it should not be classified as a skin condition or problem but normal physiology of post-pubescent woman.
Do men get it ?
As I have suggested, it is almost exclusively seen in females.
Men are unlikely to develop cellulite unless they are suffering from androgen deficiency or are being treated with estrogen for prostate cancer. It is even suggested that estrogen, the female sex hormone is a causal factor in the development of cellulite.
Cellulite will also be more visible in women because the epidermis and dermis layers of the skin are thinner. So any uneven tone under the the skin will be more apparent on the surface for women.
Women have more fat deposited around the buttocks and thighs than men to help cushion the body from the rigors of childbirth. So more fat under the skin may manifest as more dimples on the surface.
So, in fact, cellulite is a female concern. There are very few topical ways to deal with it.
Exercise and diet can help.
Keeping the body toned and trim will reduce the appearance of cellulite.
Eating less fatty foods may also help.
Stress that can alter the amount or delicate balance of hormones circulating throughout the body may also be a causal factor in cellulite. So not getting stressed or reducing stress is another approach.
However the reality is that most women will experience cellulite. It should not be seen as a problem just a fact of life. But I know, that’s easier said than done !