As you’ve probably noticed I started posting more content about cellulite on legs (and other areas). That’s because this is one my favorite (aka painful) topics to talk about. Frankly speaking, I forgot the time when it appeared on my skin for the first time. Because it was years and years ago. It seems that I always had cellulite above knees, on the back of my legs and even on my calves. I even don’t remember my body without it. Crazy!
I used to have the most prominent cellulite on legs and thighs which made me feel embarrassed and insecure about my body. I never ever wore shorts even during the hot summer days. I know, it sounds pathetic. But that was my reality.
Of course, now I am more confident in my own skin and learn just to embrace my imperfections. We, women, should be definitely more kind and forgiving to yourselves. People can’t be perfect. And that’s the beauty of this world. We should work more on our self-esteem than on perfecting our bodies.
But anyway I really feel those girls who suffer from cellulite on legs. Cellulite is not only a cosmetic flaw. It’s a sign that there is something wrong with your health and you should pay attention to it. One of the reasons behind a cellulite skin is the hormones. So make sure you check my post “Hormones and cellulite” to learn what can be done to figure it out.
Why do we have cellulite on legs?
You can definitely have cellulite almost everywhere on your body. At times of crazy hormonal swings, I saw cellulite even on my hands! But it’s still quite rare. Most of the time the lower body is more prone to cellulite than the upper body. It happens because those areas naturally have more fatty tissue. When too much fat is stored in the connective tissue, the appearance of the dimples becomes more prominent.
Besides, due to the sedentary lifestyle, you may experience poor blood circulation and water retention in your legs, which causes lumps and bumps on the skin. That’s why it’s important to stay active during the day, take breaks during the working day and incorporate massage into your daily self-care routine.
The lack of exercise may be another reason for cellulite legs. It’s very important to train your body regularly and build muscles if you want to have beautiful tight skin. I’ll dive in to exactly how to work out to get rid of cellulite further in the article. But I just wanted to point out that exercising is one of the best ways to lose cellulite on legs. Don’t neglect it. Just try to find an activity that you like and make a routine that works for you.
Some other causes of cellulite on legs and thighs are estrogen dominance, loss of collagen, genetics, thinning epidermis (outer layer of skin).
To summarize, I would say that to get rid of cellulite on legs you need to address fat loss, collagen strength and hormonal health in the first place.
And here are some ways to achieve these goals:
Change your diet
I know, dieting tips are the most boring. But you can’t eat crap and expect a perfect skin, right? It just doesn’t work like that. So first of all, you need to choose clean and nourishing whole foods.
The aim of a clean diet is to boost collagen production and to eliminate toxins. It will improve skin firmness and help to reduce cellulite of legs and thighs. I have a free ebook “How to eat healthy” (you can download it in the right sidebar) with everything you need to know to start eating healthy (+ handy printables and a shopping list).
But as a general rule, try to eat an alkaline diet with lots of raw vegetables and fresh fruits, lean proteins, healthy fats, and whole grains. Everything that is packaged may contain too little nutrients and too much sugar. You definitely don’t need all these nasties. So reach for more natural products.
Some studies show that caffeine can make cellulite worse as well as smoking and drinking alcohol – they all create toxins in the body.
Try to cut out simple carbohydrates like white bread, white flour, sugar and cakes. Carbs create an insulin spike in your blood which results in a weight gain. So the less simple carbs you eat, the better for your health and waistline. Choose complex carbs instead, such as wild rice, quinoa, sweet potato, buckwheat, multigrain bread etc.
Make sure you stay hydrated as water cleanses your body and eliminates toxins. That will reduce water retention and the appearance of cellulite on legs and thighs. Water can also improve the production of collagen and the firmness of connective tissue in your skin. The optimal amount is about 1,5-2 liters of water per day.
As many experts say, cellulite is the combination of two main factors – fat and the lack of collagen. To get rid of fat you need to lose weight by following a healthy diet (as we’ve already discussed) and by incorporating a fitness activity into your life. Nothing new here.
But you should also focus on boosting collagen production in your body if you want to get rid of annoying cellulite on legs. Cellulite forms when our connective tissue (made of collagen and elastin) shrinks and shortens. It happens naturally when women get older, but also due to the lack of nutrients.
In order to improve the collagen production, you want to consider taking supplements and nourishing your body with collagen-boosting foods.
One of the best foods for this are: egg whites, all berries, citrus fruits, leafy greens, bell peppers. That’s because when creating collagen, your body uses protein and vitamin C, zinc and copper. If you want to improve the quality of your skin, you should definitely focus of foods that contain these nutrients.
If you experience severe cellulite on legs, you should aim to get as many collagen-boosting products as possible. One way is to take collagen peptides and supplements. They will decrease the appearance of cellulite and make the skin firmer.
As for the topical treatments that may build collagen in the skin, like Retin-A or creams with retinol or vitamin C, they can be a good addition to your anti-cellulite strategy.
I believe that the best exercises to get rid of cellulite on legs are weight-lifting and resistance training. At least, that’s what works best for me and the my clients. Cardio and other types of activity are really great. But the skin on your legs is loose and bumpy, strength training will improve it tremendously!
That’s the fact – strong muscles have the ability to impact the tightness and tone of the connective tissue in the skin. So even if you don’t lose weight but train regularly, you will see the difference in no time. You just need to be consistent.
Start lifting with light weights 2-3 times a week. Then add more reps and more weights (if you are okay with that). I personally don’t go heavy because I’m not allowed to (due to health issues), but even 12kg kettlebells make such a difference to me! I do a lot of squats, lunges and other complex moves. And my legs are really tones and nice-looking. All the hard work definitely pays off!
Please check my post “Anti-cellulite workouts for legs” to find my best recommendation and video workouts you can do at home to ditch cellulite.
In general, my tips is to use any exercises with the focus on legs – it can be cardio, it can be HIIT, it can be heavy lifting. Just make sure your legs are always in work.
Some specialists also recommend exercising on an empty stomach to boost fat loss and build the muscles at the same time. I love this strategy and feel good when I train like that. But you should listen to your body. If you have really low energy in the morning or feel nauseous, feel free to choose another time and train only after you grab a bite. It’s all about finding the balance.
As it was mentioned earlier, cellulite on legs may appear due to poor circulation in the skin. Specialists think that the capillaries and blood vessels that bring nutrients to the skin begin to deteriorate and leak lymphatic fluid into your fat cells, which get engorged. These fat cells cluster together, poofed up with liquid, and move toward the surface of the skin, causing lumps and bumps that we call cellulite.
One promising remedy is massage. It doesn’t mean you need the help of a professional massage therapist. If you can opt for it, great! But if it’s not the case, you can do everything at home. Check my article “Anti-cellulite massage” with different techniques, tools and video tutorials on how to do massage at home and get results fast.
Another great idea is to use contrast showers (alternating hot and cold applications) to tighten and firm the skin on your legs. Contrast hydrotherapy is popular in many high-end spas and salons. But you can do it at home as well. To lose cellulite, you shower the affected areas 2-3 minutes with warm and then 2-3 minutes with cold water, and vice versa. The whole process may take about 10 minutes.
This method is surprisingly effective and you can see the results almost right away – an immediate reduction in the appearance of cellulite happens due to the fluid effect. Such routine improves circulation, activates your metabolism and stimulates cell renewal.
Dry brushing and vacuum cup massage may be another great way to improve the blood circulation and remove excess water. You can do all the techniques yourself and see how your body responds to it.
In my case, the cellulite on my legs was the result of hormonal imbalance and severe water retention. That’s why lymphatic drainage massage worked the best for me and gave me almost instant results. But I know many people who swear by vacuum cup massage and dry brushing. All these methods are worth trying.
As a quick recap:
- Cellulite on legs and thighs develops because these areas naturally have more fatty tissue
- Use weight-lifting to tone your leg muscles and reduce cellulite
- Focus on a healthy low-carb diet for the best results
- Take vegan collagen and eat foods that boost collagen production
- Detox your body to get rid of excess toxins that lead to cellulite
- Do regular massage and use any other techniques to firm the skin
I hope this article helps you to create a strategy on how to get rid of cellulite on legs and thighs. It’s not a quick process. We gain weight and develop cellulite for years! So we can’t expect cellulite to disappear overnight. But it is possible to ditch cellulite if you are strategic and consistent. I wish you the best of luck on this journey.
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