Where does cellulite come from?

I'm 27 and I weigh around 100 lbs. I may not be the most active person in the world, but I'm super skinny, and I don't understand how I ended up with this much cellulite on my butt. What caused it?


F, 29, Iowa

Tags:woman age 25-34 90-109 lbs cellulite skinny causes butt

I have been as thin as a string bean my entire life, and yet, it seems as if I have carried cellulite since I can remember. I never really cared about it enough to let it bother me and have zero problems wearing shorts in front of other people. However, it has sparked some questions from less polite friends of mine over the years, so one day I decided to find out why I had cellulite so that I could give them an answer beyond I don’t know. It turns out that cellulite isn’t as much about being fat as people typically think it is. It has a lot more to do with skin losing moisture as we age and breaking down. I could start doing strength training exercises to tighten the connective tissue, but like I said, it’s never really bothered me, so I think I’ll pass.

I have weighed no more than 110 pounds my entire life, yet when I hit my mid twenties I could not help but notice an unappealing plethora of mini dimples splayed across the vicinity of my rear. It started to look like an orange peel. I was completely mystified by how they had gotten there, so I did what any modern millennial would do and took to the internet for answers. Apparently, the collagen layer between my fat and skin has been busy thinning as I age, and this has allowed my fat to poke through my skin and create that unwanted pitted look. I have been slowly fixing this by taking collagen supplements and using skin replenishing moisturizers. I may look into laser treatments that can help reduce cellulite.

Cellulite has been bugging me for ages, so I ended up doing some research to find out the cause behind it. I was surprised to learn that roughly 90 percent of all women actually have cellulite! What we call cellulite is basically uneven skin that is caused by something much deeper in the body. We have these thick bands of connective tissue that stretch between the skin and the muscle. The fibers help to hold the skin in place, and the space between them is filled with fat cells. However, skin tends to shift around a bit, so you can see the indentations caused by the fibers pulling tight against the skin. If you gain weight, the extra fat cells pushing against the skin can make it worse. It might also be more noticeable if you have thin skin that shows the underlying structure more clearly. As you can see, it's possible for anyone to get cellulite, even when they're super skinny like you. I had cellulite back when I was a size 00, and I still have it now that I'm a size 8. I am going to visit a plastic surgeon and ask about procedures like liposuction or a FDA-approved procedure I read about called cellulaze to try and reduce my cellulite. If It doesn't seem like a good procedure for me I may start working with a personal trainer to try and lose some excess fat in my problem areas.

I was very thin and ate very healthy, organic foods. However, and very much to my dismay, I found myself with a large amount of cellulite in my thighs and buttocks. The kicker? I was only 29! After doing some online research as to the cause of this anomaly, I discovered wherein my problem lie. I hadn’t been exercising and my muscles had become soft and loose as a result. I also learned that we lose elastin in our skin as we age, and you have to replace that if you want to keep firm, smooth skin. I immediately proceeded to look up exercises that targeted my thighs and butt and began doing them. I also started a daily ritual of coating myself with moisture enriched lotions and cellulite creams to make up for the elastin I lost in my skin. I noticed a pretty remarkable difference after two weeks, and I now have a nicely rounded backside. Usually exercising doesn't get rid of all your your dimpling though. There are cosmetic cellulite treatments that can also help to improve elastin in your skin.

I wondered where all the cellulite in my thighs was coming from – I was a healthy weight and lived a healthy lifestyle! I had always thought that was something that happened primarily to those who were massively overweight until I noticed I was carrying around a healthy dose of cottage cheese myself. The internet told me that a good diet alone was not enough to prevent the appearance of cellulite on my person. I was informed by all the fitness and health blogs that I needed to be doing regular exercise alongside ingesting foods or supplements that would aid in replacing my dwindling collagen supply. I have never been a big exerciser and don’t find it fun at all. I would much rather eat my way to good health, but apparently that’s not good enough for old Mr. Cellulite. So, I instead turned to caffeine creams and lotions, and they seem to be helping.

A lot of people are under the impression that only the obese get cellulite, and the less fat you carry, the less likely you will be to catch cellulite. These are both huge misconceptions. I’ve had many friends who were fit or just skinny and they carried a healthy amount of cellulite on them. When my girlfriend discovered her first patch of cottage cheese, she melted to pieces and went into a depression. She told me she felt like an old lady whose youth was fast flying behind her (and I must admit, her dramatic behavior made it hard to hold back from laughing in her face.) She had just turned 29 years old, and was having a hard time making peace with the big 30 that was waiting for her on her next birthday. I started looking online at what cellulite is and what was causing it. Turns out, it’s nothing more than your skin reducing collagen production and elastin, which in turn, allows your fat to poke through more. I talked her into trying collagen supplements and applying more lotion, and her cellulite disappeared pretty quickly.