Can Liposuction Get Rid Of Cellulite?

Written by Elizabeth Geddes-Bruce, MD, Board Certified Dermatologist on February 18, 2020 No Comments

liposuction and cellulite

Nearly 80% of all women will experience cellulite in their lifetime. The puckering effect of cellulite occurs when fat under the surface of the skin pushes up against normal connective tissue bands. Differences in the amount of fat or quality of connective tissue determine how pronounced and noticeable cellulite is.

While some may believe cellulite is fat-related, the truth is that every woman is susceptible to cellulite development, no matter how fit they are. Losing weight, while being positive for your health for many other reasons, will not get rid of cellulite. This is the reason why liposuction is an ineffective treatment for cellulite.

Why Liposuction Will Not Remove Cellulite

Liposuction is a popular body contouring procedure for good reason. Liposuction instantly removes stubborn, unwanted fat from the body, allowing the silhouette of the body to be contoured in a way that enhances its appearance. You can see the benefits of liposuction by visiting our liposuction photo gallery.

Unfortunately, the dramatic results of liposuction do not result in a reduction in the appearance of cellulite. While some liposuction techniques like SmartLipo provide skin tightening benefits the effect is often still not enough to remove cellulite. This is because cellulite exists in the upper layers of the skin that liposuction does not target. Ironically, liposuction (and even natural fat loss) can make cellulite worse by emphasizing the puckering effect on the skin.

Effective Cellulite Treatments

While liposuction may be ineffective at addressing cellulite, there are other effective treatments available for even the most severe forms of cellulite:

  • Thermage is a non-invasive procedure that can contours and tightens the skin. It delivers specialized radiofrequency energy into the skin in order to provide a tightening effect. In a single treatment, Thermage can smooth dimples on thighs and buttocks with lasting results. The procedure also restores collagen connective tissue and improves circulation and metabolism in cellulite-prone tissues to reduce fluid and improve the appearance of cellulite.
  • Subscision is a minimally-invasive surgical procedure that works by cutting the fibrous bands beneath the skin with a specially designed needle to release the bands causing tension. The subcutaneous fat below the skin’s surface is then redistributed evenly to create a smooth surface. In some cases, patients will also benefit from a fat transfer procedure to use the patient’s own fat and tissue to fill in any pockets created from severing the tethered bands.
  • Avéli is the first cellulite treatment with the ability to identify and release the precise septa bands that lead to dimpling on the buttocks and thighs. When the targeted bands are released, skin appears smoother. This simple in-office treatment is minimally invasive and has the ability to provide significant results in as little as a single treatment.


Elizabeth Geddes-Bruce, MD

Elizabeth Geddes-Bruce, MD is a board certified dermatologist and dermatologic surgeon specializing in the practice of both cosmetic and medical dermatology. Dr. Geddes-Bruce is fellowship-trained in cosmetic dermatology and laser surgery. She served as Chief Resident at one of the nation’s top dermatology programs – The University of Texas at Houston and M.D. Anderson Cancer Center.

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