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What is Anti-Cellulite Massage, Why it Works

Anti-Cellulite massage
Written by Sonia Naz

To find a more toned skin and feel comfortable in his new jersey, we believe in anti-cellulite massage, to be true. We tell you why.

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Kneading, stretching, smoothing, tapping the skin … There is no better way to get rid of its annoying dimples. By the way, palpate-roll targeted has been doing the job for not far from forty years.

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What is new and interesting is the approach of a physiotherapist, Anne Cali, who convinced the phlebologist Philippe Blanchemaison to launch a study on ten patients to validate the results of his manual massage. It is after years of practice of paper-rolling traditional that she finds that her gesture has gradually changed, that it is more effective and acts faster. She then asks herself to describe her technique she calls GAD (drag, press, take off).

The protocol of the study: fifteen sessions of 30 minutes at a rate of three per week. One month later, there is evidence of a marked improvement in the quality of the skin and an average loss of 3.7 centimeters in the thighs and 8 centimeters in waist circumference. Spectacular! The explanation of the physio? “With this method, it’s like doing lymphatic drainage and a traditional palpating and rolling together at the same time. ”


“The hand adapts to the reliefs of the body and allows a deep seizure of tissues, dermis, and hypodermis, even in areas with a bone relief such as waist or hips,” observes Anne Cali. “The mechanical action of the hand on the tissues leads to a proven biological response,” says Dr. Blanchemaison.

This phenomenon of mechanotransduction acts on the fibroblast (the cutaneous cell guaranteeing firmness) and will produce 15% to 30% more collagen. Interesting when we know that this production decreases with age and that the stiffening of the collagen fibers is responsible for the aggravation of the orange peel appearance and relaxation. Another target? The lymphatic system. “The palpate-rolling drains and improves the appearance of the skin by releasing trapped water between the fat cells,” says the phlebologist.

Hence a loss in centimeters that can be bluffing, since these techniques also promote lipolysis, in other words, the destocking of fat cells. And that’s not all. “During the massage, endorphins, or hormones of well-being, are released, which contributes to the physical and psychological relaxation, underlines Anne Cali. The lifting of areas of muscle tension and the release of heat caused by the rubbing of hands on the skin contribute to the feeling of well-being. ”


Regularity: the pros are formal, no need to start with two massages, stop, then resume the next month. The ideal? Two sessions minimum per week. And if you start to see a result from the fifth, it often takes ten, and more in case of old cellulitis and fibrosis. “It’s like sports,” says physio Odile Vilain. One session a week is maintenance, but to improve the figure, you need two.

That’s a real budget, so do as much as you can. Because, as targeted as it is, a message will give little satisfaction if one does not put in “format cure”, according to the expression of Claire Martichoux, the founder of the institutes Les Petits Soins. “The best way to stimulate lipolysis is to avoid sugars and industrial fats, to be vigilant food and sports,” says Dr. Blanchemaison. His advice: walk 30 to 45 minutes after the massage to burn the mobilized fat cells during the session. “The whole silhouette strategy is not based on massage alone,” agrees Anne Cali. As the results are fast, most women do not want to ruin it, so they pay attention to what they eat, they want to move more and not miss their pool or Pilates session.

The more you solicit the deep muscles, the better the venous return, the less cellulite you will have. “I find this energizing massage. Afterward, I feel more invigorated and it motivates me to pay attention to what I eat. I do not take more sugar at the end of the meal as before, I do not even want, “says Valerie,


During the first appointment, the physio or beautician questions you and looks at your skin to identify a possible vascular fragility and determine the age and type of cellulite: adipose, edematous (with water retention) or fibrous. Often, the practitioner then takes the measurements of the areas to be treated (arms, stomach, thighs …) with precise markers that will allow him to correctly control the centimeter loss at the end of treatment.

The targeted massage on one or two zones maximum lasts 20 to 45 minutes, the meeting 30 to 90 minutes according to the practitioners. Some like to prepare the skin before and offer a sweat. “It’s important to activate the elimination of toxins,” says physiotherapist Nicole Desnoë. Others focus on flushing out knots and other points of muscular and energetic tension. “A completely stressed person must relax before losing, stress can block everything,” observes Sophie Arches, an expert in manual drainage.

Finally, there are the hardcore pros of oil or, conversely, dry maneuvers, and those who moisturize the skin with a cream. Most take advantage of this special moment to advise a better lifestyle and the practice of self-massage, the capital boost to reclaim his body and boost the effects of his cure.


A key to five to ten sessions, a clear improvement in the appearance of orange peel, more or less important depending on the type of cellulite and the treated area, cellulite leaving faster on the stomach than on the thighs. “The skin is slacker, smoother, and shinier thanks to the slid pressures that cause blood flow to the area massaged,” notes Anne Cali.

Note that one also loses centimeters when one completes by a regular self-massage (see page 178). Then you have to maintain one session per month. For the most motivated, it is necessary “to follow at least a weekly session of Aquagym or Aquabiking,” advises Odile Vilain.


Some areas are more sensitive than others, especially when there is fibrosis. The maneuvers palpate-rolling is rarely comfortable but, according to the pros, they must always remain bearable. “The pain causes reflex contractures of the muscles, a defense of the body to avoid tissue damage.

The massage can also generate bruises and even varicosities. In the case of blue, the practitioner should not massage the next time. It’s up to him to modulate the intensity of his pressure and to be attentive to your feelings. It’s up to you to say when it hurts.

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About the author

Sonia Naz

I'm a Review Content Writer since 2013. I provide research driven and unbiased buying guides to help you make smart decisions. I give authentic, trusted and unbiased reviews to help people for making better decisions.

1 Comment

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