What is the cause of ugly orange skin?

Cellulite (orange peel skin, sometimes falsely referred to as Cellulitis) generally refers to a build up of dimpling in the skin, occurring particularly in areas around the thighs, upper-arm, hips and buttocks. Orange peel syndrome occurs almost exclusively in women. Men benefit from a different connective tissue structure. In overweight women, cellulite can occur even prior to the age of 25. Up to 90 percent of mature women will gain some cellulite and in varying degrees.

A woman’s fat tissue lies just under the skin. Cellulite occurs as the cylindrical collagen strands which cross that fat tissue swell in varying degrees due to cyclical female hormonal changes, rendering the collagen bands of the fatty layer visible. Cellulite can therefore be linked, among other things, to hormonal change. The claim that orange skin is caused by an accumulation of harmful contaminants in the connective tissue is yet to be scientifically proven.

The types of cellulite can be divided into three categories:

  1. Dimples visible on pressing the surface of the skin.
  2. Dimples visible when standing, although not when lying down.
  3. Dimples are also visible in the lying position.

Cellulite does not cause pain nor does it hinder any critical bodily functions. It is therefore important to realise that cellulite is not an illness but is a biologically associated change of the connective tissue. Problems induced by cellulite are of a rather aesthetic nature. These days there are many different methods of preventing or reducing orange skin. That said, none of the currently available treatments - medical or cosmetic - appear to be completely successful.

The following measures are often used to combat cellulite:

  • Generation of negative pressure with a special vacuum tube.
  • Lymphatic drainage.
  • Measures to increase blood-flow such as adequate exercise, interchanging hot/cold showers, massage.
  • Targeted nutrition. Increased intake of Vitamin C can help strengthen the connective tissue through the netting of collagen fibres. Amino acids l-arginine and l-glutamine are extremely effective in stimulating blood-flow and also help towards strengthening the muscle/connective tissue, giving the skin an aesthetically pleasing, firmer appearance.
  • Bathing in sea-salt.
  • Thermo-packs.
  • Extremely low temperatures for a short time- in a cold-room (Kryo chamber).
  • Micro-electro therapy.

Given that cellulite affects the lower layers of the skin structure, successful results cannot be achieved through use of creams, ointments or other cosmetic treatments. At most, the mechanical process of massaging affected areas could potentially achieve a limited positive result. Liposuction may well remove an element of body fat, however the dimples consistent with orange skin remain, or develop again later.

Summary: Women have little influence on cellulite. The ugly orange skin can, however, be best combatted through participation in certain sports in combination with massage and targeted nutrition (rich in amino acids, particularly l-arginine and l-glutamine).


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