Cellulite is the dimpled appearance of the skin that some people have on their hips, thighs, and buttocks. It is much more common in women than in men because of differences in the way fat cells, muscle, and connective tissue are distributed in men’s and women’s skin.
Fat deposits that push and distort the connective tissues beneath the skin because of the appearance of lumpiness, leading to the characteristic “cottage cheese” changes in the appearance of the skin. Physicians refer to cellulite as edematous fibrosclerotic panniculopathy (EFP).
Cellulite is unrelated to the condition known as cellulitis, which is a spreading bacterial infection or inflammation of the skin and tissues beneath.
Frequently Asked Questions
The dimpled appearance of cellulite is a normal variant — one way that many perfectly normal human beings look. Heredity, skin thickness, gender, the amount and distribution of body fat, and age can all influence the extent to which cellulite is present or visible.
Cellulite occurs due to shrinkage or shortening of the fibrous tissue cords that anchor the skin. While cellulite is more common in women than men, men also can develop cellulite. Cellulite occurs in people of all races living all around the globe. Although female hormones may play a role in contributing to this pattern of fat distribution, cellulite is not treatable by hormone therapy.
Cellulite is more common in women than in men. Having a family history of cellulite is another risk factor. Pregnancy and an inactive lifestyle may increase the risk of developing cellulite.
Cellulite causes dimpling of the skin and a lumpy appearance to the flesh. Cellulite can cause an “orange peel” appearance to the skin. It is most commonly located in the hips, buttocks, and abdomen.
Sometimes it occurs in the breasts, upper arms, or belly. With mild cellulite, the dimpling is not apparent unless pinching the skin.