Working with health and fitness experts definitely has its perks. One morning over a shared cup of coffee, I casually asked Thrive's resident health coach Michelle Pellizzon how a friend (meaning me) could reduce the appearance of cellulite. Here are two methods she recommended, and what happened when I tried them.
Dry Brushing With Yerba Prima Tampico Skin Brush
Dry brushing wasn't as uncomfortable as I expected, at least not on my feet, legs, back, or arms. My chest and torso were a different story, however, so I learned to brush more softly and slowly there. The process was simple: I scrubbed gently in an upward motion for about five minutes until my skin turned chalky and slightly pink. Then I showered and moisturized with Acure Organics Firming Lemongrass Body Lotion with Moroccan Argan Oil.
Obviously, my stretch marks didn't disappear immediately, but my skin felt fresh, exfoliated, and super soft. But after I repeated the treatment for four days, to my surprise, I started to notice a difference. My skin not only grew less sensitive to the brush, but also looked tighter, especially on the backs of my upper thighs.
DIY Caffeine-Infused Coconut Oil Scrub
Caffeine is thought to increase blood flow to "problem" areas when used topically, therefore temporarily reducing the look of dimpled skin. To give test drive this theory, I melted coconut oil in a sauce pan then mixed in some coffee grounds to form an oily, brown-specked paste that looked disgusting but smelled divine.
I waited until my husband and dog were fast asleep, for fear of them seeing the mess I was making in the kitchen and bathroom (the former hates a messy kitchen; the latter is forbidden from licking up coffee because it's toxic for pups).
Once the coast was clear, I headed to the bathroom, lathered up, massaged it, then let it sit for about five minutes, then showered off. The coffee grounds exfoliated while the coconut oil moisturized, revealing velvety soft gams. Unfortunately, though, the magic seemed to wear off soon afterward.
Hate to say it, but the old adage "If it sounds too good to be true, then it probably is” applied in this case, at least for me. Both treatments gave me some results, but didn't seem to last—and dry brushing and/or scrubbing every day isn't really practical.
While I'm sure these two all-natural solutions help diminish the appearance of cellulite for some women, I haven't yet found an effective long-term remedy. And Michelle confirmed that cellulite is genetic—typically you either have it, or you don't—and there's really no way to permanently get rid of it (though some report smoothing results from taking collagen supplements).
That said, I'm going to keep dry brushing and using the scrub because there are 200 days until summer. I have my fingers crossed that sometime between now and then I'll see more lasting results.
Photo credit: Alicia Cho