Cellulite is a term for lumpy, dimpled flesh on the thighs, hips, buttocks and abdomen. Cellulite is most common in adolescent and adult women.

Cellulite isn't a serious medical condition, but it can be unsightly. Cellulite might make you self-conscious about wearing shorts or a swimming suit.

Many cellulite treatments, including massages or cellulite creams, advertise remarkable results. Most of these treatments don't live up to their claims.

Researchers are studying possible medical treatments. In the meantime, you can take steps to slightly improve the appearance of cellulite.

Symptoms Causes Risk factors

Cellulite looks like dimpled or bumpy skin. It's sometimes described as having a cottage cheese or orange peel texture.

Mild cellulite can be seen only when the skin is pinched — the dimpling appears in the pinched skin. More-severe cellulite makes the skin appear rumpled and bumpy with areas of peaks and valleys.

Cellulite is most common around the thighs and buttocks, but it can be found on the breasts, lower abdomen and upper arms as well.

When to see a doctor

Cellulite isn't a serious medical condition, and treatment isn't necessary. In fact, many doctors consider cellulite a normal occurrence. However, if you're concerned about the appearance of your skin, see your doctor, dermatologist or plastic surgeon.

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