Fitness Weight Loss

Scientifically proven ways to get rid of cellulite

By Kim Crawford, M.D. Last updated: October 4, 2018
scientifically proven ways to get rid of cellulite

So, you think there’s no “cure” for cellulite?

scientifically proven ways to get rid of celluliteIf we look for all of the scientifically proven ways to get rid of cellulite, we’ll find only one fool-proof way. I’ll reveal this information in the article.

Let me first pique your interest with a discussion of what we mean by “cure” or “get rid of.”

If you only have a small or even moderate amount of cellulite, then there are plenty of scientifically based ways to reduce the amount and/or appearance of cellulite so much that you likely won’t even notice that you have any, unless you do the “cellulite pinch. Doing “the pinch” as you see in this picture shows dimpled looking “orange-peel” skin most women have.

The causes of cellulite are likely gender specific (hormones, obviously), and the dimpling appearance is caused by connective tissue “bundling up” fat cells. I’ll reveal the total cure, but stay with me, or you’ll miss more cost-effective ways proven to reduce either the amount or the appearance (or both) of cellulite.

Surgery works:

Cellulaze is a laser that’s inserted under the skin using a few small incisions. A surgeon uses the laser to sizzle away the septae bands that are pulling down on the skin. The laser also cooks pockets of fat, reducing bulges. The company that makes the laser says it also helps thin, sagging skin. I’m not so sure about the latter.

The surgery may take several hours, depending on the size of the area treated. The doctor injects a painkiller to numb the area before the procedure. Recovery may take 3 to 4 weeks to get over bruising and soreness. Other side effects include temporary swelling, discoloration, and possible itching. Real results are seen about 6 months after the surgery. The cost is a little under ten thousand dollars, on average. You’ll have very tiny scars at the incision sites which can be faded out with lasers and chemical peels over time. This is quite pricey, but more tricks are coming.


Before you get excited about this being a scientifically proven way to get rid of cellulite, let me say, “not so fast”. As you know, often the hype precedes the science. I’ll write about the proven benefits of cryotherapy soon, but right now cellulite and fat loss just aren’t one of them. However, if you examine the physiology of what cryotherapy is doing, amping up mitochondria (your body’s energy factories) to make more ATP, and possibly causing decreased blood flow to fat cells, you can postulate what you wish.

Some famous people in the entertainment industry swear by cryo-tanks for fat loss and cellulite ablation. However, I looked in every possible place to find published scientific information on this—positive or negative—, and I found absolutely nothing as of this publication date. Now, if done properly, cryotherapy can’t hurt you. Indeed, there is scientific evidence it helps with pain, depression, and diseases of mitochondrial dysfunction such as multiple sclerosis.

There are positive studies for pain improvement in osteoarthritis and fibromyalgia, which is now thought to be a disease caused by biotoxins, including toxic mold. Is the pain relief in fibromyalgia due to decreased toxin load as some claim? Who knows? It just hasn’t been studied. My opinion is the pain relief isn’t due to toxin release. So, what about cellulite and toxin release, then? This hasn’t been studied either. I don’t know if or when someone will consider studying how, if or why cryotherapy might work for cellulite, but I seriously doubt any toxin connection. The bottom line on “cryo” is a session will cost as little as $35 and as much as $150, with the average ranging $65-$75. If you want to experiment, just know that you’re experimenting.


Endermologie does NOT work; do not waste your money. This warning is a harsher warning than usual. This nonsensical machine is sold for cellulite reduction, and many people are spending their hard earned money and wasting time going in for session after session.


I’m going to withhold judgment on “mesotherapy” because the main ingredient used in fat-reduction mesotherapy is the same drug used in under-the-chin fat reduction. The drug is Kybella. Kybella is deoxycholic acid. Deoxycholic acid has been used for decades as the principal ingredient in mesotherapy injections for fat (likely works) and cellulite reduction (no real evidence it works specifically). You can “do the math” here.


Far-infrared sauna therapy is great for your health. It causes you to sweat for one. Sweating by any method will induce toxin release from your bloodstream, through the pores of your skin. Believe it or not, some studies do indeed suggest there is a reduction of visible cellulite with far-infrared sauna (FIR) use. Due to this repeated observation, the cellulite-due-to-toxins theory has emerged.

These studies apparently spawned the proliferation of bio-ceramic-lined shorts which are said to use the body’s heat to generate far-infrared rays. They do indeed cause massive sweating, and after the “sweat,” clinical observations yield opinions that there is less visible cellulite. There is no data to support the role of toxins in the formation of cellulite, yet that myth abounds. In my opinion, the ceramic bio-shorts work by causing local tissue dehydration. We don’t know what the FIR does, but it’s such a healthy practice that I’m certainly not going to condemn it.

Surgical and non-surgical fat reduction:

Liposuction done in a variety of ways will remove fat. By definition, lessening fat will reduce the amount of cellulite you have. However, don’t look for any dramatic improvement in cellulite with only traditional liposuction. Similarly, the two new non-invasive fat reduction methods called CoolSculpting and SculpSure do indeed work for the reduction of fat. Do not expect cellulite reduction specifically from either of these two methods either.

Foods for fat loss:

First, let’s review the basics about how to decrease body fat—not just cellulite.

Being overweight is an inflammatory condition and inflammation in and of itself slows weight loss. I am assuming just about everyone with a cellulite issue wants less body fat. My anti-inflammatory diet plan provides an abundance of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and phytonutrients where you can have a moderate calorie intake without being hungry.

You want to eat about 30% protein/30% fat/40% carbs. This percentage is evolving, and new guidelines for optimal health and aging will likely have us all eating 30% carbs and 40% healthy fats. Stay tuned on this one. Stick to organic foods as much as possible and avoid GMO’s (Genetically Modified foods). I’d prefer you practice a Mediterranean diet rather than a Paleo diet. Paleo is loaded with inflammatory omega 6 fatty acids found in meats. However, for maximum results, follow the diet in my ebook at the end of this article.

Other fat loss “tools”:

Proper weight loss and hence body fat loss also requires adequate sleep. This means you do not need help falling asleep, staying asleep and you wake up refreshed.

Near perfect GI tract function is also mandatory for proper weight loss. I bet you didn’t know that. So many women suffer from constipation that I hope you’ll “round back” to that article. The health benefits of probiotics are many. We know they are mandatory for weight loss and therefore fat loss.

Good energy levels are essential for proper weight loss. Why? There are many reasons. If you are fatigued, you will reach for carbs. Now, stay with me on this next sequence. If you are fatigued, you are likely not getting proper sleep. If you are tired, you will not exercise. Right? Strength training, in particular definitely diminishes the appearance of cellulite.  So, use the material on this website to get yourself in fat-losing mode, and you will lower the amount and/or the appearance of your cellulite. Many people are jumping on the nutritional ketosis for weight loss bandwagon because it sure works!

Cellulite appearance reduction tricks:

1. Hydration: The more hydrated you are, the better the cellulite will look! Urine should be clear. That’s the easy way to know if you are hydrated enough.

2. Weight: If you need to lose weight, then great! THAT will shrink ALL fat including cellulite!

3. Collagen stimulation: Brushing/exfoliating any area does indeed stimulate collagen production and can help. It also slightly helps with cream penetration so brush first if you are using topical creams. Theoretically, any laser treatment like IPL or other collagen stimulating laser should help but nothing “out there” has been studied. As of late, microneedling devices and derma-rolling look promising. It seems to help the cause—not cure it; help it.

4. Lotions and potions: Studies show a reduction of the appearance of cellulite using caffeine creams and aminophylline creams. Retinol stimulates collagen so using it or anything else which stimulates collagen will help build more tissues around the dimpled skin to reduce the appearance further. (Not studied—just my two cents).

You can mix caffeine and aminophylline creams together. Strivectin has a great marketing team, but it just plain doesn’t work; Nivea either. Promising studies exist for appearance improvement with gotu kola, capsicum and ginger creams. There is no physiologic reason why you can’t mix any of these ingredients with caffeine and aminophylline.

5. Being tan (No, not a real tan from the sun!): The appearance of being tan makes cellulite appear less visible. However, actually getting tan breaks down collagen, gives you wrinkles and skin cancer. Therefore, don’t think I’m suggesting a suntan or a tanning booth tan. A nontoxic vegetable spray tan is pretty decent camouflage when combined with the above.


Now you are aware of the inexpensive things to try including being hydrated, eating healthfully, sleeping well and exercising. You can find a cryotherapy tank or a FIR Sauna at selected health spas, medical practices or fitness center to give 2-3 sessions a “try.”  Further, you can buy creams, a pair of far-infrared shorts, and a spray tan. If you want to get the one scientifically proven best way to get rid of cellulite, spend the money on surgery. Whatever you choose, I always recommend trying less “invasive” things first. The references below reveal that the least expensive best way to get rid of the appearance of cellulite is with the use of body-generated FIR.

 2011 Mar;10(1):30-5. doi: 10.1111/j.1473-2165.2010.00537.x.

Reduction in body measurements after use of a garment made with synthetic fibers embedded with ceramic nanoparticles.

Conrado LA, Munin E.
 2013 Mar;12(1):18-24. doi: 10.1111/jocd.12027.

Reductions in body measurements promoted by a garment containing ceramic nanoparticles: a 4-month follow-up study.

Conrado LA, Munin E.


  1. Dilute Sculptra injected with a microcannula combined with subcision is another nice strategy to improve cellulite.

    • Great comment. This must be a technique you’ve developed. Bravo. Nice to hear from you Dr. P- hope you’re doing well.

  2. I have the most unsightly cellulite and it’s just on my fronts of thighs. If I am to do home treatments what will work the best for the least money Dr.Kim?

    • HI Annette,
      Women with cellulite on their thighs get nice results with the pants and cream we have here on our site. You can augment that with a dermaroller at night. Of course, eating a healthy diet and losing fat/gaining muscle is the first and most important step. Good luck! Dr.Kim

  3. Oh hey Annette,
    I’ll tell you I tried those FIR shorts with the moorspa cream for MY thighs and unreal but they worked!

  4. Hi, I waited to try these. I am amazed. One “wearing” and I can see the difference. Amazing. Thanks!

FREE email consultation with Dr. Kim included with every purchase & FREE shipping on all orders over $150