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Rude Looks

Bye bye cellulite

Fed up with orange peel thighs? Read Rude Health’s guide to how to reduce the appearance of cellulite using a number of methods.

If you’re dreading wearing a bikini on the beach this summer because you suffer from cellulite, you’re not alone. In fact, it doesn’t matter how skinny, wealthy or famous you are, the vast majority of women and some men are likely to suffer from it. Cellulite gives the skin a dimpled or orange-peel like appearance and is related to a lack of fluid drainage because of genetic, hormonal and even environmental reasons. It can affect women of any size, weight and body structure.

Ellen Cox is a qualified Professional Aromatherapist based in the west of Ireland. “Women’s cell structure in the upper (adipose) layers of the skin is different to that of men’s,” she says,”so women are more prone to cellulite than men. Contributing factors are fluid retention, toxic waste accumulation, poor circulation and lymph flow.”

While there’s no miracle cure for cellulite, there are a number of things you can do to shift it so that you don’t have to cover up every summer. One of the first things to consider according to Finn Murray of the Hopsack in Rathmines is whether your bowel is working properly. If it is not you could be retaining toxins, so look into how you can improve its function.

Eat to beat cellulite

Finn Murray says, “There is a lot you can do with foods to reduce cellulite. Detoxifying liver-cleansing foods include lemon, cucumber, beetroot and sulphurous vegetables such as broccoli, cabbages, garlic and asparagus. These help the body to excrete oestrogen.”

Fruit and vegetables are generally good for cellulite because they are packed with antioxidants which assist in the formation of good-quality elastin fibres in the skin. Eating plenty of foods rich in vitamin C such as blueberries, oranges, tomatoes and peas help strengthen the skin’s connective tissue, making it less prone to the condition. Papaya, pineapple and blackcurrant are also recommended as they break down the fibres between fat cells.

Dry skin brushing

“Dry brushing is an absolutely essential activity to include when treating cellulite,” says Ellen Cox. “It helps assist the body in the removal of waste, improves lymph flow and stimulates circulation. It exfoliates dry skin and gently stretches the connective tissue to help rejuvenate the production of collagen and elastin fibres. It is important to choose a soft bristled brush and always brush towards the heart in small circular strokes. The best time to do it is for about three minutes before a shower.”

DIY massage

While standing in the shower use your hands to squeeze the skin in the areas of your body where you have cellulite. The theory is that you can break down the fatty deposits just below the skin’s surface by manipulating the flesh.

According to Ellen Cox, “Regular aromatherapy massage will assist in the elimination of toxins, help reduce fluid retention plus improve circulation and lymph flow. Choose from Black Pepper, Cypress, Cedarwood, Geranium, Grapefruit, Juniperberry, Lavender and Lemon essential oils. Three or four oils may be used together, diluted in a base oil and massaged into the skin.”

Finn Murray says, “Essential oils from the citrus group such as grapefruit can really help get rid of cellulite. Mix three to four drops of grapefruit oil with a sweet almond, jojoba or wheatgerm base oil and massage into the skin after showering.”

Super seaweed

We are lucky in Ireland that seaweed products are readily available. Health stores sell packets of seaweed bath that consist of dried seaweed in a net. Simply run very hot water over the seaweed and let it soak for a few minutes. Now soak away in the bath. The water will turn a yellowy/orange colour and feel oily, all of which means it is working. Seaweed is a great skin detoxer, it can also help stimulate the body to get rid of waste and reduce the appearance of cellulite.


Any exercise that gets you moving is good for muscle and skin condition, but yoga and pilates are a real help for cellulite as are HIIT workouts. HIIT stands for high intensity interval training and means that you do intense exercise in short bursts with rests in between. It can be done anywhere, including at home and burns more fat than normal aerobic exercise.

Natural help for cellulite

  • Tonics with active ingredients such as rosemary can aid circulation to the skin.
  • Vitamins C and A and zinc support collagen and skin structure.
  • Selenium is a powerful antioxidant that can help the body fight toxins.
  • Collagen capsules can help improve appearance of cellulite – health stores sell capsules containing hyaluronic acid, alpha lipoic acid, astaxanthin, vitamins E and C, lycopene and co enzyme Q10.
  • Green tea is a powerful toner. Available as a tonic that you apply to skin.

For a certified lymph drainage massage practitioner visit

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