The ResidentAdo is 16, tall, slim and pretty, and yesterday tried to buy some cellulite cream. After we had picked ourselves up off the rather grubby Carrefour floor, we told her that they don't work.
"They don't work" we said.
"This one does" said she.
"No, none do" we said.
"Yes, this one does" said she.
"It's a con, they don't work, it's the rubbing that helps" said I.
"Get your mother to buy it" said her father.
And that was that, she put it back and I suppose we'll see what she can get out of her mother.
I wondered why a young girl might think she needs to rub a bunch of dubious chemicals on her legs to get rid of imaginary cellulite. Well, we are in France, home of the gullible magic-potion/pill-for-all ills-believing woman, but really, SIXTEEN!
French women spend a fortune on these cellulite creams when a healthy diet, exercise and drinking lots of water is all you need. I remember my mother saying that when she was enduring radiotherapy, she had to drink two litres of water per day. This was a bind and the treatment was wearing, but on the bright side, she lost the cellulite on her legs.
Studies continue to show that cellulite creams don't work, but apparently women who use them are like Creationists: they don't accept the science, they want to believe the fantasy. Who wouldn't? It's boring drinking lots of water, it's tedious having to get out there and exercise, and it's often dull eating a healthy diet. They involve a potential lifestyle change from hedonistic self-indulgence to more healthily rigorous self-control. It's so much easier just to fork out 20Euros plus and enjoy the sensation of applying specialist silky creams on one's legs.
The thing is, you don't need to spend wads of cash on cellulite cream as they do no more than moisturize legs. You can get the same effect by keeping the skin exfoliated with some sort of mitt and massaging in normal moisturizer regularly. French women spend a lot of time looking after their bodies and it's probably this regular application of creams which help them keep cellulite at bay. As they get bigger, however, I think we'll be seeing more dimpled behinds on the beaches in the summer.