The Cure for Cellulite

FDA-approved Cellulaze can get rid of cellulite with one doctor’s visit. The cost ranges from $2,500 to $12,000 but the procedure promises long-lasting results.

Only problem is that cellulite doesn’t actually need curing. Ninety percent of women past puberty have it. It’s simply the way women’s fat lays on their bodies. If you are a woman without cellulite there may be a problem, such as too-low bodyweight.

While cellulite is perfectly natural, Cellulaze works by singeing healthy connective fibers inside your body with a laser. It may be FDA-approved but this doesn’t sound too healthy.

Once upon a time cellulite was thought beautiful, as with the voluptuous women Rubens painted happily dancing in their dimpled flesh.

In her book, The Beauty Myth, Naomi Wolf points out that cellulite was classified as unsightly, disfiguring and “polluted with toxins” by Vouge in 1973.

Untrue. But a good way to sell magazines offering advice, along with products and procedures advertised in their pages to hide or get rid of it.

Wolf goes on to observe:

Women’s flesh, you could acknowledge, is textured, rippled, dense, and complicated; and the way fat is laid down on female muscle, on the hips and thighs that cradle and deliver children and open for sex, is one of the most provocative qualities of the female body. Or you could turn this into an operable condition…

How can an “ideal” be about women if it is defined as how much of a female sexual characteristic does not exist on the woman’s body?

Do we need a cure for cellulite? Or do we need to cure a sick society that is obsessed with finding ways to make women feel bad about themselves? And might the best remedy be love for your body instead?

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About BroadBlogs

I have a Ph.D. from UCLA in sociology (emphasis: gender, social psych). I currently teach sociology and women's studies at Foothill College in Los Altos Hills, CA. I have also lectured at San Jose State. And I have blogged for Feminispire, Ms. Magazine, The Good Men Project and Daily Kos. Also been picked up by The Alternet.

Posted on May 16, 2012, in body image, feminism, gender, psychology, sexism, women and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.

  1. Nearly woman I’ve ever know, including myself, has at least a little cellulite *somewhere* on her body. Mine is on my thighs, directly underneath my buttocks…and no matter what exercises I do, it stays there, even as the rest of that area tones up and gets muscular. I’ve come to accept it for what it is, since my BMI is healthy and I think I look pretty good.

    There was one woman I knew in college who claimed in our Human Sexuality class that she had no cellulite and that women who *did* have “unsightly dimples” were just unmotivated slobs. Then again, she was 5’8″ and a size 0…her collarbones and ribs were markedly visible when she wore tight clothes, and her eyes were sunken. Our teacher (a man!)tried to tell her that women simply have fat lay differently on their muscles than men do, and that body fat helps greatly with childbearing and heat retention, but she was having none of it.

    I don’t know, BroadBlogs. On the one hand we have women literally starving themselves so they can look like Photoshopped models, and on the other we have people who are grossly obese with diabetes, inability to walk, blood pressure issues, and sleep apnea who get upset when their doctors tell them to lose weight. Why can we not find a good balance, and just promote healthy lifestyles and diets, rather than taking extremes?

    • Yeah, I think a healthy balance is best.

      But advertisers like to make people feel bad about themselves, and promote unrealistic ideals, to get people to buy, buy, buy.

      And any woman with estrogen should have cellulite. So all women should have it if they’re a healthy weight.

  2. This is insane. I’ve heard about lotions and creams that are supposed to fade out stretch marks or cellulite. But surgery, lasic surgery is so ridicuous. What’s crazier is that people with the money will go through with it willingly. Cellulite is natural and nothing that can be prevented by anything. It’s like people getting botox to stop wrinkles from showing on their aging skin. Aging is natural, why try to stop something that is inevitable?

  3. I don’t think we need a cure for cellulite, but I think it would be nice to have an option to have it for the people that do want it. Cellulite is a normal part of our bodies and almost all women will have it at some point in their lives, whether it is after puberty or after losing a lot of weight. While I personally think that we as a society should embrace the complexity of our own bodies and learn to love our bodies for what it is, I also think that we should have an option to cure it as well. Some women may not like the cellulite on their thighs or stomach and that is completely fine. To have an option to remove it is vital, as we are not forcing people to do something that they don’t want to do. Having a cure for cellulite will result in the best for both worlds, for the people who don’t want to remove it and for the people who do.

    Loving the way you look is a very important key to self confidence and happiness, and if women need a cure for cellulite to love the way you look then so be it.

    • Biggest problem is that surgery is dangerous. Some people die. Better for women to accept –and even celebrate — their naturally feminine bodies, I believe.

  4. It’s yet another ordinary occurrence that is conceptualized as a problem that has to be overcome – and the fact that it’s so prevalent and essentially a normal feature of women’s bodies means that ‘treating’ cellulite is a cash cow that the media, fitness, beauty and even medical industries can milk for all its worth. Tapping into our insecurities means big business…and if women are even worrying about the way they look during sex, it is easy to see how and why this can be exploited.

  5. Vogue is not alone in making people feel inadequate about themselves. To compound the matter, the magazines are in cahoots with Madison Avenue and promote whatever the market wants (or thinks it wants).

    We live in a culture that continually tells us that we are not good enough. You’re not tall enough, not thin enough, not smart enough, not man enough, etc. But if you just buy this product, or have this procedure done, all will be right with the world and you will fit in and be accepted.

    It’s not us the need reforming. Our culture/society needs to accept the difference in each of us. Now that is really something to celebrate.

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