We women certainly are not fans of cellulite and the dimpling skin on the back of our thighs can hold us back from embracing summer trends, shorts and short dresses. These negative feelings towards our own bodies may affect more than 90% of all women, as studies show that at least nine out of 10 women have it. Boo.
Whilst you're probably well aware of the term, do you know what cellulite actually is? Let us quickly explain...
Cellulite is basically the structure of fat and fibrous connective tissue that creates the appearance of skin dimpling under the skin. It can be caused by all kinds of factors hormones, genes, tight clothing and underwear, and yes, sometimes weight gain, but certainly not always. Many thin people have cellulite, and there are plenty of curvy ladies with perfectly smooth skin.
Sure, cleaning up your diet, doing more exercise, quitting smoking and losing weight (specifically decreasing your body fat percentage) may help, but it’s not guaranteed. There is no sure-fire way to get rid of cellulite, so women with it could hide their thighs forever in shame, or simply decide not to care.
It often makes us feel insecure, but why? Why do we care, is it for our own self esteem or is it because men get turned off by the orange-peel effect? It seems, actually, men don’t even care.
A recent study commissioned by RoC skincare, found that most men actually have 'cellulite blindness' - they don't even see it! One top of that, one in three have no idea what it even is. One in five men think cellulite is a type of battery (this did make us chuckle).
Yet the same study found more than half of the women said cellulite is their biggest cause of misery, while four out of five said it makes them feel bad about themselves. How have we got to such different ends of the same spectrum?
We interviewed Matthew*, 28, an IT consultant who has been in a long-term relationship for three years, about what he thinks about cellulite.
“Cellulite is rarely portrayed in photos and in advertisements, so I understand how a lot of women may feel slightly insecure about having it.”
According to him and his friends, a lot of men love women with thighs and butts that jiggle.He says:
“I would say that cellulite is attractive because I see it as raw beauty in a person. I feel that if a girl is fit and healthy it doesn't matter about the slight ripples on her skin. To me, it's more about them maintaining themselves.
Let’s say a person eats lots of heavy meat and fatty foods, doesn't work out or look after themselves, then sits around all day and complains about their physical health, appearance and cellulite. I’d think this is super unattractive and they should take action.
It's about appearance and your energy as well as looking after yourself and being proactive. Basically, if you’re healthy on the inside, you'll light up with a glowing energy and you'll project this good confident vibe. I don't think many people would be into a super-lazy girlfriend.”
So how much is too much? Is there a limit?
“Cellulite on the bum is fine, and even if it shows through a little in a summer dress then so be it. It's a bit of them at their raw state.”
Many women would be horrified with the idea of dimples showing through their skirt, yet you say this is nice. Where do women get this insecurity?
“I think in modern-day society we're taught and brought up to not be familiar with cellulite through adverts and posters, as everything is retouched these days so people will feel uncomfortable if they have it, and women in the photos don’t.
Women in ads are portrayed as fit, tight, lifted and slim, whereas men are portrayed as strong, masculine, and successful. No-one is going to see a slightly chubby man with cellulite advertising a perfume.
So we have to look past this fake advertising world we're having forced on us every day and find the truth. Every day we have to fight what adverts want us to believe is real life and what women and men should look like.”